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Entrepreneurship and Engineering

Ehsan Jabbarazadeh and Julie Iarossi.
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

I don’t know if you’ve noticed but over the past ten years, colleges and universities have become more and more involved in teaching entrepreneurship.  And our next guest says a focus on technology and innovation is the most recent trend in this area.

Mike Switzer interviews Dr. Ehsan Jabbarzadeh, an associate professor of chemical and biomedical engineering, and director of entrepreneurship for the College of Engineering & Computing, and Dr. Julie Iarossi, clinical assistant professor in the Management Dept. at the Moore School of Business.  Both are also co-directors of the National Science Foundation I-Corps site, all at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC.

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After almost 20 years, Mike Switzer retired from Wells Fargo Securities in 2001 as Senior Vice President/Investment Officer and Certified Portfolio Manager. In 1999, he and his wife, Maggie, purchased and operated for eight years the Baskin Robbins ice cream store on Forest Drive in Columbia. They grew the store from a bottom-tier operation in the Baskin Robbins franchise system to one in the top 5% nationwide within three years, tripling sales along the way. While operating the ice cream store, Mike and Maggie received patents for a portable ice cream sink and fold-down sneezeguard they invented and in 2002 started Magnolia Carts, an ice cream cart manufacturing company, which they sold in 2013.