Center for Social Entrepreneurship

at Middlebury


DSC_0172The CSE began to take shape in winter term 2011, under the leadership of 21 students in Professor Jon Isham’s winter term course, 21st Century Global Challenges. In winter term 2012, 12 Middlebury students in Professor Isham’s Social Entrepreneurship in the Liberal Arts researched how social entrepreneurship education can enhance the mission of Middlebury College. This course was taught again in winter term 2013. In the fall of 2012, Professor Isham taught a new first year seminar, Social Entrepreneurship and Social Justice, and Assistant Professor Sarah Stroup and Executive-in-Residence Charlie MacCormack ’63 co-taught course, Private and Public Governances in the Era of Globalization.

To explore Jon Isham’s winter term course, Social Entrepreneurship in the Liberal Arts, please visit the course website. At the website you will be able see the syllabus and readings for the class along with other great resources when learning about social entrepreneurship.

While Middlebury offers dozens of courses each semester, some students choose to access resources outside of the established curriculum in the form of Independent Studies.

Last fall, Hannah Judge ’12.5 and Anna Clements ’12.5, chose to do an Independent Study with Professor Jon Isham and Jeff Howarth from the Geography department, in order to continue to develop their project “Broad Street Maps.” After starting their business plan during their Independent Study, they were able to finalize and refine it with the J-term class Midd Entrepreneurs. They met once a week with Jon for guidance and assistance, and read material on social entrepreneurship, including the Blue Sweater by Jacqueline Novogratz.

This past spring, Bronwyn Oatley ’13 and Genevive Dukes ‘13, also did an Independent Study with Professor Isham, as a follow up to his Social Entrepreneurship in the Liberal Arts class that they took during J-term. After feeling like they hadn’t had the chance to dig deep enough during the short four-week course, they decided they wanted to look closer at social impact bonds (SIBs) through an academic lens. A few of the books they read with Professor Isham included, Getting Better, Poor Economics, The Art of Innovation, and Why Nations Fail, in addition to many journal articles.

In Fall 2013, Professor Isham plans to work with Rana Abdelhamid ’15 and Prestige Shongwe ’16 on an Independent Study. One of the selected readings they will be discussing is Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo.



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