Entrepreneurs abroad in Singapore and Turin
By Christine Gordon, CFE Curriculum and Programs Specialist
Our immersive and entrepreneurially-focused study abroad opportunities launches students across two oceans in the summer! This year, May through June brings 20 students into Singapore’s startup ecosystem. July brings another 30 students to Turin’s. Participating students—rising sophomores through seniors—enjoy collaborative experiences owing to CoE’s International Relations, Center for Entrepreneurship and International Programs in Engineering partnerships.
The 6-week Singapore experience includes academic coursework at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in accounting and finance, marketing for new ventures, and Chinese culture and traditions. Upon successful course completion and transcript review, these courses come back as U-M transfer credit at 3 credits each. While in Singapore, students enjoy local co-curricular and cultural engagements: off-site team building, roti prata making, batik art, and broad local alumni engagement.
Wolverine alums in Singapore are generous in sharing their time and expertise with students on this entrepreneurially-focused study abroad. Students’ opportunities to delve into first-hand accounts, on-site, include:
- Garuda Robotics with U-M Alum Mark Yong, Founder and CEO
- Innov8’s Bl oc k 71 Startup Incubator, as introduced to us by U-M Alum Wu Choy Peng, Singtel’s CIO, with innovation challenges led by Monica Tsai, Senior Director of Investments and Operations
- Behind the scenes tour with business launch lens of Marina Bay Sands with Krist Boo, VP Communications, and Wangelin Sum, as introduced to us by U-M Alum George Tanasijevich, CEO
- NSI Ventures with Founder Shane Chesson and Director Anvesh Ramineni
- National University of Singapore Economic Miracle talk by U-M Alum Dr. Nitin Pangakar, Academic Director of its Business School (NUS)
- NTU’s Block 79 LaunchPad Startup Incubator
Student feedback from Singapore is affirmative!
- “I have a much better understanding of the startup culture and process in Singapore.”
- “The incubator panels and drone startup are quite inspiring and educational.”
- “When starting a business you need to constantly get feedback from your customer base about your ideas.”
- “Talking to the alumni is really useful in understanding what I could possibly do after I graduate!”
Summer’s 3-week Turin study abroad includes academic coursework through Polytechnic University of Turin (POLITO) and European Innovation Academy (EIA). Students intensely engage on international teams to bring their tech startup idea to a global market. Program speakers, mentors, seed investors and facilitators guide students throughout a rigorous curriculum. A competitive spark is lit in program participants! Team management, intellectual property, B2B and B2C innovation, scaling, problem/solution fit, prototyping, user-experience design, product development, pitching, and revenue generation are taught across a business model canvas concept. Upon successful course completion and transcript review, 3 credits transfer back to U-M. In Turin students very much enjoy the multiculturalism of Northern Italy, while iterating on a dynamic team with students from all over the globe. Customer Discovery in Milan and Product Showcase in Rome complement multi-city co-curricular experiences. An added facet of Turin is that some students are also selected for internships at Fiat-Chrysler Automotive World Class Manufacturing Development Center!
Check out links on CFE’s and IPE’s blog sites for more from this summer’s entrepreneurially-focused study abroad participants! Watch for Summer 2018 applications through CoE’s IPE Office late Fall Term.