Andrew Bryant, a senior finance major at Louisiana Tech, has been named a University Innovation Fellow. He is one of only 251 students from 65 higher education institutions in 15 countries to be part of this program in 2021.
“Entrepreneurship has always had a special place in my heart and has always been a part of who I am,” Bryant said. “I have always been an industrious individual inspired to engage in idea generation and innovation. Throughout my life experiences and classes in the College of Business, I have discovered the incredible value in entrepreneurial thinking and could not pass up the opportunity to learn how to initiate meaningful and lasting change.”
The University Innovation Fellows, a program of Stanford University’s Hasso Plattner Institute of Design, empowers students to become agents of change at their schools, lending the student-voice to conversations about the future of higher education. Fellows work to ensure that their peers build the creative confidence, agency, and entrepreneurial mindset needed to address global challenges.
This marks the fourth year Louisiana Tech has participated in the program. Fellows are sponsored by faculty and administrators and selected through an application process each year. Following acceptance into the program, students participate in a six-week online training experience.
“Throughout the six weeks of training, I was adequately equipped with an arsenal of newfound skills and strategies which I am now able to apply to my academic and professional careers as I approach decision-making situations,” said Bryant. “I am and always will be grateful for this program for teaching me to think innovatively, promoting my entrepreneurial mindset, and provoking me to be more creative.”
Bryant’s project developed during the training marries his passions for entrepreneurship, serving other students, and Louisiana Tech. He created Bulldog Marketplace, a web-based platform designed to connect current Tech students who are engaged in entrepreneurial ventures.
“Ideally, Bulldog Marketplace will act as a centralized hub that increases student entrepreneurs’ visibility by exposing them to a large, active buying community,” Bryant said. “In addition to increasing student entrepreneurs’ ability to connect with a larger customer base, the platform will enable student entrepreneurs to easily identify and connect with their peers who are also involved in entrepreneurial ventures.”
Bryant envisions the platform facilitating community building among innovatively inclined students to strengthen Louisiana Tech’s entrepreneurial culture.
“I look forward to implementing much of what I learned during my training,” Bryant said. “I hope to create real, meaningful, and lasting change at Louisiana Tech University. I am also excited to learn more about how my project will merge into the University’s system. No matter the challenges that I will inevitably face, I am confident that all of my hard work will pay off in the end resulting in a positive legacy that thrives on campus long after I have graduated.”
With the addition of this year’s Fellows, the program has trained more than 2,600 students since its creation. To learn more about University Innovation Fellows, visit universityinnovationfellows.org.
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