Success of UNH’s Entrepreneurship Center Leads to Additional Support


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Wednesday, February 14, 2018
From left to right: Ian Grant, director of the ECenter at UNH; entrepreneur and philanthropist Peter Paul ’67; and Marc Sedam, associate vice provost of innovation and new ventures at UNH

From left to right: Ian Grant, director of the ECenter at UNH; entrepreneur and philanthropist Peter Paul ’67; and Marc Sedam, associate vice provost of innovation and new ventures at UNH. Courtesy photo.

DURHAM, N.H. – After providing the initial support to launch the Peter T. Paul Entrepreneurship Center (ECenter) at the University of New Hampshire, entrepreneur and philanthropist Peter T. Paul ’67 has renewed his support based on student demand and the center’s success with a $400,000 gift.

“We are grateful for Peter’s ongoing support,” said UNH President Mark Huddleston. “The ECenter is a great asset and helps us to attract students who are curious to learn and understand more about problem solving, idea creation, and the start-up process.”

Paul’s new gift was structured to include additional support from the university, including a commitment to help secure other alumni financial support. Overall, the funding will allow the ECenter to flourish until 2022.

“I always have high expectations for outcomes based upon financial gifts I make to UNH,” said Paul, “but even those were widely exceeded within two years of the ECenter’s launch. The speed at which the ECenter grew, the tangible impact it has already had on students from every college and the national recognition it has received in such a short period of time makes me proud to have been the catalyst. While my gift helps sustain the current structure the center is looking for philanthropic entrepreneurs to help support additional new and innovative programs. Every dollar has a significant impact.”

The ECenter was recently recognized as the top emerging entrepreneurship center by the Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers, which represents 250 member institutions in 15 countries. The award was based upon the quality, depth and breadth of the program’s impact on students.

“The ECenter is intentionally independent of any one college on campus to better foster engagement from all students regardless of major and college,” said Ian Grant, director of the ECenter. “We appreciate Peter’s support and are proud that we were able to demonstrate the desire from and impact to students from a wide range of backgrounds.”

The ECenter provides co-curricular programming (non-academic classes), hosts the Entrepreneurship Club, and provides 1:1 coaching. It has coached three winners of the Social Venture Innovation Challenge and second and third place winners. Over the last two years, it has coached the winner and two second place teams for the Holloway Prize.

The Peter T. Paul Entrepreneurship Center (ECenter) is the co-curricular heart of ideas, innovation and entrepreneurship at UNH. Its goal is to create the next generation of leaders with an entrepreneurial mindset who can see opportunities and identify creative solutions others have missed, one idea at a time. The ECenter delivers unique hands-on experiential programming that inspires, nurtures and mentors students from any major, at every step of process, anywhere from idea development to company creation. The center operates as a start-up in an academic environment, and all programs are donor funded.

The University of New Hampshire is a flagship research university that inspires innovation and transforms lives in our state, nation and world. More than 16,000 students from all 50 states and 71 countries engage with an award-winning faculty in top ranked programs in business, engineering, law, health and human services, liberal arts and the sciences across more than 200 programs of study. UNH’s research portfolio includes partnerships with NASA, NOAA, NSF and NIH, receiving more than $100 million in competitive external funding every year to further explore and define the frontiers of land, sea and space. 

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Caption: From left to right: Ian Grant, director of the ECenter at UNH; entrepreneur and philanthropist Peter Paul ’67; and Marc Sedam, associate vice provost of innovation and new ventures at UNH. Courtesy photo.