Social enterprises are businesses with predominantly a social or environmental objective. So, for students looking to make the world a better place through business, we recently ran Hack For Good, our very own 48 hour social enterprise focused hackathon at Accelerator.

Accelerator is London Met University’s business incubator and specialises in developing business ideas and entrepreneurial skills, through various programmes, with students and graduates from the University.

What is Hack For Good?

As one of our newest and most popular programmes with students from all schools at London Met, Hack For Good gives you the opportunity to learn new entrepreneurial skills, develop socially minded business ideas and practice your presentation and pitching.

Over the weekend of 21-23 February, we ran our Hack For Good programme for more than 40 passionate, like-minded students from London Met, University of Greenwich and City University.

During the Hack For Good weekend you develop social enterprise business ideas which focus on 1 of 6 keys issues; including health and wellbeing, innovations in care, access to housing, climate change, safety on the streets and poverty. By focusing on these key issues, you could be giving back to not just the city where you study but potentially on a global scale.

What happens over the weekend?

The weekend was facilitated by an expert team from Experience Haus, who provide applied learning and hands-on courses in a range of different digital expertise. With expert knowledge in design, marketing, personal and professional development Experience Haus take you through the weekend from start to finish.

Students from any school of the university can take part and you don’t need to have any experience of business or social enterprise to come along; just the passion and drive to make an idea become reality.

In a similar format to our Startup Sprint programme, you would spend Friday evening learning the basics of setting up a social enterprise, present your business idea (if you have one) and voting for your favourite before teaming up.

You’ll work the idea through the social lean canvas to plan out the fundamental aspects of your new social enterprise business in preparation for customer discovery on the Saturday.

To find out what your customers’ wants and needs, you need to speak to them. So, Saturday we send you out to undertake market testing and idea validation around Shoreditch. The information and feedback you get from speaking to customers is the perfect way to validate or pivot your idea. Afterall, there is no good reason for building a product or service that no one will buy or use.

Do we get a mentor at Hack For Good?

Yes! You will get help and support on Saturday and Sunday from a fantastic group of experts, founders and of course the awesome Experience Haus facilitators. You will use all of your newfound knowledge from Saturday to refine and practice your pitch ready for the final pitching event to a judging panel on Sunday.

What is the Hack For Good pitching final?

In the culmination of your 48-hour hackathon experience, you and your team will finish the programme on Sunday night at an awesome pitching final. That’s right, you will pitch your new business to a room full of your fellow participants, friends, business founders and an expert judging panel. It might sound scary, but it is always great fun!

It is fantastic to see how much progress students like you make over the weekend when they confidently take to the stage and present brand-new social enterprises.

We will be running Hack For Good again next year and we already cannot wait! If you would like to take part in our next Hack For Good programme, you can register your interest now.