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Moving Innovation Forward

"I feel very passionate about equipping MSU students with the best practical skills and tools to prepare them for entrepreneurial and creative problem-solving opportunities when they graduate." - Bob Burgess

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Moving Innovation Forward

Educate. Validate. Support. These are the pillars of the Burgess Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation housed within the Eli Broad College of Business.

The institute is an integral part of MSU’s business innovation ecosystem, leading entrepreneurial education and research, helping students test and validate their ventures, and offering coaching support and mentorship to budding entrepreneurs.

The institute’s name honors Robert “Bob” K. Burgess (’66), an accomplished business leader and longtime university advisor. In the fall of 2016, MSU announced a $4.5 million gift to the institute from Burgess. He previously made a $2 million gift to the institute in 2005. Bob and spouse Georgia (’67) were named Philanthropists of the Year at the 2016 MSU Alumni Grand Awards Gala.

Burgess’s recent gift commitment, a combination of $3 million in cash and a $1.5 million charitable bequest, is being allocated across three areas of the institute: helping students compete in national and international business contests; recruiting and retaining talented instructors with significant business experience; and supporting activities and initiatives of the institute.

“I feel very passionate about equipping MSU students with the best practical skills and tools to prepare them for entrepreneurial and creative problem-solving opportunities when they graduate,” says Bob.

The institute advances research on venture capital, private equity, and entrepreneurship, and builds knowledge-sharing networks across the world. It also stimulates economic development in Michigan, supports the commercialization of intellectual property developed within MSU, and promotes student business innovation.

Bob’s commitment to the institute has been essential, says Ken Szymusiak, managing director of the institute, noting: “Without him, we wouldn’t be able to offer our students the experiences we do today, and our next chapter will further elevate our current programs while allowing us to provide more innovative curriculum and training opportunities.”

Author: Lois Furry

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