Innovation & Entrepreneurship Certificate

About

The undergraduate certificate in Innovation and Entrepreneurship (I&E) is designed to provide students with a pathway to pursue a rigorous cross-disciplinary study of innovation and entrepreneurship that will be complementary to any major and will enable students to be innovative and entrepreneurial in their pursuit of knowledge in service of society. The certificate requires an in-depth course of study examining the theories of innovation and entrepreneurship, coupled with hands-on practice in both areas. Innovation and entrepreneurship are, by their very nature, areas of cross-disciplinary inquiry, so the certificate will draw on theory, contexts, and methods from across the disciplines. The certificate builds on the already-existing emphasis of knowledge in service of society that is taking place within the students’ majors and co-curricular activities, to further enhance students’ abilities to explore the complex problems being faced by our world and to develop innovative methods to address those problems.

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Goals

The overarching goals for the I&E certificate are: (1) that all students participating in the certificate program will recognize the vital importance of using all they have learned across the disciplines to turn ideas into actions in whatever vocation they pursue, and (2) that they will embody the skills to do so.

Cultivating such an innovative and entrepreneurial spirit will involve students continuing to develop the following capacities:

  • Creativity, nurtured through disciplined mastery as well as exposure to diverse modes of research, inquiry, and experimentation;
  • Technical Competencies, learned by engaging the relevant topics/fields as well as learning through courses and experiences those skills that are critical to success in innovation and entrepreneurship;
  • Courage and Resilience, encouraged through courses that focus on experimentation and through experiential learning;
  • Reflection, developed through careful analysis (and learning the tools for such analysis) both inside and outside of class, through co-curricular spaces to engage mentors and colleagues in engaging major issues facing the world, and through structures and opportunities for introspection about one’s own gifts as well as blind-spots; and
  • Collaboration, fostered by opportunities to work in teams and to reflect on the diverse communication and leadership challenges that teamwork involves.

Learning Objectives

The learning outcomes include development of the key capacities outlined in the goals section, along with the following knowledge, skills, and abilities:

  • Identify need(s), particularly one(s) tied to large, complex problems
  • Generate multiple ideas (innovations) to address the need(s) identified
  • Assess the validity (under realistic constraints) of the innovation(s) generated
  • Create and execute a research project, artistic endeavor, social entrepreneurship program, or business plan tied to a specific innovation
  • Acquire necessary resources to initiate a project, program, or venture to pursue an innovation
  • Create the needed financing for an innovation project or venture and manage finances in order to successfully sustain a project or venture
  • Lead, manage, and work effectively within a team
  • Commercialize or otherwise generate income from an innovation
  • Communicate effectively, particularly innovative ideas, verbally and in writing
  • Create a positive and ethical culture in which to pursue innovation and entrepreneurial ideas
  • Develop courage and resilience, along with an understanding of the value/learning which comes from failure
  • Evaluate success in creating a project, program, or venture

Overview & Requirements

To earn the certificate, students must successfully complete the following requirements:

  1. Four courses:
    1. Gateway Elective—foundations course within chosen pathway
    2. Keystone—fundamentals of developing a strategy to launch a venture
    3. Elective —further exploration in innovation and/or entrepreneurship
    4. Capstone—focus on turning ideas into action through a capstone project
  2. Two immersive co-curricular experiences tied to innovation and entrepreneurship, in which students gain real-world application of knowledge and invaluable hands-on learning. One of the experiences must exceed 300 hours; the other must exceed 150 hours. Examples of different types of experiences include, but are not limited to, innovative and entrepreneurial internships, research, civic engagement initiatives, independent projects, or work developing an independent venture.
  3. Creation of a public facing e-portfolio, which provides students with a platform to creatively capture artifacts from their work and experiences throughout the certificate. This is meant to deepen their reflection of their participation in the program and provide a tangible accounting of students’ learning.

Overview of the I&E Certificate Requirements

Courses

The I&E Certificate consists of four courses. All students complete the same keystone and capstone course. Students select 1 of 5 pathways through the certificate. Each pathway consists of two courses of the student’s choice: a gateway elective and an elective.

The recommended sequence of courses is 1) Gateway Elective 2) Keystone 3) Elective 4) Capstone. Students must complete the gateway elective, keystone, elective, and two experiences prior to enrolling in the capstone.

No more than one course and one experience that is used to satisfy the requirements of any major, minor, or other certificate program may count toward the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Certificate.

Listed below are the courses in the I&E Certificate curriculum. Unless cross-listed with I&E, the course numbers refer to the listing of the owning department, but all cross-listings for each respective course equally qualify to count toward the requirements.

Required Courses

Keystone
I&E 352 Strategies for Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Capstone
I&E 499 Innovation & Entrepreneurship Capstone

Elective Courses

Select two courses from your chosen pathway.

Media, Arts & Entertainment Pathway
  • AMI 301S Moving Image Practice
  • DOCST 354S.01 – Web Design and Narrative: Artists, Documentarians, Art Historians, and Entrepreneurs
  • ETHICS 270 Business Ethics
  • I&E 140 Create, Innovate, Act
  • I&E 217SA The Economics of Art—The Chicago Scene (Duke in Chicago)
  • I&E 242S Multimedia Documentary
  • I&E 252 Learning to Fail
  • I&E 253 Social Marketing for Entrepreneurs
  • I&E 272S Documentary and Policy
  • I&E 290 Innovation & Entrepreneurship at the Intersection on of Media, Entertainment and Technology
  • I&E 290* Introduction to Performing Arts Management & Entrepreneurship
  • I&E 290* Sports Entrepreneurship and the Evolving Marketplace
  • I&E 290* Theater & Film Arts Entrepreneurship & Social Policy
  • I&E 295S Arts Entrepreneurship
  • I&E 310S Introduction to Non-Profit Cultural Institutions
  • I&E 311S Legal Issues for the Performing Arts
  • I&E 359A – Introduction to Global Los Angeles: An Interdisciplinary Survey (Duke in LA)
  • I&E 373 Intellectual Property Law: Law, Policy, and Practice
  • I&E 390S* Devising Theater
  • MUSIC 273 Electronic Music
  • PUBPOL 290S-01/MUS290S-01 Social Entrepreneurship & the Arts: Building Your Dream
  • THEATRST 145S Acting
Social Innovation & Policy Pathway
  • BME 290L* Technology with Women’s Health
  • EHD 290S-01* Community Data in Action
  • EHD 290S-02* Evaluating Health Innovation
  • ETHICS 270 Business Ethics
  • I&E 140 Create, Innovate, Act
  • I&E 252 Learning to Fail
  • I&E 253 Social Marketing for Entrepreneurs
  • I&E 261 Social Innovation
  • I&E 262 Open Knowledge & Education Innovation
  • I&E 263 Entrepreneurial Problem Solving in Global Health
  • I&E 272S Documentary and Policy
  • I&E 290* Theater & Film Arts Entrepreneurship & Social Policy
  • I&E 310S Introduction to Non-Profit Cultural Institutions
  • I&E 373 Intellectual Property Law: Law, Policy, and Practice
  • I&E 390* OSPRI: Open Source Education Technology
  • I&E 390S Leading a Life of Impact: Creating Transformative Impact and a Transformational Life
  • I&E 590* Hacking for Conservation & Development
  • PUBPOL 265 Enterprising Leadership
  • PUBPOL 290S-01/MUS290S-01 Social Entrepreneurship & the Arts: Building Your Dream
  • PUBPOL 290S-06* Innovating for Social Impact
  • PUBPOL 642S Designing Innovation for Global Health
  • SPANISH 315A Duke in Chile: Language and Culture of Entrepreneurship in Latin America
Technology & Design Pathway
  • ARTSVIS 198 Experimental Interface Design
  • BME 290L* Technology with Women’s Health
  • BME 490* Biochemical Engineering Design
  • BME 590* Biomedical Device Innovation
  • BME 590* Metabolic Networks and Design
  • DOCST 354S.01 – Web Design and Narrative: Artists, Documentarians, Art Historians, and Entrepreneurs
  • EGR 121L Engineering Innovation
  • EGR 190L* Engineering Design and Communication
  • ETHICS 270 Business Ethics
  • I&E 250 Building Global Audiences
  • I&E 252 Learning to Fail
  • I&E 253 Social Marketing for Entrepreneurs
  • I&E 271A Building and Sustaining a Successful Enterprise
  • I&E 281 Basics of Technology Commercialization
  • I&E 290* Founders Workshop: Startups
  • I&E 290 Innovation & Entrepreneurship at the Intersection on of Media, Entertainment and Technology
  • I&E 373 Intellectual Property Law: Law, Policy, and Practice
  • I&E 390* OSPRI: Open Source Education Technology
  • ISS 240L Fundamentals of Web-based Communications
  • PHY 566 Computational Physics
Culture, Community & Commerce Pathway
  • ECON 375 The Economics of Entrepreneurship
  • EHD 290S-01* Community Data in Action
  • EHD 290S-02* Evaluating Health Innovation
  • ETHICS 270 Business Ethics
  • HISTORY 248S.01 Publishing & Marketing Popular Fiction
  • I&E 140 Create, Innovate, Act
  • I&E 171 Organizational Anthropology: Anthropologists in the Workplace
  • I&E 250 Building Global Audiences
  • I&E 252 Learning to Fail
  • I&E 253 Social Marketing for Entrepreneurs
  • I&E 262 Open Knowledge & Education Innovation
  • I&E 373 Intellectual Property Law: Law, Policy, and Practice
  • I&E 390S Leading a Life of Impact: Creating Transformative Impact and a Transformational Life
  • I&E 290* Foundations of an Open Source World
  • I&E 290* Sports Entrepreneurship and the Evolving Marketplace
  • I&E 390* OSPRI: Open Source Education Technology
  • ISS 240L Fundamentals of Web-based Communications
  • MMS 360 Entrepreneurial Opportunities in Finance
  • PJMS 378 The Future of News
  • SOC 359 Sociology of Entrepreneurship
  • SPANISH 315A – Duke in Chile: Language and Culture of Entrepreneurship in Latin America
Unscripted Pathway

The Unscripted Pathway is designed by individual students to meet their unique academic and intellectual goals. Students can create their own interdisciplinary pathways and select electives from across themes.


*Please note that special topics courses (course numbers typically ending in 90) change frequently in title and content. In order to ensure that a special topics elective choice meets the certificate requirement, students must clear their selection with the I&E Certificate staff.

Experiences

In order to gain real-world application of knowledge and invaluable hands-on learning, students will complete two learning experiences tied to innovation and entrepreneurship. One of the experiences must exceed 300 hours; the other must exceed 150 hours.

Examples of different types of experiences include, but are not limited to, innovative and entrepreneurial internships, research, civic engagement initiatives, independent projects, or work developing an independent venture.

Students must identify and propose each learning experience they plan to undertake. Students will be informed of this approval process upon admission to the program. All proposed experiences will be thoroughly reviewed for their relation to innovation and entrepreneurship, quality, and fit given the student’s stated objectives for completing the certificate.

Students may choose to complete the experiences at any time, as long as the experiences meet the minimum hour requirements and are both completed prior to taking the capstone.

For each experience, students must seek out a mentor who will supervise the work or provide external expertise and guidance.

Information Sessions

  • February 15th, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., West Duke 202 (East Campus)
  • March 21st, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., Brodhead 241
  • Certificate Office Hours

  • February 7th, 12:00 to 2:00 p.m., Brodhead 241
  • March 27th, 1:00 to 3:00 p.m., Brodhead 216
  • April 17th, 1:00 to 3:00 p.m., Brodhead 216

Application Process

APPLY HERE: https://www.dukeonline.duke.edu/cert2/ (requires NetID and password)
Eligibility
  • Seniors are not eligible to apply (no exceptions)
  • Juniors must apply no later than the end of the add/drop period during the Fall semester (no exceptions)
  • Sophomores are eligible to apply anytime
  • First-Years are eligible to apply at the start of their second semester

Application Components
  • Identification of the four courses and two experiences, with selection logic and rationale
  • Essays outlining the objectives for completing the certificate and the problem/area of focus to be explored
  • List and description of co-curricular, extra-curricular, and employment experience

Ariana Gallegos


Ariana is pursuing an Interdepartmental Major in History and Public Policy focusing on Civil Rights, Social Movements, and using history to create social change. Through the Innovation & Entrepreneurship, Ariana is exploring what it takes to turn an ideas into an entrepreneurial venture.

Last Summer she participated in Duke in Silicon Valley. The program opened her eyes to the world of tech & the cutting edge aspects of the industry. She hopes to learn more about careers in the business side of tech.

At Duke Ariana is involved in Business Oriented Women and is an active member of a sorority. She has had past experience working as a social media marketing strategist for a hotel management company, a branding and marketing manager for a wedding venue startup, a campus ambassador for multiple startups, and she is currently interning in a paid campus ambassador program for In2une Music, a company that does marketing for independent music artists. In her free time she enjoys yoga, meditation, photography, and discovering new music.

Alex Gottwald ’19


Alex is studying computer science and economics alongside the I&E certificate. He came to Duke for the intersection of these three programs, and he is especially passionate about technology entrepreneurship. Through his certificate courses, Alex has taken Basics of Technology Commercialization, Strategies for Innovation & Entrepreneurship, and is currently enrolled in his elective, Moving Image Practice.

Last summer, Alex participated in Duke I&E’s Melissa & Doug Entrepreneurs program. As a part of the program, he launched AskAlex Tech Experts, a startup simplifying online tech support for older adults with limited computer experience. Beyond just the real-world implications of his work, Alex loved the program for its ability to connect him with a cohort of students going through similar experiences and an extremely successful network of Duke alumni entrepreneurs.

Alex is excited to speak to students about his Certificate experiences and to help them find their own path.

Check out these interviews with a few of our I&E Certificate students to learn more about the program!

Matt Alston ’17


Learn more about Matt’s experiences as an I&E Certificate student by reading this story or by viewing his e-portfolio.

Sophia Jamal ’17


Learn more about Sophia’s experiences as an I&E Certificate student by reading this story or by viewing her e-portfolio.

Shelby Wailes ’17


Learn more about Shelby’s experiences as an I&E Certificate student by reading this story or by viewing her e-portfolio.

Ashan-wa Aliogo ’17


Learn more about Ashan-wa’s experiences as an I&E Certificate student by reading this story or by viewing her e-portfolio.

Emily Bauman ’16


Learn more about Emily’s experiences as an I&E Certificate student here.

Karishma Popli ’16


Learn more about Karishma’s experiences as an I&E Certificate student here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible to apply?

The I&E Certificate is open to undergraduate students currently enrolled at Duke University and is earned upon graduation in conjunction with their major degree. Second-semester first-years, sophomores, and first-semester juniors are eligible to apply. Students may apply as early as the spring semester of their freshman year. The deadline to apply is the end of the drop/add period in the fall semester of a student’s junior year.

When are the application deadlines?

The application deadlines correspond to key dates on the Duke academic calendar, as detailed below:
• Round 1: Date on which Drop/Add for Fall ends (September)
• Round 2: Date on which registration for Spring begins (November)
• Round 3: Date on which registration for Summer begins (February)
• Round 4: Date on which registration for Fall begins (April)

When should I apply?

You are encouraged to apply as soon as you are eligible and feel ready to complete the application. The benefits of applying earlier are that you will have a longer period of time over which to complete the requirements and you will have earlier access to the advising and enrichment opportunities that accompany the program.

Is there a limit to the number of students you admit to the program?

There is no limit to the number of students we will admit to the program. The I&E Certificate is available to all eligible Duke undergraduates who, through their application, demonstrate a good fit with the program and can put together a cohesive and thoughtful pathway through the requirements. If there is any concern about a student’s application, the student will be counseled to determine if the I&E Certificate is the right fit for their Duke experience.

What if I don’t yet know what I want my pathway to be?

You should apply to the certificate with a clear set of your goals for the program as well as a general interest area that you want to focus on (i.e. technology, energy, social innovation, etc.) through your courses and experiences. However, we understand that your plan may evolve as you progress through your undergraduate career and accumulate more experience.

What if none of the pathways align with my academic interests?

Students with multiple interests may design their own pathway via the Unscripted Pathway, which allows them to select both of their electives across themes to meet their unique academic and intellectual goals.

What other resources or opportunities are open to me as part of the program?

As a member of the I&E Certificate program, you will become part of a community of Duke students dedicated to innovation and entrepreneurship. Certificate students will also have individual advising as well as special access to workshops, speakers, mentorship, and networking opportunities.

Do I need to know what my specific experiences will be when I apply?

You do not need to know what your specific experiences will be at the time you apply to the I&E Certificate. However, you should be able to broadly identify the type of experiences you want to undertake as part of the certificate, and justify why they are a good fit for your overall pathway through the program.

May I change my plan for my courses and experiences after I am accepted into the program?

You may change the selection and timing of your courses and experiences after you are accepted into the program. We understand that your plan may evolve as you progress through your undergraduate career and accumulate more experience. Regardless, the courses and experiences you end up completing must together form a cohesive pathway and coherent story.

I have already taken one of the electives prior to applying. Will it count toward my certificate requirements?

Yes. If you complete one of the approved Gateway Elective courses, it will count toward your certificate requirements, regardless of when it was taken.

I have found an elective I want to take for the certificate that is not on the approved list. Will it count toward the certificate?

Applicant: When filling out your elective choices on your application, click the “petition a non-approved elective option.” In the text box, provide the elective’s course title, description, syllabus (if available), and rationale for why you believe this course fits your pathway and should count for the certificate. When your admissions decision is communicated to you, you will be notified about whether or not this petition was approved.

Admitted Student: Send an email to certificate-entrepreneurship@duke.edu and provide the elective’s course title, description, syllabus (if available), and rationale for why you believe this course fits your pathway and should count for the certificate. The petition will be reviewed and you will be notified by email about whether or not it was approved.

I have already completed a relevant experience prior to applying. Will it count toward my certificate requirements?

The experiences should occur within the context of the undergraduate career and be aligned with your area of focus. Because the e-portfolio is intended to capture your experiences in real time and be a vehicle for reflection as you progress through the certificate, your experiences will be better maximized if you are part of the program when undertaking them. However, if you believe your case warrants an exception, please provide justification for this on the application in the relevant text box for describing your anticipated experience. Upon admission to the program, you will then need to complete a “Prior Experience Petition Form” in order to get official approval. At most, the program will be able to accept one experience that was completed prior to starting the program.

How do I know if an experience I identify will count toward the certificate?

After you are admitted into the program, you will fill out a series of forms that will be used to determine if an experience meets the criteria for the certificate. The general criteria for an experience are that it is hands-on and practical, is innovative and entrepreneurial in some way (meaning at some level, you are helping identify and solve problems), and helps further your individual objective(s) for completing the certificate.

Will courses, internships, or independent studies I have taken that count toward the requirements of my major/minor/certificate also count toward the I&E certificate?

One course and one experience used to satisfy the requirements of your major, minor, or other certificate program may “double count” toward the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Certificate.

Do the experiences have to be completed over the summer?

The experiences are not time-bound. You may choose to do them at any time and over any period of time, as long as they meet the minimum hour requirements and are both completed prior to taking the Capstone.

What are the requirements of the e-portfolio?

After you are admitted into the program, you will be provided a comprehensive set of guidelines for completing the e-portfolio. This will provide clear instructions for everything from how to set up your e-portfolio to the specific content that it should contain and how it is assessed.

May I earn both the Markets & Management and the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Certificate?

No. You may earn either the I&E Certificate or M&M Certificate.

Is the certificate program open to graduate students?

The I&E Certificate program is currently only open to undergraduate students. However graduate courses in Innovation & Entrepreneurship are offered. Please check the courses page or ACES for the most up-to-date listings.

Contact Us

Certificate program questions can be directed to the program team at: certificate-entrepreneurship@duke.edu.

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