The Service-Learning methodology applied to Operations Management: From the Operations Plan to business start up.

Constantino García-Ramos, Almudena Martínez-Campillo

Abstract

A teaching innovation methodology characterized for being a link between the students´ learning process and the University Social Responsibility is the "Service-Learning" (SL). Recently, it is been emphasized that teachers in the field of Business Management should use teaching methods that promote civic values and social commitment. In this line, the SL complements the economic-financial education that students receive, allowing them to develop important professional and personal skills as well as to receive training according to socially responsible principles, since they learn by working in community service initiatives.

Our SL experience consisted in combining the teaching innovation in five subjects taught at the University of León (Spain) –where one of them is from the field of Operations Management– with the provision of a free support service for rural women's entrepreneurship. In the current unemployment situation, a possible alternative is the creation of an own company. However, female entrepreneurs have to develop their business idea and to demonstrate its viability, which poses them serious difficulties due to lack of training, experience or even advice on the matter. After detecting this social need, our experience consisted in organizing multidisciplinary groups of students to guide female entrepreneurs in rural areas during the whole entrepreneurship process.

After developing this activity of teaching innovation, we can conclude that the SL is a good methodology to improve the academic, personal and social development of students, suggesting that it is possible to join their academic success with the social commitment of the University.


Keywords

Learning; Service-Learning; Operations Plan; Female Entrepreneurs

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References

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