This course is open to all Columbia graduate students but is intended for students with a business idea or students who are part of a team with a social venture idea that they have either launched or hope to launch upon graduation. Each student must join a pre-approved list of ventures to work on during the course. Up to 5 ventures will be selected to be incubated.
The professor and a team of expert mentors will provide customized guidance for each venture to enable the launch of the venture. This will include: development of a business, financial, marketing, sales and hiring plans; legal documents; prototyping, board development, and impact reporting. Students should be prepared to pitch to potential customers and investors outside of class and report back on their reactions. Teams will present in the final class to a roundtable of impact investors and entrepreneurs who will assess these business plans and the viability of the venture, critique presentation skills, and identify next steps. Ventures can also request a recommendation from the professor at the end of the course, if and when the team is ready to apply for the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures.
While not a pre-requisite, this half semester course is intended to be paired with B8526 Launching Social Ventures in Term A of this semester. This term B course will provide students who wish to launch a business with a social mission upon graduation, customized guidance to enable the launch of their business. Students will work closely with the Professor and mentors in class, outside of class, and in the field with their startup team, and on an individual basis, on all aspects of their business plan, growth strategy and launch activities.
If you have a venture that you’re working and would like this to be included in the course, the deadline to submit your venture proposal is Friday February 23, 2018. Each venture application will be expected to use the business plan template taught in B8526 Launching Social Ventures in term A (it is strongly recommended that each venture team has a member who has taken this course). Selected ventures will be posted in the course syllabus on Friday March 2, 2018.
Adjunct Assistant Professor
Julius Mokrauer is a Managing Director for Evolve (Evolve Ventures & Evolve Foundation) whose mission is to reduce inner suffering and facilitate inner transformation at scale. Prior to Evolve, he was Managing Director/Fund Manager at Serious Change, one of the pioneering early-stage impact venture funds, where he continues to serve as a board representative/strategic advisor. He serves as a member of...
Adjunct Professor of Business
William J. ("Bill") O'Farrell has been starting and running tech companies for longer than he'd like to admit. He was most recently co-founder and CEO of Body Labs, a computer vision and AI company focused on providing the human body as a digital platform for a broad range of markets, including online apparel sales, gaming, health and fitness and AR...