Students for Change: Social Entrepreneurship in Academia
Key words: education, innovation, competency development
Project duration: 15.10.2016 - 14.10.2019
European Union – Erasmus+
The main objective of the project Students for Change is to develop a pedagogical method for Higher Education Institutions (HEI) feasible and desirable in Latin American context, to teach and train university entrepreneurs with the necessary skills and knowledge to be active players implementing social innovations. This pedagogical method hopes to position HEIs as active actors in regional development.
The project prioritizes the change at institutional level, builds capacities for improving quality of teaching and learning at academic programs in Latin-America. Its strategy is to put students and academic staff in the center of the action, achieving concrete results and convincing university leaders to embedded social innovation in curricula of formal academic programs. The consortium of Students for Change is convinced that the only sustainable way that Higher Education can face the most difficult challenges in Latin America is through transforming skills and competences for students in the region.
- Coordinator: Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM) Mexico
- Universidad de Colima (UCOL) Mexico
- Universidad de Talca (UTALCA) Chile
- Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso (PUCV) Chile
- ASHOKA Chile
- Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul (PUCRS) Brazil
- Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) Brazil
- Universidad de Costa Rica (UCR) Costa Rica
- Instituto Tecnológico de Costa Rica (ITCR) Costa Rica
- Universidad de Caldas (UCALDAS) Columbia
- Corporación Universitaria Minuto de Dios (UNMINUTO) Columbia
- Universitat Politècnica de València (UPV) Spain
- Universidad del País Vasco/ Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea (UPV/EHU) Spain
- Universidade de Aveiro (UA) Portugal
- Université Grenoble Alpes (UGA) France
One of the main objectives of the project is to integrate social innovation in curricula and learning environments at the universities of Latin America. Another one is to improve the quality and relevance of its academic programs in relation to the skills that ought to be developed by students in order to solve the social problems affecting the region.
Accordingly, the project has the following objectives:
- To implement educational models that promote the formation of entrepreneurial skills and social innovation
- To offer strategies for teacher training
- To design strategies and methodological tools useful to programs and academic projects (teachers and students involved) to better understand the needs of communities and improve joint and sustainable resolution of identified problems
- To develop a model for monitoring and evaluating the development of social entrepreneurship skills in the curriculum
- To design and implement political and institutional processes relating to administrative, academic and management support in order to promote social innovation in Latin American universities
- To establish alliances between Latin American and European universities seeking to promote social entrepreneurship strategies
- To strengthen the existing social incubators at participating universities and their links with the student learning process and curricula for the generation of better environment
- To improve the efficacy and sustainability of projects
Students for Change is a project based cooperation between Europe and Latin America. It is coordinated by the Tecnológico de Monterrey, a Mexican university with relevant experience in project management and a long track record of social entrepreneurship. In order to generate and implement a viable and desirable teaching method and to develop entrepreneurial skills focused on social innovation, the project draws on the experience and know-how of European universities. They assume a leadership role in each of its core tasks, according to their skills and experience. All of them work in close coordination with Latin-American Universities, sharing responsibilities in the development of actions. Therefore, the project is highly enriched with collaboration between institutions of higher education from Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean. The distribution of the work packages and responsibilities was based on the specialization, experience and knowhow of each European and Latin American University regarding research on theoretical concept of social innovation, methodology development, training teachers, evaluation and experience on mainstream policies in the university.
This project contributes to reach its goals by:
- Deepening academic research about social innovation
- Developing competences of social innovation across the curriculum
- Strengthening social responsibility programs of selected institutions
- Improving teaching skills and cultural awareness of participants
- Increasing staff and student mobility in both Latin American and European partners
- Developing a knowledge bank for social innovation
- Fostering further opportunities of collaboration between staff of each participant institutions
The project is developed in five stages, each one culminating in an international meeting of the participating universities:
- Stage 1 - State of the art of entrepreneurship programs and the set-up of university groups: Three different groups of universities (Caribbean, Europe & Latin-America) are set up. Thereby, the aim is to develop educational and entrepreneurship programs in each of the participating universities and their respective countries.
- Stage 2 - Methodologies for entrepreneurship and social innovation: The project focuses on the development of methodologies to promote entrepreneurship and social innovation across the curriculum and an institutional culture of Higher Education Institutions, especially in Latin America.
- Stage 3 - Teachers training for pilot projects and selection of participant teachers for the pilot projects: Each university selects five teachers to participate in a pilot project consisting in implementing learning methodologies for entrepreneurship and social innovation across their disciplines and courses.
- Stage 4 - Pilot projects implementation and evaluation: During the implementation stage, visits are made to the pilot projects. The results are presented during a meeting in Talca, Chile.
- Stage 5 - Scaling up and institutionalizing entrepreneurship and social innovation programs: The last stage of the project turns around the institutional issue of entrepreneurship programs. Participant universities work on how to institutionalize entrepreneurship and social innovation programs in their curriculum in a way that could allow them to achieve broader impact on the curriculum.
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Location & approach
Exit 13 (Kreuz Dortmund Nord-Ost), direction Derne/Schwerte (B236), 1st exit direction Dortmund-Eving, next traffic lights turn right (Kemminghauser Str.), after 2.7km turn left (Evinger Str./B 54), after 1.1km traffic lights turn left (Deutsche Straße), after 500m on the left is the Evinger Platz.
From the Bundesstraße 1 (extension A40 or A44) to the intersection B1/B236 direction Lünen, 3rd exit direction Dortmund-Eving.
Exit Dortmund Hafen, turn left until the intersection Münsterstraße (B54), direction Eving, after about three kilometers turn into Deutsche Straße.
You can download an enlarged general map here
From Dortmund Airport, it takes just about 20 minutes to get to Dortmund Central Station by AirportExpress and from there to the university by subway (U-Bahn) 41. The stop is "Zeche Minister Stein". A wider range of international flight connections is offered by Düsseldorf Airport, about 60 kilometers away, which can be reached directly by S-Bahn from the university station. From there, you can get directly to Dortmund Central Station.
From Dortmund Central Station, take the U 41 light rail (direction Brambauer / Brechten). The stop is "Zeche Minister Stein". The Minister Stein Center is located on the right in the direction of travel of the streetcar.
You can find an overview map here.