Curriculum

Our unique program allows undergraduate juniors and seniors, graduate students, or working professionals to earn a certificate in the field of sustainable business. Adopting a systems approach, this comprehensive program equips participants with the cutting-edge knowledge and skills needed to help organizations become more resilient, competitive and reputable by embracing a stakeholder mindset and sustainable principles and practices.

Our curriculum evolved from a single elective course called “Sustainable Business Strategy,” which Professor Jackson and David Baxa co-taught every summer during 2015-2022. In that period, we experimented with different pedagogical approaches, combining traditional readings of books and articles with case study analyses, field trips, and consulting projects for a range of clients, including Kraft-Heinz (Winchester), World Sailing (London), and Space for Giants (African conservation NGO).

In 2022 we consulted a panel of experts to help us design the new curriculum, including Dr. Alix Willimez, a recognized expert in sustainable development and a recent graduate of the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership. We conducted an analysis of sustainability-related jobs posted on LinkedIn, where over 1000 new jobs for “Sustainability Manager” are posted every month. We consulted with our colleagues in the College of Arts & Sciences, to align our curricula.

Please contact Dr. Giles Jackson to learn more: gjackson@su.edu

CERTIFICATE IN SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS 

Course Number Course Name Course Description Credits
SBS 401/SBS 501 Foundations of Sustainable Business This course surveys the emerging sustainable business sector in a global context. Students will examine the broader ecological, social, economic, technological, regulatory and institutional forces driving the sustainability agenda and various frameworks for designing a sustainable business that aligns commerce with long term value creation for society and our planet, consistent with the emerging international reporting framework. Students will conduct in-depth research and gain hands-on experience with the Institute’s ongoing projects.

This 12-week course is offered every fall.

3
SBS 402/SBS 501 Sustainability Stakeholders & Agendas  This course examines business sustainability issues from an intergenerational perspective and through the lens of different stakeholders. These include nature, governments, business and trade groups, consultants, investors and analysts, media organizations, community groups, activist and civil society organizations operating at multiple levels (local, regional, national, international, global).

This 7.5 week course is offered every spring.

3
SBS 403/SBS 503 Sustainability Strategy & Governance This course focuses on sustainability issues at the firm level, encompassing business philosophy and entity formation; corporate strategy, structure and governance; intellectual property and innovation pathways; product and service certification programs; Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) policies; sustainable supply chain management; sales, marketing and public relations; and sustainability measurement and reporting.

This 7.5 week course is offered every spring.

3
SBS 404/SBS 504 Sustainable Business Practicum Companies around the world are seeking qualified interns who can help them integrate sustainability into their business processes, from managing customer sustainability communications to utilizing sustainability software for reporting metrics. Students can make a real impact by helping with the transition to a low-carbon economy.

The Sustainable Business Practicum is an opportunity for students to acquire real-world experience by applying sustainability principles in practice. This will take the form of an internship with a for-profit organization, non-profit organization, government agency or consulting firm. Students will acquire the practical skills and knowledge to rethink, innovate and positively shape or reshape businesses and organizations and help create a sustainable future.

This course is offered during spring, summer and fall. Undergraduate students are required to complete 120 hours to earn 3 credits. Graduate students are required to complete 150 hours to earn 3 credits. The schedule is worked out between student and employer.

3-6

Scholarships

Thanks to the generosity of the Baxa Family Foundation, a limited number of prestigious $1500 scholarships are available to undergraduate and graduate students on a competitive basis. Contact Dr. Giles Jackson for details: gjackson@su.edu.

 

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