Impact Investing Practicum is an eight week consultation (128 hours) offered to impact investing firms by the Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley. Impact Investing helps firms develop solutions, creating value for the firm by leveraging the financial and social impact backgrounds and skills of Haas MBA students. 8 FTMBA students were selected for the 2018 inaugural year.

This applied innovation course is co-taught by Adair Morse, Associate Professor, Haas Finance Group, and Nora Silver, Faculty Director and Adjunct Professor of the Center for Social Sector Leadership; with programmatic management by Seren Pendleton-Knoll, Associate Director of the Center for Responsible Business. The practicum is run in conjunction with the second half of the Haas course New Venture Finance, taught by Adair Morse, which educates students in venture landscape, raising finance, and financial contracts and notes. Nora Silver and Adair Morse met with the student teams to provide regular oversight.

Student Application Deadlines

Impact Investing Information Session & Application Release: Wednesday September 19th, 11:00 AM
Impact Investing Application Due: Sunday September 23rd, 11:59 PM
Impact Investing Notification: Friday October 5th
Impact Investing Final Confirmation: Monday October 8th, 9:00 AM
March 2019-April 2019: 8 week externship
~April 30-May 4 2019: Final Presentations & Deliverables

Download FAQs for students here. The application for students can be found here.

An application for firms can be found here.

Past projects:

Patagonia's Tin Shed Ventures

Students examined a global landscape for the impact investment in renewable energy. They began by considering the mode of energy production through of a lens of understanding resource opportunities and government subsidy advantages in different markets. They then developed entry strategies for deploying capital and financial structures, in the end proposing best partners with which to work in that region.

The SF Foundation

Students developed a mission-aligned investment strategy proposal for The San Francisco Foundation that supports their mission of building strong communities in the five counties of the Bay Area, and their strategy of advancing racial and economic equity.

Impact Investing Practicum in the News

Haas Pilots Impact Investing Practicum (June 2018)


“The team of Haas students brought a fresh, new lens to our impact investing research, and the results will be immediately applicable to strategic work with our clients.”
– Danielle Reed, Cambridge Associates

“The insights, skills, and passion for meaningful impact that the Haas students brought to this project made it a great partnership for our team!”
– Sonja Velez, CFO, The San Francisco Foundation

“Our Haas team was incredibly professional, and it was clear from our first conversation that this project would add value to our company. With very little oversight necessary, the students owned the role of project managers, making for a seamless experience. Their weekly analyses and recommendations helped refine the projects scope, resulting in final proposal that Patagonia can immediately act upon – we have already shared their work with our colleagues oversees and are acting upon some of the recommended next steps.”
– Alex Kremer, Manager, Patagonia’s Tin Shed Ventures

“The Impact Investing Practicum provided me an opportunity to utilize skills from my prior professional experiences in developing an investment thesis and impact framework for my partner organization. Working alongside experienced impact investors, while putting lessons from New Venture Finance into practice, allowed me to gain a thorough understanding of the impact investing landscape and its ability to shape broader investing strategies over time.”
– Gregory Schorr, MBA Candidate, Class of 2019

“What I found especially rewarding about the Impact Investing Practicum was the importance of my work to my client, The San Francisco Foundation. I had the opportunity to work directly with the foundation’s CFO each week and have meaningful discussions about how to craft an impact investing strategy that would capture the potential of the foundation’s unique position and meet the critical needs of the community it is serving. The significance and impact of my recommendations never escaped me. The experience was also very affirming. I came to Haas from the social sector to pivot into an impact investing career. The fact that I had the depth of knowledge to advise the foundation demonstrates just how much I’ve gained from my time at Haas.”
– Elizabeth Foster, MBA ‘18

Please email Seren Pendleton-Knoll for information about applying for Impact Investing Practicum.