|MSU STRATEGIC INVESTMENT PROPOSAL FOR INSTITUTIONAL PRIORITIES|
|Title||Bobcat Enterprises||Request Date||2012-11-30|
|Department||College of Businessfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Cross Depts||Students from all colleges are eligible to participate.|
|Proposed Dates||Start: March 15 2013||End:|
|Bobcat Enterprises places students from across campus into student-run teams to address real-world challenges faced by Montana organizations. Itís an intensive, transformative experience that helps students apply their skills by engaging with the business and non-profit communities.
Currently, the College of Business conducts class-based consulting projects in several courses, where hundreds of students work with over 60 organizations each year. However, many potential projects do not fit within the timeframe or scope of a semester, and this would allow for a higher degree of engagement by allowing more students to work with more clients.
|Strategic Goal: Members of the Montana State University community will be leaders, scholars and engaged citizens of their campus, local, state, national and global communities, working along-side community partners through the mutually beneficial exchange and application of knowledge and resources to improve the human prospect.
Objective E.1: Strategically increase service, outreach and engagement at MSU.
This initiative is designed to engage students, faculty, and staff of MSU with businesses, not-for-profit organizations, and the MSU Innovation Campus and the Technology Transfer Office in a very tangible way. Assistance provided by Bobcat Enterprises will directly benefit the client organizations and enhance the economic development of Montana. Client organizations will better appreciate the resources MSU has to offer and the role it plays in the well-being of the state. Further, including business professionals as mentors for the students provides yet another way that MSU can partner with members of the local community in a way that benefits students and clients.
MSU Goal: Prepare students to graduate equipped for careers.
Objective L.3: Increase job placement
Bobcat Enterprises will directly contribute to the economic development of Montana, facilitating the success of Montana businesses so they can provide employment for MSU graduates. Additionally, the experiential learning for students provided by Bobcat Enterprises provides precisely the type of real-world application of skills that employers seek. Our students working on class-related projects already receive job offers from their clients; Bobcat Enterprises will provide further avenues for developing relationships that lead to employment.
|COST AND REQUIREMENTS|
|Funding Type:||One-Time Only Funding||Base (3-yr Recurring) Funding|
|FY13||FY14||FY15||Base ($)||OTO Startup ($)||FTE;|
|Materials & Supplies|
|Please comment, if necessary, regarding cost and requirements.||
Although Bobcat Enterprises will be primarily a student-run organization, it is vital that an experienced business professional have coordination and oversight responsibilities. This will provide continuity as students rotate through the organization. Most importantly, though, this will be a learning experience for the students, and an experienced individual is needed to provide guidance and to ensure that recommendations delivered to clients are of high quality. Although faculty members will also be involved in some projects, regular meetings with the student consultants, developing relationships with clients and mentors, and day to day management of the students must be done by someone dedicated to this task. This will take approximately 20 hours per week for this individual.
As stated above, students must be compensated for their participation in Bobcat Enterprises. This allows them to spend enough time (10-20 hours per week) to get projects done on a timely basis, and the income will likely replace wages made through some other part time job that the student would otherwise have. The compensation for the students is listed in “Other Operations,” and assumes that students will be paid approximately $10/hour. This amount allows for approximately 3,000 hours of services per year (recognizing that there are some benefit costs associated with student employees).
Over time, the goal would be to expand the number of students that can participate. This will be done by funding expanded operations from donations from those clients that can afford to contribute to the ongoing sustainability of Bobcat Enterprises.
Some travel by the coordinator and the students will be necessary to provide services to clients outside of the immediate area.
|Describe the Proposal|
Bobcat Enterprises is the epitome of student and faculty engagement with the community, accomplished in a way that provides experiential learning and economic development that leads to career opportunities for students. Students put theories into action by working in self-directed teams for the benefit of Montana. The College of Business has extensive experience with providing these services, but it has typically been done through class projects. Bobcat Enterprises provides an organizational structure that allows us to significantly broaden the scope and impact of our efforts by being able to engage in projects that do not fit within the scope of a typical semester class project. A greater number of clients will be served in a more timely manner.
Client organizations will be drawn from throughout Montana and the MSU community, where we have already experienced significant demand. We have garnered significant interest from the MSU Innovation Campus (MSUIC), the MSU Technology Transfer Office, and TechLink, all who would like to use student consultants to support their activities. For example, Teresa McKnight, Executive Director of MSUIC, is interested in employing Bobcat Enterprises for the following:
Similarly, Gary Bloomer of the MSU Technology Transfer Office has expressed interest in using student consultants to conduct research into the feasibility of commercializing technologies and ideas that emanate from MSU research labs. These engagements will provide an excellent opportunity to include student consultants from across campus, particularly from the STEM fields, as their expertise will be needed on these technology-oriented projects.
There is already a steady pipeline of clients from the Montana business and non-profit community because of our history of class projects. Each year, we are unable to serve numerous clients because their project timelines do not fit within our semester boundaries.
There is also another source of potential clients for Bobcat Enterprises: Students who need assistance in starting and operating their own businesses. Numerous MSU students currently run their own businesses, typically by providing some sort of service to the local community. To help them and others learn how to start and operate a successful business, we are submitting a separate proposal to implement the SMART Center (Student Managed Activities and Results Training). There is also a relationship with a third College of Business proposal focused on Peer Advising and Mentoring, which is supportive of the MSU Foundation's initiative to implement a student-alumni mentor network. The graphic below depicts a high level view of the related proposals and entities.
Key Components of Bobcat Enterprises
Benefits of Bobcat Enterprises:
|Describe the broader impacts and benefits of this proposal|
During the spring 2013 semester, we will hire a .5 FTE professional to oversee Bobcat Enterprises. Assuming this coordinator is hired in the latter half of the term, we will then begin recruiting students to participate. A few (2-3) students will begin during the summer, with an additional 4-5 students beginning in the fall 2013 term. The total number of students involved will depend on demand and students’ availability but will be approximately 10- 20 students per term. Students will be responsible for marketing their services to the community. Following the model at other universities, Bobcat Enterprises will encourage donations from clients to help make the service sustainable and the students will be responsible for ensuring that their total expenses do not exceed the combined revenue available from university and donated funds. Over time, the goal would be to generate half of the operating budget through donations from clients.
Assessment of Bobcat Enterprises will be based on the following:
|If assessed objectives are not met in the timeframe outlined what is the plan to sunset this proposal?|
Fixed costs associated with Bobcat Enterprise are nominal (e.g. providing a few computers, which cost will be born by the College of Business). The coordinator will be hired on a year-to-year contract basis, and students will be paid hourly. The entire operation could be “wound down” easily if it is not successful.
|Dean/Director:||Kregg Aytes (email@example.com)|
|Executive/VP:||Martha Potvin (firstname.lastname@example.org)|