Entrepreneurship Initiative

The mission of the Entrepreneurship Initiative is to encourage entrepreneurial activity in the Pioneer Valley of Massachusetts by fostering an educational environment among participating colleges and universities that informs, supports, and inspires students, and by recognizing and awarding students who display entrepreneurial spirit.

Harold Grinspoon, real estate entrepreneur, founded the Grinspoon Entrepreneurship Initiative (EI) in 2003 (a program of the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation) to elevate the importance of entrepreneurship and recognize entrepreneurial excellence among college students. A regional collaboration of Pioneer Valley colleges and universities, Grinspoon EI hosts an annual spring “Celebration of Entrepreneurial Spirit” Banquet, and recognizes outstanding students with Entrepreneurial Spirit Awards. 
Grinspoon EI delivers annually  
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Participating Colleges

American International College Marshall Epstein
Amherst College Stephanie Hockman
Bay Path University Gillian Amaral
Elms College Amanda Garcia
Greenfield Community College Ryan Costello
Hampshire College  
Holyoke Community College Ellen Majka
Mt. Holyoke College Rick Feldman
Smith College  
Springfield College Pam Baran, Heather Gilmour
Springfield Technical Community College Diane Sabato
University of Massachusetts Gregory Thomas
Western New England University Mary Schoonmaker
Westfield State University Tony Furnelli and Kim Sherman


Entrepreneurship Awards
Spring Elevator Pitch Competition


For more information please contact Cari Carpenter: cari@hgf.org or 413-276-0831.

Participating Colleges

View the list

Congratulations to our award recipients!

2022 (PDF | 55kb)

2021 (PDF | 145kb)

2021 Grinspoon Gallery of Entrepreneur Award Winners