The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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Hegi Family Career Development Center hosts social impact week

The Hegi Family Career Development Center is hosting the first Social Innovation and Impact Week, which focuses on social entrepreneurship. Last year, the center hosted a social entrepreneurship panel. This year, Social Impact Week will not only have a panel, but also opportunities for students to network.

“There are already large numbers of SMU students volunteering, and research shows this generation is particularly interested in careers that will serve a deeper purpose in improving their community and the lives of those around them, not just a bottom line pay check,” Hegi Family Career Development Center Assistant Director Devon Skerritt said.

The Social Impact Expo will take place on Monday from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Commons. Dallas area nonprofits and mission-driven for-profits will be sharing their mission, as well as volunteer opportunities, internships and even consumer goods and products with SMU students. Products students can buy include coffee, granola and sandals.

On Wednesday from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. the Social Innovation Forum will feature panelists from the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, an incubator program for enterprises in the health, income and education sectors, and other Dallas social entrepreneurs. The forum, led by Arts Management Professor Trey Bowles, is about how to create social innovation, how to build social businesses that impact people and are sustainable and how SMU students can get engaged in this work. Seven to eight people will make up the panel. The differences between non profit and mission-driven for profits will also be discussed.

“We attempt to expose more SMU students to the exciting and emerging industry of social entrepreneurship and innovation in North Texas,” Skerritt said.

The week ends with the Green Riba Social Business Case Competition and Presentation. The competition, hosted by Green Riba, will ask students to propose a business solution to a social problem, such as urban food poverty, financial exclusion or the like. Green Riba is a micro-lending organization, founded by SMU students and alumni, that uses a storefront that sells Fair Trade certified coffee to fund West Dallas entrepreneurs.

All SMU students are welcome to participate and teams must have three to five members. The case is designed to take around 10-15 hours to complete.

“The competition is a great opportunity to test your skills and win some prize money in the process,” Skerritt said.

Registration is rolling. Team leaders will receive the case materials via e-mail upon enrollment. Teams will present on Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to noon to a panel of judges currently active in the social sector in Hughes-Trigg Student Center Forum. Teams will have 12 minutes to present their solutions to the judges. There is $1,500 in cash prizes for the top teams.

“The hope is that a lot of SMU students across the different types of schools will be interested,” Skerritt said. “We’re interested developing relationships across campus to maximize the number of SMU students making an impact in social entrepreneurship in the nonprofit mission driven profit sector because it is an emerging field.”

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