This course introduces students to the entrepreneurial mindset, focusing on the concepts, practices, and tools of the entrepreneurial process. Students practice the process of exploring interesting problems and developing creative ideas to address them. An entrepreneurial mindset is useful for tackling new opportunities or challenges in any business, government, non-profit and life in general. The only effective way to acquire an entrepreneurial mindset is to practice it. This course takes an experiential approach: You are expected to start a new venture and be an active participant in the learning process. You interact with the beneficiaries and partners as you initiate and validate your ideas and hypotheses. Your active participation and engaged presence is required. Prerequisite: Intense curiosity. 3 hours lecture; 3 semester hours.

BUSINESS MODEL DEVELOPMENT (EBGN 460)

This course leads students through the process of developing and validating a business model for an innovative product or service by a start-up or an established organization. The creation of a business model can be challenging, frustrating, fascinating and fulfilling. Building on skills learned in EBGN360, students explore ways to sustain and scale a promising new product or service in any context: commercial/for-profit, social/non-profit or government. It is an iterative process that involves uncovering beneficiary needs and leads to an in-depth understanding of how value is delivered, differentiated and captured. Students work in teams since new ventures are started by teams with complementary skills and a shared purpose. This is a demanding, hands-on course that integrates knowledge from entrepreneurship, business, economics and engineering classes. Students are expected to initiate and drive an intense beneficiary discovery process that involves reaching out to beneficiaries and engaging them outside class. Prerequisites: EBGN360, 3 hours lecture; 3 semester hours.

CHANGE THE WORLD (EBGN 498)

This is a series of short courses and lab that introduce students to the entrepreneurial process as follows:

  • EBGN498A Beneficiary Discovery meets 2:00 – 3:15 on 1/14, 1/21, 1/28, 2/4 and 2/11, 2019.
  • EBGN498B Creative Problem Solving meets 2:00 – 3:15 on 2/18, 2/25, 3/4, 3/11 and 3/18, 2019.
  • EBGN498C Business Model Development meets 2:00 – 3:15 on 4/1, 4/8, 4/15, 4/22, 4/29, 2019.
  • EBGN498E Business Model Lab meets on Mondays 4:00 – 5:15 Spring Semester.

 

The beneficiary discovery process focuses on investigating an interesting problem that a startup can try to solve. Correctly identifying and framing a problem is a critical step towards solving it. We take the time to deeply learn how a problem affects people using a process of empathy mapping. This step involves interviewing people and “falling in love with their problem.” We do not explore solutions nor do we brainstorm ways to deal with problems. The objective is to get the right problem and get the problem right before we attempt to solve it.

The creative problem solving involves developing potential solutions to a problem using rapid pretotyping (or pre-prototyping). A pretotype is a simple and quick test to validate an assumption about the potential solution. Iterating on pretotypes results in a minimal viable prototype or product (MVP). The objective is to arrive at a solution that actually solves the problem.

The business model development process is where you evaluate turning your solution to a problem into a viable and sustainable business. We use the business model canvas approach to explore different revenue and cost models and iterate on them. The objective is to develop a business model that allows the new venture to deliver value and scale.

As with all our entrepreneurship courses, the only effective way to acquire an entrepreneurial mindset is to practice it. This course takes an experiential approach: You are expected to start a new venture and be an active participant in the learning process. You interact with the beneficiaries and partners as you initiate and validate your ideas and hypotheses. Your active participation and engaged presence is required. Problems and solutions are broadly considered in commercial, social/non-profit or government contexts. Prerequisite: Intense curiosity. 1 hours lecture; .05 semester hours.

In a crisis, national security initiatives move fast at startup speed. Yet in peacetime they default to decades-long acquisition and procurement cycles. Obviously, this isn’t cutting it. Today, our potential adversaries are able to quickly acquire and harness the power of innovations: social networks, encryption, GPS, low-cost drones, 3D printers, the Internet and many other technologies. This is your opportunity to do something about it. Learn how to design and test solutions to important national security problems with speed, urgency and creativity.
This course equips students with the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to identify, define, and begin solving real problems for real people, within the socio-technical ambiguity that surrounds all engineering problems. It focuses on problems faced in everyday life, by people from different backgrounds and in different circumstances, so students can rise to the occasion presented by future workplace challenges. By the end of this course, students will be able to recognize design problems around them, determine whether they are worth solving, and employ a suite of tools to create multiple solutions.
The Cornerstone program equips students to think innovatively and entrepreneurially about the world around them. The design process learned in these courses is the framework for not only becoming a successful engineer or scientist, but also in forming successful start-ups and business ventures. 
The Capstone Design@Mines program combines students from the Civil, Electrical, Environmental, and Mechanical Engineering degree programs. The program uses client-driven projects to engage students in projects that matter. 

Students must engage in the design process to satisfy the needs of their clients.

IDEAS (Innovation and Discovery in Engineering, Arts and Science) is a first-year course combining both NHV and EPICS I, offered through the McBride Honors Program. Students in this course learn the design thinking process, with a focus on user-centered design.
The Humanitarian Engineering minor focuses on co-creating just and sustainable solutions for communities worldwide. Principles of innovation and entrepreneurship are learned throughout the pathway.

Practical Foundry

Are you interested in learning how to turn our ideas into the metal objects? Would you like to learn about the casting process and how to develop your own patterns and molds using computer design tools? Interested in casting as a hobby or possible career? Would you like to design and produce your own product run of Mines mementos? If this sounds interesting, you are invited to join the pilot for a new class in the Mines Foundry:

MTGN 298A – Practical Foundry (CRN 86045)

An introduction to the theory and practice of metal casting and finishing. Students will develop a limited-run casting process for the production of a small metal products in the Mines foundry. The course will cover the basic science of the casting process, an introduction to metallurgy, an overview of casting economics, and an introduction to entrepreneurship.

3 semester hours; Th 3-6 pm; Hill Hall 124 (15 students maximum)

For more information, send email to: burwell@mines.edu