Cornell School of Hotel Administration now offering concentration in entrepreneurship

Apr 13, 2015

Contact:  Kristen Ciferri, 607.255.0179,

Cornell School of Hotel Administration now offering concentration in entrepreneurship
Ithaca, NY, April 13, 2015 – The Leland C. and Mary M. Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship at the School of Hotel Administration (SHA) at Cornell University is pleased to announce that SHA has begun offering a concentration in entrepreneurship.

Entrepreneurship courses are open to both undergraduate and graduate students from all majors throughout the university, although they are focused towards SHA students. Currently about 30% of those enrolled are non-SHA students.

SHA offers three "concentration areas" in which students at the school may further specialize; to that end, the new entrepreneurship concentration currently falls under the Hospitality Leadership (HOLD) area, which also includes human resources, law, and managerial leadership. HOLD is what actually appears on the student's transcript, but it is expected and reasonable that students will specify the entrepreneurship concentration on their resumes and market themselves accordingly.

Ten entrepreneurship courses are currently offered. For the concentration, three of the courses are required and yield eight credits, and students choose from among the remaining courses for a minimum of four credits. The advisors are the faculty who teach the courses.

Entrepreneurship education at SHA is not new, but it has taken time for the offerings to grow to the level at which a concentration could be formalized. The school has recruited and cultivated faculty to teach the subject, and increasing numbers of students have been drawn to enroll in the existing entrepreneurship courses. Once the decision was made, it took a year for the concentration to be created, needing extensive input from SHA's educational policy committee.

Steven Carvell is associate dean for academic affairs at SHA and academic director of the Pillsbury Institute. "SHA is committed to giving students a well-rounded business acumen, with opportunities to learn from the top experts in any relevant area," Carvell said. "SHA students are among the world's best and brightest, and I'm pleased that we're now able to offer another academic avenue for those with entrepreneurial ambitions. This is the beginning of many amazing things to come."

This spring will see the first graduation of seniors with this concentration. One is SHA student Francesco Jimenez '15, who notably co-represented SHA in the Student Challenge at this year's International Hotel Investment Forum (IHIF) Berlin, with sponsorship from the Pillsbury Institute. "SHA is a premier business program grounded in hospitality," said Jimenez. "The school has the expertise and the resources to fully prepare students to be leaders in all facets of business. Graduating with the new entrepreneurship concentration will give me not only the knowledge, but also the confidence, to pursue my own entrepreneurial goals."
About The Leland C. and Mary M. Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship
Founded in 2006 with a generous gift from Leland Pillsbury '69 and his wife, Mary Pillsbury, the Pillsbury Institute provides support for seasoned faculty and proven entrepreneurs to help students envision their dreams, engage with others, and execute with excellence. The institute guides students in the study of entrepreneurship and innovation, connects them with successful hospitality entrepreneurs and innovators, and gives them practical experience to help them link classroom theory to real-world practice. The Pillsbury Institute is also a source of information about forming new hospitality businesses, managing small and family-run businesses, franchising, corporate venturing, new venture funding, and innovation.