Starting young: Entrepreneurial component in higher education required

Updated: Feb 17, 2020 8:50 AM

Entrepreneurial component in higher education needed.

To be a successful entrepreneur, a positive attitude and support structure are a must.
  • By Narendra Shyamsukha


A COMMON characteristic of successful entrepreneurs is they launched their ventures while they were young. According to an EY survey of nearly 700 entrepreneurs, about half launched their companies while they were in their20s. It found they did not jump-start straight after higher education, but had to gain real-world experience. Also, a third of survey participants said that higher education provided them with the ground they needed for business practice. Having an entrepreneurial component in higher education can aid in the creation of more entrepreneurs and ventures, in turn creating job opportunities.

How feasible is it? To be a successful entrepreneur, a positive attitude and support structure are a must. Universities can give students systematic knowledge on all aspects of running a business, and equip them with the necessary tools to prepare for eventualities; campus life also gives plenty of opportunities to test business ideas. They get to analyse the variables of the trade in a systematic way, formulate and test hypotheses, and think about abstract concepts. The right age If college students receive the right stimulation, it can allow them to develop a higher degree of self-control and work on their vision. Universities must include courses that teach students critical thinking and risk-taking. Experiential learning must also be given equal importance. Universities must provide right facilitators to deliver content, including academicians and successful entrepreneurs.

Delivery methods cater to a wide crosssection of students. Internet media, incubation support, internship, simulations, helping develop business plans, case studies, one-to-one interactions, project work, study visits and mentoring can help support successful implementation of an entrepreneurship education curriculum. Graduates must also possess certain core competencies—to be able to identify and evaluate business opportunities, identify and solve problems, make the right decisions at the right time, network, communicate effectively, and display out-of-the-box thinking.

They have be capable of developing a business plan that can sustain after launch, and the venture must be able to provide jobs, make enough profits to fuel expansion, innovate, develop a strong public image, and satisfy the stakeholders. If such a structured framework can be executed successfully, we will be able to integrate it with existing curricula.

(The author is founder & chairman, ICA EduSkills. Views are personal)

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