Travis Lesser

Color portrait of Travis Lesser

Adjunct Instructor, Coordinator of Farrell Center for Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Department Management and Organization
Office Address 467 Business Building
Phone Number 814-865-8673
Email Address

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Travis is an Instructor in the Department of Management and Organization, teaching courses in entrepreneurship, social entrepreneurship, and responsible business leadiership.

In addition, his role as Program Coordinator with the Farrell Center for Corporate Innovation & Entrepreneurship, he administers such programming as the CIENT Student Experienceship Program, Propel Business - New Innovation & Entrepreneurship Program and is also working on projects focused on social entrepreneurship and impact. He is also the faculty advisor for Penn State Net Impact Undergraduate Chapter.


MBA, Marketing and Entrepreneurship, Penn State University, 2014

BS, Business Administration w/ concentration in Professional Golf Management, Methodist University (NC), 2001

Courses Taught

BA 342 – Res/Sustn/Ethc Bus (3)
Course examines actions taken by corporations that impact global citizenship, environmental sustainability, and the economic stability of international societies. It further looks at relationships, rights, and responsibilities between businesses, business decision-makers and their stakeholders. B A 342 Socially Responsible, Sustainable and Ethical Business Practice (3) Businesses and other large organizations have come to influence nearly all aspects of life in contemporary industrialized societies. The actions taken by businesspeople have major impacts on individuals and on society as a whole. Conversely, the expectations of citizens and their representative bodies (e.g., governments, communities, unions, interest groups) influence a wide range of corporate actions. Students of B A 342 will examine these relationships, rights, and responsibilities between businesses, business decision-makers and their stakeholders. As students enter their field of study, this course will introduced them to current ethical, social responsibility and sustainability issues that face business practitioners within their field and across related disciplines. Each business function – accounting, finance, marketing, risk, supply chain, human resource policies, etc. – has relationships and responsibilities within the larger social environment. This course considers commonalities across the business functions and teaches students to think broadly about how a business fits into a more complex web of relationships within society. The course begins with an overview of the corporation’s place and role in society as well as key concepts in understanding why knowledge related to corporate governance, ethics, sustainability and social responsibility issues is critical to professional managers’ responsibility and long-term career success. The stakeholder model is reviewed along with the study and application of ethical decision-making frameworks to current ethical dilemmas. Sustainability and global responsibility are introduced within the context of government regulation versus responsible stewardship. The closing section of the course provides thought and discussion on issues facing business practitioners across key business functions.

MGMT 365 – Social Entrepreneurship (3)
Social entrepreneurship exposes students to the power of solving social problems through market-based solutions. Entrepreneurs, in general, create opportunities through resource integration. Therefore, social entrepreneurs create socially beneficial opportunities through the integration of public and private resources. In this course, students will explore the latest regulatory, legal and macroenvironmental policies and issues related to social entrepreneurship. In contrast to existing entrepreneurship courses, social impact is the primary purpose driving firm creation. Profitability, or value capture is not required, but might provide an innovative business model choice. In order to support the creation and growth of important social opportunities, entrepreneurs should consider different business model innovations beyond financial returns alone might produce. After taking this course, students will be alert to legal and regulatory opportunities, be capable of developing relevant marketing innovations and provide measurement and impact analyses prior to and after implementation of their strategies associated with social entrepreneurship. These learning outcomes will benefit traditional entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs in developing innovative solutions.

MGMT 215 – Entr Mindset (3)
This course provides the opportunity to learn to think like an entrepreneur in the broader context of social entrepreneurship, intrapreneurship, creative problem solving, opportunity recognition, and innovation. MGMT 215 Entrepreneurial Mindset (3) An entrepreneurial mindset can be applied to different situations such as social entrepreneurship, intrapreneurship, creative problem solving, opportunity recognition, technology management, innovation and career development, etc. The skills and attributes of an entrepreneurial mindset can be used to expand career options and career paths for students in any major. Students will develop self-efficacy, leadership, recognition of new opportunities, resourcefulness, creativity and comfort with ambiguity. Further, this course will help students develop an appreciation for mistakes and failure as valuable learning opportunities. Through experiential exercises and problem based learning the student will be afforded the opportunity to study, apply and absorb an entrepreneurial mindset as an approach to viewing the world, to recognizing opportunities and to developing novel solutions. After taking this course the student, regardless of a student's major or college, will have a greater understanding of how to apply entrepreneurial thinking to problems and adopt entrepreneurial solutions to those problems to transform them from problems into opportunities.

ENGR 310 – Entrepreneurial Leadership (3)
This course develops leadership and entrepreneurial skills using collabora- tive, problem-based projects, with engineering and business students working in teams.