Recap: Penn Impact Lab 2018 – Grand Canyon

June 1, 2018
Programs & Research


In May 2018 CSIS offered a credit-bearing program for current Penn students (in collaboration with SP2’s Masters in Nonprofit Leadership program): Penn Impact Lab (PIL). Students convened in Grand Canyon National Park to learn tools for social innovation and volunteer with the National Park Service.

The course covered 5 distinct objectives:

1. To introduce students to the concepts and practices of social entrepreneurship;

2. To introduce students to the components of a successful social enterprise;

3. To train students to view the world from a perspective of social innovation;

4. To encourage and empower students to develop their own innovative solutions to different social problems around the world.

5. To introduce students to real social issues and social innovations in a real-world setting.

By the conclusion of Penn Impact Lab, students had:

Mapped organizations, current events, and approaches for their social impact focus area in- and around Grand Canyon;

Applied competitive analytical frameworks to a social impact organization, and peer reviewed other students’ submissions;

Completed a design thinking crash course;

Delivered a 3-minute speech featuring a value or meaningful experience.

Congratulations to each of our students on a job well done. We extend a huge thanks to our partners at the National Park Service, and in particular to Ranger Todd Nelson — a true environmental steward with whom anything is possible.