SocialReturns is creating a University Consortium
on Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship that will focus on the study and practice
of social enterprise and social entrepreneurship among nonprofit organizations in
the U.S. and abroad.
The University Consortium will be a virtual structure that will
enable universities and individual faculty to systematically engage in and advance
the movement by sharing information and best practices, coordinating research
projects, developing curricula, authoring joint case studies and other
publications, and providing a greater number of learning opportunities and applications
for their students and the nonprofit community overall.
The University Consortium will provide:
• Faculty with a vehicle and leverage points for
conducting research, producing cases and other publications, designing curriculum,
• Students with coursework in social entrepreneurship,
a turn-key program for identifying internships, and the opportunity to serve as
junior consultants to the finalists in the Social Enterprise Competition for Nonprofit
• Local Nonprofit Organizations with opportunities
for learning about social enterprise and entrepreneurship, and participating in
university-based programs and initiatives, especially within their local communities;
• Development Staff with a proven process for reconnecting
with alumni who will serve as expert evaluators in the Competition; and
• The University writ-large with the opportunity
to stand out as a trendsetter in social enterprise by recruiting dedicated students,
showcasing faculty and administrators as final judges, speakers, and master class
presenters at the Annual Conference and Awards Ceremony, attracting positive media
attention, and adding significant value to the field at-large.
Features and Benefits
One significant advantage of the University Consortium is that is
will give academic institutions access to SocialReturns' data and subject pool,
and will give our organization access to faculty, researchers, and students with
the time and ability to analyze the enormous amount of data we've amassed and will
continue to collect. Both entities will have the opportunity to present research-based
findings and co-brand reports on various social enterprise topics for the field.
During our first phase of operation, the new University Consortium
on Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship will incorporate a number of tracks, with
others to follow as we pick up steam. These include:
• Case Writing and Other Publishing
• Curriculum Development/Courses/Student Instruction
• Student Involvement (internships, junior consulting as
part of the Business Plan Competition)
• Continuing Education (certificate programs/executive
education/training community leaders)
• Consulting, including consulting to nonprofit organizations
in the Business Plan Competition
• Community Outreach.
When the Social Enterprise Business Plan Competition begins, University
Consortium members and students will have the opportunity to follow at least one
entrant and one finalist in the Competition. Faculty may be invited to participate
as evaluators as well.
Pages on the SocialReturns.org Website
The University Consortium will have a section of the SocialReturns.org
website that contains a membership directory (so that Consortium members can connect
easily with one another); pages designated for each track (so that interested parties
can view current and planned activities such as research, student involvement, ideas
for enhancing curriculum, etc.); research papers and other publications , co-branded
by the authoring institution(s) and SocialReturns; and a message board and/or listserv
to enhance communications within and across all tracks.
Our primary mode of operations will be virtual . We expect to hold
quarterly conference calls for each track to share information about activities
and to present opportunities for additional networking. We also intend to lead a
session at the 2006 Gathering of the Social Enterprise Alliance, and we could hold
a special meeting there as well. The Gathering will be at the Hyatt Regency inAtlanta
from March 7-10, 2006.
Requirements for Joining the University Consortium
The main requirement for joining is that the individual have a formal
relationship with a college or university that is involved in social enterprise
and entrepreneurship .
At present, there is no anticipated fee for joining the University
Consortium, nor do we intend to grant monies to Consortium members for pursuing
their university-based social enterprise and entrepreneurship activities.
Want to learn more?
We are particularly interested in identifying colleges and universities
to take a lead role in coordinating one of the tracks in the University Consortium
- in either research, publishing, curriculum development, continuing education,
or community outreach. This will give even greater visibility to you and your institution.
For more information, please contact
firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to join the University Consortium
on Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship and/or explo re the opportunity for taking
a leadership role, please call or write
email@example.com (phone 201-569-6692).
And please don't forget to join the SocialReturns.org website to stay
up-to-date on this growing movement. There's no fee to join. Sign up now!
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