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Social Entrepreneurship Feasibility

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									                                 Entrepreneurship 205
                    The Liberal Arts and the Entrepreneurial Mindset
                                       Spring 2008

     Instructor:    Stephen L. Zabor
         Office:    Gerstacker 204
  Office Hours:
     Instructor:    William Fillner
         Office:    Gerstacker 13
  Office Hours:     MWF 2:30 – 4:15
 Class Meeting:     MWF 11:00 – 12:20 – Hinsdale 213

Course Overview
     In “The Liberal Arts and the Entrepreneurial Mindset” you will explore the role of
entrepreneurship and the concept and process of being an entrepreneur through a liberal arts
lens. During this course students will develop an understanding of the importance and the wide
ranging nature – for-profit, not-for-profit, and social activities – of entrepreneurship in a creative
and vibrant society and will consider their own personal and civic responsibility within society. A
central theme of the course will be to promote awareness of, interest in, and the development of
an entrepreneurial mindset.
     The basic concepts necessary to develop an understanding of entrepreneurship, the
entrepreneurial mindset, and the continuing process of creativity and innovation will be
presented. And the concepts necessary to understand how to analyze the potential for a new
product or service will be introduced. For example students will explore and will utilize concepts
of leadership, teamwork, risk analysis, market research, the value of patents, trademarks, and
copyrights and finance.
     Case studies will be employed to examine the values, abilities, and personal characteristics
of successful entrepreneurs. Guest speakers, entrepreneurs, will meet with the class to discuss
how they discovered the entrepreneurial opportunity, why they chose to pursue it and their
experiences throughout the process of discovery, creation, and implementation: both successes
and failures.
     Because entrepreneurship is fundamentally about putting one’s ideas to work students, in
groups, will develop a feasibility study for a new product, service, or response to a social issue.
Ideas for the products or services will be generated by the class through a brainstorming
exercise. The new product/service idea will be presented to the class via a rocket pitch – a 3
minute presentation – and will be put to the test during the eleventh week of the course.
     The art, and science, of developing an enterprise plan will be examined and we will explore
when it is appropriate to devote the time and energy to complete a formal plan. To illustrate the
process of planning each student will develop a Personal Enterprise Plan that will create the
strategy for their education and indicate how to best apply that education to achieve and sustain
their desired lifestyle.

Course Goals
   Offer a course that will examine the concept that entrepreneurship and liberal arts are
      mutually reinforcing concepts - the entrepreneurial mindset
   Provide a basic understanding of entrepreneurship and basic business concepts
   Encourage active participation in new venture creation
   Encourage active participation in concept creation and evaluation
   Develop students’ information literacy by facilitating access to resources at the college
      and off campus that will enhance the entrepreneurial learning experience
   Develop an understanding of the value of teamwork through participation in a group
      project - Understand what facilitates and impedes effective group process.

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      Provide inspirational role models through guest speakers, articles, and case studies
      Develop written and oral communication skills

Textbooks and Readings
    Enterprising Nonprofits: A Toolkit for Social Entrepreneurs,, J. Gregory Dees, Jed
      Emerson, Peter Economy, Wiley
    Why Not? How to Use Everyday Ingenuity to Solve Problems Big and Small by Barry J.
      Nalebuff, Ian Ayres; 2003
    Additional readings may be posted on Sakai or available on reserve at the library

Evaluation and Grading:
    Students will be evaluated on a combination of individual and group performance. Individual
performance will be based on a number of in-class and out-of-class assignments. Group
performance will be evaluated through a group project and will include an evaluation by
teammates.
 1. Class Participation (regularity of attendance, frequency and quality of class     10%
      participation; more than 2 absences will negatively impact your grade)
 2. Case Analyses (individual grade, which includes in class discussions and             20%
    written reports)
 3. Examinations                                                                         30%

 4. New Venture Simulation (group grade, which includes formal oral                      20%
    presentations, informal presentations, participation in class exercises,
    operating performance assessment and evaluation by other group members)

 5. Personal Enterprise Plan (individual grade; which includes participation in          20%
    class exercises)

    All written work must be submitted electronically. Failure to electronically submit written
work will negatively impact your grade. While work may be submitted early; late assignments
will not be accepted.

Attendance Policy
    Please complete all reading assignments before class and be prepared to contribute to
class discussions. Any absences from class have the potential to negatively impact your class
participation grade – if you aren’t in class, you can’t participate. If you must miss a class
meeting, notify the instructors ahead of time.

Project/Assignment Descriptions
     Case Write-ups – The course will utilize cases of actual entrepreneurial examples to
illustrate material covered in the course and to generate class discussion. The basis for any
good case discussion is preparation. Specifics on the format for case write-ups and case
discussions will be distributed to each student. We are anticipating that we will have three guest
speakers in class who will provide a case statement for you to read. For each of the cases you
will be expected to write an analysis of the case prior to the visit and a response that will be due
the class following the visit.

     New Venture Simulation – The project is designed to simulate the entrepreneurial process
from the initial spark of creativity through to the implementation of the new venture. To generate
new venture ideas the class will participate in an in class brainstorming session to generate a
list of possibilities. The ideas will be focused and reduced through a discussion and a vote-

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based selection process to create the projects for the semester. Once the project list has been
determined students will be assigned to groups of 4-6 students.
    Each group will conduct a feasibility study; write a concept plan and “rocket pitch” the new
venture idea to “potential investors.” The venture may be designed to sell a product, provide a
service, or meet a specific societal need. Ventures may be either for-profit, not-for-profit, or
social entrepreneurship in nature. The final portion of this requirement will be the actual
implementation of your plan during the eleventh week of the semester. The exercise is intended
to simulate the entrepreneurial process and hopefully result in the future creation of new
ventures.
    Components of this assignment will include:
     Identification of entrepreneurial opportunities for student teams
     Organizational Agreement
     Concept Plan
     Feasibility Study
     Rocket Pitch
     Operating Performance Assessment
     Teammate Evaluation
    Specifics about this project will be distributed to each group.

     Personal Enterprise Plan – The Enterprise Plan is a personal plan exploring your strategy
for your education and how you will apply that education to achieve and sustain the lifestyle you
desire. Early in the semester each student will complete a self-assessment exercise to
determine their entrepreneurial disposition and ability that will be used to guide the development
of their personal enterprise plan.
     This plan, similar in structure to an enterprise plan completed by entrepreneurs when they
are seeking financial support (the student is now the enterprise) will include an inventory of
skills, knowledge, and interests, a list of courses and experiences, and an explanation of how
the courses and experiences relate to the development of the “enterprise.” Each student will be
required to explain how they will build on their personal strengths and how they will develop the
areas that may seem to be weaknesses.
     This Personal Enterprise Plan is a living document, an ongoing project. The student, the
student’s advisor, and the entrepreneurship mentor will review the Enterprise Plan on a regular
basis until graduation. Specifics on this assignment will be distributed to each student.

     Class Participation – Participation in class is critical to comprehending and practicing the
theories and skills covered in the course. Class participation will be 10% of your final grade and
will depend on the following components:
   In-class discussion – This includes participating in class discussions of topics and case
      analysis. Your participation will be evaluated based on the thoughtfulness of your remarks.
      As mentioned before, attendance is a critical component of this, you have to be present in
      order to participate.
   Leadership of discussion sessions
   Other Class Assignments
            o Several class sessions will include in-class exercises. Your participation in these
                exercises will also contribute toward your class participation grade.
            o We will likely have one or two opportunities to participate in market analysis of
                ventures being considered by Hiram College.
            o Organization and promotion of two speakers scheduled for the entrepreneurship
                program will be available to a few class members.

Academic honesty is expected: Hiram College's mission statement states that it is our goal
"to enable students of all ages to develop as intellectually alive, socially responsible, ethical

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citizens ready for leadership and for continuous personal and professional growth." The
fundamental purpose of the following course requirements is to encourage you to begin to
create your own understanding of the historical, current and future development of public policy
in the United States. To this end it is critical that you acknowledge the sources you are drawing
from as you build your understanding and that you put your understanding in your own words.
As Diana Hacker (1996) states in the Third Edition of Rules for Writers:
     In research writing, sources are cited for two reasons: to alert readers to the sources
     of your information and to give credit to the writers from whom you have borrowed
     words and ideas. To borrow another writer's language or ideas without proper
     acknowledgement is a form of dishonesty known as plagiarism. (p. 353)

Course Outline
A schedule of class meetings is below. The dates for particular topics may be rearranged to
accommodate speakers or to address the specific needs of the class. Changes to the course
schedule will be announced in class and posted on Sakai.




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