Socially Responsible Enterprise


Leeds is one of the few undergraduate business schools in the nation that emphasizes socially responsible conduct in business throughout its curriculum. The Center for Education on Social Responsibility (CESR) helps undergraduate students become outstanding business leaders of tomorrow by preparing them to meet the ethical challenges posed by an increasingly competitive, globally-connected business world.

CESR offers the Certificate in Socially Responsible Enterprise (SRE) to further develop students’ ability to meet these future challenges by crossing the boundaries of traditional functional areas of business and those that separate business from other academic disciplines. Students who complete the certificate will see and understand the social and environmental impacts of business and their ethical implications from a broader perspective. They will also graduate with practical knowledge and marketable experiences that will guide them in conducting business in an informed, responsible, and ethical manner.



Required Courses

Complete 9 hours (3 courses) from the following:

  • BADM 4820 Leadership Challenges: Exercises in Moral Courage*
  • MGMT 4080: Sustainable Operations*
  • BADM 4820 Business Solutions to Global Poverty: Learning Through Service
  • ENVD 4023: Environmental Impact Assessment

*May qualify as business electives

Note: These courses are in addition to BCOR 1010: Introduction to Business, BCOR 3010 (Business Applications of Social Responsibility (which must be completed before or taken concurrently with the Certificate Business-Related Courses), and the senior capstone course required for each student’s area of emphasis.

General Courses

It is recommended, but not required, that students complete 6 hours (2 courses) in the areas of philosophy, environmental studies, political science, economics, communication, civil engineering, or sociology.

Experiential Learning

Sign up for the experiential learning requirement with the SRE Certificate Advisor (Associate Director of CESR - Francy Milner).

Students must complete experiential learning through one of the following:

  • BADM 4820: Business Solutions to Global Poverty
  • ENVS 3001: Sustainable Solutions Consulting
  • OPIM 4080: Project Management (with advisor approval)
  • Advisor-approved independent study in a related topic or an advisor-approved internship of an appropriate nature.

The SRE Certificate Advisor has information on the opportunities listed below and on other ways to fulfill the practical experience requirement. Students may also want to contact Career Connections for information about internships that have been approved for the SRE Certificate. With advisor approval, students can undertake projects that are not included in the following examples of experiential learning.

Intern for a company (for profit or non-profit)

Students may serve as an intern to assist an enterprise in developing or furthering a cultural, social or environmental initiative. For example, a student might act as an “intrapreneur” (corporate change-maker), helping draft and implement a corporate code of ethics or a training program designed to imbed corporate standards of behavior in an organization’s culture. Other examples: Serve as an intern for 1) Beanstalk, an incubator for smaller philanthropic hopefuls or 2) Educate! Africa, which educates young entrepreneurs in Uganda and sponsors rural public libraries in many African nations.


Voluntourism is the concept of traveling abroad, using one’s own funds, for the purpose of volunteering for a development-related project while also engaging in tourist activities. In order to gain credit for such a trip, students must show that the project or major activity for the trip is related to social responsibility (such as environmental sustainability or social development).

Service Learning through Study Abroad Office

The Office of International Education offers study abroad programs focused on service learning. These programs generally span one academic quarter or semester in the host country, during which the student will participate in, and gain credit for, study in a school of higher education. Outside of the classroom, students will work with local institutions and non-governmental organizations on service projects that promote community development. Service learning programs that are approved through the Office of International Education are automatically approved for “practical experience” credit for this certificate.

Personal Reflection and Statement of Purpose

Upon completion, students will reflect on their learning and draft a short reflection paper and a statement of purpose, setting out the values that will guide their conduct and their careers. They will then be interviewed by the Director or Associate Diretor of CESR. This final requirement is to remind students why they elected to pursue the certificate and how it will continue to have an impact on their life after college. Students are encouraged to truly “live” the statement of purpose.