Undergraduate Certificate in Entrepreneurship

Belk College of Business Undergraduate Certificate in Entrepreneurship

Do you want to determine your own future, be a creative thinker that can drive change, own your own business or make an impact in your profession? If so, then the Undergraduate Certificate in Entrepreneurship is for you.

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Think and Act Entrepreneurially

The Undergraduate Certificate in Entrepreneurship provides students with an understanding of how to think and act entrepreneurially in efficient and effective ways. Open to all UNC Charlotte undergraduate students (note eligibility requirements below), the certificate aims to satisfy the increasing societal demand for skill sets related to entrepreneurship:

  • How to recognize and evaluate opportunities
  • How to create and communicate a vision
  • How to think holistically and systematically in designing and organizing a venture.

Coursework

Core Courses (6 credit hours)

(Fall) Helps students take the first step as an entrepreneur. Before entrepreneurs can organize ventures around innovative solutions to exploit opportunities, entrepreneurs benefit from first recognizing and evaluating opportunities. Students achieve two course objectives fundamental to being an entrepreneur: (1) students put together an opportunity portfolio — a detailed understanding and analysis of an industry/technology and all of the situational conditions that inform the opportunity within that industry/technology context; and (2) based on this opportunity portfolio, students are tasked with pitching a potential solution to a specific opportunity.
(Spring) Entrepreneurs work in contexts where they cannot control what ultimately occurs. As a means to increase students’ self-confidence and mental fortitude for uncertain contexts, this course seeks to present students with conditions of uncertainty and complexity. It involves different approaches, from engaged learning exercises, individual and team projects to interactions with entrepreneurs.
(Spring) Many individuals often recognize the same opportunities, but only some individuals become entrepreneurs by taking the actions to exploit the opportunity, and only a few of the entrepreneurs become successful by exploiting the opportunity effectively. This course provides students with an understanding of how they can shift from recognizing opportunities to taking actions to exploit the opportunities to create value for a market and for society. It involves a combination of readings, casework, and experiential exercises aimed at helping students learn from real entrepreneurs’ experiences, but also providing initial exercises to allow students to put into action what they have learned.

Electives (6 credit hours)

(Fall and Spring)A study of the factors leading to entrepreneurial success with an emphasis on opportunity identification, structure and planning, and the management of new ventures. Provides tools necessary to understand and evaluate the entrepreneurial process within a large company, new venture, family business, or growing a small business.
(Fall) Entrepreneurial decisions are the key dilemmas and debates faced by entrepreneurs. Students learn about the key decisions that real entrepreneurs face in operating their ventures. A dilemma is “an argument presenting two or more equally conclusive alternatives; a choice or a situation involving choice between equally unsatisfactory alternatives; a problem seemingly incapable of a satisfactory solution.” The process of entrepreneurship involves the recognition of challenges and dilemmas, vigorous debate, and ultimately, solutions. No solution lasts long in an entrepreneurial milieu whose underpinning is “creative destruction.”

Total Credit Hours: 12

At least two courses are offered per semester to allow students to complete the certificate program in as short as one year, but you'll have your junior and senior years to complete the program.

Eligibility

The certificate is open to UNC Charlotte undergraduate students who have a minimum cumulative 2.5 GPA and are on track to obtain junior standing by the intended incoming semester. Students of all colleges are encouraged to apply. The program will accept the brief applications throughout the year for students seeking to start in either Fall or Spring. The program is capped at 60 students.

What can I do with this certificate if my major is in....?

  • Develop a business plan for your own art gallery.
  • Cover costs, make a profit and learn to market yourself as an artist.
  • Open a dance studio for children by identifying a community need.
  • Discover an opportunity as an independent architect/developer.
  • Create your own app development business.
  • Develop a new esports game or a new controller for gaming.
  • Utilize big data to provide business intelligence for companies. 
  • Drive change-oriented projects within corporations.
  • Deliver technological innovations to improve efficiency/effectiveness.
  • Understand product design and development and learn to design for the end user.
  • Develop innovative health care technologies that impact at-risk populations.
  • Open your own personal training studio.
  • Learn leadership skills for healthcare administration.
  • Learn how to create a business around chemistry-related innovations.
  • Organize a venture supporting policy entrepreneurship.
  • Assess opportunities in biology-related industries.
  • Build a practice to address individuals’ psychological needs.
  • Understand the efficiency and effectiveness of different business models.
  • Systematically understand how to run your own business from start up to exit.
  • Appreciate the opportunity to join or build a franchise.
  • Assess the risks and approaches for being a social entrepreneur.

How to Apply

  • Complete the application
  • Justin Webb, the Belk Distinguished Professor of Business Innovation, will reach out to discuss your application. Be prepared to talk about your interest in entrepreneurship!
  • Classes start Fall 2023!

Looking for a graduate-level certificate program? Visit the Graduate Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation page.