The HTCTW Course is a community-based course. I’ll walk you and the rest of your cohort through the HTCTW Checklist step-by-step. You’ll be given specific assignments to complete, there’ll be group activities to participate in, and you’ll be supported with additional resources. Throughout the course, you’ll be sharing your work with others, reflecting on their feedback, and getting better. At the end of the course, you’ll be in a position to launch your project into the world. And, you’ll be enmeshed in an inter-generational community of one-of-a-kind social innovators!

Who’s the instructor?

My name is Shawn Humphrey. I’m an award-winning Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Mary Washington, judge for the international standard-setting Social Impact Media Awards and founder of multiple globally-recognized movements, experiences and conferences. Over the years, I’ve formulated a unique methodology for beginning and sustaining projects in a low-cost manner. For example all of my projects cost me less than $100 per year to launch and maintain. Indeed, many of them cost me less than $50 per year. Always looking to live a life of positive social disruption, I’ve decided to formalize my methodology into the HTCTW Checklist and I’m offering this course for those who are looking for more guidance with the checklist.

Why would you want to take this course?

Here’s the thing about us humans. Whenever we lend the least bit of credence to the idea that we can shape the arc of social change, we unleash an unimaginable internal struggle. The adrenaline that attends our initial dreaming is soon followed by a fog of self-doubt, uncertainty and insecurity. I’m here to help dissipate the paralyzing fear that attends the beginning of any new project. And, in the life-cycle of every project there comes a moment or two or three or more when we lose a bit of confidence and question our capability to change the world. I’ll be there to remind you that you can.

Who is eligible?

Anyone from anywhere who is 18 years and older with a social innovation project at any stage of development.

How much does it cost?


Why is it free?

I’ve been teaching this course at my university since 2019. However, this will be my first time teaching this course in a manner that combines live weekly sessions and workshops, individualized coaching, scheduled group time and self-paced learning. This course, this time, is a test run. And, as you’ll learn in this course, the only way to learn how to do anything is to do that thing. So, instead of asking for money from you up front for the course, I’ll be asking for great testimonials from you at the end, which I’ll have to earn.

How long is the course?

The course lasts for eight weeks. Here are the details:

  • Begins during the first week of June 2021.
  • Ends during the last week of July 2021.
  • This is a hybrid learning course combining live weekly sessions and workshops, individualized coaching, scheduled group time and self-paced learning.
  • The course is 100% virtual.
  • You and your cohort members meet with me once a week for 1 hour (day and time tbd)
  • I’ll also hold office-hours for one-on-one sessions.

Where do we meet?

On zoom.

Three things I’ll have your doing:

  • Starting too soon. You cannot figure out the why of your work by thinking alone. You need to act. So, I’m gonna have you sharing your work with the world in all its incomplete and imperfect glory. Trust me, you’ll survive.
  • Outpacing your insecurities. They’re real. They’re powerful. And, giving them the space and time to be heard and reflected upon is key. However, I’ll also have you sharing your work with the world too quickly for them to get in the way.
  • Finding your funky. The world is not changed by innocuous. You need to find your niche, your weird, your funky. Some may ask you to rub away all of your sharp edges. I’ll ask you to sharpen them.

What else will we be doing?

Here’s an overview of some of the things you’ll be doing:

  • Zero in on the WHY of your work
  • Articulate your values
  • Identify your role and place in the process of social change.
  • Create your own network (ecosystem, customer and power)
  • Build a project that is yours – your voice, your values, your way
  • Utilize tools to reach, educate, and connect with your target audience.
  • Saying “I don’t know”
  • Saying “I need help” and seek it out from others
  • Seeing abundance around you
  • Excelling under pressure.
  • Failing, getting back up, trying again and humbly succeeding.
  • Beginner – You’ll learn to begin what you want to begin where you are at and with whatever expertise, connections, and resources that you’ve got.
  • Live coaching sessions with Shawn
  • Questions to guide your thinking
  • Live interaction with the peers in your cohort
  • Discussion board for group learning
  • Group Q&A zooms with Shawn
  • Live one-on-one coaching zooms with Shawn
  • Brand identity
  • Prototyped Website
  • Content with which to spread your idea
  • Effective social media architecture
  • Power network and more…
  • Write a mission statement
  • Secure non-profit status
  • Raise money via grant funding
  • Build a board of directors
  • And a few other things

These things are important (well, some of them); but, you don’t need non-profit status, or a board, or a grant to get started. And, when was the last time that you read a mission statement that gave you goosebumps? Never, right. All of the bulleted-items above (and more) are artefacts of an earlier age. Worse than that. Those things in that list can form a secret alliance with your fears to stomp out your beginning. Right now, at this stage in the life-cycle of your project, those things in that list are a distraction. Beginnings need to begin. So, we’ll be ignoring those things (and more). And, one more thing:

  • I am not a tech-savvy human being. I am a hack-savvy human being. I find ways to make things happen. So, as far technical support (like writing code for your website) from me to you, I’m sorry to say this; but, don’t count on it.

How do I apply?

First, complete the application form (see below). I’ll follow up with a quick email (via professor[dot]humphrey[at] letting you know that I received it and begin setting a date and time for a one-on-one call with you. The call will cover your motivation for doing work in the social innovation space and most importantly your commitment to the work. If after the call, we conclude that we’re a good fit for one another and you’re a good fit for the course, then you’ll be approved for the course. Here are the steps once again:

  1. Complete the Application Form (see below)
  2. Scheduled a Call
  3. Complete On-boarding Instructions (once you’re approved)

The application process is currently closed. Please use the Contact form to reach out to me and learn more. Thanks. – shawn