Together, we’re elevating the craft of teaching, with experiential learning and entrepreneurial thinking that will, in turn, build innovative, creative students.

Innovative teaching isn’t just about being a better teacher. It’s about recognizing potential and inventing new ways to put that potential to work for the world – crucial in our ever-evolving economy. The Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation created the Guild to help teachers learn from each other, no matter the field in which you teach. You’ll not only hone your craft and awaken your innate innovative mindset; you’ll also help your students find and forge new paths related to their degrees and passions, so they can be adaptable, successful and fulfilled.

  • Certificate program to expand your CV
  • Minimal, flexible time commitment
  • Special incentives for TCU faculty to participate

Apply to the Guild

Students writing on Post-it notes on the glass wall of a classroom

Meet the Demand for Innovation

To survive, we must adapt.
More than 50% of the American workforce is currently on a 1099, and that number continues to rise. The average lifespan of a public company in the U.S. has dropped from 71 years in 1932 to 14 years in 2022, and that number keeps falling. Given the rise of the gig economy, independent contractors and new technology, experiential learning and entrepreneurial thinking are more important than ever, for both individuals and businesses.

It’s not about starting a business.
Starting a business is one potential rewarding outcome, but entrepreneurial thinking is about finding purpose and leveraging adaptability in whatever path you – or your students – choose. Entrepreneurial thinking includes:

  • Recognizing opportunity
  • Creative problem-solving
  • Maximizing minimal resources
  • Communicating a compelling vision
  • Building effective networks
  • Creating value in your personal and professional lives
  • Making a positive difference in you organizations and communities

Program Structure
The Guild program has an innovative framework, including seminars with flexible scheduling; mentorship and coaching to help you customize your learnings; a growing community of educators in the Guild; plus tools, resources and creative models you can take with you. You’ll also have the opportunity to discover new friends and connect with like-minded colleagues across disciplines, anytime.
Time Commitment
  • Two semesters
  • Mostly two-hour seminars once per month in the first semester
  • Additional sessions for special topics (if requested or needed)
  • Three classroom visits from your mentor and colleagues in the Guild, plus two seminars in the second semester
  • One-on-ones at your choosing

Unleash your creativity

This course applies to teachers of all disciplines – and benefits their students. We’ve seen creativity unleashed in all kinds of ways.

  • A dancer who realized she was more than just a performer; she could start her own studio or clothing line.
  • Nursing students who saw a need and launched a CPR course that also funds scholarships.
  • Journalism students who learned how to produce video segments from start to finish using only their phones.

“Being part of the Innovative Teachers Guild has introduced me to concepts of entrepreneurial thinking that readily translate into my teaching and scholarship. The toolkit is a treasure trove of materials and links that we’ve explored to address current and future trends in the workforce. From theoretical frameworks to business models to up-and-coming innovations, articles, and artifacts, the toolkit is a repository of best practices.”

Gina Alexander, Associate Professor, Nursing
TCU Harris College of Nursing & Health Sciences

“The Guild created a space for me to connect with others at the university who are facing the same struggles and looking for the same growth and opportunities that I am for my students and classes. It gave me the security and confidence to explore new ideas, methods and activities for my classes. I had no idea how innately entrepreneurial I was in my field. The Guild helped uncover that for me. This group truly is the group you didn't know you needed.”

Patty Zamarippa, Assistant Professor of Professional Practice, Journalism
TCU Bob Schieffer College of Communication

“The Innovative Teachers Guild has helped me find ways to connect my creativity with my understanding of entrepreneurship. As a professor in the fine arts, I find it especially useful to be given concrete tools along with open-ended pathways. This combination of guidelines and freedom is helping me to become a better teacher, a better colleague and a better entrepreneur.”

Suki John, Professor, Classical & Contemporary Dance
TCU College of Fine Arts

Photo: Rodney D'Souza

Rodney D'Souza

Executive Director, Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Professor of Professional Practice
Davis Family Entrepreneur in Residence
Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Neeley 3502C

Photo: Michael Sherrod

Michael Sherrod

Instructor III
Director, Innovative Teachers Guild
William M. Dickey Entrepreneur in Residence
Entrepreneurship and Innovation Department

Neeley 3502E

Gina Alexander
Associate Professor, Nursing
TCU Harris College of Nursing & Health Sciences

Jan Ballard
Instructor, Design
TCU College of Fine Arts

Nick Bontrager
Associate Professor, Art
TCU College of Fine Arts

Catherine Coleman
Chair of Strategic Communication
Professor, Strategic Communication
TCU Bob Schieffer College of Communication

Dusty Crocker
Professor of Professional Practice, Design
TCU College of Fine Arts

Suki John
Professor, Classical & Contemporary Dance
TCU College of Fine Arts

Patty Zamarripa
Assistant Professor of Professional Practice, Journalism
TCU Bob Schieffer College of Communication