Entrepreneurship boot camp kickstarted by UIF

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McCaffrey ’18, Arielle Singer ’18, Lakhena Leang ’18, Vera Marsova ’18 and Robert Barsamian ’17 were named University Innovation Fellows. (Courtesy of Matt Milless Students Luke)

This past Monday, the University Innovation Fellows formally launched their “Entrepreneurship Boot Camp” in collaboration with Union College Entrepreneurship Organization (UCEO) and WiseLabs – an entrepreneurial organization sponsored by General Electric (GE).

Primarily, the camp was aimed at providing students a platform to present new innovative ideas and give them a chance to build their entrepreneurial and creative abilities.

The boot camp, spread out over two weeks, consists of four two-hour sessions that covered a myriad of topics related to starting your own business, creating a product and pitching it to investors and customers. Simultaneously, it emphasizes the need for ideas to be original and specific to a particular field. The camp was open for faculty as well as students from all years, irrespective of their majors.

Accomplished and experienced individuals like former Harvard Business School professor Dennis Encarnation and former GE executive John Glass were also called in to hold workshops and stimulate training sessions about running a successful business.

In recent years, such programs or camps have not been conducted by students on campus. The newly-launched Entrepreneurship Boot Camp “is a series of workshops aimed to introduce interested students to the most critical points of an entrepreneurial venture,” said Lakehna Leang ’18. “Furthermore, for the more experienced students, the purpose of this workshop is to provide them with knowledge about the future steps they can take to bring their ideas they might have to the next level,” added Leang ’18.

Leang, along with students Luke McCaffrey ’18, Arielle Singer ‘18, Vera Marsova ’18 and Robert Barsamian ’17 were named the University Innovation Fellows this year and attended a meetup in Silicon Valley, which included immersive experiences at Stanford University and Google.

The fellows were supported by Associate Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Shane Cotter; the David L. ’39 and Beverly B. Yunich Professor of Business Ethics, Hal Fried; Associate Professor of German Erika Nelson; and Dean of Academic departments and Programs, Wendy Sternberg.

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