What we do
Serving Those Who Serve Others
The Social Enterprise Service Group™ (SESG) @ Elizabethtown College was founded with a mission to help address some of the world’s most pressing social issues through technology innovation transfer strategies and social enterprise development. The SESG connects innovators to resources, encourages the creation and growth of small businesses, and helps close the gap between academic research and a strong sector of entrepreneurial innovation.
We POWER Social Enterprise.
What is a Social Enterprise?
Social Enterprises are businesses that exist to fulfill their specific social purpose and make a measureable sustainable difference in individual lives. The SESG helps launch social enterprises, assists in their development and supports in funding their growth.
Social Enterprise is a growing field of study, and a field that aligns with Elizabethtown College’s mission to ‘educate for service’.
From Idea to Enterprise: Transforming Innovation to Socio-Economic Impact
The SESG is premised upon the belief that persistent social problems can only best be addressed through social enterprise, especially when they can draw upon individuals who seek meaningful, purposeful work as a significant part of their life, and are educated for service.
Recipe for Success:
Through its unique offering of services and resources, The SESG pairs the intellectual capital from the Professional Sciences and Liberal Arts Disciplines in a customized Business Model to address a specific persistent social problem. Ultimately, each successful initiative will be funded with Social Impact Capital to deliver a sustainable solution.
What we do
By leveraging Elizabethtown College’s existing research and action institutes, including the Social Enterprise Institute (SEI), the High Center for Family Business and the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies, the SESG will apply lessons learned and best practices from successful regional entrepreneurship sectors to encourage the development of an entrepreneurship sector that is efficient, sustainable, and social in focus.
The rationale for focusing on the deployment of social enterprise businesses is one of a timely nature:
- Social needs are ever increasing
- The level of philanthropy ever decreasing
- Public policy is insufficient to bridge the gap, thereby creating a market opportunity favoring the rise of social enterprises.
The Social Enterprise Service Group™ has experienced rapid growth in responding to “market place needs” as evident by the array of current projects in various stages of development. Project staffing is provided by interdisciplinary teams made up of faculty, undergraduate and graduate students as well as subject matter experts from industry. Project funding is accomplished by utilizing a mix of financial resources, such as grants, contracts, donations and impact investments.
The SESG is supported by Social Impact Investor research grants and by the Social Enterprise Foundation (SEF), a Pennsylvania foundation focused entirely on funding the development and startup capital needs of social enterprises.