Last week we announced the creation of the “Amy Rees Anderson Academic Entrepreneurs” Program at Utah State University in partnership with the Center For Growth And Opportunity and today I was so excited to get to go and meet with our very first cohort of female fellows in the program. I was blown away at how impressive these young ladies were and all I can tell you they are going to CHANGE THE WORLD! I kid you not. I couldn’t be prouder than I was today as I sat down with them to hold our first mentoring session. Here is a copy of the news release issued last week that explains more about the program:
Posted August 29, 2018 in News
Utah business icon partners with the Center for Growth and Opportunity at Utah State University to sponsor fellowships for female students pursuing careers in academia.
LOGAN, Utah — For Amy Rees Anderson, academic entrepreneurship is crucial for success in any field.
And she knows something about entrepreneurship.
From starting her career as a small business owner, to becoming founder and CEO of MediConnect Global — a company she grew and sold for over $377 million — she’s spent her entire career finding new and inventive ways to create value for her customers, employees, and companies.
Now, as founder of REES Capital and the IPOP Foundation, and author of a daily blog, one of Rees Anderson’s primary goals is to support opportunities for students — especially aspiring academic entrepreneurs — who advance ideas through the University that can help shape higher education and business.
“I believe the greatest opportunities for entrepreneurial success occur when there is collaboration between industry and academia,” said Rees Anderson. “If we can provide students exposure to the current challenges companies face and motivate students to think like entrepreneurs, we will increase the number of successful ideas spinning out of the universities into the marketplace.”
By partnering with the Center for Growth and Opportunity at Utah State University to create the Amy Rees Anderson Academic Entrepreneurs, a program for female students at Utah State University interested in pursuing graduate degrees or a career in high education, Rees Anderson hopes to encourage female students to become entrepreneurial leaders in business and academia.
“Our young women cannot be what they cannot see. Female students need to see more female professors and female business leaders as examples during their college years — both inside the classroom and outside of it,” said Rees Anderson. “The world needs more women of integrity who understand the unique obstacles women in business face.”
Selected students — known as fellows — will work on research projects across a variety of topics, including technology and innovation, barriers to entry for entrepreneurs, and the role of business and government in society.
“Research plays such an important role in helping us to understand how and why entrepreneurs succeed,” said Rees Anderson. “It helps identify market opportunities, best leadership practices, and inspires public policy modifications that, if made, could help remove barriers and encourage the expansion of entrepreneurial endeavors.”
The program will also provide mentorship and learning opportunities to aspiring female academic entrepreneurs.
“I experienced firsthand the unique benefits that entrepreneurship can afford women as it allowed me to be self-reliant while giving me the flexibility I needed to fulfill my most important role of being a mother to my two children,” said Rees Anderson. “I’d love to see more young women get to enjoy these same benefits.”
Rees Anderson’s most excited to work one-on-one with students in the program. She said she was blessed with great mentors in her career that have inspired her to pay-it-forward through sharing what she learned. She hopes her experiences, insight, and mentorship through the Amy Rees Anderson Academic Entrepreneurs program can inspire students to be leaders in whatever field they choose.
I feel incredibly blessed to be in a position in my life where I am able to donate my time, talents, and resources to help encourage young people, both male and female, to get their education and become self-reliant. And it is my hope that someday, when those students eventually get to a station in life that allows them to pay it forward, that they will make the choice to also give of their time, talents, and resources to support others who follow.
~Amy Rees Anderson