Entrepreneurial Mindset: Integrating Creative Thinking and Innovation into a Graphical Communications Course
Nationwide, leaders in business and industry have increasingly acknowledged the importance of entre¬preneurship. Several areas of the country showcase the importance of entrepreneurship such as Silicon Valley in California where a large number of start-up companies in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields are located. To meet the needs of business and industry, institutions of higher educa¬tion prepare students for future employment by offering rigorous and relevant coursework in areas such as entrepreneurship. Collegiate faculty and staff can use fundamental engineering courses to instill an en¬trepreneurial mindset – a set of beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors that drive innovation – in their students. This paper will explore an open-ended team project within a freshman-level engineering graphics course in which instructors encourage an entrepreneurial mindset in students. The goal of the course project is to develop engineering students’ critical thinking and innovation skills while preparing them for their future professions. An end-of-semester course-wide poster competition allowed students to practice teamwork as well as innovative thinking and communication skills.