GCC 3005/5005 Global Venture Design – What Impact Will You Make?

Tuesdays and Thursdays, 8:15 – 9:30 am, Fall 2017

Instructors: Steve Kelley, Senior Fellow, Humphrey School of Public Affairs, Tom Fisher, College of Design, and Fred Rose, Acara Director. 

In GCC 3005/5005 upper level undergrads and grad students work on multidisciplinary teams of 4-5 students to develop innovative financially-viable venture solutions to address water, energy, food/agriculture, health and livelihoods challenges in India, East Africa and Nicaragua. Each team will work closely with Acara Staff based in India, East Africa and Nicaragua and will have access to various mentors and coaches throughout the semester. Teams will present their venture plans to a panel of potential judges at the end of the course. You can learn more about this course by reviewing the 2016 Course Syllabus. If you are a graduate, professional or upper level undergraduate student, register in April, 2017. Seats are limited to 70.

Students from this course are strongly encouraged to take CEGE 5572 in January, 2018 to develop their solution and then apply for prize funding and fellowships at the Acara Challenge to pilot and launch their venture idea. The most passionate, committed teams from the course are likely to receive seed funding.

This course is accepted as an elective for the following programs: Honors course requirement, Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering B.S., Civil Engineering B.C.E., Entrepreneurial Management B.S.B., International Business B.S.B., Public and Nonprofit Management B.S.B., Entrepreneurial Management Minor, Leadership Minor, Product Design Minor, and the Sustainability Studies Minor.

What did past students get from GCC 3005/5005?

The Acara challenge stretched me to work on global problems with real world implications. The class gives you the support and education to start to address some of the toughest challenges facing the world today.

Steele Lorenz, Co-Founder MyRain, Acara ’10, Carlson BS ’10

Acara taught me how to develop and refine a framework to begin realistically addressing global challenges related to basic human needs.

Adam Witt, Co-Founder TextRA, Acara ’10, CSE PhD ‘14

The Acara Challenge is a great way to learn about communicating across functions of a business. Most of the time at Carlson, we just speak with other business students, which really isn’t very healthy. Building communication skills with engineers can be very valuable.

Connor McIntire, Co-Founder HSD Sanitation, Acara ‘12, Carlson BS ‘13

The most important skill I learned from the Acara challenge was how to work well in a team of diverse people . . . Another really important aspect of the Acara program is that it gives you a global outlook on the world. As an Acara participant you really begin to understand how people from different cultures . . . of the world think, feel and live their lives.

Katheryn Klarich, Co-Founder Blue Food, Acara ‘11, CSE BS ’14

More than any other class I’ve taken in my grad school career, the course allowed me the chance to employ my creativity, work with smart students from across other disciplines, and employ thinking skills in design, ideation, and project management that I know will be useful in the future. It was both the most frustrating and most rewarding course I’ve been a part of.

Georgia Rubenstein, Co-Founder Nutricycle, Acara ’12, Humphrey MS ‘13

The Acara Challenge course enabled me to work with an interdisciplinary team on a common vision for PurePots, which taught me the importance of bringing together perspectives from different fields to create a more comprehensive idea.

Makenzie Dixon, Co-Founder PurePots, Acara ‘12, CSE MS ‘14