Archive for Educational Innovation

Innovative Social Entrepreneur Programs and Alleviating Poverty Through Microfinance

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SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT:

I am on the advisory board, and my company, Creative Sage/Cathryn Hrudicka & Associates, is a partner in the following innovative Social Entrepreneur/corporate philanthropy programs that serve people on local and international levels. Here is the announcement for an upcoming event in San Francisco that we are co-producing, and the Web links:

http://givefoundationonline.blogspot.com/

Global Initiative to Advance Entrepreneurship

Event: May 10, 2007
Alleviating Poverty Through Microfinance:
Three Bay Area Programs Initiate Social Change

Location:

Hotel Rex
562 Sutter Street (at Mason)
San Francisco, CA 94102
P: 415.433.4434

Time: 6:00 pm check in; 6:30pm-8:00pm program
Cost: $30.00/includes dinner
Register in advance at: http://sfmicrocredit.eventbrite.com/

Microcredit is breaking the cycle of poverty. By providing credit via small loans to the poor, microcredit programs are transforming the lives of millions of families and communities around the world. Based on the idea that the poor have the capacity to improve their own situations, microfinance programs help impoverished people build viable businesses and create their own economic opportunities.

Alleviating Poverty Through Microfinance, the first event in the Social Entrepreneurship Lecture Series, will showcase three Bay Area microcredit initiatives. Three featured speakers include:

Vijay Kapoor, I Create India. I Create, Inc., provides Integrated Entrepreneurship Training to disadvantaged communities in India. Vijay will discuss how I Create is working with Bay Area nonprofits to “adopt” villages in low-income areas in northern India and providing training and seed money to aspiring entrepreneurs.

Bob Graham, NamasteDirect. Bob is founder and Chief Executive Officer of NamasteDirect, a San Francisco-based nonprofit focusing on microcredit in Central America by providing small loans to first time women borrowers. Bob will discuss opportunities to provide microcredit to underserved communities in Central America.

Keith Axtell, Rotary International District 5150. Keith is World Community Service Chair for Rotary District 5150, serving the greater San Francisco Bay Area. He will discuss local Rotary microcredit programs in Guayaquil, Ecuador, resulting in three hundred small businesses in one of the poorest areas of the country.

Who Should Attend?

This two hour event is for anyone interested in the exciting field of microfinance, including nonprofits, social entrepreneurs, and members of the business community. The event will encourage innovation among organizations already participating in microfinance programs, and provide opportunities to form strategic partnerships to build and expand the outreach and success of microcredit and microfinance.

Sponsored by Rotary Club San Francisco Golden Gate, Global Initiative to Advance Entrepreneurship, Creative Sage and other nonprofit and business partners, this is the first of an ongoing series showcasing social entrepreneurship initiatives in the Bay Area and around the world. This series will be comprised of speakers, expert panels and film screenings that showcase the emerging field of social entrepreneurship. To learn more, visit http://www.givefoundationonline.org.

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Back to Orbit: Sing to Me about Innovation!

 

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Once in awhile, someone relatively unknown or “outside of the box” will do something spectacularly creative that deserves all of our attention. Today, I discovered that someone—Gus Bitdinger, a Stanford graduate student who wrote a primo song about Innovation in large organizations, “Back to Orbit.” Gus’s professor, Robert Sutton, was so impressed with the song, which was Gus’s final project for Sutton’s class, that Mr. Sutton posted a YouTube video of Bitdinger playing his song on the Harvard Business Review web site, in his “The Working Life” column.

Sutton wrote about the innovation class that fellow professor Michael Dearing and he taught to a diverse group of eleven Stanford students, called “Management Science & Engineering 282,” a joint offering of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program and the Stanford (Design) “d.school” class. As Sutton describes it, “We decided to see how creative the students could get by subjecting them to an absurdly hard final exam (suggested by one of the students, Sam Goldman): We asked each one to make a short video that summarized what they learned in the class. We were impressed by how well they all did; but the best one just stunned us: ‘Back to Orbit,’ which you can see as a YouTube video.” You can also see, hear and discuss it The Harvard Business Review Online (the video will pop up here, if you’ve got Snap).

Gus has very creatively used many ideas from the late Gordon MacKenzie’s landmark book, “Orbiting the Giant Hairball,” one of the classics about Creativity and Innovation in organizations. As many of my readers know, Robert Sutton is Professor of Management Science and Engineering at Stanford University, where he co-founded the Center for Work, Technology and Organization. His most recent book is The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn’t. Sutton’s personal blog is Work Matters; he also maintains (with Jeffrey Pfeffer) a website focusing on the use of evidence-based management.

You can get this terrific video at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JrlSHZ0anAM or just click on this link, and the video should pop up here.

You can also see the video clip on our Creativity and Innovations Blog.

I invite you to watch other videos about creativity and innovation on our sidebar on the right, below, as I’ve had some problems embedding them in the main blog pages here. We’ve also gathered innovative PR and Marketing videos on our PR and Marketing Mentor Blog...scroll down to the sidebar there, and keep checking back for VodPod widge video additions on both of my WordPress blogs.

This should be obvious, but…Innovative organizations deserve the most creative and innovative marketing and PR, especially for your organization’s most innovative services and products!

 

 

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Revolutionize Retirement with Community College Encore Career Grants

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Is your community college opening doors to encore careers?

Civic Ventures will provide up to 10 grants of $25,000 each to community colleges that are finding ways to unleash the power of baby boomers as a workforce for social good.

Colleges that receive grants will be leaders in the effort to help people over 50 transition from midlife careers to “encore careers”–purpose-driven jobs that meet critical needs in America’s communities.Specifically, grants will be awarded to community colleges that are creating innovative ways to prepare baby boomers for careers in education, healthcare, and social services.

Grant proposals are due May 1st. Let’s revolutionize retirement now, and for future generations, and put those Baby Boomers to work for good causes!

The Community College Encore Career Project is sponsored by Civic Ventures—a think tank and incubator generating ideas and inventing programs to help society achieve the greatest return on experience—and is funded by the MetLife Foundation.

Fast Company magazine selected Civic Ventures as a Winner of its 2007 Social Capitalist Award. To learn more, visit http://www.civicventures.org.

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