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Think starting a business is the only way to be an entrepreneur? Think again.

Christine Haworth

By Christine Haworth, BSBA ’18, MSE ’19

Innovation, this word comes up more and more in the business world with the pressures to continually succeed as a business, but what does innovation really mean, and how can one be innovative?

A common misconception is that innovation just means “change,” but innovation is better described as creating new processes and ideas for productive change.

I was drawn to a master’s degree in entrepreneurship because being entrepreneurial is more than starting your own business, it’s about having an entrepreneurial mindset that allows you to be creative to generate unique solutions, in other words, innovative in any business setting.

Most of the students in the Thomas S. Johnson Master of Science in Entrepreneurship (MSE) program are either planning on starting their own business or looking to gain the skills to be innovative in a more traditional business setting.

Last May, I graduated from the University of Florida with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. I decided to continue my education with a Master of Science in Entrepreneurship because of the program’s publicized emphasis on the ability to be an “intrapreneur,” one who innovates in an existing company when you have the tools and mindset of an entrepreneur.

The MSE program highlights 13 entrepreneurial competencies and course work is geared towards better understanding these competencies. They range from improving creative-problem solving to resource leveraging and risk mitigation, with many others in between. One of our classes, Venture Finance, focused on understanding the economic component of venture capital funding, and how to mitigate risk using financial software to predict probabilities of outcomes. Another class, Corporate Entrepreneurship, dove into opportunity recognition within an existing company, and using case studies, what was the best way to handle the situation in each scenario.

Outside of the classroom, the MSE program offers the Silicon Valley trip, multiple field trips to organizations and special programs designed to enhance your skills and understanding as an innovator. The access the program provides to truly qualified individuals is incredible and allows for a deeper understanding of the subject from those who’ve experienced it firsthand.

I’ll be finishing up the MSE program this August and looking to bring an innovative mindset into my future career.

Interested in learning how you can become an innovator like Christine? Request information about the Thomas S. Johnson Master of Science in Entrepreneurship today.