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General Engineering Program

Innovation, Design, and Entrepreneurship Minor

Technical Innovation, Design Thinking, and the Entrepreneurial Mindset Minor

Engineers – Are you interested in exploring technical innovation beyond the Design Thinking Pathway?  Are you interested in developing skills that will help you apply your engineering degree so that you can effectively create real impact through the creation of value and improved circumstances for others?  Are you interested in complementing your major with courses and activities relating to technical innovation, business, law, and the world of design?  Are you interested in learning concepts that are critical to success in start-ups, large companies, social enterprises, and even civic organizations?  If so, consider selecting this new Minor, created especially for engineers and implemented in a way that allows every engineer to fit its requirements into their four year program.  This new Minor can now be declared formally through the normal approval process. For more information, contact Dr. Christopher Kitts,

This Minor includes requirements in the areas of Product Innovation and Prototyping, Business and Commercialization, and Design Thinking and Entrepreneurial Fundamentals. Students are also required to complete an experiential project putting these concepts into practice as well as participation in two elective activities. Multiple OPTIONS are available for each of these requirements, affording students a great deal of flexibility in completing the Minor. Currently, the Minor offers an optional BioInnovation and Design track to provide students with an opportunity to focus their study of innovation and design/entrepreneurial thinking to medical and healthcare applications. Completion of the Minor requires satisfying the requirements listed below. Track-specific requirements are noted in each requirement category.

You can find the Technical Innovation, Design Thinking, and the Entrepreneurial Mindset Minor Advising Form here.

Product Innovation and Prototyping (5 unit minimum):

  • Option A: MECH 144/L – Smart Product Design (5)
  • Option B: ENGR 121 – BioInnovation I (2), ENGR 122 – BioInnovation II (2), and ENGR 2 – Introduction to Engineering Design and Prototyping (2)

    BioInnovation and Design Track: Must complete Option B

Business and Commercialization Fundamentals (4 unit minimum):

  • Option A: BUSN 70 – Contemporary Business Issues (5) – or – BUSN 170 – Contemporary Business for Non-majors (5)
  • Option B: ENGR 173 – Intro to Business Fundamentals (1) and 3 additional 1-unit courses from the approved business list

    BioInnovation and Design Track: Must complete Option B including ENGR 152 and ENGR 156

Design Thinking and Entrepreneurial Fundamentals (4 unit minimum):

  • Option A: MGMT 164 – Introduction to Entrepreneurship (5)
  • Option B: 4 1-unit courses from the approved design/entrepreneurial thinking list

    BioInnovation and Design Track: Must complete Option B including ENGR 151, ENGR 153, and ENGR 154

Experiential Activity (5 unit minimum):

  • Option A: ENGR 163 A & B – Engineering and the Entrepreneurial Mindset (1) Performed over 3 qtrs in conjunction with an engineering senior capstone project course sequence (6-10)
  • Option B: ENGR 163 A & B– Engineering and the Entrepreneurial Mindset (1) performed over 3 qtrs in conjunction with ENGR 199 – Directed Research (6) performed with a hands-on engineering component
  • Option C: BUSN 145 – Entrepreneurship Practicum (5 unit option) performed as part of a placement that includes a significant technology focus relating to design/development, and approved by the Minor Program Coordinator

    BioInnovation and Design Track: May complete any Option. Experiential activity must involve a relevant medical device or healthcare innovation project approved by minor and track program coordinator(s).

Elective Component: Complete any two of the following program opportunities

  • Option A: Complete the Design Thinking Pathway with an essay theme that specifically emphasizes a topic relating to developing a deep understanding of customer/market needs and opportunities and capitalizing on this to create value through the design of a technical system.
  • Option B: Participate in selected co-/extracurricular activities approved in advance by the minor program coordinator. These may include experiences such as two significant extra-curricular design challenges, a workshop, a mini-course, etc. (such activities may not have been used for credit in any other course)
  • Option C: Complete an independent study project related to technical entrepreneurship, supervised by a faculty member and approved in advance by the minor program coordinator.
  • Option D: Complete an additional 2 units of coursework from approved courses in the Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship program. Courses chosen from this list cannot be doubly used to satisfy the Design Thinking pathway. 


Course Options for the Minor

Business and Commercialization Fundamentals-related 1-unit courses

ENGR 152 – Regulatory Pathways for Medical Devices and Technologies (1)

ENGR 156 – Conceptualizing Innovations in Healthcare (1)

ENGR 164 – Financing New Ventures (1)

ENGR 167 – Go To Market Strategy (1)

ENGR 168 – Legal Considerations for New Ventures (1) 

ENGR 173 – Introduction to Business Fundamentals (1) 

ENGR 174 – Financial Statements and Decision Making (1)

ENGR 175 – Business Model and Plan Development (1)

ENGR 176 – Introduction to Technical Marketing (1)

ENGR 178 –  Intellectual Property for Engineers (1)

Design Thinking and Entrepreneurial Mindset Fundamentals 1-unit courses

ENGR 151 – Design Controls for the Medical Device Industry (1)

ENGR 153 – Risk Management during Medical Device Design and Development (1)

ENGR 154 – Usability Engineering for Medical Devices (1)

ENGR 162 - Systems Thinking (1)

ENGR 165 – Creativity: The Art of Innovation (1)

ENGR 166A – Introduction to Design Thinking I (1)

ENGR 166B – Introduction to Design Thinking II (1)

ENGR 169 – Social Entrepreneurship (1)

ENGR 171A – Opportunity Recognition I (1)

ENGR 171B – Opportunity Recognition II (1)

ENGR 172A – Applied Entrepreneurship I (1)

ENGR 172B – Applied Entrepreneurship  II (1)

ENGR 177 – Customer Ethnography (1)

ENGR 179 – Corporate Intrapreneurship (1)

Additional courses in the Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program:

ENGR 19 – Ethics in Technology (4)

ENGR 110 – Community-based Design (3)

ENGR 140 – Diversity (4)

ENGR 141 - Innovation Theology (4)

ENGR 145 - Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and the Evolution of Silicon Valley (4)

ENGR 161 – Globalization and the Cultures of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (4)

BUSN 6/6H - Business Ethics (4)

PHIL 26- Ethics in Business (4)

Contact Us

Program Director: Jes Kuczenski
Administrative Assistant: Melanie Massie

Main Office: Heafey 242

General Engineering
Santa Clara University
500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053

Discovery and Innovation, Bldg. 402

Minor Advising Form Current Student Resources