HAZLETON, Pa. -- William Andahazy has been hired as entrepreneurship coordinator of the Penn State Hazleton LaunchBox, Chancellor Gary Lawler recently announced.
The Hazleton LaunchBox, supported by Pasco L. Schiavo, Esq., is a center for innovation and entrepreneurship located at 13 W. Broad St. in downtown Hazleton. The Hazleton LaunchBox is part of the University’s Invent Penn State program, a Commonwealth-wide initiative to spur economic development, job creation and student career success.
“With the Hazleton LaunchBox recently opening, it was imperative to select a leader like Bill who is well-versed in entrepreneurship, business development and economic development," said Lawler. "Certainly, Greater Hazleton will benefit from his vision and strategies for assisting entrepreneurs in starting and growing their businesses.”
In his role with the LaunchBox, Andahazy oversees a variety of programming and is responsible for facilitating entrepreneurship education, collaborating with Penn State faculty on internships, developing a mentorship program and planning a speaker series.
“Bill brings an extensive background in career services and demonstrated success in developing and furthering relationships with the community," said Director of Continuing Education Debra Conway. "His work with students and businesses throughout his career will serve the LaunchBox well as he plans and executes a number of programs and events in the Hazleton area.”
Andahazy said, “With the right programming and support, I believe the LaunchBox will make a positive impact on both Penn State Hazleton’s campus and the city of Hazleton community. Whether a person decides to start a business or go to work for an established company, our goal is to provide students and members of the community with tools that allow that individual to be successful academically and professionally through the creation of an entrepreneurial mindset.”
Andahazy has more than 15 years of university administration experience in professional development, innovation, program development and corporate relations. He has also led several study-abroad programs in Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, China, Chile, Argentina and South Africa. He taught a variety of classes at Villanova University, Temple University Fox School of Business, Community College of Philadelphia and Misericordia University. He also served as a consultant in higher education and small business.
Prior to working in higher education, he spent more than 10 years in corporate human resources management with an emphasis on talent management, training and organizational development.
Andahazy holds a doctorate in education with a concentration in higher education leadership from Wilkes University, with a research focus on global education programs and professional development. He earned a master’s degree in human resources administration from the University of Scranton and a bachelor’s degree in general studies with a concentration in public relations and institution administration from the University of Maryland. He holds an executive education certificate in general management from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Andahazy serves on the Pennsylvania Governor’s Advisory Council for Hunting, Fishing, and Conservation. He is a lifelong outdoors enthusiast and resides in Mountain Top with his wife and daughter.
Partners in the Hazleton LaunchBox include the Downtown Hazleton Alliance for Progress (DHAP); CAN DO, Inc.; CAN BE Innovation Center; the Greater Hazleton Chamber of Commerce; the Society of Hispanic Business Professionals; and other partners through The Hazleton Innovation Collaborative (THInC).
A number of programs are planned at the LaunchBox, starting with a six-week entrepreneurship program for high school students in collaboration with DHAP and THInC. It will host programs in support of Global Entrepreneurship Week and Women Entrepreneurship Week this fall. Recurring programming such as 3D-printer training and an entrepreneurship speaker series will also begin this fall. In the spring, the LaunchBox will hold its first Idea Test Lab bootcamp, which has been successful at other LaunchBox centers around the commonwealth.
“Most of our programming will be open to the public and will have the opportunity to capitalize on Penn State programming to help entrepreneurs start or grow a business," said Andahazy. "We will also be able to provide consulting resources such as legal, licensing, and financial for entrepreneurs seeking assistance in those areas. We hope to be a key contributor in the economic and cultural revitalization of the downtown Hazleton area."