Welcome to Episode 3 of Teaching Change. Since the last episode, Courtney has presented at the Florida Library Association Conference. Her presentation focused on how the Valencia East Book Nerds, the student club she advises, has helped its members succeed in their personal and academic lives. Meanwhile, Jerrid took a group of students on a field trip to First Green Bank to learn about its sustainability program. Kyle Sanders, the manager of the Winter Park branch, was a great host as the group learned about several of the bank’s initiatives such as energy efficiency, LEED-certified building material, recycling, and solar roof panels.
The conversation turns to Chris Miller’s blog post “10 Things Social Entrepreneurship is Not.” Chris Miller is the founder and CEO of Mission Center L3C. Jerrid is quite fond of the list because it covers common misconceptions that he has encountered during the course of his work.
At the top of the list is social entrepreneurship is not Facebook. As social media continues to be a ubiquitous part of society, it may come as no surprise that some people confuse the two. However, social entrepreneurship has more to do with business practices and social value than it does with likes and posting. Sure, Facebook can be used as a tool to promote businesses that may include social entrepreneurs, but the purpose of each is quite different.
Jerrid and Courtney also cover the blog’s assertions that social entrepreneurship is not charity, not necessarily nonprofit, and that it is most definitely not anti-profit. TOMS Shoes, which has been quite profitable, is a great example of this criteria. At TOMS Shoes, every time someone purchases a pair of shoes another pair is donated.
In another part of the world, India’s Grameen Bank also exemplifies how social entrepreneurship is not a synonym for charity. Founded by Muhammed Yunus, Grameen gives microloans to people who need small loans but are not eligible for traditional loans because they do not have capital. Muhammed Yunus and his bank were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006.
The rest of Miller’s list is reviewed, including social entrepreneurship not being a fad and not being about corporate responsibility. All of the “not” talk ultimately leads to a clearer understanding of how social entrepreneurship operates and how it impacts the world.
Teaching Change Shout-outs
For more information on topics discussed during the show, see the list below.