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Certificate Programs
Social Entrepreneurship

In 2006, Indiana University inaugurated the first formal university-based Social Entrepreneurship program in Indiana. The Certificate in Social Entrepreneurship: Nonprofit and Public Benefit Organizations is a cooperative program between the School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA) and the Kelley School of Business. The Social Entrepreneurship certificate prepares students for innovatively approaching public needs with a combination of entrepreneurial practices and social purposes – through the for-profit, nonprofit, and governmental sectors.

Admission Eligibility

Students must be admitted to the Master of Public Affairs program or the Master of Business Administration program at IUPUI to participate in this certificate program.


An online application and information may be obtained from the SPEA Web site, www.spea.iupui.edu. Please contact Dr. Bielefeld, wbielefe@iupui.edu, 317-278-0306, early in your graduate program if you are interested in the certificate program. The certificate program requires a special internship and permission for some courses.

Certificate Requirements (18 credit hours)
Required Courses (9 credit hours)

EACH of the following courses:

  • SPEA-V 521 The Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector (3 cr.)
  • BUS-W 511 Venture Strategy (3 cr.)
  • SPEA-V 559 Principles and Practices of Social Entrepreneurship (3 cr.)
Electives (9 credit hours)*

Kelley Electives

  • BUS-F 509 Advanced Capital Budgeting (1.5 cr.)
  • BUS-F 517 Venture Capital and Entrepreneurial Finance (1.5 cr.)
  • BUS-M 503 Applied Marketing Research (3 cr.)
  • BUS-M 513 Marketing Strategy Simulation
  • BUS-P 510 Service Operations (1.5 cr.)
  • BUS-P 552 Project Management (1.5 cr.)
  • BUS-P 527 Operations Processes I (1.5 cr.)
  • BUS-P 528 Operations Processes II (1.5 cr.)
  • BUS-J 522 Strategic Management of Technology and Innovation (1.5 cr.)
  • BUS-W 525 New Ventures and the Venture Community of Indianapolis (1.5 cr.)

SPEA Electives

  • SPEA-V 522 Human Resource Management in Nonprofit Organizations (3 cr.)
  • SPEA-V 525 Management in the Nonprofit Sector (3 cr.)
  • SPEA-V 526 Financial Management for Nonprofit Organizations (3 cr.)
  • SPEA-V 539 Management Science for Public Affairs (3 cr.)
  • SPEA-V 541 Benefit and Cost Analysis for Public and Environmental Affairs (3 cr.)
  • SPEA-V 558 Fund Development for Nonprofits (3 cr.)
  • SPEA-V 562 Public Program Evaluation
  • SPEA-V 602 Strategic Management of Public and Nonprofit Organizations (3 cr.)

*At least 3 credit hours must be taken in school other than one offering degree. Alternative courses may be included as electives, depending upon faculty and course availability.

Social Entrepreneurship Internship Program

Internships for the Certificate in Social Entrepreneurship need to satisfy certain criteria to qualify and must be approved by the Director of the Social Entrepreneurship program. All internships must receive prior approval unless it can be shown that a student has had prior experience in social entrepreneurship and the student applies for experiential credit instead of an internship.


A Social Entrepreneurship Internship should meet three criteria:

  • The development of the project the semester before the internship starts
  • A 480 hour internship on site at the host organization, agency, or business to execute the project (may be extended over a longer period than 3 months, with less than 40 hours per week
  • A final evaluation of the project, related to social entrepreneurial approaches

In addition, a Social Entrepreneurship Internship project must have social goals as well as quantifiable financial goals – and both of these goals should increase the financial profitability of the overall organization while also improving its social mission and outcomes. These objectives need to be identified before the internship and used to evaluate effectiveness at the completion of the internship project.

The final project evaluation should include an analysis of how the doublebottom line was used in the planning and operation process and how it was or is expected to be achieved. If the anticipated financial and social goals were not attained, the analysis should include a critique of what prevented their achievement and suggestions on how the obstacles to successful completion might have been overcome.

The internship may be satisfied by an Internship Practicum through V585 Practicum in Public Affairs (3 - 6 credits), X523 and X524 Enterprise Experience I and II (1.5 credits each), or approved experiential credit.