The program at San Diego State University matches talented graduate business students with nonprofit organizations. Interns work with the organization's senior management to improve performance and achieve their goals through entrepreneurial initiatives.
The internships unite academic, corporate and social concepts in entrepreneurship for a unique educational MBA experience. Over the course of a 150-hour internship, students identify a strategic objective, perform related business analysis and develop a substantive report.
For certain projects, SDSU faculty advisors may act as facilitators and QUALCOMM employees mentor the interns to enable agency implementation of recommended courses of action.
The QUALCOMM EMC Social Entrepreneur Internship Program began when the Kauffman Foundation for Entrepreneurial Leadership recognized that the internships they had been sponsoring in For-Profit enterprises could benefit Non-Profit organizations.
In early 1999, Kauffman provided SDSU's Entrepreneurial Management Center with seed money to launch a social entrepreneur internship initiative with the goal of securing permanent local funding. Later that year, the EMC announced a grant from its partner QUALCOMM, Inc. to continue the social internship program.
How the Program Works
- Phase One:
Each semester (Fall, Spring and Summer) the EMC invites nonprofit organizations to submit internship project proposals. After they are reviewed to insure they are compatible with program goals, the project descriptions are posted on our website. Student’s request interviews based upon their experience, skills and interests. The agencies receive copies of resumes of those students desiring an interview.
- Phase Two:
In a single afternoon the students and agency representatives meet on campus for "match day." In most instances the preferences of the agencies and students are mutually selective, and a one-to-one match is made. Each intern is assigned a program advisor for purposes of guidance, as a source of technical assistance and to insure a quality learning experience results. A mentor from QUALCOMM also becomes part of the internship team.
- Phase Three:
The intern, host organization supervisor and QUALCOMM mentor meet to establish and confirm the scope of the engagement and agree upon deliverables. Additional meetings and conferences occur on an as-needed basis. The intern is the individual primarily responsible for the successful outcome of the project and is expected to take on a leadership role to insure that occurs.
If you are interested in participating in this program, please complete a nonprofit application form (found on the EMC website www.sdsu.edu/emc ) and send it to Bernhard Schroeder at firstname.lastname@example.org.