Innovation Creativity & Entrepreneurship (ICE)

The Innovation, Creativity & Entrepreneurship (ICE) Emphasis at Western is designed to prepare students to finance, plan for, start and manage their own profitable venture.

Western’s Innovation, Creativity & Entrepreneurship program is all about fresh thinking, positive impact and rising to challenges. And our setting in the eclectic Gunnison Valley reinforces such attitudes. We question the status quo by championing bold ideas, taking intelligent risks and accepting sensible failures.  Professors with real-world entrepreneurial experiences present the curriculum. Our small classes help students develop personal relationships with local business owners and connect the classroom to the community in ways that encourage growth, leadership and commitment.

What Will You Learn in the Innovation, Creativity & Entrepreneurship program? What Skills Will You Acquire?

Innovation, Creativity & Entrepreneurship at Western is anchored in the fundamentals of business, from accounting, marketing and economics, to management and strategy. You will learn to manage an enterprise as an innovative leader, as comfortable reinventing a critical business process as you are formulating strategy for the entire organization. Some of the skills Western ICE students grow reach beyond operational fundamentals, including:

  • Opportunity recognition
  • Problem framing
  • Design thinking
  • Creative thinking
  • Empathetic awareness
  • Risk management
  • Resilience
  • Negotiation

Beyond the Classroom

Taking a required experiential course that exposes you to real businesses and organizational challenges further develops entrepreneurial skills. Students work one on one as business consultants with an existing or start-up small business.

After Graduation

In our Entrepreneurial Planning course, students develop their own business plans. Many students have launched successful businesses from the plans they created at Western.

Next Steps

If you're interested in Western's Innovation, Creativity & Entrepreneurship Program, we invite you to take the next steps towards becoming a part of the Mountaineer family.

Share your interest with friends and family:
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  2. Get more information about the program.
  3. Schedule a campus visit so you can meet professors, see the beautiful Gunnison Valley, and find out if Western is the perfect school for you.
  4. Start the online application process - apply online now.
  5. Find scholarships, grants, or financial aid that match your interests and situation.


Tyler Brandt smiles for a portrait-style photo
“Every professor I’ve ever had here has been amazing. The class sizes are incredible. And I’m dyslexic, so the class sizes and working with professors one-on-one is really cool. I know all of my professors really well, and you get to interact in class.”

Faculty & Staff


Dr. Christopher Greene headshot
Associate Professor of Business Administration; Innovation + Creativity + Entrepreneurship (ICE) Project Director
B.S. University of Wyoming, JD University of Colorado School of Law
Phone: (970) 943.2300
Office Location: Borick Business Building 222


FOR REQUIRED COURSES AND DEGREE PLANS, VISIT THE OFFICIAL UNIVERSITY CATALOG. This is a sample of courses offered by Western Colorado University. To ensure the courses you need are offered during the current semester, please visit the university course search.

 ACC 350 - Income Tax (3 credits)

An introduction to the federal income tax system. Emphasis is on the ways in which the U.S. income tax laws influence personal and business behavior and decision making, and how the tax laws can be used to accomplish various economic and social objectives. Topics covered include an introduction to tax research, principles of income and deduction, tax liability, and tax credits. Individual taxation is the primary focus, but the basic principles apply to most forms of business organization as well. Accounting majors must pass this class with a minimum grade of "C." Prerequisite: minimum sophomore standing.

 BUAD 100 - Business in Society (3 credits)

A study of the role of business in modern society. Topics include the private enterprise system, consumerism, management functions, major functional areas of large business, vital areas of small-business operation, and the environment of business.

 BUAD 150 - Introduction to Hospitality (3 credits)

An introduction to hospitality management, including historical developmental patterns, current business trends, and future international expectations. Current job market, working environments, personal risks, and rewards are explored.

 BUAD 275 - Innovation, Creativity, and Entrepreneurship: Mindset (ICE: Mindset) (3 credits)

The ICE mindset comprises the underlying beliefs and assumptions that drive the behavior enabling people to create positive change. This course takes the approach that anyone (not just those who want to start businesses) can benefit from understanding and applying an innovative, creative, and entrepreneurial mindset to any situation that demands change in their life. Students are immersed in learning about the fundamental aspects of an ICE mindset and the unlimited opportunities it can provide.

 BUAD 300 - Business Ethics (3 credits)

A study of how ethics apply to business organizations today. Special emphasis is placed on developing moral reasoning. The course provides multiple perspectives on actual cases and ethical dilemmas faced by organizations with an emphasis on allowing students to think through ethical problems. Topics studied include moral philosophies, moral agency and development, ethical underpinnings of free markets and economic systems, and ethical concerns with the environment, future generations, and other stakeholders such as employees and consumers. Prerequisites: completion of Base Curriculum; BUAD 309 or COTH 202; or instructor permission.

 BUAD 311 - Essentials Excel Skills for the Workplace (1 credits)

This course prepares the student for Microsoft Excel Office Specialist certification. This course covers all of the topics tested by the certifying examination including managing worksheets and workbooks, applying formulas and functions, analyzing and organizing data, visual presentation of data, and sharing worksheet data with others. Prerequisites: college-level mathematics requirement with a minimum grade of "C-" or instructor permission

 BUAD 312 - Advanced Excel Applications (2 credits)

This course emphasizes the use of computer spreadsheets to organize, analyze and present quantitative information to aid managerial decision-making. The course exercises include examples from several disciplines including business, energy and environmental impact analysis, natural sciences, and social sciences. Specific topics will include business planning and budgeting, capital budgeting and net present value analysis, time value of money, cost / benefit analysis, goal seeking, scenario planning and pivot tables.Prerequisites: BUAD 311, Excel Office Specialist certification or instructor permission.

 BUAD 315 - Business Law (3 credits)

Study includes: sales, commercial paper, secured transactions, corporations, partnerships, estates, trusts, and agency. Prerequisite: BUAD 210.

 BUAD 335 - Marketing Communications (3 credits)

Advertising, sales promotions, media utilization, public relations, and personal selling are highlighted in this course. Legal regulations and ethical considerations in mass media advertising and promotions are also covered. Finally, the student is exposed to the principles of planning and budgeting for such media events. Prerequisites:MATH 140, MATH 141, or MATH 151 with a minimum grade of ÒC-Ó; ACC 201 with a minimum grade of ÒCÓ; BUAD 270; or instructor permission.

 BUAD 340 - Global Business (3 credits)

An advanced course with application of management and marketing principles to the inter-national marketplace. Cultural, political, and geographic differences are analyzed in order to develop market strategies for global markets. Prerequisite: BUAD 309 or COM 202; or instructor permission.

 BUAD 345 - Consumer Behavior (3 credits)

Utilizing theories from the behavioral sciences, this course provides an in-depth examination of the individual customer learning and decision-making processes, segmentation, as well as culture, subculture, and social class relationships with marketing. Students develop an understanding of consumersÕ shopping behavior, utilization of different marketing channels, perception of products, and reactions to advertising and other selling methods. Prerequisites: completion of Base Curriculum; BUAD 270; or instructor permission.

 BUAD 350 - Human Resource Management (3 credits)

Provides students with an understanding of the functions, content and challenges of Human Resource Management (HRM) in organizations today. Insights will be developed on basic dimensions of HRM such as recruitment, selection, performance management, rewards and retention, as well as particular challenges concerning strategic HRM and global environments. Emphasis is placed on how the complexities of HRM relate to students' past and future experiences as members of organizations. Prerequisites: BUAD 309 or COM 202 or instructor permission.

 BUAD 375 - Innovation, Creativity, and Entrepreneurship: Toolkit (ICE: Toolkit) (3 credits)

This course helps students identify and frame business and other societal problems that are characterized by complexity, uncertainty, volatility, and ambiguity. Students learn to think problems through by understanding the situation and framing problems in new ways that might alter how they generate and evaluate solutions. Prerequisite: ACC 201; BUAD 275; or instructor permission.

 BUAD 425 - Marketing Research (3 credits)

The focus of this course is the collection, analysis, and interpretation of marketing data for reporting research information necessary to make informed marketing decisions. Students develop skills in defining research problems, designing surveys, experiments, and observational studies, managing data collection, performing data analysis, and communicating results. Prerequisites: completion of Base Curriculum; BUAD 270; or instructor permission. BUAD 335 and BUAD 345 recommended.

 BUAD 491 - Strategic Management (3 credits)

The formal analysis of an organizationÕs macro and industry environment; its mission and goals; and strategy formulation, implementation, and control. This is a capstone course which integrates the studentÕs knowledge from the areas of accounting, finance, marketing, and management. Students are encouraged to take this course during their last semester; graduating seniors are given priority in enrollment. Prerequisites: completion of Base Curriculum; BUAD 309; BUAD 333 or 350; BUAD 360; and senior standing.

 BUAD 494 - Innovation, Creativity, and Entrepreneurship: Launch (ICE: Launch) (3 credits)

This course provides real world, hands on learning on what itÕs like to actually start an organization. Students talk to customers, partners, competitors, as they encounter the chaos and uncertainty of how a startup actually works. Prerequisite: Base curriculum; BUAD 275; BUAD 375; or instructor permission.

 BUAD 499 - Internship in Business Administration ( credits)

A course designed specifically for junior- and senior-level students. Internships provide guided, counseled, and progressive experience under a dual-tutelage program of a businessperson and an academician. An academically monitored activity to assure quality experience. Graded Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory only. Prerequisite: completion of Base Curriculum; or instructor permission.

 ECON 201 - Macroeconomics (3 credits)

An introduction to the methods, models, and approaches used by economists to analyze and interpret events and policies related to the overall operation of the economy. The course endeavors to make sense of unemployment, inflation, recessions, debt and deficits, economic growth, the expanding role of the Federal Reserve, and policies to provide stability to the economy. Additional attention is given to the making of economic policy in an era of globalization. Finally, students are exposed to multiple schools of thought regarding macroeconomic reasoning. Prerequisite: ACT math score of 19 or above; SAT math score of 500 or above; pass MATH 099; or Accuplacer Elementary Algebra test score of 85 or higher, or university-level math requirement with a minimum grade of C-. Prerequisite or corequisite: ENG 102.

 ECON 302 - Intermediate Microeconomics (3 credits)

Intermediate Microeconomics extends the analysis of individual economic behavior and the functioning of markets learned in ECON 202 by incorporating the more sophisticated microeconomic models used in more advanced economic analysis. Topics include the theories of the consumer and the firm, the functioning of market, and the impact of market structure on price formation. Prerequisites: ECON 202; MATH 140, MATH 141, or MATH 151 with a minimum grade of "C-"; ECON 201 recommended.