Students at the University of Colorado Denver Business School recently engaged in a project to make blankets for homeless youth, to be donated to Urban Peak. First-year students in the CU Denver Business School’s class “Business, Leadership, and You” were given the task of deciding how to spend funds allocated to the class. These funds are intended to be used to help build relationships and enrich students’ lives.

The students had two requirements imposed on their decision-making: the students had to reach a consensus on how to use the funds, and everyone in the class had to participate in the activity. The students tossed around many fun alternatives for the funds available to the class, such as going bowling or buying a meal for the class, but ultimately landed on a more altruistic option. The students decided to use the money to buy supplies in order to make blankets for those less fortunate than themselves. Hopefully, the work of these students will help to spread some holiday cheer and warmth.

Dr. Ken Bettenhausen, the instructor for “Business, Leadership, and You,” feels as though the project provided a valuable learning experience for the students. “It was a great experience for the students to be able to organize themselves and connect in a meaningful way with an organization that serves a population to which they can relate.” Dr. Bettenhausen is an Associate Professor at the CU Denver Business School, and the Director of the MS Management program. Dr. Bettenhausen also directs the Managing for Sustainability program.

The class was connected to Urban Peak through the Experiential Learning Center (ELC) at CU Denver. Experiential learning includes a variety of activities with one common goal—to immerse students in hands-on learning outside the classroom where the experience is at the heart of the learning process. The ELC is committed to working closely with students, faculty, employers and community partners to provide quality experiential learning opportunities that enhance academic learning, integrate theory and practice, and promote professional development and active citizenship.

For more information about the MS Management or Sustainability programs, contact Dr. Ken Bettenhausen at or 303-315-8425.

For more information about opportunities available through the ELC, contact the center at, or 303.556.6656.

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