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Lenoir-Rhyne University’s Entrepreneurship major prepares undergraduate students to launch new companies, enter the free market and build sustainable profits that drive GDP and contribute to jobs creation. Our Entrepreneurship major reinforces skill sets in marketing, accounting, sales, leadership and, perhaps most importantly — creativity. What makes our graduates stand out from the crowd is the practical component of their education. It focuses on creating an impact and not just studying theory.

LR’s Entrepreneurship major integrates core Business study and preparation, including microeconomics, business law, leadership, organizational behavior, and production and operations management, with a rich emphasis on Entrepreneurial learning and practice.

The major is supported by LR’s Center for Commercial and Social Entrepreneurship (CCSE). Our goal through the CCSE is to prepare students to change the world one idea at a time by creating an innovative culture, surrounding them with an ecosystem of talent and resources, and ensuring each student finishes our program with the critical thinking skills that will serve them for the rest of their lives. The Center includes the Innov828 Business Incubator program incubator and access to subject matter experts.The incubator serves as a vast resource for the area’s budding entrepreneurs, providing step-by-step instructions for the complete development of a product or service. From legal assistance and patents to mentorships and funding, the CCSE aims to support entrepreneurs in their establishment of innovative, profitable businesses.

For students seeking similar skill sets but with an emphasis on non-profit and/or social issues, Lenoir-Rhyne also offers a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Entrepreneurship. The program stresses entrepreneurship as a way to not only achieve personal success, but to positively impact society.

Qualified Entrepreneurship students interested in continuing their Business education through graduate study can easily matriculate into Lenoir-Rhyne’s Master of Business Administration program. Through LR’s innovative Bridges to Dreams and Alumni Advantage programs, students who complete their undergraduate degrees at Lenoir-Rhyne University are able to complete their graduate degrees in shorter time and at significantly less expense (up to nearly half off the standard M.B.A. degree at LR).



Entrepreneurship aCCREDITATION



The Entrepreneurship major requires completion of an internship allowing students to gain firsthand experience working alongside seasoned professionals in a business environment. Through the CCSE, students can also network with professionals who can serve as mentors, sharing their vast experience as entrepreneurs and business leaders.

Each year LRU hosts Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW), an annual, international initiative aimed to inspire and recognize entrepreneurs. It is the largest celebration recognizing those who invent products and create new companies and start-up businesses, as well as those who use their business to create a social change. The event features speakers, workshops, roundtable discussions, and presentations all focusing on the impact of commercial, social, and industrial aspects of entrepreneurship. Faculty members from multiple disciplines, international partners, local and regional entrepreneurs, as well as LRU business students participate in the event.

A highlight of GEW is the Edison Project Business Plan Competition. This event is similar to ABC’s Shark Tank in that regional entrepreneurs will present their business plans to a panel of judges and compete for the title of the Best New Entrepreneurial Business and cash awards. This event is co-sponsored by LRU in conjunction with the Catawba Valley Chamber of Commerce, Catawba Valley Community College, the Small Business and Technology Development Center (SBTDC), and the Small Business Center (SBC).


It is our goal to help our students become not just successful entrepreneurs who can establish profitable businesses, impact our local economy and create jobs, but to also be successful people in a dynamic and ever-changing world. Career options for students include not only running their own commercial or non-profit organization but also being a valuable member of an existing company. Our students learn the critical thinking and leadership skills that the world's top employers are seeking. Whether it is envisioning and building their own new ventures or helping to build value in an existing company, our students are prepared with the self-confidence and abilities to enter the marketplace and to be successful.




Students may complete a BA degree with a major in Entrepreneurship. The same degree is available with the major in Social Entrepreneurship.

Entrepreneurship Major Requirements

Program Contact

Dr. Ralph Griffith

Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship
Hickory Campus