“A culture of enterprise and entrepreneurship, equips students with skills for a rewarding, self-determined professional life.”


For the past 5 years, UWTSD's Professor Andy Penaluna has helped to lead on new guidance on enterprise and entrepreneurship, both in the UK and in Europe.

Professor Penaluna has worked closely with The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA), an independent, not for profit organisation aimed at safeguarding standards and improving the quality of UK higher education wherever it is delivered around the world. He has recently chaired their 2017 - 18 review and led the development of new their national guidance.

When universities foster a culture of enterprise and entrepreneurship, it equips students with the skills for a rewarding, self-determined professional life.

It also has significant benefits for the institution itself, says new guidance from the UK’s independent quality body QAA, published on January 18. The guidance will also be available in Mandarin and other languages, following widespread use of the previous version.

The revised guidance, led by Professor Penaluna of the International Institute for Creative Entrepreneurship at University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD), captures the latest thinking on how to embed enterprise and entrepreneurship in higher education, which requires both creative and critical thinking.

"Educators are often tasked with preparing students for jobs that don’t yet exist, using technologies that have not yet been invented, and spotting and solving problems that we have yet to define clearly,” said Professor Penaluna.

"For enterprise and entrepreneurship to be meaningful and effective requires new approaches to teaching and assessment within a whole university culture. The best opportunities for students occur when universities create a central environment that supports collaborative working across different areas."

While the last five years have seen significant progress in enterprise and entrepreneurship education, Professor Penaluna believes universities can do a lot more to prepare graduates who want to run their own businesses or hit the ground running as graduate employees.

"We need to allow students to learn in a way that enables them to identify and solve real problems, perhaps starting a business as an integral part of their programme or responding to challenges set by a local enterprise,' he says.”

"And, allow them to fail, especially when learning is the result. Being able to experience failure in order to find new ways forward is a valuable life lesson that increases resilience, helps flexible thought development and brings innovative new ideas into play.”

"When something as influential as the new QAA Guidance happens, it is often overlooked where things started to develop. For UWTSD our journey began when we listened to past students, and took on board what they told us about life beyond graduation. Simply put, it was our own past students who first set us on the enterprise education path, and they continue to teach us to this day.”

"UWTSD takes pride in doing good things locally, then taking them to a global community, and it’s difficult to find a better case than this. Working in partnership with great colleagues and institutions to create this distinctive guidance on enhancing the quality of provision, we have redefined what it means to have a good university education."

Since the launch of the original QAA guide in 2012, Professor Penaluna has been invited to address many conferences and events across Europe to share his thoughts on how to embed enterprise and entrepreneurship in higher education. He has worked with the EU’s Joint Research Centre to develop a pan-European approach to monitoring development through learning, which is now being rolled out across all member states.

In May last year he travelled to Brussels to present a keynote at an Ented Practice into Policy event, and also addressed the Digital Competence Framework (DigComp) and the Entrepreneurship Competence Framework (EntreComp).  

And in June he addressed a joint workshop at Prince Phillip House in London, hosted by the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Royal Society, the British Academy and the Academy of Medical Sciences, together with a number of prominent speakers helping to shape the future of entrepreneurship education, including Professor Fiona Murray CBE, Associate Dean for Innovation at MIT and Co-Director of the MIT Innovation Initiative.

Then in September, Professor Penaluna delivered a talk at the International Education Leaders luncheon as part of the ENACTUS World Cup. The talk, called ‘Future Proofing Education: The Innovation Imperative’ was delivered to education leaders from 36 different countries around the world at the ExCel Centre in London.

QAA Chief Executive Douglas Blackstock said: "Since we published our original guide to enterprise and entrepreneurship education in 2012, there have been substantial developments in UK and international policy and practice.”

"Alongside providers' adoption of new types of learning and new metrics for success are recent policy drives to apply entrepreneurial approaches to STEM subjects and the government's new Industrial Strategy. This was led by observations made by the Prime Minister, and the updated guide responds to these changes."

You can view the latest publication here: http://www.qaa.ac.uk/publications/information-and-guidance/publication/?PubID=3222#.WmCNka5l_IU

Attached Pic (left to right) shows Margherita Bacigalupo, lead author of the European Commission’s Entrepreneurship Competency Framework, Professor Andy Penaluna and Fiorina Mugione, Chief of the Entrepreneurship Section at the United Nations in Geneva. Both organisations supported the guidance and made their views heard at the launch in London’s Royal Academy of Engineering.

Further Information

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