Applications for Project Pyramid Spring 2024 are now open!





Our Mission

Initiated in 2006, Project Pyramid is a Vanderbilt University interdisciplinary, student-led program that uses in-classroom and hands-on learning experiences to meaningfully engage with socially conscious organizations across the globe, seeking to establish market-driven solutions that help fulfill their missions.

Our Values

Sustained Partnerships: Bringing together Vanderbilt students from multiple disciplines and building relationships with community organizations.

Education: Learning from other students in the classroom and encountering poverty in the community.

Responsive Action: Defining a response in conversation with the community and academic scholarship.

Our Vision

The convergence of many disciplinary perspectives and collaboration with communities experiencing poverty leads to sustained attention to poverty beyond Project Pyramid.

The Course

MGT 6552 – Project Pyramid

Project Pyramid is an interdisciplinary course open to all graduate students at Vanderbilt University. The course examines the causes and symptoms of global poverty, addressing the innovative and entrepreneurial ways organizations attempt to alleviate the conditions of poverty. We will draw connections between global and local contexts and analyze poverty intervention methods from a variety of private and public sector organizations. Using real-world case studies, the course is designed to enable collaboration and discourse across different graduate disciplines and student perspectives.

All students interested in this course are required to complete an application to enroll. Participation in the course requires enrollment in MGT 6554 (Project Pyramid: International Immersion) and MGT 6429 (Project Pyramid: Consulting Projects). If you are a student outside of Owen and are interested in enrolling, or have any other Project Pyramid questions, please email Professor Mario Avila at

This course counts towards the following MBA emphasis: Sustainability & Social Impact.

MGT 6554 – Project Pyramid: International Immersion

This immersion is open to all graduate students at Vanderbilt University who have completed the prerequisite course, MGT 6552. During the international trip, student teams will meet with key stakeholders, conduct market research, and engage with local communities to understand the social entrepreneurship ecosystem. Students will work alongside their client to prepare for the Project Pyramid: Consulting Projects course, MGT 6429.

This course counts towards the following MBA emphases: International Studies; Sustainability & Social Impact.

MGT 6429 – Project Pyramid: Consulting Projects

This course is open to all graduate students at Vanderbilt University who have completed the prerequisite courses, MGT 6552 and MGT 6554. This course provides students with hands-on opportunities to solve complex problems in a team setting, applying topics and frameworks covered in Project Pyramid. Student teams are coached through a real international consulting assignment for social enterprises that seek to alleviate poverty around the world. Clients and locations vary from year to year.

This course counts towards the following MBA emphasis: Sustainability & Social Impact.

Applications for Project Pyramid Spring 2024 are now open!



Documents & Information

Read about last years’ Project Pyramid projects in Guatemala. To learn about more additional Project Pyramid projects, check out our blog posts!

Questions about Project Pyramid? Check out the FAQ below, or contact us at

Partner Organizations

With over 13 years of past projects, Project Pyramid is a premier graduate-level consulting program. Partnering with a cohort of Vanderbilt students can provide your organization with fresh insight, data-driven analysis, and actionable recommendations.

To begin the process and help us learn more about your organization send us an email at

Students: Frequently Asked Questions

Where do I apply?

Applications for the Spring 2024 Project Pyramid course are now open. Submit your application here.

How are students selected for the class?

Students are selected based on their application. Strong candidates will be able to clearly articulate their interest in Project Pyramid, social ventures and how participation links to their future personal and professional goals. Prior skills, experience, and interest in cross-disciplinary work will also be taken into account. Only graduate students can take part in Project Pyramid.

When will we find out if our application has been successful?

Students will be informed of their entrance to the course after applications close.

How is Project Pyramid structured?

Project Pyramid follows the following structure:

  • Mod 1/first half of Spring Semester – 2 x 1.5 hours of class time at Owen, plus team project preparation work – 2 credits
  • Spring Break Trip to visit partner in their home country – 5 to 6 days (or longer if students wish to extend their trip without missing class) – 1 credit
  • Mod 2/second half of Spring Semester – mixture of in-class and team project activities – 1 credit

*Owen Spring Break doesn’t align with the University Spring Break.

What are this year’s projects/countries?

Project Pyramid is student-led and the committee is researching and selecting partners. Projects and locations have yet to be announced.

How much does the Spring Break trip cost?

The cost of each trip varies on the destination. Participants should budget based on flights, food, and accommodations for 5 to 6 days in the country. The TFC will provide a contribution intended to offset travel costs. Further information will be provided when the projects are announced so that students can take the costs and respective TFC contribution into consideration when choosing which project they want to participate in.

Is participation on the Spring Break trip mandatory?


Is it possible to audit Project Pyramid?

Yes, but please indicate this on your application so we can ensure the class is balanced between those who are auditing and those who are not. Students who audit the course are held to the same participation and engagement requirements as non-auditing students.

Is it possible to take Project Pyramid twice?

No. Due to high demand for participation in the course, each graduate student may only take Project Pyramid once. However, students are encouraged to re-apply if their previous application did not result in acceptance into the course.