Undergraduate Courses

Please click on the courses below for a brief description.

Business & Its Publics

(SOIM-UG.0125 – 4 credits)

This required course introduces freshmen undergraduate students to the many interconnections between business, society, markets, politics, culture, and life. Through a series of lectures featuring a broad range of visitors, complemented by small group discussion with senior Stern faculty and intensive writing sessions, students develop and express their own perspectives on the meaning of business and its role in society while hearing, seeing, and questioning key people in business and the institutions that surround it. Speakers at plenary lectures span the range of executives, entrepreneurs, artists, politicians, activists, regulators, and writer.

Organizational Communication and Its Social Context

(SOIM-UB 0065 - 4 units)

Students learn how organizations communicate with multiple types of audiences, focusing on the interconnections between business and society. The course uses the stakeholder model of the corporation to introduce the strategic implications of communication for modern organizations. Students focus on strategic and tactical aspects of corporate communication to study and practice the ways in which organizations communicate to their varied internal and external stakeholders. Assignments develop students’ abilities in speaking and writing to these varied audiences, both to inform and to persuade. The course emphasizes bridging theoretical fundamentals while stressing action learning, which includes applying communication strategy to: • oral and written business assignments, • presentation delivery techniques, • visual communication analysis and practice, and • team communication.

Law, Business & Society

(SOIM-UG.0006 – 4 credits) 

This course challenges undergraduate students to think deeply about legal systems and the continual evolution of business practice and business law. This process is multidimensional and involves social, political, ethical, and technological factors. In the course, students examine how key areas of business law influence the structure of societal and business relationships, while honing their analytical, communication, and writing skills.

Professional Responsibility & Leadership

(SOIM-UG.0012 – 2 credits)

This capstone undergraduate course fosters the development of professional judgment in business. Students consider how to behave in challenging professional situations, balancing self-interests and those of the firm within the larger context of society, ethics, and law. The course builds on content discussed throughout the social impact core while introducing new themes pertinent to students about to enter the workforce, including the economic and ethical aspects of acting as a business professional, and several approaches, to leadership.

Social Entrepreneurship

Social Entrepreneurship is an emerging and rapidly changing business field that examines the practice of identifying, starting and growing successful mission-driven for profit and nonprofit ventures, that is, organizations that strive to advance social change through innovative solutions. This course is designed to provide a socially relevant academic experience in order to help students gain in-depth insights into economic and social value creation across a number of sectors/areas including poverty alleviation, energy, health and sustainability. Essentially, students will have the opportunity to find and test new ideas and solutions to social problems, create sustainable business models (using lean startup principles), identify funding options and alternatives, learn how to measure social impact as well as scale/grow a social enterprise to name a few. We provide students with a toolkit and frameworks that can be used in a social venture or within an existing organization to influence social change. 

Economic Inequality: Perspectives & Practices

This course invites students to consider the causes and consequences of economic inequality from a variety of perspectives, to judge the situation based on their own ethical values, and to take concrete actions to bring about positive change in the world. The course format integrates a discussion seminar with two major research projects. In the seminar context, students become familiar with relevant terms and concepts drawn from the disciplines of economics, political science, sociology, organizational studies and philosophy. Informed by these multiple analytic perspectives, students undertake two major research projects. The first individual project focuses on the causes and consequences of inequality in the contexts of the students’ own hometowns. The second group project focuses on possible points of leverage with the market, government and community sectors, and encourages students to use these points of leverage to bring about a more just society. These projects will allow the students to become more familiar with the complexity of economic inequality as an empirical phenomenon, and more empowered to contribute pragmatically to a just society.

Social Innovation Practicum

This course is designed to help students gain actionable insights into the nexus between economic and social value creation. Specifically, the purpose is to provide students with hands-on exposure to the entrepreneurial pursuit of social impact and innovation. As a result of this course, students will gain:
• Increased ability to recognize and critically assess various forms of social enterprise strategies as tools of economic development and social transformation
• Greater understanding of the challenges of growing and sustaining a social enterprise, as well as special insights into enterprise development and growth
• Improved consulting skills, including project planning, issue and stakeholder analysis, formulation of strategic and tactical recommendations, and client relationship management.