“Social entrepreneurship is a social movement aiming to create a new socio-economic paradigm, one that redefines the way we identify and support innovations, optimizes the use of existing resources, fosters diversity, promotes collaboration and constantly aims to do more, with less, for more.” - Dr. Rogelio Garcia-Contreras, Director of Social Innovation, University of Arkansas
The focus of the Social Innovation Initiative is student experience. Through our programs, classes, and global experiences, students learn about the importance of social entrepreneurship, as a movement and as a discipline. Thanks to a strong curriculum including a solid theoretical background and service-learning opportunities, students are exposed to active learning experiences which give them the opportunity to design social innovation strategies and explore the steps to launch a successful social venture.
Social Innovation Challenge
The Social Innovation Challenge connects a multidisciplinary network of classes with organizations committed to addressing social and environmental issues affecting our communities. The purpose is to develop viable, sustainable, and scalable solutions within the scope of a semester and invite students to think entrepreneurially about the change they want to see in the world.
This innovative study-abroad initiative fosters a global collaborative economy and explores critical challenges from a local and an international perspective, finding common ground in the development of viable, sustainable and scalable solutions to these problems. The purpose is to foster a global dialogue of changemakers and innovators, inviting them to think globally in order to act locally.
The High School Innovation Program
The High School Innovation Program is designed to engage socially minded, innovative high school students and support the development of an entrepreneurial mindset. Students are also introduced to the ecosystem supporting entrepreneurship and innovation at the University of Arkansas.
Enactus is an international non-profit student organization striving to implement and develop the United Nations' 17 Sustainable Development Goals in our local community. The Social Innovation Initiative works closely with the University of Arkansas chapter of Enactus as they develop viable, sustainable, and scalable social ventures. For more information, visit the Enactus website.