At Georgetown University, social entrepreneurship – developing innovative approaches to address society’s problems – is very much in keeping with our Jesuit ideals of service to society.
To have significant impact on these social issues, however, the operating model has to be sustainable and robust – regardless of whether or not it is a non-profit or for-profit enterprise. With this in mind, our “social” entrepreneurs are exposed to all the same methodologies as our “commercial” entrepreneurs; they practice the same techniques to develop, test and refine their ideas; and they use the same rigorous approach to ensure that their programs can succeed.
Across the university, we have a range of academic courses and co-curricular programs through which students can further explore the realm of social entrepreneurship. A few of these opportunities are highlighted on this page.
Georgetown alumni have, for over 200 years, gone forth from campus and found many ways to improve the world around them. The Georgetown Entrepreneurship Initiative, Global Social Enterprise Initiative, and many other organizations on campus are committed to developing the next generation of socially impactful entrepreneurial leaders.
Social Entrepreneurship at Georgetown
The following organizations are recognized for a commitment to social entrepreneurship. Please use the contact information provided to find out how you can get involved and make a meaningful impact.
The Global Social Enterprise Initiative at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business aims to prepare current and future leaders to make responsible management decisions that create both economic and social value. Created by Distinguished Professor of the Practice, Bill Novelli and led by Executive Director, Ladan Manteghi, GSEI engages corporate, non-profit, government, and other stakeholders to advance the understanding of social enterprise.
Net Impact promotes positive change – social, ethical or environmental – through profitable business means. The organization helps students find careers in corporate social responsibility, sustainable business, renewable energy, international development, nonprofit management, microfinance and social enterprise, through job postings, networking opportunities, and career education programs. Net Impact also works with the Georgetown faculty to drive the inclusion of social, environmental, and related themes in the MBA curriculum, and to raise the profile of the school as a leading institution at the intersection of business and society. The group welcomes students who don’t necessarily want a “Net Impact” job, but want to learn more about civic engagement, philanthropy, and community involvement.
Launched at Georgetown and now offered at schools around the country, the Compass Fellowship is a one-year program for first-year undergraduates. Compass inspires students to start social ventures, and empowers them to tackle the world’s greatest problems through socially conscious business models. At Georgetown, Compass provides 15 of the most passionate freshman with mentorship from both student leaders and business professionals, who guide them through the process of creating a social impact business.
Compass Strategy Advisors fosters a strong social entrepreneurship community at Georgetown and creates an environment of innovation, cooperation, and social engagement, both on and off campus. The organization partners with entrepreneurs at Georgetown to further their impact; presents students with opportunities to gain hands-on experience with startups; and hosts educational events that promote dialogue about social entrepreneurship – spreading the message that businesses should strive to be both financially and socially sustainable.
The StartupHoyas Challenge is a series of pitch competitions throughout the year, led by a team of undergraduates but open to the entire Georgetown University community. Divided into both “commercial” and “social” tracks, the pitch events allow students an opportunity to hone their ideas and present their concepts to a panel of expert judges. Included in the annual line-up is a Social Innovation Competition; this event focuses specifically on socially-oriented business ideas, and is both student judged and student funded. The event is co-sponsored by the StartupHoyas and other student organizations, including Compass and G.A.M.B.L.E. (Georgetown Aspiring Minority Business Leaders & Entrepreneurs).
Georgetown Energy is an undergraduate action team that promotes energy self-reliance and sustainability as a hedge against steadily rising retail energy costs. Among other activities, they work to end the stigma of environmentally friendly choices like wind and solar energy, which now compete economically with fossil fuel-derived sources. They also promote the adoption of practical energy solutions all across the world, both here in Washington and in places like Haiti. Georgetown Energy was founded in 2009 by undergraduates with the conviction that renewable energy is central to our global energy future, and is soon to be incorporated as a nonprofit.
Kairos is an international student entrepreneurship society. The Kairos mission is to empower the young pioneers who will propel the world forward through entrepreneurship and innovation. Their network is supported by top tier universities, mentors, and corporations across the globe; the Georgetown University chapter is now in its third year.
Contact: Zainab Ali, firstname.lastname@example.org
Social Entrepreneurship at Georgetown
SIPS stands for Social Innovation and Public Service. Truly unique to Georgetown, the SIPS fund was established by the undergraduate student body, and provides financial and institutional support for any Georgetown community members looking to make an impact on our world. Whether on the Hilltop, in D.C., or across the globe, SIPS looks to harness the creativity and passion of Georgetown’s unique student body to catalyze social change.
Contact: Katie Anthony, email@example.com
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