Retired Entrepreneurship Professor Honored With ‘Legacy Award’

Carol Reeves, U of A's former associate vice provost for entrepreneurship, received the Legacy Award last week in Las Vegas, Nevada, from the Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers.

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Carol Reeves, U of A’s former associate vice provost for entrepreneurship, received the Legacy Award last week in Las Vegas, Nevada, from the Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers.

LAS VEGAS — When Carol Reeves first started developing entrepreneurship programs at the University of Arkansas, she and one other part-time person oversaw all entrepreneurial activities on campus.

Last week in Las Vegas, seven team members from the U of A Office of Entrepreneurship and Innovation were on hand as Reeves received the Legacy Award from the Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers.

“When we started … the cost of sending seven team members to the GCEC conference exceeded our annual budget,” Reeves mused.

The Global Consortium was founded in 1997 to facilitate collaboration between university-based entrepreneurship centers in the US, and it’s Legacy Award has been presented since 2012 to those who pioneered and directed a “university entrepreneurship center that created a legacy impact in the field. of entrepreneurship,” according to its website.

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Reeves, who retired from the U of A in 2020 and was the impetus behind its thriving entrepreneurship programs, praised the students, mentors and fellow team members who helped transform the entrepreneurial ecosystem at the university and the throughout Arkansas.

“Our most important resource has always been our students,” Reeves said. “They’re incredibly hardworking, they’re bright, and they’re almost surprisingly humble.”

Thinking about his legacy, Reeves added that there are two groups he hopes to impact: students and the team that succeeded him.

“(The students) have changed the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the state of Arkansas,” Reeves said. “The depth and breadth of the programs they (OEI) have created and run just amazes me.”

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Reeves joined the U of A in 1990 and has been a professor in the Sam M. Walton College of Business, teaching courses in entrepreneurship and new venture development, international business, strategic management and negotiation. In 2005 he was appointed the Cecil W. and Gwendolyn Stuckey Cupp Applied Professorship in Entrepreneurship.

Between 2009 and 2018, Reeves’ student teams won more national business competitions than any other university in America. Reeves retired in 2020 as associate vice provost for entrepreneurship.

The Consortium’s Legacy Award is a fitting honor for Reeves, according to Anne O’Leary-Kelly, senior associate dean for faculty affairs and academic departments at Walton College.

“For me, legacy implies something greater than the sum of its parts. It’s more than individual achievement. It suggests a lasting impact and it suggests a self-enriching effect,” said O’Leary-Kelly, who often collaborates with Reeves.

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“These are all characteristics that describe Carol Reeves’ impact on entrepreneurship and innovation in the state of Arkansas.”

About the U of A Office of Entrepreneurship and Innovation: The Office of Entrepreneurship and Innovation creates and curates innovation and entrepreneurship experiences for students in all disciplines. Through the Brewer Family Entrepreneurship Hub, McMillon Innovation Studio, Startup Village, and Greenhouse at the Bentonville Collaborative, OEI provides free workshops and programs — including social and corporate innovation design teams, venture internships, competitions and startup coaching. A unit of the Sam M. Walton College of Business and Division of Economic Development, OEI also offers on-demand support for students who would be innovators within existing organizations and start-up entrepreneurs. a new one.


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