Finger Lakes Social Entrepreneurship Institute


The Third Annual Finger Lakes Social Entrepreneurship Institute will take place November 7-9!

Building on the success of the last two years, this Institute will feature tools that are essential to the success of a social venture, a keynote talk, plenary sessions with inspiring and innovative social entrepreneurs, a pitch session, a workshop on compassionate communication, and field trips that showcase local efforts to transform structures and habits of mind to create ecological sound and socially just communities work for everyone.

Invited speakers include:

  • Dennis Derryck, the founder of the Corbin Hill Food Project, which works with farmers from upstate New York and community groups in New York City to deliver fresh, local produce to Harlem and the Bronx. The Corbin Hill Food Project is transforming the CSA model so that farm fresh food is accessible to all. 
  • Omar Freilla, the founder of Green Worker Cooperatives in the South Bronx, which is dedicated to incubating worker-owned green businesses in order to build a strong local economy rooted in democracy and environmental justice.
  • Paul Schmitz, the founder of Public Allies, a national non-profit dedicated to supporting young people through full-time community service and leadership development programs.  Paul is recognized as a foremost expert in Collective Impact and one of America’s most influential nonprofit leaders.
  • Yve-Car Momperousse and Stephane Jean-Baptiste, Founders of Kreyol Essence. Kreyol Essence offers an extensive array of organic, wellness-based beauty, body, and health care commodities. The creation of KE was fueled by Yve-Car’s vision to stimulate economic activity in Haiti through jobs instead of aid.

Featured Models and Tools:

  • The Business Model Generator Canvas: The BMG Canvas is a strategic management and entrepreneurial tool. It allows you to describe, design, challenge, invent, and pivot your business model.
  • The Matrix Map:The Matrix Map is a visual tool that plots all of the organization's activities -- not just its programs -- into a single, compelling image. By illustrating the organization's business model -- through a picture of all activities and the financial and mission impact of each one -- it supports genuinely strategic discussions.
  • People-Centered Design: This Design Process helps people hear the needs of those they’re designing for, create innovative approaches to meet these needs, and deliver solutions that work in specific cultural and economic contexts.
  • Collective Impact: Collective Impact is the commitment of a group of people from across different sectors (i.e., nonprofit, for-profit, government, education) to a common agenda for solving a complex social problem. There are five conditions that, together, lead to meaningful results from collective impact: Common Agenda, Shared Measurement, Mutually Reinforcing Activities, Continuous Communication, Backbone Support.

Below is the schedule for the two and a half days of plenary sessions, workshops, and discussions. Stay tuned for the complete program!

Friday, November 7 Milstein Hall Auditorium, Cornell University

  • 5:30-6:30pm Reception
  • 6:30- 8:30pm Opening Plenary

Saturday, November 8 Greater Ithaca Activities Center, Downtown Ithaca

  • 8:00am Breakfast begins
  • 8:15-9:00am Plenary
  • 9:15-10:15am Workshops
  • 10:30-11:30am Workshops
  • 11:30 am Lunch begins
  • Noon-1:00pm: Keynote
  • 1:00-1:30pm Relationship building
  • 1:45-2:45pm Workshops
  • 3:00-4:00pm Workshops
  • 4:15- 5:00pm Relationship building
  • 5:00pm Dinner starts
  • 5:30-6:30pm Plenary
  • 6:30-7:00pm Relationship building
  • 7:00-9:00pm Pitches  
  • 9:00pm Networking at a local restaurant and bar

Sunday, November 9:  Greater Ithaca Activities Center, Downtown Ithaca

  • 9:00am Breakfast
  • 9:30am Convene and travel to field trips
  • 9:30am to 12:30pm Workshop on Compassionate Communication
  • 10:00am-noon Field Trips
  • 12:45pm Lunch at GIAC
  • 1:30pm Closing


This event would not be possible without the generous support of our co-sponsors: Department of Development Sociology, Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, Engaged Learning + Research, Entrepreneurship at Cornell, Iscol Family Program for Leadership Development in Public Service.

 The following information is available from our previous Institutes:

  • 2013 and 2012 Institute Programs downloadable to the right
  • 2013 Summary of Institute Participant Evaluations
  • 2013 Institute Pictures available in the slide show to the right
  • 2013 TEDxCornellU Program downloadable to the right

Word clouds from the 2013 participant evaluations.


Looking back on the 2013 Institute, what stands out?



Anything else you would like us to know?