Iowa State University recognized for excellence in entrepreneurship education as a USASBE Model Program.

AMES, Iowa (Jan. 13, 2021) – The United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (USASBE) introduced Iowa State University as the winner of the 2021 USASBE Model Program Award, the highest of the organization’s four prestigious annual Excellence in Entrepreneurship Education Awards. The announcement was made January 8 as part of the USASBE 2021: Be Boldly Unscripted annual conference.

The USASBE Model Program Award recognizes colleges and universities that provide comprehensive, bold, high quality educational programs that train future generations of entrepreneurs. Previous award winners include Purdue University (2020), University of Missouri – Kansas City (2019), and Syracuse University (2018).

This year’s recipient, Iowa State University, has an entrepreneurship program that pervasively demonstrates it supports the mission of sharing knowledge beyond the campus borders. They embed innovation and entrepreneurship deeply into their culture and broader curriculum. Iowa State is cultivating the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs while responding to the needs of their state.

“Iowa State’s program was expansive in its scale, and boldly embraced the challenges of engendering innovation and entrepreneurship across its campus. The judges felt it was important to show how this kind of infusion at a large institution is possible,” says Bruce Teague, program awards chair for USASBE 2021.

“Iowa State embraces the guiding principles of entrepreneurship education — bold teaching, research and practice — in order to make an impact in the lives of their students and in the causes in which they are passionate,” says Julie Shields, CEO of USASBE

“We are thrilled to be recognized as a USASBE Model Program,” says ISU Pappajohn Center for Entrepreneurship Director Judi Eyles. “Iowa State enlists a truly cross-disciplinary approach, engaging all seven colleges across campus to participate in our comprehensive and robust innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem.”

The Excellence in Entrepreneurship Education Awards are presented annually by USASBE to colleges or universities in recognition of bold and innovative programs that make an impact in the field of entrepreneurship education.

All programs selected as a finalist were asked to submit a 10-minute pitch video for their nomination and participate in a Q&A session with finalist judges. View Iowa State’s video here.



Founded in 1981, the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (USASBE) is an inclusive community of educators, researchers, and entrepreneurs advancing entrepreneurship education through bold teaching, scholarship, and practice. Membership is open to all, as is attendance at USASBE’s hallmark annual conference. USASBE also publishes a peer-reviewed academic journal, Entrepreneurship Education & Pedagogy and develops a variety of helpful resources and professional development opportunities for entrepreneurship educators as they create a positive impact. For more information, visit the USASBE website at or contact USASBE CEO Julienne Shields at

About ISU Pappajohn Center for Entrepreneurship
The ISU John Pappajohn Center for Entrepreneurship, part of the Ivy College of Business and the Office of Economic Development and Industry Relations, offers numerous programs and services that broadly reach and connect students, community entrepreneurs, business professionals, and alumni. The Center has two primary objectives: 1) to create a culture that encourages entrepreneurship and innovation, 2) to provide the tools necessary for building and improving Iowa’s businesses. Outreach efforts are designed to help individuals recognize opportunities, gain skills and experiences to take advantage of opportunities, and connect with the right resources and support to launch a successful business. For more information, visit

Julie Lelonek, ISU Pappajohn Center for Entrepreneurship, 515-294-1562,
Judi Eyles, ISU Pappajohn Center for Entrepreneurship, 515-296-6754,
ISU Pappajohn Center for Entrepreneurship1805 Collaboration Pl, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50010