Scholarship for Social Change

From donations, to hiring North Central students and alums, to being a fan of the cross country team, Kris Hartner and his business, the Naperville Running Company have long been supportive of North Central College.

Now, he has pledged $100,000 to create an endowed scholarship fund at the college.

“There’s a new major, that the college is adding, it’s Social Entrepreneurship. The idea is that we set up a fund, and endowment,” said Kris Hartner, owner of the Naperville Running Company. “The revenue from that endowment would help give funds to students that are seeking this major.”

Students pursuing the new Social Entrepreneurship major will have the opportunity to start their own business. The scholarship from Hartner’s fund will help cover the startup costs.

“What we want to do is build a three year relationship with someone who wants to be a social entrepreneur and we want to pay along the way for things that people who start businesses have to do. For example, if they want a copyright or trademark relative to their business,” said Tom Cavenagh, Professor of Leadership, Ethics, and Values at North Central College.

The potential business must have a positive social impact.

“I think it’s neat, and it’s not just entrepreneurship, but it’s social entrepreneurship. These are students that are doing something in business that can generate revenue where the revenue can actually have an impact on the community,” said Hartner.

The scholarship will continue to generate new funds, allowing it to benefit a few new students every year.

The new social entrepreneurship major is slated to open for new students in fall 2017.

Naperville News 17’s Blane Erwin reports.

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