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Standing Apart: What makes students more likely to launch a venture or commercialize a product?

Several years ago, a program for students called Lion Launch Pad was created at Penn State with the goal of encouraging undergraduate students to take innovative ideas and commercialize them. While many students at Penn State enroll in the now university-wide entrepreneurship program, not all students become involved with Lion Launch Pad. The research question explored in this paper is this: What makes the students in Lion Launch Pad more entrepreneurial? In other words, how or why do these students stand apart from others who may be interested in entrepreneurship or innovation, but do not take the extra step to launch a venture or commercialize a product? Data is currently being collected this semester from Lion Launch Pad students and appropriate comparison groups. Several constructs are being examined including locomotion and self-assessment, creative self-efficacy, entrepreneurial self-efficacy, and locus of control.

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