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Certificate in Innovation & Entrepreneurship

passion.jpgThe Certificate in Innovation and Entrepreneurship equips intrapreneurial and entrepreneurial professionals with a tool set needed to take an idea to market.


This certificate program teaches underlying principles of competitive strategy, and how to translate them into action. Participants will discover frameworks that can be used to evaluate existing resources, stimulate and manage innovation, as well as build a long-term competitive strategy. You will learn how to develop an innovation strategy that aligns with your organization’s goals. You will practice using the innovation frameworks of lean startup, business model innovation, Blue Ocean Strategy, and design thinking to aid the customer discovery process. The Certificate in Innovation and Entrepreneurship is in partnership with the College of Continuing Education at Sacramento State.

Through the course of the certificate program, you will work from a problem to an idea stage, to problem-solution fit, to product-market fit, and actualization of your concept. In this program, you will examine everything from culture and the executive team, to testing and validating your idea, to pitching your idea and raising funds. This course is for individuals interested in start-ups to large multinational companies, and from high-tech and biotech companies to more traditional environments such as retail, healthcare, and financial services.

The Certificate in Innovation and Entrepreneurship allows you to explore fundamental elements of strategy formulation and enhance your ability to think and act strategically. This track introduces breakthrough concepts that can help to identify, capture, and deliver on great ideas and to successfully drive innovation throughout the organization. This is a certificate program that provides the business fundamentals to succeed at any entrepreneurial or intrapreneurial venture

Program Logistics

  • The program is an 80-hour program that encompasses 6 courses
  • Participants will walk away with a Certificate for Innovation & Entrepreneurship from Sacramento State as well as 1.5 CEUs
  • Program cost is $3,500 (Inquire about scholarship opportunities
  • Application is required

Course Descriptions

Course 1: Entrepreneurial Mindset (8 hours)

In this course, participants will be able to develop the proper mindset of an entrepreneur while developing the self-awareness and leadership skills needed to create a successful startup. Participants will explore leadership traits, skills, and tools to help them become better leaders. We will discuss why culture is so important and how leaders can transform the culture into what they would like it to be.

Course 2: Innovation Lenses (16 hours)

Participants will learn how to document their idea (new business or product/service offering) and business plan into a single page business model. The days of hundreds of pages of a static business plan no longer exist. The key is to be agile and quick to iterate your idea and business model to reduce risk and speed time to market. You will look at innovation through various lenses depending on the type of business you are creating.

Participants will learn:

  • How to most effectively create social innovation
  • How to help existing firms innovate
  • How to launch a startup
  • How to successfully create new market space where there is no competition

Course 3: Identifying a Problem & Creating Traction (24 hours)

In this course participants will, define the problem they believe customers have and the opportunity it creates. They will do this using the leading tools to uncover the most important problems the customer is experiencing. We will explore ways to ideate and solve the problems, then create experiments to test our assumptions. You will learn techniques to test your riskiest assumptions first so that you can reduce your risk and uncertainty about the need for your solution.

Participants will learn how to gather insights from customers and create offers without ever building a solution. You will learn how to turn insights into prototypes and then into a minimum viable product (MVP).

Course 4: Building a Business Model (8 hours)

In this course participants will strategically explore their go to market strategy and how to build their customer base. You will examine how you will reach customers and then continue to keep and grow clients. Participants will learn what the key activities and resources are that make their value proposition unique. In addition, competition and competitors will be discussed and participants will learn how to articulate their unique selling proposition.

Course 5: Entrepreneurial Finance (8 hours)

In this course, participants will learn about the basics of economics regarding a startup and the costs associated with this venture. Participants will explore funding opportunities and sources. In addition, equity financing will be addressed and how this can impact a startup operation.

Course 6: Communicating & Actualizing Your Business (16 hours)

This course will develop participants’ ability and confidence to successfully pitch their idea to stakeholders. Participants will learn how to take the information from their business model/lean canvas and craft their pitch deck. In addition, participants will learn about metrics and measurement how vital these instruments can be to the success of a new venture. You will learn how to integrate innovation into the current organization so it can be measured and managed successfully. Lastly in a fun environment participants will pitch their idea to a panel of guests.

Application to Enroll

The program requires you to submit an application before you can be accepted to enroll into the Certificate program. Please submit your interest through the button below.