Alexander Bohlen/Courtesy Photo

Come Spring 2017, Cal Poly students across all majors will be able to minor in entrepreneurship.

Orfalea College of Business’ 24-unit minor provides the foundational knowledge needed to grow a business with classes such as Introduction to Entrepreneurship (BUS 310), Introduction to Design Thinking (ENGR 234) and Business Basics for Entrepreneurs (BUS 210).

“The classes will teach you to be a leader,” Charmaine Farber, creative director of the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE), said.

Students graduating with the entrepreneurship minor will gain valuable skills regardless of whether they choose to pursue a start-up business after college.

“They will have negotiation and design skills, creative ways to attack problems and skills in presenting and pitching business ideas,” entrepreneurship minor coordinator Jonathan York said.

The minor has officially launched for a limited number of students who will begin their entrepreneurship classes this spring. The minor will be open to more students in Fall 2017.

“It’s almost like a pilot project,” York said. “We will see how many students enrolled and where the demand is.”
Students with credit in Introduction to Entrepreneurship (BUS 310) and involvement in the CIE have preference in the selection process, but are not guaranteed a spot.

By learning more about how to sell an idea, students gain knowledge necessary to move into the CIE’s Hatchery, a room in Cotchett Education (building 2) that serves as a space for students to begin brainstorming the logistics of a start-up company.

From the Hatchery, the SLO HotHouse provides the next level for student entrepreneurs who want to continue developing their business.

Examples of start-ups that moved to the HotHouse include Current Solutions, a platform that gives victims of sexual assault the opportunity to share their story, and BoltAbout, a business allowing students to rent bikes at a monthly cost.

“It’s about working together to see an idea and carry it through to execution, what would an employer not like about that?” Farber said.

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