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Twenty in 20: New Santa Clara University Initiative Aims to Prepare 20 California Entrepreneurs for Success by End of 2011

Friday, Apr. 16, 2010

SANTA CLARA, Calif., April 16, 2010—Aiming to provide 20 entrepreneurs with the tools to run successful California businesses, Santa Clara University’s Leavey School of Business is now accepting applications for a fully subsidized, six-month entrepreneurship program that begins in June. 

Applications for the California Program for Entrepreneurship will be taken until May 1. Judges will choose 20 companies with the most likelihood for success: a well-developed business idea or startup business, experienced leaders, and high potential to make a contribution to California's economy within a year of completing the program.

“We know that new business ventures will be significant in helping turn around the California economy,” said Daniel Aguiar, executive director of the School’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and a former entrepreneur. “We want to make an investment in that process by providing our business-faculty expertise and our unique Silicon Valley connections to help set up these businesses.”

Emerging entrepreneurs are invited to apply for admission to the program through an online application that includes several exercises to assess their potential for a successful start. “We hope to launch 20 California businesses in 20 months,” said Drew Starbird, dean of the business school and co-creator of the program.

Selected participants will enroll in all classes, workshops, and seminars free of charge, and be provided all books, in-class materials, on-site meals and housing at no cost. Travel expenses are not included.

The program is being funded by a grant from the Executive Development Center at Santa Clara University’s Leavey School of Business. 

“Our curriculum is designed to knock down any barriers to success for the emerging entrepreneur,” said Aguiar. “We aim to equip them with expertise in marketing, finance, and operations, as well as skills in organizational dynamics, strategic management, and communication.”

Beginning in June, the participants will begin a series of virtual exercises, meetings with faculty mentors, and five on-site weekend sessions. In September, they will come to SCU’s campus for an intensive five-day workshop, after which they will prepare a business “pitch” under the mentorship of Silicon Valley executives and participate in a business plan competition with a $5,000 prize. During the program, they will be introduced to a wide network of business leaders.

For more information about the program and to apply, visit

About the Leavey School of Business
The Leavey School of Business at Santa Clara University began in 1923, and was one of the first business schools in the country to receive national accreditation. Its undergraduate business, MBA and Executive MBA programs are consistently ranked among the top in the nation. The curriculum at all levels emphasizes the leadership role of business in creating an ethical society as well as business responsibilities for social justice and sustainability in the global marketplace. The School opened its new $49 million building for undergraduate, graduate, and professional business education in fall 2008. For more information, see

About Santa Clara University
Santa Clara University, a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley, offers its more than 8,600 students rigorous undergraduate curricula in arts and sciences, business, theology, and engineering, plus master's and law degrees and engineering Ph.D.s. Distinguished nationally by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, California's oldest operating higher-education institution demonstrates faith-inspired values of ethics and social justice. For more information, see

Media Contact:
Deborah Lohse | SCU Assistant Media Relations Director | (408) 554-5121 |


Tags: CIE, leavey

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