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Trust Center Entrepreneurship Courses

While there are 60+ courses at MIT that focus on entrepreneurship and innovation in all shapes and sizes, each semester there are a core subset of these classes that are taught by the Trust Center team. Below is a breakdown of these courses and their key components to assist students in determining which courses they should consider enrolling in for the Spring 2021 semester. (All times listed are Eastern time zone.)

15.351 “Introduction to Making”
Thurs, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm

Provides basic skills and knowledge with a set of core maker technologies that form a broad foundation for creating prototypes. Fosters an understanding of how to make the abstract concrete. Includes a large experiential component that builds skills in the various elements of making. Enrollment limited; application required.

15.367 “Healthcare Ventures”
Thurs, 4:00 – 6:00 pm

Addresses healthcare entrepreneurship with an emphasis on startups bridging care re-design, digital health, medical devices, and high-tech. Includes prominent speakers and experts from key domains across medicine, pharma, med devices, regulatory, insurance, software, design thinking, entrepreneurship, and investing. Provides practical experiences in venture validation/creation through team-based work around themes. Illustrates best practices in identifying and validating health venture opportunities amid challenges of navigating healthcare complexity, team dynamics, and venture capital raising process. Intended for students from engineering, medicine, public health, and MBA programs.

15.369 “Seminar in Corporate Entrepreneurship”
Tues & Thurs, 4:00 – 5:30 pm

Addresses the practical steps that can be taken to make existing organizations (corporations, non-profits, government, etc.) become more entrepreneurial. Uses a systematic approach to integrate lectures, exercises, guest speakers, and a team project. Application required.

15.373 “Venture Engineering”
Mon & Wed, 8:00 – 9:30 am

Provides an integrated approach to the development and growth of new innovative ventures. Intended for students who seek to leverage their engineering and science background through innovation-driven entrepreneurship. Emphasizes the concept that innovation-driven entrepreneurs must make a set of interdependent choices under conditions of high uncertainty, and demonstrates that venture engineering involves reducing uncertainty through a structured process of experimental learning and staged commitments. Provides deep understanding of the core technical, customer, and strategic choices and challenges facing start-up innovators, and a synthetic framework for the development and implementation of ventures in dynamic environments.

15.378 “Building an Entrepreneurial Venture” (aka GSD)
Tues, 8:00 – 11:00 am

Intensive, project-based subject intended for startup teams already working on building a new, high-impact venture. Applies advanced entrepreneurial techniques to build and iterate a venture in a time-compressed manner. Includes weekly coaching sessions with instructors and peers, as well as highly interactive and customized sessions that provide practical, in-depth coverage on key topics in entrepreneurship. Topics include venture creation, primary market research, product development, market adoption, team and culture, and scaling processes with constrained resources. Meets with 15.3781 when offered concurrently. Expectations and evaluation criteria differ for students taking graduate version; consult syllabus or instructor for specific details. Application required; consult instructor. No listeners.

15.387 “Entrepreneurial Sales”
Mon & Wed, 4:00 – 5:30 pm

Instruction provided in basics of technology sales – making a sales call, designing sales compensation plans, and hiring, managing, and firing sales representatives. Also discusses negotiating large sales transactions, managing international sales organizations, integrating sales teams in acquisitions, and selecting the best go to market model for a company. Considers what comprises a ‘startup sales toolkit.’

  • Instructor: Lou Shipley, Kirk Arnold, Jim Schuchart
  • Course info

15.390 “New Enterprises”
Mon & Wed, 2:30 –  4:00 pm OR 4:00 – 5:30pm

Covers the process of identifying and quantifying market opportunities, then conceptualizing, planning, and starting a new, technology-based enterprise. Topics include opportunity assessment, the value proposition, the entrepreneur, legal issues, entrepreneurial ethics, the business plan, the founding team, seeking customers and raising funds. Students develop detailed business plans for a start-up. Intended for students who want to start their own business, further develop an existing business, be a member of a management team in a new enterprise, or better understand the entrepreneur and the entrepreneurial process. Meets with 15.3901 when offered concurrently.

15.392 “Scaling Entrepreneurial Ventures”
Tues & Thurs, 5:30 – 7:00 pm

Surveys the personal, institutional and operational challenges involved in scaling an entrepreneurial venture. Discusses both effective and ineffective solutions. Addresses topics such as leadership, culture, operations, governance, and human resources. Includes case studies, site visits, movies, simulations and guest speakers.

15.394 “Entrepreneurial Founding and Teams”
Tues & Thurs, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm OR 2:30 – 4:00 pm

Explores key organizational and strategic decisions in founding and building a new venture. Through a series of cases, readings, and activities, students examine the trade-offs and consequences of early founder decisions: whom to include in the founding team, how to allocate equity among co-founders, how to determine founder roles, how to hire and motivate early-employees, and whether to involve external investors. Aims to equip students with tools and frameworks to help them understand the implications of early decisions, and to build enduring resources that enable the venture to execute even if the original plan changes substantially. Meets with 15.3941 when offered concurrently. Expectations and evaluation criteria differ for students taking graduate version; consult syllabus or instructor for specific details.

15.399 “E-Lab”
Tues, 8:00 – 11:00 am

Project-based subject, in which teams of students from MIT and Harvard work with startups on problems of strategic importance to the venture. Popular sectors include software, hardware, robotics, clean technology, and life sciences. Meets with 15.3991 when offered concurrently. Expectations and evaluation criteria differ for students taking graduate version; consult syllabus or instructor for specific details. In addition to the regular MIT registration process, students should register at the subject website one month before start of term to facilitate formation of student teams and matching of teams with startup companies.

15.911 “Entrepreneurial Strategy”
H2, Mon Wed & Fri, 9:30 – 11:00 am OR 11:00 am – 12:30 pm

Teaches an integrated strategy framework for start-ups. Provides a deep understanding of the core strategic choices facing innovation-based entrepreneurs, a synthetic framework for the process of choosing and the implementation of entrepreneurial strategy, and the core challenges and approaches for scaling ventures over time. Highlights the process of how to choose an entrepreneurial strategy, the specific choices that matter, how key choices fit together to form an overall entrepreneurial strategy, and the playbook for particular strategies for startups.