Tayo Akinyemi

Colorado State’s Global Social and Sustainable Enterprise Program

Colorado State“If we did all the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.?
— Thomas Edison

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out the Global Social Enterprise Program at Colorado State University’s School of Business.? When I applied to the Johnson School at Cornell, I assumed that I knew which schools had reputable programs in sustainable global enterprise.? The Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan, and the Kenan-Flagler Business School at UNC, were among these, but I still managed to find slightly ?off the radar? programs like the MBA in Sustainable Management at the Presidio School of Management.?Nonetheless, it turns out that I made at least one serious omission: The Colorado State College of Business.? The Global Social and Sustainable Enterprise Program at the Colorado State University College of Business is an 18-month MBA program that brings 25 students (50% U.S. and 50% international) together to build enterprises that address environmental, health and social problems in developing countries.? CSU is committed to exploiting the opportunities that exist at the intersection between sustainability and social entrepreneurship.

The unique curriculum at Colorado State tailors traditional subjects to address the challenges of sustainable global enterprise, in courses such as marketing for global sustainable enterprise and accounting for global sustainable enterprise.? It also offers cross-disciplinary courses, including social entrepreneurship, microfinance, and ecological perspectives for business.?

The fulcrum of the GSSE experience is team-based project work, which enables students to attack real-world problems.? Examples of these projects include Bright Light Innovations, a nonprofit project that will distribute cooking stoves to low-income households in northern Nepal and India, and Envirofit, a company committed to introducing sustainable technologies to the developing world.

CSU’s program is reminiscent of the MBA for Social Entrepreneurs offered by the Skoll Centre at the Said Business School of Oxford University in its singularity of purpose.? Most MBA programs offer a sustainable global enterprise focus within the general MBA curriculum, but both GSSE and the Skoll program focus exclusively on equipping budding social entrepreneurs to make change in the world.

As I ponder whether I can attend next week’s Net Impact conference, Building a Sustainable Future: What Will You Do Next?, and still pass my midterm exam, I imagine how wonderfully affirming it must be to attend a program that exclusively nurtures your interests.

In any case, I expect to see and hear GSSE-ers making an impact at Net Impact and in the world of sustainable global enterprise generally. ?Welcome to the family!