The Impact MBA, Social Entrepreneurship track at CSU’s College of Business teaches you how to create and manage a team-based startup from the ground up that achieves sustainability with results focused on the triple bottom line of economic, social and environmental performance.

The resulting entrepreneurial innovations and solutions you uncover can – and should – be used as powerful forces to solve the most complex global challenges of our time.

Bring startup ideas to life

Every semester, you’ll have an innovative course on social entrepreneurship while learning foundational and transferable business skills in marketing, finance and accounting. The new venture creation process will be integrated into your courses, enhancing your planning, leadership and teamwork abilities along the way.

decorative divider

“The program helps students create businesses that are renewable, regenerative and that support a better life for people.”

- Mike Callahan, MBA graduate, senior project leader at National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Co-founder of PowerMundo

decorative divider

40-60 Day Field Experience

At the center of the Social Entrepreneurship track is an immersive 40-60 day self-guided field practicum focused on market research and discovery. You will spend your time wherever in the world your “field” is – whether that is in our own backyard in Colorado or in one of the far corners of the globe. 

Your team will be focused on addressing a specific global challenge, and will use the summer to conduct primary market research. Your goal will be to uncover authentic solutions to a global challenge, and develop one solution into a full-fledged business plan.

By the end of the field study, you will have a deep understanding of the realities of entrepreneurship and be able to address practical questions like:

  • What are the needs of this community, and what are the potential impacts from addressing those needs?
  • Who are the key stakeholders with whom the team should consult?
  • What are the biggest obstacles to addressing this global challenge?
  • How much does it cost to build and install necessary products?
  • How does the cost of living in a community factor into the bottom line?
  • Will the market support this venture?

You’ll return to the CSU campus after the field experience for the final semester with three business models that address the global challenge and a new perspective on achieving objectives and solving problems.

The ultimate goal is to develop an entrepreneurial mindset, which is valuable within the program and will serve you well into the future.

decorative divider
Kat Ernst

“All of the things you can’t Google, you figure out in the field.”

– Kat Ernst, Impact MBA program director

decorative divider

Pitch competition

All of your hard work and team effort culminates in a pitch competition before December graduation. The competition is attended by project partners and the public, members of the faculty, the CSU community and your family and friends.

View the pitch competition videos

See how other Impact MBA students are taking their entrepreneurial spirit and pairing it with essential business skills to develop new business models and watch their pitch videos below.

Good-looking clothes can also be good for the environment. Yak the Blue was started to help regenerate Mongolia’s severely depleted ecosystems and help herders at the same time.

Everyone deserves to lead a life well-lived. WellNav is developing partnerships to address gaps in the disability support network and empowering individuals to make better choices about their care options.

Ubiquitous is helping educate young people, regardless of their social or economic standing. Through an online educational platform and a mobile health unit, the venture hopes to empower young people with the resources they need to make smart choices.

Sweet ReTreat is reimagining sustainable development and delicious snacks. Whether your biking or hiking, you can be sure to stop at a locally owned Sweet ReTreat for environmentally-friendly snacks in an sustainable built location.

Seagraze has developed a way to combat climate changing gas emissions with a seaweed additive in livestock feed that will cut methane emissions by 90% while offering ranchers more sustainable options. The venture hopes to create demand for environmentally-friendly beef products at the same time.

The American dream should be accessible to everyone. ImmPower is developing no-interest financial instruments for use by marginalized populations, and is using Islamic concepts of financing to do it.

High-quality food doesn't have to have a high price to match. Heirloomers is developing an e-commerce platform to connect consumers with the sustainably raised agricultural products they love at prices they can afford.

Creating trust in the voting process is a vital part of fair elections. Attica Voting is using a transparent and secure web platform to offer voters a more sustainable alternative to paper ballots and hackable voting machines.

decorative divider