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REF NO.: 36

SUBJECT: Memorial launches Canada’s first master’s degree in social enterprise and entrepreneurship

DATE: Jan. 5

A new master’s degree at Memorial University aims to train a different kind of business leader for a new way of doing business.

The master of business administration in social enterprise and entrepreneurship (MBA-SEE), launched by the Memorial's Faculty of Business Administration, is a 12-month program focused on developing change agents committed to sustainable and social business practices in public, private and not-for-profit sectors.

“There is a growing awareness of social enterprise and social entrepreneurship throughout the business world,” says Dr. Isabelle Dostaler, dean, Faculty of Business Administration. “With this new MBA program specifically designed to focus on the three pillars of sustainability – people, planet and profits – we aim to develop graduates who will be agents of change. The MBA-SEE puts Memorial on the leading edge of an important emerging sector of the provincial and national economy, one which has the potential to help navigate the current challenges that have arisen in business, culture, the environment and the economy.”

Social enterprise and social entrepreneurship involve using sound business practices to pursue social, cultural or environmental missions. Not primarily focused on generating profit, these ventures seek and create opportunities to generate value through commercial, market-based activities.

“Newfoundland and Labrador is facing significant challenges in the 21st century,” says Nicole Helwig, manager, Memorial’s Centre for Social Enterprise, a partnership between Memorial’s Faculty of Business Administration, School of Social Work and School of Music that seeks to enhance the quality of the human experience through social enterprise and social innovation.

“We see social enterprise as a pathway to social innovation, aiming to create sustainable social and economic value,” says Ms. Helwig. “The MBA-SEE aims to develop leaders for social change — whether that be in the non-profit, public or for-profit sectors — capable of addressing complex social problems in creative and effective ways. By cultivating relationships with existing and emergent social enterprises, this program will help strengthen the social enterprise sector in the province.”

The first cohort of MBA-SEE students will begin classes in fall 2018. Applications are now being accepted.

“In today’s business environment, it’s critical that organizations are sustainable and offer value to the communities in which they operate. In order to do that, we need leaders who are able to think creatively, look for innovative solutions and operate with a social conscience,” says Dr. Dostaler. “Unlike a traditional MBA program, the MBA-SEE embeds the concepts of sustainability into every course offered, which will help create these leaders for social change.”

Find more information about the MBA-SEE click here.

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For more information, contact Susan White, communications advisor, Faculty of Business Administration, at (709) 864-2616, (709) 689-7988 or susanwhite@mun.ca.  

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