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Rita Chesterton

Rita Chesterton 

Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurship 

Muhlenberg College 

As both a faculty member and director of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program since 2015, it is my job to promote the entrepreneurial mindset among Muhlenberg students. Muhlenberg offers a minor in entrepreneurship for students of any major along with many cocurricular programs and events that seek to connect students with the greater Lehigh Valley entrepreneurship community. I teach courses in the minor and develop programing for students. 

In 2019 I was recognized for the Bridge Builder award at Muhlenberg, the most meaningful recognition that I can receive as an educator there. My career path has branched off in many directions over the years, but I have always found the most personal fulfillment when working directly with students and making an impact on their lives. 

The most important lesson that I have learned is the value of connection and communication. Whether it’s in your personal life or your professional life, no one succeeds alone. There is a myth of the lone entrepreneur that pervades the media. The truth is that behind every individual success story there are mentors, advisors, friends and family who were there to provide support. 

I have a small organic garden that I have been enlarging every year and have lately begun to focus on planting the rest of my property with native species … that promote a healthy ecosystem in my neighborhood. My passion for this area has been motivated in part by many passionate students who have pushed me to think more about environmental sustainability. 

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This profile is part of Lehigh Valley Business' Higher Education Power 30 list for 2021. Information used in this profile was sourced from the honoree. See the full list at lvb.com or in our digital edition.

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