Developing Student Teams to Enable Value Creation

Faculty Lead: Lawrence Neeley


  • Aaron Hoover, Olin College of Engineering
  • Charles Kim, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Bucknell University
  • Scott Shrake, Director of Engineering Programs in Community Service (EPICS), Arizona State University


Startup companies and large corporations alike are recognizing the power and necessity of teams that possess an entrepreneurial mindset and also have work processes and tools that explicitly support their entrepreneurial endeavors. There is specific recognition of the shortcomings of traditional waterfall or stage-gate development processes that break under the conditions of risk and uncertainty faced by entrepreneurs. Agile Scrum is a particularly powerful and popular modern development framework that directly addresses these shortcomings. The goal of this project is to understand and develop Scrum-based processes that support student teams and their learning. 


As part of this project, we created and delivered virtual and in-person workshops targeted at instructors of courses where students engage in team-based project work. Through these workshops we were able to introduce the basic mechanics of Agile Scrum as a tool, share the ways we have adapted Scrum to the particularities of academic settings and how it can be used to directly support and develop the Keen Student Outcomes of Creating Value, Engineering Thought and Action, and Collaboration. We shared this work and collaborated with partners at Bucknell University and Arizona State University. We also delivered workshops to broad faculty audiences at the VentureWell OPEN conference and Olin Summer Institutes. 

The research project was made possible through a grant from the Kern Family Foundation.