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Established in 2003 through an endowment by Larry and Carol Levy, the Levy Institute for Entrepreneurial Practice provides the foundation for entrepreneurship curriculum and engagement activities for Kellogg students. As part of the greater Kellogg Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative (KIEI), the Levy Institute works in tandem with like-minded centers, alumni networks and organizations across the Kellogg network to foster entrepreneurial success for both Kellogg students and alumni.

Beginning in the fall of 2012, the Levy Institute joined the Kellogg Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative to develop and introduce an entirely new curriculum-driven Entrepreneurship pathway based upon the lean startup methodology, using the business model canvas and design thinking tactics to build high-value, game-changing startups across all business sectors. In addition to the Entrepreneurship course pathway, Kellogg now offers course pathways on Growth & Scaling, Venture Capital & Private Equity and Real Estate, as well as classes in Corporate Innovation. These pathways are also available within Kellogg’s Evening & Weekend program.

We invite you to learn more about our recent changes by watching the Kellogg Game-Changing Entrepreneurship video, reading of recent student competition successes, and learning more about the startups piloted at Kellogg by students in the 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 classes by exploring this website.

Questions about Entrepreneurship at Kellogg? Contact us via kiei@kellogg.northwestern.edu.

Entrepreneurship at Kellogg

Driving game-changing innovation is more than just coming up with one great idea. Learn how Kellogg’s new approach to teaching entrepreneurship centers first on identifying a problem, then designing solutions for that problem in a customer-centric approach by drawing upon faculty expertise across the school. Not only does Kellogg equip students with the skill set to continuously innovate within their startup or corporation, but Kellogg faculty are also constantly looking to iterate and expand the curriculum based upon the needs of Kellogg students.

A New Approach to Teaching Entrepreneurship
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Since the fall of 2012, the Levy Institute and the Kellogg Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative (KIEI) have collaborated with Kellogg academic departments and research centers to introduce 44 new courses for entrepreneurs, growth-focused leaders and corporate innovators. Additionally, 22 new faculty members actively engaged within the Chicago startup and venture capital community have been welcomed to our experienced Entrepreneurship, Growth & Scaling and Corporate Innovation faculty bench. In tandem with new Kellogg internal competitions, engagement opportunities and an expansion of the internship program, Kellogg students are better able to leverage not only the skills and applications gained in the classroom, but the Kellogg network itself to further their entrepreneurial success.

In addition, Kellogg and Northwestern faculty, departments and centers have provided mentorship and financial support to those student startups competing on the national landscape. Here are a few highlights from the past two years.

Year Four | 2015-2016

During the 2015-16 academic year Kellogg students continued to excel. Kellogg student startups received first place at the +Acumen FundersCircle, the CommonBond Social Impact Award, Invest for Impact, the UNC Real Estate Development Challenge and the HULT Prize Regional Finals.

Kellogg startups were accepted into accelerator programs such as Techstars and the AT&T Aspire Accelerator, and placed in competitions such as the Wharton Private Equity Buyout Case Competition, the Wharton India Startup Competition, the Stu Clark Investment Competition, the Rice University Business Plan Competition, Princeton University’s Tiger Launch, the New Venture Championship, the Cisco Case Competition, the Booth-Yale Education Business Pitch Competition and New York University’s Stern School of Business Entrepreneurs Challenge. Additionally, startups founded or co-founded by Kellogg students took top ranks at the Northwestern University Venture Challenge.
Learn more by visiting our Competitions Successes page.

Year Three | 2014-2015
Opticent MDAR

Kellogg student teams won more than $1 million in 19 different challenges and competitions during the 2014-2015 academic year. These events provided seed money as well as potential customers and mentors for student startups. Kellogg teams earned the top three overall prizes, as well as four first-place and three second-place industry track awards, at the Northwestern University Venture Challenge, NU’s largest business pitch competition. Additional successes – including six first-place and three second-place honors – took place at these domestic and international competitions: MIT Clean Energy Prize, Global Venture Labs Investment Competition, Giants Entrepreneurship Challenge, Delta Institute Boost Competition, MBA Impact Investing Network & Training competition (MIINT), BAHM (Business School Alliance for Health Management) Case Competition, Rice Business Plan Competition, Quinlan Social Enterprise Competition, New Venture Championship, Wharton People Analytics Conference Case Competition, MIT Africa Innovate Business Plan Competition, VentureWell E-Team Program, Wharton LatAm PE Competition, Wharton MBA Buyout Case Competition, Regional VCIC, the mai Bangkok Business Challenge, Adobe Digital Analytics Competition and Suzhou New District, Technological Innovation and Entrepreneurship Leader Competition.

Student entrepreneurs in 2014-2015 created a variety of startups, featuring such goods and services as medical innovations, sustainable land management and recycling solutions, education-enhancing technology and consumer engagement applications. Learn more about 20 student startups.

Year Two | 2013-2014
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Composed of students from schools across Northwestern including Kellogg, the McCormick School of Engineering and the Feinberg School of Medicine, the medical device startup Innoblative had the privilege of ringing the NASDAQ closing bell this year as a result of wining the Global Venture Labs Investment Competition at the University of Texas at Austin McCombs School of Business. Innoblative also received funding for their innovative approach to the treatment of breast cancer from other business competitions, including the Stu Clark Investment Competition at the University of Manitoba and the Oregon New Venture Championship, to name a few.

During the 2013-2014 academic year, Kellogg startups received funding from many domestic and international competitions, including the following: the Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Challenge, the MBA Impact Investing Network and Training Competition, the Clean Energy Trust Award, the Breast Cancer Startup Challenge, the Aspen Institute’s Business and Society International MBA Case Competition, the Rice University Business Plan Competition, the Walmart Better Living Business Plan Challenge, the Quinlan Social Enterprise Competition, the NewDay Summer Internship Award, the Stanford University BASES Social E-Challenge, the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance BMEidea Awards, the Techweek Chicago Launch Competition, the International Case Competition at Carnegie Melon, the Global Family Enterprise Case Competition, the Ernst and Young Diversity Case Competition, the Wharton Leveraged Buyout Competition, the Origami Idea Challenge, and the Northwestern University Venture Challenge.

Learn more about the startups founded by the class of 2014

Year One | 2012-2013

SiNode at NASDAQ

During the 2012-2013 academic year, SiNode Systems, a startup team composed of students representing multiple Northwestern University schools, including Kellogg, were granted the opportunity to ring the closing bell at NASDAQ after winning the Rice University Business Plan Competition. Their game-changing approach to using superior anode technology for the next generation in li-ion batteries also lead to funding from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Energy Business Plan Competition.

In addition to receiving $1 million from business plan competitions, SiNode also received funding from the U.S. Department of Energy and the Chicago Innovation Awards. Learn more about SiNode Systems’ progress and recent press by visiting their website.

During the 2012-2013 academic year additional Kellogg startups raised funding via entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship competitions, including the following: the International Impact Investing Challenge (now the Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Challenge), the Doe National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition, the C.K. Prahalad Case Competition at the University of Michigan, and the Adobe Digital Analytics Competition.