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Leavey School of Business Santa Clara University


Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative

Launched in January 2012, the Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative (NPI) provides opportunities for Santa Clara University undergraduate students to contribute to, and learn from, businesses, individuals, and organizations in low-income neighborhoods in Santa Clara County around issues of economic prosperity. NPI is supported by SCU's Leavey School of Business as the BUSN 188 elective and is part of the University's larger Thriving Neighbors Initiative.

NPI/BUSN 188 gives Santa Clara University undergraduate students from any discipline and any year the opportunity to put their book learning into practice while developing skills and experience in every aspect of business ownership and management. Many alumni identify NPI as one of their most important and valuable college experiences.


NPI 2020 Business Owners Share Thank You Messages

Through NPI/BUSN 188, students have the opportunity to:

  • Work as consultants helping a small business owner from a local underserved community.
  • Gain real-world experience in all aspects of business.
  • Collaborate with fellow SCU students in teams.
  • Earn Experiential Learning for Social Justice (ELSJ) credit.
  • Form relationships with incredible, inspiring people.
  • Experience entrepreneurship from a new perspective.


How it Works:

In NPI/BUSN 188 you work in groups of 3-5 students together with a local small business owner from an underserved local community. Working as business consultants, your team meets with the business owner throughout the Winter and Spring quarters. In the Winter quarter, your team works closely with the business owner to identify goals and create an action plan which your team will implement in the Spring quarter. Each team receives funding for its approved action plan.

A teaching team including SCU and community representatives will lead the course, along with guest speakers including NPI student alumni.

NPI provides students with valuable, real-world business experience in areas of marketing, accounting, strategy, operations, and more. NPI is a four credit, two-quarter course, Winter AND Spring quarters (two credits earned each quarter).

Photo of Akita Sushi food truck
Navigate here to Previous NPI Businesses

NPI businesses represent a broad spectrum of industries throughout Santa Clara County, varying in size, organizational type, and each one at a different stage of entrepreneurship.

NPI Student and client at the Santa Clara County Recorder
Navigate here to Sample Projects

Following their action plans, students help their business owner clients formalize their business, identify and implement new marketing strategies, evaluate and optimize operations, examine finances, adopt technologies, and more.

NPI Teaching team member Yacanex Posadas and business owner
Navigate here to Help the Local Community

Students, and a teaching team comprising SCU and community representatives, utilize their skills and experience to impact the life and livelihood of a local small business owner through BUSN 188/NPI.