2020-2021 Undergraduate Bulletin

Innovation and Entrepreneurship

The university-wide entrepreneurship minor at Daniels focuses on action, decision-making, experimentation, and hypothesis testing in the face of an uncertain future within a business context.  Students who complete the entrepreneurship minor will understand how to shape the business, economic, political, and social context along with the creation of their products or services.  To help students understand how to start successful businesses or to innovate within existing businesses, the entrepreneurship minor offers courses from several different perspectives such as financial, legal, marketing, and leadership.

entrepreneurship Minor

The minor in Entrepreneurship is available to all University of Denver undergraduate students. BUS 1440 The Fourth Industrial Revolution is prerequisite for all Entrepreneurship minor courses. Business students take this course as part of the Business Core, and only require an additional 20 hours in order to complete the minor. 

Prerequisite Course 1
BUS 1440The Fourth Industrial Revolution4
Entrepreneurship Sequence
Required courses
EVM 3350From Idea to First Dollar Sale4
EVM 3380Leadership, Management, and Execution4
Select 12 hours of elective courses:
Planning the New Venture
The Innovation Ampitheater
Business Law for Entrepreneurs: Legal Issues for Emerging Businesses
Project Management Using Trello and Asana
Creating Your Digital Presence
Ethics in Entrepreneurship
Primary Research
The Perfect Pitch
Accounting Basics
Financial Statements
Sketch and InVision
UI/UX Design
Market Discovery and Product-Market Fit
A/B Testing
MVP Build and Validation
Cloud Technologies
Real Business Cases in Entrepreneurship
Topics in Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Independent Study
Directed Study
Metrics & Financial Tools for an Emerging Business: Accounting and Finance for the Emerging Business
IELLC: Mindsets and the Design Process
IELLC: Consumer Insights, Design and Business Issues
IELLC: Building Our Own Business or Non-Profit
Introductory Game Design
Topics Mechanical Engineering (Entrepreneurship through 3D Printing)
Submit other elective requests to Stephen Haag, Faculty Director of Entrepreneurship
Total Credits24

1: This course will not show up in the minor area for business students. Business students take this course as part of the Business Core, and only require 20 additional hours in order to complete the minor. 

EVM 3350 From Idea to First Dollar Sale (4 Credits)

This course is based on actually starting a company, launching a product, creating a market, and learning how to embrace failure and manage uncertainty. As hands-on course, student teams will actually create and run their own startups. All types of businesses are welcome: retail, services, technology, hospitality, etc. Class discussion, presentations, and guest speakers will explore the principles of planning, testing, measuring, analyzing, and rapidly iterating. Startups require significant effort, commitment and passion. This class is no different. Prerequisite: BUS 1440 or BUS 1000 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3351 Planning the New Venture (4 Credits)

In this course, students will encounter the conceptualization, development, documentation, and presentation of the business plan for an innovative new business initiative. Students will submit their plan to a panel of experienced professionals and receive critical feedback. Cross listed with EVM 4351. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3360 Business Law for Entrepreneurs: Legal Issues for Emerging Businesses (4 Credits)

This course will highlight the legal and business issues entrepreneurs face as they conceive and launch a new venture. Using real world scenarios, we will explore issues throughout the new venture lifecycle from pre-formation, organization and financing to intellectual property, employment issues, regulatory environment, and exits. The course is designed for students who want to start, join, or invest in a start-up or new business during their career. The goal is to develop an understanding of legal concepts necessary for decision making around the multitude of issues that entrepreneurs and would-be entrepreneurs face including an understanding of how the law can help and possibly hinder new enterprise creation. Prerequisites: BUS 1000.

EVM 3370 Metrics & Financial Tools for an Emerging Business: Accounting and Finance for the Emerging Business (4 Credits)

Students are taught to link physical activity occurring in the business venture to the movement of numbers on financial statements. They draft 3 years of flexible profit and loss, cash flow, and balance sheet statements; Year 1 is monthly, Year 2 is quarterly, and Year 3 is one annual period. Students learn how to visualize the activity, metrics, and assumptions needed to support the customer experience they intend to build and how these numbers flow through their financial statements including: Generating revenue leads; Convert leads to sales; Producing the product/service; Delivering the product/service; Converting customers into repeat business; Set-up and maintain Quick Books. Cash impact of corporate governance costs (indirect) are included, such as risk management (insurance), employee benefits and compensation, facilities, technology, legal and capital expenditures, etc., understanding the tax implication of setting up different governance devices and understanding recapitalization and its implications. Students learn to identify activity metrics to drive cash basis break-even for daily, monthly, and annual periods. They will also learn how to create a Use of Funds Statement linked to their proforma'd financial statements. Students will learn different types of financing and under which circumstances these types are used-credit cards, factor loans on inventory, bank loans- including small business administration loans, angel funding, and venture capital funding. Exit strategies like M&A and IPO will also be covered. Prerequisites: BUS 1000.

EVM 3380 Leadership, Management, and Execution (4 Credits)

The final course in the entrepreneurship minor is a project based course designed to cultivate, coordinate, and integrate The University of Denver's diverse resources for the development and application of more creative entrepreneurial behavior and achievement. It builds on the overlap of three clusters of programs: business, engineering, and music. After having completed the other four courses in the minor, the final course offers an opportunity for students to form multidisciplinary entrepreneurship project teams (E-Teams) for transforming products or projects into practical realities, and to interact with alumni and community entrepreneurs. In this course, each E-Team project group develops a comprehensive business or operational plan for its entrepreneurial venture based on projects from engineering, music, and approved business school projects. Students are required to write and defend their business plan for a panel of potential investors. This course incorporates wisdom, insight, and experiences for successful entrepreneurs and explains the benefits and risks involved in the proposed entrepreneurship ventures. Students in the course will be based in the college where the project originates. However, student teams, regardless of where they are based, will be required to meet with an advisor in Daniels College of Business three times during the quarter to get counsel on their business plan project. In addition, students will be required to attend speaker series comprised of three outside entrepreneurship speakers. Finally, the course culminates with presentations to successful entrepreneurs who will judge the merits of the business. Prerequisite: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3400 The Innovation Ampitheater (1 Credit)

Want to start your own business and invent your own future but haven’t landed on a great product/service idea? Already have a business and want to expand into new spaces and offerings? This course is for people who answered yes to either of those questions. The Innovation Amphitheater takes you through 16 proven strategies and techniques to help you innovate into new spaces and find opportunities. You’ll explore such strategies as cross-overs, combos, slivercasting, inside-out, old school and retro, and many more.

EVM 3401 Project Management Using Trello and Asana (1 Credit)

Learn the basic fundamentals of project management, focused specifically on high-performing teams while starting and running an early-stage business. Explore how to implement proven project management concepts and techniques using popular tools like Trello and Asana. 1 credit hour. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3402 Creating Your Digital Presence (1 Credit)

Creating awareness of your new business venture is one of the most important tasks in the early stages of building your business. Creating awareness by driving traffic through and to your digital presence is essential. To help you as you embark on an entrepreneurial effort, this courses focuses on building an integrated digital presence with a website, Facebook Business Page, Twitter account, Pinterest account, and an Instagram account. Prerequisite: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3403 Ethics in Entrepreneurship (1 Credit)

Creating a business for the sake of generating profit is not enough. Businesses must contribute to the betterment of society through social, environmental, and financial gains. This course will help you build the right vision for your business by 1) engaging you in ongoing reflection and dialogue about your ethical responsibilities in product and service innovation, and 2) helping you understand cognitive, behavioral, and principled approaches to ethical issues in product and service innovation. Prerequisite: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3404 Primary Research (1 Credit)

To be successful in your business venture, you need to make data-driven decisions. Much of that data can come from internal operations or perhaps secondary sources. But, to truly be successful, you need to gather, analyze, and make decisions based on primary research data from your external market. In this course, you’ll learn the basic tenets of performing primary research activities including defining your market segment, building a primary research instrument, gathering data using a primary research instrument, analyzing the data, and making recommendations. Prerequisite: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3405 Crowdfunding (1 Credit)

Funding a business startup is perhaps one of the biggest stumbling blocks of all new ventures. Angels and VCs aren’t yet interested in you because you have no or limited sales, traction, and stickiness. And generating activity is difficult because you have no money for building your product, and therefore have nothing to sell. Fortunately, you can raise startup funds in the form of pre-sales through various crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo. This course takes you through the process of getting a campaign up and going on those platforms so you can generate early-stage funds so desperately needed for your new business venture. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3406 Gamification (1 Credit)

Gamification is the application of game principles, elements, and techniques to non-game contexts. Gamification includes such things as badges, virtual currency, trophies, progress bars, leaderboards, leveling up, etc. Gamfication is particularly useful for customer retention, product stickiness, and in general “making un-fun things fun to do.” Gamification is widely used in health and fitness, education, personal budgeting, surveys, and the like. In this course, we’ll start with the theory behind gamification and then move quickly into gamification strategies and techniques, focusing on their appropriate application within specific contexts and how you can use gamification in your new business venture. Prerequisite EVM 3350.

EVM 3407 The Perfect Pitch (1 Credit)

Essential to most new business ventures is the ability to raise capital, most notably from angel investors and venture capitalists (VCs). Raising capital starts with the “pitch,” a presentation that is exciting, informative, realistic, and addresses what funds are needed, how they will be used, and how the investor will financially benefit from providing the funds. This course will help you learn how to create the perfect pitch for your new business venture. We will review both successful and unsuccessful pitch presentations. As well, several angel investors and VCs will be present in multiple class sessions to discuss how they evaluate pitches. Prerequisite EVM 3350.

EVM 3408 Accounting Basics (1 Credit)

Accounting is an activity in any business that measures, processes, and communicates financial information and transactions. This vitally important activity will help you track your expenses, recognize your revenue, and in general keep an accurate and detailed view of the financial strength of your business. In this class, you’ll learn how to process operating expense transactions (e.g., advertising and payroll expenses) and revenue transactions (both actual sales and sales on credit). You’ll also learn how to appropriately handle the depreciation of long-term assets like vehicles and buildings. Finally, you’ll learn how all of these transactions enable you to build a balance sheet for your new business venture. Prerequisite: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3409 Financial Statements (1 Credit)

Of the four major financial statements, the most important to a new business venture are the balance sheet, the income statement, and the statement of cash flows. Knowing how to build and interpret these are critical to your success during not only the early stages of spinning up your business but throughout the lifetime of your business. In this class, based on a wide variety of financial transactions, you will learn how to build and interpret an income statement and a statement of cash flows. (It is assumed that you already know how to build and interpret a balance sheet.) You’ll also learn how to build a proforma income statement and statement of cash flows, based on the financial projections of your new business venture. Prerequisites: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-) and EVM 3408 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3410 HTML and CSS (1 Credit)

SquareSpace, Weebly, or any number of other tools can help you create basic websites without writing a single line of code. But, if you want to build the next big startup, the first languages you’ll need to learn are HTML and CSS. In this course, you’ll learn the foundations of HTML and CSS and why they exist. You’ll then learn best practices for building on the web. You’ll then be responsible for building 3 websites with HTML and CSS: A landing page for your business, a personal portfolio site, and a site of your choosing. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3411 Sketch and InVision (1 Credit)

Building a business and a product is no longer restricted to people who can code or construct. Modern design tools have enabled any aspiring founder to present a vision in real pixels, earning customers and credibility that puts their company ahead of the competition. The new standard of digital prototyping revolves around Sketch and InVision, two simple, yet highly effective, tools that anyone can learn. With a comprehension of the basic features of these tools, anyone can deliver the same quality of digital products as Google, Apple, and Uber. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3412 UI/UX Design (1 Credit)

In highly competitive markets, the differentiator for products is no longer just technology or customer service, but a fluid and intuitive product that is easy to use. User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX) design are the backbone of a good product and convince customers and investors to buy-in to your product or business before it even exists. Good UI and UX are rooted in empathy for a customer and fluency in modern design methodology. In this course, you’ll learn about these modern design methodologies in such a way that you can build an exceptional digital product. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3413 Design Thinking (1 Credit)

Design Thinking is a creative problem solving process that builds your ability to first see and then solve human-centered opportunities. It starts with empathically looking at frustrations inside and around your organization, then moves through a variety of brainstorming sessions to build customer centric solutions. Design Thinking is a wonderful tool to help you monetize the human capital in your organization. Once we know the process, we will ask students to bring real challenges into the classroom where we will use Design Thinking to build potential new products, services and solutions. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3414 Market Discovery and Product-Market Fit (1 Credit)

Market discovery is about identifying opportunities that you believe are worth exploring. Some markets have already been established; others have yet to be created. Is the product right for the market? Is the market right for the product you want to build? This course is for people who are eager to use their existing ideas or develop new ideas to improve an existing market or discover a new market. We will study the market discovery and product-market fit for companies such as Uber, AirBnB, Tesla, Snap and Slack. You will learn how to quickly identify and test product-fit for your target market.  Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3415 A/B Testing (1 Credit)

When you first launch your new venture business, you may think you know exactly what customers want and how they will react to various features and services, but you don’t. It’s as simple as that. You can do all the planning, designing, and interviewing that you want, but you’ll never truly know what your customers want and how they will react until you put something in front of them. A/B testing is a methodology for creating a controlled live experiment, giving two groups of users different experiences, features, touch points, pricing strategies, and so on to determine what they like and how they will best react to your offering. In this course, you’ll learn both the art and science of A/B testing. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3417 Branding and Messaging (1 Credit)

Branding is an essential element for any startup. Your brand is created by you and grows as your business grows. It’s more than a logo, colors, and fonts contained in a style guide. It’s the experience that you create for your customers. It’s something your business should aspire to. Something memorable. And as you work though this course, you will get an understanding of what it takes to build the brand for your business. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3418 MVP Build and Validation (1 Credit)

Deciding what to build, how to build it and who to build it for is THE basis for every business concept.  This applies not only to startups, but also existing companies that want to expand their enterprise.  When building a new product, service or venture, it’s important to create a buyable product efficiently with usually limited resources.  In short, you don’t want to build products your customers don’t want and you want to find that out as soon as possible. This course will help students understand the concept of MVP (Minimum Viable Product) by taking their own team-created concept from idea to inception. Concepts covered will include business-hypothesis-driven experimentation, iterative product releases, and validated learning.   The process will include team formation, ideation, collection of information to learn and translating the data into action through market testing.  The big project is an MVP you present. Prerequisite: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3420 Cloud Technologies (1 Credit)

Welcome to the Cloud! What is the cloud, is it a thing, a concept, a nifty term? If you are starting a new business, thinking about starting a new business or improving the efficiencies in an existing business, you need to understand the available technologies and tools in the Cloud.  Where do I host my website, how do I handle accounting, where is the email server, how do I track customers, how do I share information, what tools are available for customer support? These are just a few questions the Cloud will solve efficiently and cost effectively.  The Cloud has dramatically changed the competitive landscape for startups by reducing the cost of starting a new business. The Cloud removes costly equipment, software and support expenditures; with the Cloud, you pay for what you use. This course will focus on identifying, analyzing, and implementing Cloud technologies to help run your business.  Here are some of the topics we will explore and discuss: flexible costs, how and when to implement these tools, is your data safe, comparing similar services, improving collaboration. Prerequisite: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3421 Intellectual Property Issues for Startup Businesses (1 Credit)

All businesses have assets, both tangible and intangible, and these assets must be managed, nurtured, accounted for, and protected. Among the most important of those assets today fall in the realm of intellectual property (IP) and are protected through mechanisms such as copyrights, trademarks, and patents. As a business owner, you must be aggressive and vigilant in ensuring that your most important IP assets are protected, as they are an important part of your brand portfolio. This class will introduce you to the role of copyrights, trademarks, and patents as tools for protecting your intellectual property. In doing so, you will learn about your rights as an IP owner and – equally as important – your responsibilities for not infringing on the IP assets of other organizations. Prerequisite: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3422 Startup Legal Issues (1 Credit)

Starting a business involves a host of activities, from product/service development, to marketing, to sales and service. At the foundation of all of these activities are legal considerations. Legal considerations for startup businesses range from establishing a form of business operation, to registering with the government and obtaining the appropriate licenses, to filing sales taxes, to the management of employees (hiring, contracts, etc.), and a host of other essential activities. To get your business off “on the right foot,” this course introduces you to the legal considerations that are vitally important to your success. Prerequisite: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3424 Visualizing & Presenting Data (1 Credit)

Being able to tell a compelling story, in particular with data, is a skill that is rarely taught. Today, most people either adopt reports that have existed in an organization for as long as time, or they create flashy reports using the latest tools. In most cases, neither of these reports give the end users what they want. This course will focus on giving you the tools to create purposeful reports by helping you answer the age old question around any design... Form, Fit and Function. Prerequisite: EVM 3350.

EVM 3425 Rapid Prototyping - 3D Printing and Laser Engraving (1 Credit)

The purpose of this course is to empower students to more effectively develop their creative and entrepreneurial capacities utilizing the tools of rapid prototyping. Students will identify appropriate rapid prototyping technologies to apply to unique situations. Curriculum over the course of the day progressively builds by presenting more challenging problems. At the conclusion of the course, students will be able to turn ideas into solutions that add value to a product, process, or service.

EVM 3428 WordPress (1 Credit)

What is WordPress? What is a CMS? What is Open Source? Is it a concept or a nifty term? If you are starting a new business or thinking about starting a new business you need to understand the available technologies and tools to build and manage a website. Where do I host the website? How do I create and update the website? What tools are available? These are just a few questions we will answer in the WordPress Grind. The WordPress Grind has been designed from a beginner’s perspective. The goal is to provide a step-by-step tutorial for creating and publishing a WordPress website. The class will cover the conceptual framework of Open Source and Content Management Systems (CMS) and lead into the fundamentals and tools required to build and manage a WordPress website. At the conclusion of this grind, you will be able to develop, publish, and manage you own WordPress website.

EVM 3430 Retail, Distribution, and SCM (1 Credit)

If you have ever walked into a retail store or shopped online and wondered what it would take to create this for yourself, including setting up the store, purchasing inventory, setting prices and deciding the layout, or just wondered how this all came together to create a viable business then this Grind is for you. If you are in the process of manufacturing a product or would like to know what goes into the supply chain to create and price your product then this Grind is for you. If you want to learn what to consider when choosing a distribution method(s) to get your product(s) to market then this Grind is for you. The RSDM Grind has been designed from a new entrepreneur’s perspective. The goal of this grind is to understand the steps and process for marketing, pricing, and selling for students that want to create a product or students developing a retail store that sells products manufactured by a third party or developed in-house.

EVM 3431 Emotionally Effective Leader (1 Credit)

Did you know emotional and social skills are four times more important than IQ when considering success and prestige in professional settings? Emotional Intelligence (EI) can be confusing. What does it mean? Is it fluffy stuff or something really tangible? Now more than ever, employers and clients are seeking leaders who display emotionally intelligent thinking, decision making and actions. How do you know if you meet those requirements? Up until recently, EI was a “gut assessment” of someone’s ability to control their emotions or care about someone or something. Now, we have a valid and reliable way of understanding our emotional intelligence and that of others. We can even measure the EI of teams! It turns out EI is quite complex. Research has distinguished 12 components of EI including: self regard, self actualization, self awareness, emotional expression, assertiveness, independence, interpersonal relationships, empathy, social responsibility, problem solving, reality testing, impulse control, flexibility, stress tolerance and optimism. Want to know how you score in these areas? EI is a “talent” that, unlike IQ, can be learned and improved throughout one’s life. In the Emotionally Effective Leader Grind, you will have the opportunity to assess your own EI through a valid and reliable EI talent assessment. Revealing your strengths and weaknesses, you will learn how to build your own EI and maximize the magnitude of your impact within the organizations or teams you lead.

EVM 3432 Getting to Know Your Customer (1 Credit)

Would you date a person you don’t know? Much like finding the right partner, developing lasting relationships with customers requires time and energy up front. You need to get to know who your customers are and what they value before they will develop lasting relationships with your brand. For example, Peloton’s 2019 ad campaign “The Gift that Gives Back” was designed to highlight the benefits of a customer’s fitness journey. However, it received a lot of criticism in the media for being offensive. In the end, the negative publicity seemed to help strengthen the brand – why? Perhaps it’s because Peloton paid close attention to what their customers care about. Peloton customers value their fitness and wellbeing, and the discourse in the media highlighted how Peloton could support their journeys. This course on Getting to Know Your Customer will introduce students to tools and data sources that can help with segmenting and targeting, developing personas that represent different customer groups, and mapping out customer journeys to better understand the underlying customer experience.

EVM 3700 Real Business Cases in Entrepreneurship (4 Credits)

The Real Business course is designed to provide students with an opportunity to examine entrepreneurial business challenges through case studies, guest speaker, discussions and field experience. In addition to standard entrepreneurial start-ups, the course will cover international start-ups, gender issues relating to start-ups as well as fostering an entrepreneurial spirit in large organizations. Throughout the course, entrepreneurship will be examined from the perspective of business challenge as well as career choice. Prerequisites: EVM 3351 and degree checkpoint 2.

EVM 3704 Topics in Innovation and Entrepreneurship (1-4 Credits)

This course is custom designed to address topics that are currently in demand, such as social entrepreneurship, financing the startup after the Wall Street greed bust, finding angel investors and venture capitalists in Colorado, preparing for a pitch to investors, moving beyond startup stage, and others. Prerequisites: EVM 3350 (minimum grade of C-).

EVM 3710 Innovation/Creativity-Business (4 Credits)

This course is about identifying and creating customer needs, looking for innovative ways to address these needs, and pursuing those approaches that appear to have real profit potential. There are exercises to address and stimulate creativity, discussion of organizations that are considered to be creative businesses, and critical evaluation of the hurdles they face and the techniques they use. The course also includes innovative approaches to organizational effectiveness. Cross listed with EVM 4710. Prerequisites: LGST 2000 and degree checkpoint 2.

EVM 3991 Independent Study (1-10 Credits)

Student devises and completes a special learning project under faculty supervision. Topic and outline must be approved by supervising instructor and department. Prerequisite: EVM 3351.

EVM 3992 Directed Study (1-4 Credits)

Back to Top