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Don’t Miss the NACCE Lifetime Achievement Award Winner Tomorrow at Lunch

Posted By Jeanne Yocum, Sunday, October 13, 2013

Tomorrow at lunch, we’ll hear from Desh Despande, this year’s winner of NACCE’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Don’t miss his remarks; I know they’ll be both enlightening and energizing; I can say that with confidence because I had the honor of interviewing Desh last June for the cover article of the Summer/Fall issue of Community College Entrepreneurship, and I very much enjoyed his thoughts on how to the importance of entrepreneurship.


Desh Deshpande is a serial entrepreneur, having founded numerous companies, including Sycamore Networks. He’s also well known for his philanthropic work, which includes starting the Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation at MIT. Through the Deshpande Foundation, he provided seed money to start the Center, which empowers researchers to bring innovative technologies from the lab to the marketplace in terms of breakthrough products and new companies. Since 2002, DCTI has reviewed 500 proposals and funded more than 90 projects with over $11 million in grants.


 Desk has also been a major contributor to many entrepreneurial philanthropic causes throughout the world, including the Merrimack Valley Social Entrepreneurship Sandbox in Lawrence/Lowell, Massachusetts, in which two NACCE member colleges, Middlesex Community College and Northern Essex Community College, participate. And as if he weren’t already busy enough, in 2010, Desh was appointed to co-chair a National Council to support President Obama’s innovation and entrepreneurship strategy.


For the Merrimack Valley Sandbox (MV Sandbox), Desh committed $1 million annually over five years, works to strengthen an ecosystem that promotes entrepreneurship and leadership in Lowell and Lawrence, MA. The MV Sandbox coordinates activities between Middlesex Community College, Northern Essex Community College, UMass-Lowell, Merrimack College, community non-profits, and the Merrimack Valley business community. The "Campus Catalyst” program within the MV Sandbox provides entrepreneurial support to students at both community colleges. (For more info on this program, read the article on page 26 of the Spring/Summer 2013 NACCE journal.)

Tags:  NACCE  NACCE2013  National Association for Community College Entreen 

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