Global Entrepreneurship Week at The Pulte Institute

Author: Kirianna West

Global Entrepreneurship Week is dedicated to celebrating, recognizing, and empowering entrepreneurs in communities worldwide. During this week, people from around the world come together for local, national, and global events to encourage global economic growth.

Business in Global Development is a core tenant of the Pulte Institute's vision to address global poverty and inequality and promote human dignity. We are working closely with the McKenna Center for Human Development and Global Business and the Mendoza College of Business to create a platform for discussions centered around ethical and sustainable supply chain performance, financial tools for the underprivileged, public-private partnerships, impact investing, and—most notably in this context—social entrepreneurship.

With this in mind, Pulte created the Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation (SEI) Minor in collaboration with the McKenna Center to serve as an environment where the critical topic of entrepreneurship can be explored and developed further. The SEI Minor uses an integrated approach to expose undergraduate students to entrepreneurial principles, concepts, and tools to tackle the most challenging problems facing the global community. Open to all Notre Dame undergraduates, this customizable minor offers a practical and experiential approach to making the world a better place. Students strengthen their entrepreneurial mindset by developing innovative solutions to global social problems such as poverty, clean water access, human trafficking, racial and ethnic discrimination, domestic abuse, illiteracy, and health care.

"We're the fastest growing minor within the Keough School at the moment. Our minor is extremely interdisciplinary, with students from nearly every college within the University. The general principles of using traditional business skills to tackle social issues appeal to students from across campus," said Sarah Genz, Program Manager within the Entrepreneurship & Education Division for the Pulte Institute and Academic Advisor for the SEI minor. "Our courses are rooted in experiential learning. Students enjoy the hands-on approach to learning that many of our courses promote, specifically Dr. Michael Morris's Consulting and Development course through his South Bend Entrepreneurship Entrepreneurs and Adversity program (SBEAP), the Entrepreneurship and Empowerment in South Africa (EESA) summer program. Professor Melissa Paulsen's Human-Centered Design course also gets students working with community members, talking to key stakeholders and individuals connected to the problem."

One of the most common questions from SEI students is, "What can I do in social impact after graduation?" To help answer that question, and to celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week here on campus, the SEI Minor will host two events on November 16th.

On November 16th from 12:30-1:45 pm in Debartolo Hall 140, Timothy Rann of Mercy Corps Ventures will be presenting on his experience in impact investing, touching on his career journey, an overview of Mercy Corps Ventures' mission and values, and how impact venture capital actually works.

On November 16th from 4-6 pm in the Integration Lab in the basement of Jenkins Nanovic Hall, three panelists from various sectors in the social impact space (Mercy Corps Ventures, McDonald's Corporation, and ThinkCERCA) will discuss their backgrounds and why they chose a career in social impact. Melissa Paulsen will moderate the panel, and a networking reception with food will follow the panel.