Businesses need to create social value, and social designers need to make their efforts toward healthier societies sustainable and central to our economy. To address what we see as a critical need, we have integrated two typically siloed disciplines into into a new curriculum, and delivered it to two different audiences this summer. Social Design Meets Entrepreneurship was a one-week certificate master class offered in early July to a diverse cohort of entrepreneurs and designers from the US, Brazil, Mexico and China. Entrepreneurial Leadership in the Social Sector was developed for grantees of the Arthur M. Blank Foundation working to support environmental, youth and family programs. It took place at the West Creek Ranch in Montana. Cheryl Heller, Chair of DSI, and Cheryl Kiser, Executive Director of the Lewis Institute at Babson and the Babson Social Innovation Lab, co-created a curriculum that integrated the methodologies and mindsets of entrepreneurial thinking, leadership and social design. Feedback from participants in both classes was overwhelmingly positive, and we are developing plans to expand the offering in new venues.
“I learned how to be an entrepreneur within a large institution and use creative problem-solving to catalyze change.” -Beth Machnica
“You will learn so much about how to develop an idea and tackle a big problem! They’re good lessons for life, too.” -Katherine Donnelly
“I learned how to synthesize my work and thoughts and was given a new methodology for approaching my projects.” -Claire Sigworth
West Creek Ranch, Montana:
As part of the Entrepreneurial Leadership in the Social Sector Curriculum, Whitney Tilt, Director of Land and Wildlife Conservation at the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation, provided a deep, engaging dive into local ecosystems, and Terence Eichhorn, Chief Wrangler at the ranch, taught a fascinating lesson in understanding and communicating with horses that had powerful links to understanding audiences.