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Credit for Entrepreneurial Learning at CIT Summer 2014

CIT's ACE funded demonstrator project developed a range of modules to progress exemplary and award winning undergraduate student enterprise projects to pre start up and/or start up stage. This article briefs on the 2014 Student Inc. cohort on the 'New Venture Learning Module'.

Summer 2014 saw six lucky student entrepreneurs enter Cork Institute of Technology’s bustling on-campus Rubicon incubation centre to begin the Student Inc. Summer Programme. The young entrepreneurs hailed from a wide range of undergraduate courses in such as business, multimedia, engineering and culinary arts. Each budding entrepreneur received just over €4.5k seed funding, business support, a fully serviced office and access to a diverse pool of expertise within the centre.

As part of an ACE funded demonstrator project to develop appropriate modules to provide a mechanism to progress exemplary and award winning undergraduate student enterprise projects to pre start up and/or start up stage, while earning credits for the learning outcomes attained, the 2014 Student Inc. cohort were awarded 5 ECTS credits for completion of the New Venture learning Module. This module was designed to allow participants on summer entrepreneurship programmes accumulate credits for the learning outcomes and is the only accredited programme of its kind in Ireland.   

The module was tailored to the distinctive needs of the enterprising student with a viable business idea. In particular the need to equip the student with enterprise and commercialization skills to meet the challenges of developing their business idea to pre start up and/or start up stage. This was specifically tailored for participants on the Student Inc. Summer Entrepreneurship programme. Only those accepted on to Student Inc. can take this module. The module supports students; with the help of academic/industry mentors advance their entrepreneurship projects.

A key benefit of the programme is the peer to peer learning, not only between the six talented entrepreneurs; relationships have also been built with a number of the experienced resident entrepreneurs in the Rubicon Centre. This exposure to nearly sixty companies and the current participants on Enterprise Ireland’s New Frontiers phase two programme provided the budding entrepreneurs with a wealth of advice and insight at this critical stage of their business development.

Each participant put a large amount of work into their various start-up businesses which was extremely evident at their professional business pitches at the end of the programme. The group received positive compliments, not only on the impressive changes in their business offerings but also the obvious development in their entrepreneurial skills.

The annual programme offers participants training in various aspects of business start-up to ensure they are well informed in any decision they make, they also receive mentoring sessions on a one to one basis.

Student Inc. was generously funded €27.5k by the School of Business, the School of Engineering, Crawford Art College and CAMMS with the office space and staff expertise sponsored by the Rubicon Centre. Academic support for module development and assessment was provided by the Hincks Centre for Entrepreneurship Excellence.

 Profiles of the participants on Student Inc. can be found in the attached document.




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