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The influence of role models on students' entrepreneurial intentions

By Jessica Kennedy, Judy Drennan, Patty Renfrow and Bernadette Watson


The Smart State initiative requires both improved education and training, particularly in technical fields, plus entrepreneurship to commercialise new ideas. In this study, we propose an entrepreneurial intentions model as a guide to examine the educational choices and entrepreneurial intentions of first-year University students, focusing on the effect of role models. A survey of over 1000 first -year University students revealed that the most enterprising students were choosing to study in the disciplines of information technology and business, economics and law, or selecting dual degree programs that include business. The role models most often identified for their choice of field of study were parents, followed by teachers and peers, wish females identifying more role models than males. For entrepreneurship, students' role models were parents and peers, followed by famous persons and teachers. Males and females identified similar numbers of role models, but males found starting a business more desirable and more feasible, and reported higher entrepreneurial intention. The implications of these findings for Smart State policy are discussed

Topics: 150304 Entrepreneurship, role models, students, entrepreneurial intentions
Publisher: University of Queensland Press
Year: 2003
OAI identifier:

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