National Entrepreneurship Week takes place during the third week of February annually. This year, it takes place from February 11 to 18. It is a congressionally-chartered initiative centered on celebrating America’s entrepreneurship ecosystem. Formed in 2006, and relaunched in 2017, this initiative uplifts core values of diversity, inclusion, equity, education, and collaboration needed for the growth of entrepreneurs.
History of National Entrepreneurship Week
Entrepreneurs have been in existence for as long as people have been allowed to own their own businesses, however, the term did not appear until 1723. There are nearly 31 million small businesses across the United States, and the majority of the country’s economy is made up of entrepreneurs and small businesses. Despite this, over 50% of these businesses fail within the first year.
This was what stirred up the need for an initiative that empowers the entrepreneurship journey, and supports business owners with some of the knowledge they need to scale their businesses. In 2006, the National Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education and the Kauffman Foundation took the initiative to work with the 109th Congress, which led to the designation of the third week of February every year as National Entrepreneurship Week. This congressionally-chartered initiative uplifts core values of diversity, inclusion, equity, education, and collaboration in America’s entrepreneurship ecosystem and the network of stakeholders that support entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship across the nation.
The initiative was pretty much dormant until its relaunch in 2017. Co-Founder of the National Center for Resource Development, Joe Kapp along with two entrepreneurial educators, Amber Ravenscroft and Toi Hershman are responsible for the reviving of the annual initiative, and its popularity ever since.
They were all working on a grant in rural Ohio from the Appalachian Regional Commission to educate students in coal-affected communities when they discovered a general lack of awareness about entrepreneurship, available resources, emerging opportunities, and access to capital markets across communities. Kapp proposed the idea of reviving National Entrepreneurship Week, and in 2017, National Entrepreneurship Week 2.0 was reborn as NatlEshipWeek.
National Entrepreneurship Week timeline
The word ‘entrepreneur’ first appears in a French dictionary compiled by Jacques des Brulons.
National Entrepreneurship Week is created by the National Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education, the Kauffman Foundation, and the 109th Congress.
National Entrepreneurship Week is relaunched and gains massive popularity.
A number of federal agencies join the National Entrepreneurship Week to launch Federal Entrepreneurship Day, hosting their own events for the empowerment of entrepreneurs.
National Entrepreneurship Week FAQs
Are National Entrepreneurship Week and Global Entrepreneurship Week the same?
Although both were pushed by the Kauffman Foundation, they are different events. National Entrepreneurship Week occurs every third week in February, while Global Entrepreneurship Week falls in the second week in November.
Are there any events on National Entrepreneurship Week?
The NatElshipWeek team organizes several live and virtual events within the week, across Maui to Miami, in collaboration with several major partners.
Can I join in as a speaker for National Entrepreneurship Week?
If you have great entrepreneurship experience, you can sign up to become a speaker in the week. Also, schools and other similar institutions can apply to be involved in the program and have students and employees taught several entrepreneurship skills. Visit the NatElshipWeek website to learn more.
How to Observe National Entrepreneurship Week
Attend the events
Communities across the country offer free local and virtual entrepreneurship webinars and events to uplift and empower the entrepreneurship ecosystem. Find out about the events happening, by visiting the NatlEshipWeek website.
Join in as an educator
Do you have solid experience in the entrepreneurial journey? Then you can join the cause as an educator. As an entrepreneurship educator, you have the ability to teach new entrepreneurs how to be successful at what they do. In fact, the NatElship Week team creates events just for educators.
Spread the word
Knowledge is key, and the good news of National Entrepreneurship Week cannot spread itself. Get on your social platforms and spread the word using #NatlEshipWeek in your posts to raise awareness.
5 Facts And Figures About Entrepreneurship
Most new American billionaires are self-made
With a record high of 493 new billionaires added to “Forbes”’ annual list of the richest people in 2021, 90% of new American billionaires are self-made.
Not all entrepreneurs went to college
About 30% of entrepreneurs only have a high school degree.
The U.S. might be the best country
The United States has a Global Entrepreneurship Index of 83.6, making her the best country for entrepreneurs.
You don’t need to know business
According to entrepreneurship data, 32% of small business owners have only taken a couple of business classes, while 46% don’t have any form of business education.
You’re never too old
Studies show middle-aged men start the most successful businesses, with an average age of 42 years.
Why National Entrepreneurship Week is Important
Entrepreneurs make up a major portion of the economy
With about 582 million entrepreneurs in the world, it is clear that entrepreneurs and their businesses make up a large portion of not only America’s economy but the world at large. National Entrepreneurship Week is key to equipping our entrepreneurs with the knowledge they need to grow their businesses.
Most businesses fail in the first year
Great roles come with greater responsibilities, and the same goes for our entrepreneurs. Many start-ups fail within their first year due to a lack of knowledge, funds, or manpower. The National Entrepreneurship Week initiative was created to boost the ecosystem of America’s entrepreneurship, and equip entrepreneurs with the tools they need to keep their businesses afloat.
It provides a supportive community
The entrepreneurship journey can be a long, hard, and lonely one. With National Entrepreneurship Week, you get to meet like-minded people and learn from others’ experiences. This is especially helpful to budding entrepreneurs who need networking, and all the support they can get.
National Entrepreneurship Week dates