LESSONS LEARNED FROM "ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND CHINA": AN EXPERIENCE FOR MIT FRESHMEN
MIT (UNITED STATES)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN11 Proceedings
Publication year: 2011
Conference name: 3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2011
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:This paper is about a freshman advising experience at MIT called "Entrepreneurship and China", which, as its name implies, combines two trends on the MIT campus: a strong entrepreneurial spirit and a growing interest in China. First offered in 2007 in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, the experience targets freshmen interested in either entrepreneurship and/or doing business in/with China; with the premise being that if any freshman is interested in a career in this area, they would still have 3.5 years left at MIT to prepare themselves. The experience consists of a seminar during the Fall semester, followed by a roughly three week field-trip to China during January, the month-long interim break between semesters. (Because of the logistics and cost of the trip, enrollment is limited to eight.) While in China, students learn more about the culture, experience the country first-hand, and meet with local/expat entrepreneurs, MIT alumni and Chinese students who are trying to make things happen in this emerging economic and technological power.
In this paper, we describe the learning goals for the seminar and field-trip, outline the syllabus, delineate three ways in which we "measure" success for this effort, and discuss some of the lessons learned from running this experience which may prove useful for other institutions looking to start a similar program.
Keywords: Entrepreneurship, Global Education, Freshman Seminar.