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Photo Courtesy CREATE-X

Hiring Begins for Entrepreneurship Study

Hiring Begins for Entrepreneurship Study

The first research assistant has joined the interdisciplinary team studying the relationship between merit scholarships and entrepreneurship careers. This marks the very first step of a three-year collaboration between Georgia Tech's School of City and Regional Planning (SCaRP), the University of Georgia's Terry College of Business, and Georgia State University's Andrew Young School of Policy Studies.

The team is studying the relationship between Helping Outstanding Pupils Educationally (HOPE) Scholarship recipients and new business creation. "When you come out of school with big loans, the research shows that you're less likely to pursue entrepreneurship and starting your own company," said Paige Clayton, Assistant Professor and one of the team leads.

"If HOPE and similar programs alleviate the burden of loans, we would expect to see more people moving to self employment and starting companies sooner. We like that because we hope those companies grow and employ Georgians."

The study, led by the interdisciplinary project team of Clayton, Ross Rubenstein from Georgia State, and Susan Cohen from UGA, will also look at regional and demographic effects on Georgia students finishing college who start companies sooner rather than later. Programs like Georgia Tech's CREATE-X will be included in the study. Funding for the study comes from a $400,000 Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation 2022 Knowledge Challenge Grant.

With its growing technology hub and entrepreneurial scene, Atlanta is uniquely suited to host this study. "There are a lot of strong partnerships and connections between the university practitioners and policymakers, which help this kind of work take place," Clayton said.

"It was really easy to set it up because of how well the institutions work together. We have this common goal to support Georgia."

The connection to policymakers is critical because of the terms of the grant. "It's a requirement of this grant to have practical applications that are made available to policymakers and practitioners both within Georgia and outside. We will be writing a policy brief and dispersing it to create recommendations for how to enhance entrepreneurship among these students."

Clayton is personally excited about the study's potential to have real impact on policy in Georgia and other states. "It can be used to support these types of merit scholarships because they have such an impact on students, not just if they're going to start a company but if they're going to need loans for school."

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Headshot of Paige Clayton

Paige Clayton

Assistant Professor

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