Social Entrepreneurship Salons and Salon Sprints
Launched in the Fall of 2023, Social Entrepreneurship Salons and Salon Sprints will support students to build business solutions to contemporary social challenges.

About Salons and Salon Sprints

Social Entrepreneurship Salons feature a single interdisciplinary panel of subject-material experts to discuss a social topic and its intersections with potential business solutions.

Participants inspired to consider business solutions in response to the social topic discussed are encouraged to utilize Venture Lab's supports to iterate their idea.
Salon Sprints
Social Entrepreneurship Salon Sprints feature 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 the design of business models that directly address the challenge prompt from the salon.

The Salon Sprint week will culminate in a pitch competition at the conclusion of the week, where participants will be able to present their solutions and receive funding to progress them.
Salon Sprint Week: Programming Overview
  • Monday Kick-Off: Salon
  • Tuesday: Design Thinking Workshop
  • Wednesday: Theory of Change Workshop
  • Thursday: Social Entrepreneurship Business Models Workshop
  • Friday: Pitch Competition
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    Monday: The Salon
    The Salon-Sprint week will kick-off with a Salon event featuring a 60 minute discussion and a 30 minute Q&A session about a problem statement prompt with a panel of interdisciplinary subject-material experts. Participants will be encouraged to think about a business solution to the problem statement, informed by the expert's perspectives.
  • Design Thinking 101 for Social Entrepreneurs
    Tuesday: Design Thinking Workshop
    The next event in the Salon Sprint week is the Design Thinking Workshop. This workshop rapidly follows the salon to support participants in thinking about business solutions to the salon topics. The phases of design thinking (Empathize, Define, Ideate, Prototype, Test) are crucial to ensure a potential business solution is as impactful as possible.
  • Design Thinking 101 for Social Entrepreneurs
    Wednesday: Theory of Change Workshop
    Following the Design Thinking Workshop, participants will attend a Theory of Change Workshop. This workshop will help social entrepreneurs develop the core of the business, and the company’s product or service, that will generate revenue and impact.
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    Thursday: Social Entrepreneurship Business Models Workshop
    Following the Theory of Change Workshop, participants will attend a final workshop surrounding Social Entrepreneurship Business Models. This final workshop of the sprint will help participants bring together all of the pieces from the previous sessions; identifying a business model that will support the proposed solution and ensure that it is both viable and profitable.
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    Friday: Pitch Competition
    Salon Sprint weeks will culminate in a Pitch Competition, where participants can pitch the solutions they have iterated during the week for funding to support its progression and development.

    At least 1 member of each venture team that aspires to pitch must participate in each of the Sprint workshops.
  • Salons and Salon Sprints

    On December 5th an insightful panel discussion will be held delving into the intricate web of factors contributing to the underinvestment in LGBTQ+ centered projects.
    On November 14th, students were invited to join an interdisciplinary panel discussion to explore what it means for tech to be 'clean', why its needed, and the emergent business innovations that have arisen in response to exacerbating climate challenges.

    From September 18th to September 22nd, students participated in programming that encouraged them to think about viable business solutions to challenges within the intersections of climate change and the food system.