Images courtesy of Clark Tibbs (L) and Denys Nevozhai (R)
WHO IS THIS FOR? For aspiring and practicing designers, makers, architects, professionals from various creative fields, and anyone seeking to drive change with innovation and bring their new business ideas to the next level, using design thinking through a diversity, equity, and inclusion lens.
Register for any course individually or join the certificate program!
Turn your creative idea into a unique, viable business
Engage in the entrepreneurial journey to establish or improve your creative business, launch your project to market, and lead growth.
With an experiential learning focus, explore design thinking, customer empathy and business planning; develop leadership skills; learn how to drive innovation; develop business models; articulate messaging and branding, pitch concepts, and prepare to secure funding. Learn to assess and meet the demands of the evolving market in the context of new technologies. This program is designed for aspiring entrepreneurs, change agents seeking to reinvent aspects of an existing business, or anyone interested in learning more about how new ventures are founded.
The design thinking process will serve as the overarching framework for the program approach to entrepreneurship and innovation. Theory will be complemented by practice as students will develop a business plan around a viable product or service which they will pitch to a jury of entrepreneurship luminaries at the conclusion of the program.
Please also see our related, independent courses at the bottom of this page.
This certificate program requires the successful completion of 162 hours of study, corresponding to 8 core courses.
CORE COURSES – ONLINE
XEI 500 Entrepreneurial Mindset and Innovation
XEI 501 New Ventures, Value Creation & Business Models
XEI 502 Leadership and Management for Entrepreneurs
XBC-107 Innovation on Demand: From Ideation to Action
XBC 105 Pitch Practice through Improvisation
XEI 503 Integrated Marketing
XEI 504 Financing Innovations and New Ventures
XEI 505 Pitch Lab: Business Plan Competition
ENTREPRENEURIAL MINDSET & INNOVATION
This weekend intensive provides an overview of the entrepreneurial journey and innovation, from design thinking to funding. Combining theories and concepts with a hands-on project approach that is based on students’ interests, this course provides the necessary models, tools and frameworks to develop an idea into a viable business.
NEW VENTURES, VALUE CREATION & BUSINESS MODELS
Plan your new venture, explore value creation and business model generation. Create a vision and mission, and conduct market research and analysis to identify and understand your ideal client. Apply ideation and forecasting to innovate human-centered solutions; and infuse sustainability, social responsibility, and ethics into your work.
LEADERSHIP & MANAGEMENT FOR ENTREPRENEURS
Discover and apply core concepts of leadership and develop management skills and competencies to effectively run your creative business. Conduct risk and reward evaluation for informed decision-making; gain confidence in influencing people, collaboration and negotiation. Learn to protect your innovations using intellectual property; learn to manage change, including in technology.
INNOVATION ON DEMAND: FROM IDEATION TO ACTION
Go beyond random inspiration and unfocused brainstorming. Learn fail-safe methods for ideation to produce new ideas that stand out from the competition. Learn step-by-step innovation processes on your own or with a team to define a problem, generate ideas, work through potential solutions, and decide optimal next steps in fun, interactive, and effective ways.
This course is a must for designers, artists, entrepreneurs, marketers, brand managers, and anyone seeking to consistently produce innovation on demand. This methodology has proven effective with both the creative thinker—by providing structure—and the analytical thinker—by sparking insights. Gain effective tools that help stretch both your imagination and resources, and inspire innovative activities.
PITCH PRACTICE THROUGH IMPROVISATION
Passion is contagious. Learn how to harness your own or others’ creative vision into a compelling oral presentation. Develop strategies to gain poise and confidence and deepen your ability to connect empathically with your audience. Using a set of core public speaking techniques, physical exercises, and theater games, learn to break through insecurities; enhance your ability to hone your fundamental creative narrative; listen, present, pitch, propose, connect and network with stakeholders, and spark curiosity and buy-in from prospective audiences—whether buyers, dealers, clients, funders and investors.
Apply integrated marketing and sales concepts to your new business idea and win your ideal clients. Explore branding and digital marketing theory and practice including branding, development of messaging, creating pitches, identifying and understanding customers, and creating presentations. Learn sales strategy, including building and deepening relationships and basic sales methods. Integrate lessons learned into your business plan in preparation for the final pitch lab presentation in the last certificate course.
FINANCING INNOVATIONS AND NEW VENTURES
Learn how to plan financing to innovations, including engaging stakeholders and securing funding for new ventures. Explore a variety of funding sources including grants, venture capital, and private investors. Integrate lessons learned into your main business plan to prepare for the final pitch lab presentation.
PITCH LAB BUSINESS PLAN COMPETITION
This weekend intensive is the culminating activity for the program and provides an exciting real-life experience of the pitch process where students compete in teams to pitch their business ideas and get investor feedback. This course focuses on the design thinking process step of Test.
Independent, Related Courses
MINDFUL ENTREPRENEURSHIP: BUSINESS MODEL LAUNCH
Mindful entrepreneurship is a process of economic or social value creation which goes beyond the basic act of opening a business. You will develop a Business Model Canvas, Pecha kucha pitch, and financial plan for one of the following:
- for-profit start up
Develop the mechanics of launching a business, including opportunity-recognition, operations, customer validation, interviewing skills, financial tools, and forecast planning. Apply contemplative “whole-brain” approaches such as mind-mapping, visualization, meditation, and power questions to business development. Use Lean Launchpad methodology, resilience psychology, and intercultural communications to cultivate your iterative risk-taking skills and confidently pitch your business.
Note: This course can serve as an introduction to the new Entrepreneurship & Innovation Certificate Program.
INSTRUCTOR: ESMILDA ABREU
XSI-346-01 | MONDAYS | AUGUST 3—24, 2020 | 6:30—8:30PM
4 SESSIONS | 0.8 CEUs | $315
SERVICE DESIGN FOR SOCIAL IMPACT
SUPERCHARGE YOUR STARTUP WITH IDEATION
Would you like to turn your creative inspirations into viable business ideas? Explore combining the creative/design thinking process with key phases of the entrepreneurial process—identification, development, launch, and scaling in this interactive workshop. Starting with a fun simulation, learn simple yet powerful innovation principles to take your ideas to the next viable level or to generate new, viable ideas. Working as a team, apply a time-tested step-by-step process to further guide and support your creative entrepreneurial journey. Walk away with an empowering, practical ideation tool set for innovation and effective entrepreneurship.
Note: This workshop can serve as an introduction to the new Entrepreneurship & Innovation Certificate Program.
Online self-registration is open for the Summer term; and opens oin July 17 for the Fall semester.
If you wish to express interest in this program, or if you experience any challenge with self-registration, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Registration Deadline: Five business days before each class starts.
Early registration is encouraged. After the deadlines, students may still be admitted only if space remains in the selected course or program.