As the second millennium draws quickly to a close, technology is opening more doors and creating more opportunities than ever before. This era of possibilities is also attracting a new generation of business people--people who are finding or developing a niche for themselves and sometimes for new products and services.

In a recent alumni survey, one-fourth of all Reedies reported they were working in the field of business and industry. This category was second only to education, which captured 30 percent of alumni, and was far ahead of the third-largest categories, a split between arts/communications and health care, both reporting 8 percent of the alumni population. These numbers don't surprise President Steven Koblik, "Entrepreneurship and scholarship have a lot in common. Both endeavors attract creative types who are wonderfully imaginative, risk-oriented, and independent."

A group of Reed alumni recently created the Reed Entrepreneur Network (REN) for leaders of high-growth startups. These Reed-affiliated entrepreneurs meet quarterly to share information and contacts. Members say results of the year-old group are already positive and tangible: it has helped launch a new business, helped with funding and introductions to investors, and aided in recruiting board members and key employees.

However, the recent formation of REN does not mean Reedies are just now becoming interested in creating their own businesses. For example, Howard Vollum '36 built an oscilloscope as a Reed junior and 11 years later founded Tektronix, Inc., which revolutionized oscilloscope design and became their foremost manufacturer in the world.

On the next two pages are examples of some of entrepreneurial activities independent-thinking Reedies have begun. This is in no way a comprehensive list, but rather a small sampling of entrepreneurial Reedies. Some of the people on this list are currently immersed in very successful ventures; others are just starting new endeavors. We encourage you to suggest others whom you know that could be included in this category of creative and forward-looking spirits.

Next Page
Next Page