Venture Lab’s Social Entrepreneurship Initiative was launched in 2022 to support the social enterprise and mission-driven venture ecosystem at Penn.

Initiative Offerings

The social entrepreneurship programming is available to all of the Penn community, inclusive of undergraduate students, graduate students, and alumni. Financial award opportunities are open to all students who are enrolled full time in a University of Pennsylvania academic program.
April 29, 2024 12:14 PM
The 2024 Summer of Impact offers opportunities that empower University of Pennsylvania undergraduate and graduate students to pursue their mission-driven entrepreneurial goals over the summer.
September 11, 2023 05:20 PM
Join an interdisciplinary panel of subject-material experts to discuss a social topic and its intersections with potential business solutions.
September 11, 2023 05:20 PM
A week of programming that includes a salon event at the start of the week, and mid-week workshop sessions held in quick succession to support ideation and design of business models that directly address the challenge prompt from the salon, culminating in a pitch competition at the conclusion of the week.

Additional Resources

See below for Social Entrepreneurship Initiative events and related resources for the Penn community.

Design Thinking Links & Resources for Social Entrepreneurs.

Learn about social entrepreneurship pathways from experienced industry leaders.

Funding and other supports are available for student organizations at Penn who endeavor to support social entrepreneurship.

Fund your mission-driven venture using the opportunities available for the Penn community.

Workshops designed to support members of the Penn Community interested in Social Entrepreneurship

Social #entrePENNeur Highlight

See below for examples of Penn students who are making an impact via social entrepreneurship and their mission-driven ventures.
By  Christine Cheng
, November 05, 2023 09:03 AM
Beginning on September 18th, students participated in the Social Entrepreneurship Initiative’s week-long Climate Change and the Future of Food Salon Sprint, culminating in a pitch competition.
3 Min Read
By  Christine Cheng
, August 28, 2023 08:00 AM
Jonathan Muruako, CAS'17 SPP'24
Founder of Fitalyst: Empowering First-Gen Students with Self-Regulation Tools for Success
3 Min Read
By  Christine Cheng
, September 12, 2023 03:22 PM
Meet The Community Grocer, a scalable non-profit community market, resource, and education center advancing food justice and health equity through EBT accessible meal solutions.
5 Min Read
This program delivers experiential learning that complements Wharton's existing social impact curriculum, providing hands-on opportunities for budding social entrepreneurs to build new ventures that change the world.
Lori Rosenkopf, Vice Dean of Entrepreneurship
The fundamental purpose of the social enterprise is to address a social problem and generate revenue in doing so.
The Social Entrepreneur’s Playbook; Ian C. MacMillan & James D. Thompson
Our new social entrepreneurship program puts Wharton and Penn’s institutional power into educating the next generation of leaders to solve the world’s most pressing social problems.
Trang Pham, Executive Director, Venture Lab

Supporting Programming

The VIP Incubator is an educational incubator on Penn's Philadelphia campus that offers dedicated guidance and resources to help promising social ventures achieve critical milestones and prepare for subsequent accelerator supports.

Support for Penn student founders based in the Philadelphia area who are looking to scale their social enterprises.

Stratified funding awards for Penn students in various stages of building social enterprises.

julia pic.PNG
Contact Julia Middleton
Senior Associate Director, Social Entrepreneurship
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