New scholarship available at PPCC for entrepreneurial students


Now students enrolled in Pikes Peak Community College’s advanced manufacturing program can receive additional financial support for devising new and creative methods, ideas and products.

The Entelechy Award, funded by The Richard Petritz Foundation, will provide up to two students a year $4,150 to cover tuition, book and course-supply expenses.

PPCC is in the process of identifying nominees and will announce award winners in May, said Lisa James, executive director of the PPCC Foundation.

“We are looking for students who have the hands-on technical skills in advanced manufacturing [machining, welding, 3D printing and computer-aided design manufacturing] as well as an entrepreneurial spark–those who have the charge to bring new ideas to life,” she said.

The scholarship is intended to recognize motivated, first-year students who display personal drive, problem-solving skills, and have maintained a cumulative GPA of 2.0 and a 3.0 GPA in advanced manufacturing coursework.

“Manufacturing is a critical arm of the region’s industry,” James said. “This scholarship makes it possible to recognize those students who are committed to learning the technical skills at a high degree, while also thinking beyond what they are doing on the floor of a shop.”

The Richard Petritz Foundation was established in Colorado Springs in 2000 by successful venture capitalist and entrepreneur Richard Petritz, whose life centered on innovation and entrepreneurship in technology and the arts. The foundation’s executive director, Jeffrey Cooper, said the award has been in the works since 2013, while studying the Colorado STEM education landscape.

“We were becoming more involved in looking at how we could play a part in the Colorado Workforce Development Council Sector Partnership and Career Pathways initiatives,” he said.

The Entelechy Award was created to recognize and honor where advanced manufacturing and machine trades, meet with innovation and the character and drive of American entrepreneurship, Cooper said.

“I personally was working in machine shops in 2013 and wanted to do something to help honor the character and proud work of machinists, especially recognizing that tool and die makers were fast becoming a dying art,” he said.

And a vocational degree at a community college can be a terminal degree–it’s not “junior” to a four-year college, Cooper said.

“The award and scholarship also help serve the programming and growing need in Colorado for people with the skill set to compete globally in our manufacturing sector.”

For more information on the Entelechy Award, email