Gain Hands-on Experience in the Green Business Lab ENGRG 3030

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Last March, Cornell introduced the Green Business Lab in order to promote communication, leadership skills and business ethics among Cornell students. Deborah Mann, on-site facilitator for the Green Business Simulation Lab, said that the lab provided students with hands-on business experience “in real time, under real stressful conditions.” This year, the Green Business Lab allowed students to learn how to balance a “triple bottom line” – combining profits, people and the planet – to run a smart, green business through an official course, ENGRG 3030. The Green Business Simulation Lab, an evening course that meets once a week for four weeks is helping diminish the gap between classrooms and business meetings by teaching corporate social responsibility through an interactive, team-based environment.

Why is the course valuable to entrepreneurial students?

Students work toward a triple bottom line, meaning that you not only want your business to be economically successful, but that you also want to be responsive to the stakeholders and the people affected. You also want to show environmental stewardship and make choices that will sustain the future. Money is not the only thing that is involved in running a business — paying attention to your stakeholders is also paramount.Students gained leadership and communication skills from participating in the Green Business Lab. There are the critical thinkers and visionaries, and also the people who are solely focused on attacking the goal. Because students have so many differing personality and leadership styles, they need to learn how to communicate and work with others. Business simulations and experiential learning are so valuable to students. If they don’t have a chance to practice in real-time, the learning doesn’t cement for them and they can’t connect the dots.

What kind of students should take this course and what are the challenges in this course?

Any students with an entrepreneurial spirit, open to learning about how to manage a sustainable business, and a genuine interest in learning more about the topic! That being said, students will undergo stressful time constraints and have to do work outside of the allotted classes time, so the student should be prepare for these expectations.

Students have given positive feedback regarding the course saying,

“As an ILR student, it was great to get the chance to collaborate with Cornellians outside the ILR realm. The course helped me as a future business leader to work with a variety of leadership styles that expanded my views while collaborating for the simulated business challenges. Coming out of the course, I know I’ve gained a valuable skill entering the workforce next year.”

“Since it is imperative for today’s businesses to consider future generations in all aspects of their goods production. The Green Business Lab amalgamated the course material learned in business classes put theory into practice.”

“Our company may not have earned the most profit or growth during the course, however, my gain knowledge and skill on leadership, teamwork, and how to lead and work together to manage a business in real life is priceless.”

Unlike a standard academic structure, the Green Business Lab runs in partnership between the Cornell Team and Leadership Center (CTLC) and the Realia Group, which itself runs a similar lab for Fortune 500 companies; and Cornell’s Engineering Leadership Program.

for more information about the course visit the course website

or contact djl243@cornell.edu – Deborah Mann the on-site facilitator for the Green Business Simulation Lab.