Request for Conference Host

Hosting the GCEC Conference 


Consider joining a prestigious group of schools that have served as host to the premier global organization for entrepreneurship centers worldwide!


If you are interested in hosting, please watch the hosting webinar of take a look at the GCEC Call for Host Overview


  • BRING 600+ delegates to YOUR campus.
  • SHOWCASE your center and show the world what you are doing to support and build entrepreneurship education.
  • BRAND your center with GCEC to increase awareness of your school or university.
  • PLACE your center and your campus at the forefront of entrepreneurship education around the world.


The Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers (GCEC) was established in 1997 to foster collaboration, communication, and the mutual pursuit of excellence among university-based entrepreneurship centers. Initially focusing on U.S.-based centers, the GCEC (formerly known as the National Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers or NCEC), has evolved to include international universities as well. Today, the GCEC stands as the premier leadership organization addressing the emerging topics of importance to the world’s university-based centers for entrepreneurship. It has become the principal vehicle by which the top, established entrepreneurship centers, as well as emerging centers, can work together to share information, develop programs and initiatives, and collaborate with one another in advancing, strengthening, and celebrating the contributions and impact of individual centers.


The GCEC is comprised of more than 600 members from approximately 300 schools and colleges. The organization hosts an annual conference, an awards program, and provides virtual webinars throughout the year. The Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship at Rice University in Houston, Texas serves as the global headquarters of the GCEC.


2025 GCEC Conference 

Host schools for GCEC have the opportunity to join an elite group of entrepreneurship leaders who are empowering entrepreneurship centers and educators worldwide. GCEC is unique in that the organization believes that by holding annual conferences on host school campuses it can provide host school directors and universities with the chance to showcase their program, bring international exposure to their university and brand their efforts with GCEC. Hosting the annual GCEC brings excellent marketing benefits as well as the opportunity to collaborate with colleagues.


Applying to Host the Conference

Applying to host the GCEC Conference is a two-step process. First schools/colleges submit a letter of interest. The GCEC Advisory Board Site Selection Committee will review all letters of interest and select a small group to submit a full proposal.


Submitting your Letter of Interest :

A Letter of Interest (2 – 4 pages in length) from your university (signed by your College Dean, Provost or President) to serve as a host school for the 2025 conference should be submitted to Holly DeArmond ([email protected]) by February 23, 2024.


Based on the Site Selection Committee’s review of Letters of Interest, selected schools will be invited to submit a full proposal that will be due in May 2024. The selection process, including proposal and review, will be complete by June 30, 2024. Multi-university proposals are acceptable, but not required.


Letters of Interest Should include (at a minimum):

  • Why your school would be an excellent host for the GCEC conference;
  •  Why you believe the conference would be of particular value to your institution;
  • Innovative dimensions you envision including in your host experience;
  • How you would differentiate your university from other candidates;
  • Who will serve as campus Champion and Chairperson for the conference;
  • Brief overview highlighting your entity’s ability or experience hosting a conference of this magnitude.

Benefits to Hosting the GCEC Conference

  • Host school will have the opportunity to showcase their school, faculty, students, facilities and their community through GCEC marketing efforts and the visibility of their program during a conference attended by leaders of entrepreneurship programs.
  • Host university’s name and logo will be showcased in multiple mediums internationally. 


Estimated Cost to Host the GCEC Conference

  • The host school is responsible for all expenses associated with the GCEC Conference.  However, the host school also retains 100% of conference registration fees.  It is anticipated that registration fees will cover 70% to 90% of conference expenses, depending on the location, conference costs, and how the host school organizes the conference.
  • The host school is also able to solicit outside (non-GCEC-member) sponsors for the conference and retains 100% of all these sponsorships.  It is therefore possible for the host school to generate revenues (registration fees and sponsorships) which exceed the expenses of hosting the conference.   The GCEC can provide sample conference budgets from prior years as guidelines.
  • The most recent GCEC conferences have generated a surplus over direct expenditures.
  • The host school will work closely with the GCEC Headquarters on conference planning. GCEC HQ will provide support to assist with: 1) planning the overall conference, 2) development of the conference content, 3) connections to past GCEC Conference hosts, 4) marketing the conference to the GCEC membership, and 5) assisting with the delegate registration process, and 6) administering the feedback survey. To do this, the host will meet with the GCEC HQ on a regular basis leading up to the conference.
  • The host school will also have the GCEC Advisory Board Conference Committee available as a resource.


Impact Statements from Former GCEC Conference Hosts:

“Hosting GCEC was an opportunity to tap into support from all over campus to host an I & E event, introducing our Center to those who had not yet met us, and growing our team of ambassadors—being chosen to host was viewed as a big honor, and people like to be identified with a win. It was also a great talking point in the community, whether to bring in sponsors, or to point to how our Center focuses on showcasing entrepreneurs in our city.”
Wendy Bolger
Founding Director, Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship, Loyola University Maryland
2021 GCEC Conference Co-host

“DePaul University and Illinois Tech hosted GCEC in 2018 and it was attended by over 600 participants from all over the world. Since the GCEC was never held in Chicago before, we were thrilled to be able to showcase Chicago since it is such a central location in the US and has a vibrant startup ecosystem. As a host school, it provided DePaul and the Coleman Center with life-long contacts in entrepreneurship education and best practices in running a Center. Hosting this Conference continues to have a profound impact on all of our programs 5 years later!”
Bruce R. Leech
Executive Director/Clinical Professor, Coleman Entrepreneurship Center | DePaul University
2018 GCEC Conference Co-host


GCEC Conference Host Schools – Past and Current:

1997 – University of Maryland
1998 – University of Maryland
1999 – University of Southern California
2000 – Ball State University
2001 – Wake Forest University
2002 – Babson College
2003 – Texas Christian University
2004 – University of Portland
2005 – University of North Carolina
2006 – Northern Kentucky University (with Univ. of Cincinnati and Univ. of Dayton)
2007 – Syracuse University
2008 – University of Arizona
2009 – Rice University
2010 – Pennsylvania State University
2011 – University of Southern California
2012 – Georgetown University
2013 – University of Missouri Kansas City
2014 – University College London
2015 – University of Florida
2016 – University of Rochester and Rochester Institute of Technology
2017 – Dalhousie University, Saint Mary’s University, and Univ. of New Brunswick
2018 – DePaul University and Illinois Institute of Technology
2019 – Stockholm School of Entrepreneurship, Stockholm, Sweden
2020 – University of Las Vegas, Nevada (UNLV) – virtual
2021 – Loyola University Maryland and University of Baltimore
2022 – University of Las Vegas, Nevada (UNLV)
2023 – University of Texas at Dallas (UT Dallas) – 27th Annual GCEC Conference

2024 – Global Summit at Sasin School of Management in Bangkok, Thailand (June 20-22, 2024)

2024 – Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts (November 14-16, 2024)