Steve Case and Desh Deshpande were in town this week for our meeting of the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE). The night before the meeting, they were kind enough to spend time talking to students with me at the Global Education Center:
It was a thrill to talk to these two American innovators. Steve Case brought the internet to its wide usage through the creation of America Online, and Desh Deshpande made the hardware that helped make it possible. But what’s even more impressive is what these two have done since.
Steve Case created the Case Foundation and is now the Chairman of Startup America, which is the White House effort to promote entrepreneurial job growth. Startup America grew out of the work that NACIE did on our Celebration subcommittee, which Steve chaired.
Desh Deshpande created the Deshpande Center at MIT, which is dedicated to helping promote more businesses out of MIT, and he has also been a prolific social entrepreneur in India. Two of our entrepreneurship students went to work for him on his efforts in India.
Both guys talk eloquently about how entrepreneurship can address social problems in addition to creating jobs, which is something that I’ve talked a lot about here.