Initiative helps grow Indian Country innovators, entrepreneurs

July 12, 2012

The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED) and the Arizona State University First Innovations Initiative are proud to announce that the NCAIED will serve as a sponsor for First Innovations by hosting two student interns for the Summer 2012 Internship Program. The internship will provide the students with hands-on experience in developing and implementing a business model, as well as working knowledge of the concepts of sustainability and innovation within an American Indian context.
During their time at NCAIED, the student interns will work on developing a business model for the NCAIED to create a series of small business/entrepreneurial education workshops that will provide unique and insightful information for a wide range of participants, from start-up to active enterprises. The purpose of the education workshops is to provide opportunities and training to American Indian businesses.
"The NCAIED takes great pride in supporting Arizona State University's, "First Innovations Initiative" and facilitating this opportunity for students to learn and grow as entrepreneurs at our headquarters,” said Gary Davis, NCAIED President and CEO. “We look forward to all the innovative ideas that these brilliant young business minds will develop – helping us to continue serving Indian Country at the highest level.”
The ASU First Innovations Initiative, a collaboration between the ASU American Indian Policy Institute, the ASU Herberger Institute of Design and the Arts, and the ASU American Indian Studies program, is an award-winning program of innovation and entrepreneurship for American Indian sustainability. At a time when many tribal leaders see innovation and entrepreneurialship as a key component of sustainable tribal development, the First Innovations Initiative introduces students to the fundamentals of these concepts and focuses on entrepreneurship that is a cultural match with the long-term sustainability goals of tribes, tribal communities, and American Indians.
“This internship/field practicum provides an opportunity for students to put into practice innovative thinking skills and we are pleased that NCAIED is taking a leading role in providing a home to foster such skills”, expressed  Fonda Walters, co-instructor for the First Innovations Initiative and Senior Research Analyst for the American Indian Policy Institute.
The First Innovations curriculum is comprised of the summer field practicum followed by sequential courses offered in the fall and spring semesters. The Initiative was recently awarded the ASU 2011 Presidential Award for Innovation for its groundbreaking curriculum and the enthusiasm of the rapidly growing number of students from an expanding range of degree programs. The Initiative was also featured in Indian Country Today and is receiving international attention for its ability to resonate with indigenous peoples worldwide.
For more information about the ASU First Innovations Initiative, visit: 

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Secretary of State lauds ASU-Intel partnership for fostering international economic growth

July 12, 2012

With U.S. Agency of International Development support, program sets stage for research and industry collaborations with Vietnam

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has pointed to an educational outreach partnership of Arizona State University and Intel Corp. as a prime example of innovative efforts to expand global economic opportunities. Hillary Clinton ASU program Download Full Image

In remarks made earlier this week at an American Chamber of Commerce reception in Hanoi, Vietnam, Clinton spoke of the program that aims to help Vietnam’s universities and technical schools modernize its engineering education, and to lay the groundwork for future education, research and business collaborations between U.S. interests and Vietnam.

Clinton hailed the Higher Engineering Education Alliance Program (HEEAP) as the kind of public-private enterprise needed to produce an educated workforce prepared to compete for jobs in a 21st-century economy.

See the full text of Clinton’s remarks to business, government and education leaders.

HEEAP was established in 2010 with a $5 million grant from the United States Agency of International Development (USAID) and Intel, the leading multinational semiconductor chip and microprocessor maker. The program is administered through the Office of Global Outreach and Extended Education (GOEE) in ASU’s Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering.

To date, the program has enabled more than 100 faculty members at Vietnam engineering schools to be trained in new instruction methods, both at ASU and in Vietnam.

Earlier this year, ASU and Intel renewed a joint commitment to help to expand the program. The new agreement provides resources to increase the number of faculty members receiving training in the HEEAP education model.

It also is supporting development of a distance-education network enabling students at multiple campuses in Vietnam to take courses simultaneously.

In addition, it is providing training to Vietnamese education leaders in modern administrative, revenue-enhancement and policy development models necessary to build globally competitive institutions.

“This is an evolving relationship between the U.S. and Vietnam to enhance teaching, learning and discovery and support strong economic development,” ASU President Michael Crow said at the time the new agreement was finalized.

This summer the program is expanding it partnerships with Vietnamese universities and colleges by training 50 additional Vietnamese educators at ASU and more than 200 in Vietnam, said Jeff Goss, director of Global Outreach and Extended Education.

In her remarks, Clinton noted a recent addition to the HEEAP effort, a scholarship program designed to bring more women into engineering programs. The first scholarship recipient attended the event. She is to be the first of several hundred women expected to receive support through the scholarship program in the next five years.

Goss said an additional 20 scholarships for women will be announced on July 17 in Hanoi to further develop a pipeline for women to enter engineering and science fields.

Since its inception, the HEEAP alliance has been joined by Portland State University’s Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science, and industry partners Siemens, Danaher and Cadence.

Read more about HEEAP

Joe Kullman

Science writer, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering