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Developing Entrepreneurial Leadership In and Out of the Classroom

Renae Chesnut, RPh, MBA, EdD 

Commitment to Entrepreneurial Leadership

  • Collaborations
    • MBA, MPA, Business minor
    • Shaping Your Pharmacy Future
    • CPHS Strategic Plan
      • Instilling an entrepreneurial spirit
      • DELTA Rx Institute (
      • Entrepreneurial Mgmt Major; Minor


An entrepreneurial leader works to advance the profession of pharmacy by mobilizing others to proactively identify and pursue new opportunities to create value for patients and society.


To advance the profession by empowering practitioners, faculty, and students to boldly pursue opportunities for breakthrough achievements. The Institute instills a philosophy of life that embraces innovation and perseveres to affect change.

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Drake University and the DELTA Rx Institute

  • Curricular
    • Skills
    • Course activities
    • Minor
    • Rotation experiences
    • Co-curricular
      • Competitions
      • Speakers
      • Entrepreneurship Day
      • Internships

Drake CPHS Proposed Skills

  1. Identify an Opportunity
    1. Identify needs and solutions to problems
    2. Calculated risk-taking
  2. Develop the concept
    1. Innovative and creative problem-solving
    2. Research and decision-making
  3. Determine the required resources
    1. Life-long learning
    2. Economic analysis
  4. Acquire the necessary resources
    1. Communication of ideas effectively to create buy-in
    2. Prioritization
  5. Implement and manage
    1. Teamwork
    2. Perseverance
  6. Harvest the venture
    1. Reflection
    2. Evaluation
    3. Professional stewardship

Course Activities Examples

  • Identify an opportunity
    • Identify needs/Risk-taking
    • Empathy building exercises:  What products/services can be developed?
    • “What bugs you?”
  • Develop the Concept
    • Innovation/Creativity/Problem-Solving
    • Make a proposal to create buy-in

Curricular Mapping of Course Activities

    • Determine and Acquire Necessary Resources
    • Lifelong Learning, Communication, Economic Evaluation, Prioritization
    • Teamwork/Perseverence/Reflection & Evaluation/Professional Stewardship
      • Timed presentations - Elevator Pitches
      • Experiential activities
    • Implement/Manage/Harvest
      • Jigsaw Method/Team Based Learning
      • Ethical Discussions

Entrepreneurial Leadership Minor

      • Tenets
        • Flexibility
        • Consider all aspects of entrepreneurship, including social entrepreneurship
        • Outcomes
          • Understand the role of entrepreneurs as leaders in society
          • Develop a realistic understanding of what to expect as an entrepreneur
          • Accurately assess one’s personal level of entrepreneurial potential
          • Develop leadership, team-building, and other management skills required in the entrepreneurial environment
          • Recognize the ethical and moral issues involved in leading entrepreneurial endeavors

Curriculum Rationale

      • Coursework
        • Intro to Accounting
        • Microeconomics
        • Entrepreneurial Leadership
        • New Venture Feasibility Analysis
        • Marketing Principles
        • New Venture Capstone
        • Electives - 6 credits
      • Pharmacy Courses
        • Management in Pharmacy
        • Experiential Rotation
      • Additional Elective Options
        • Profit Planning and Control
        • Management Process and Behavior
        • Management of Operations
        • Business/Administrative Communication


      • Entrepreneurial Leadership Programs
        • Entrepreneurs Presentations
        • Creativity & Innovation Speakers
        • Student Leadership Development Series
      • Entrepreneurial Competitions
        • Drake’s Next Top Entrepreneur Competition
        • NCPA Business Plan Competition (placed 2nd nationally in 2010; 6th in 2011)
        • Drake and Statewide Competitions
      • Internships

Drake’s Next Top Entrepreneur Competition

      • Rounds
        • 1st round: 3 minutes to present a healthcare related idea
        • 2nd round:  Given a healthcare problem, have 60 minutes for brainstorming and 3 minutes to present a solution
        • 3rd round: Present a mini-business plan
      • Prizes after each round with grand prizes to top 3 following 3rd Round
      • Judges - each round, consist of a panel of 3 judges representing pharmacy, healthcare, and business 

Community Pharmacy Entrepreneurial Leadership Summer Internships

      • Pharmacy Practices
        • Compounding
        • Chain Practice and Administration
        • Independent Pharmacy
      • Shaping Your Pharmacy Future Program Modules
        • Application to the practice setting
        • Mentoring from practitioner (access to modules)

Entrepreneurial Education Steps

      1. Faculty team and development
      2. Determine goals
      3. Identify and develop courses and/or experiences
      4. Implement
      5. Measure the outcomes

1.  Development of the Team/Faculty

      • Cross-Disciplinary and Collaborative
        • Departmental
        • Entrepreneurship Centers/Programs
      • Development
        • USASBE
        • Experiential Classroom (Ok State Univ.)
        • DELTA Rx Institute web site
        • Faculty development sessions

2. Goals

Instill a spirit of change and innovation in pharmacy

      • Develop entrepreneurial leadership in our students
        • Curricular
        • Co-Curricular
      •  National recognition
        • DELTA Rx web site

3. Identify and Develop Courses/Experiences 

      • Imbedded throughout the curriculum in a variety of courses through projects, early/advanced practice experiences
        • Opportunity identification
        • The Elevator Pitch
        • E-Field Project
        • Entrepreneurial Ethics
        • The E-Rotation
      • New Courses
        • Business plan, Finance, Marketing
      • Concentration, Minor, 2nd Major

4.  Implement

      • Student Awareness
        • Expand definition
        • Explain the application
      • Utilize Entrepreneurial alums/practitioners
      • Teaching Methods:  Cases, Simulations
      • Continued Development and Assessment

5.  Measure the Outcomes

      • Great opportunity for research and scholarship!
      • PSEO (Pharmacy Student Entrepreneurship Orientation)
      • Program Outcomes
      • Professional organizations/fraternities activities (new ventures, business plan/skills competitions)
      • Senior/alumni surveys
      • Employer surveys

Download the Developing Entrepreneurial Leadership Powerpoint.