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ENTREPRENEURSHIP FELLOWS PROGRAM London Business School, United Kingdom Many London Business School students develop business ideas during their programs, and each year about 12 students are accepted into the school's incubator, where they'll spend the next year launching their businesses. But while the majority of those ideas grow into successful businesses, some will not. That's one reason why the Deloitte Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship recently started its Entrepreneurship Fellows Program for graduates PITCH DINGMAN Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, College Park While many centers run formal entrepreneurship courses and competitions to encourage students to flesh out their best startup ideas, the Smith School wanted to establish a program that engaged students in a more informal way. For the last six years, the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship has held "Pitch Dingman" every Friday, inviting anyone to pitch their ideas to experienced entrepreneurs during set office hours. During this time, 15 to 20 students are often lined up waiting to talk to a mentor. That adds up to more than 200 students each year, says center director Elana Fine. "They don't need a formal presentation—they can just take 15 minutes to tell us their ideas," she says. "Practitioners don't determine whether their ideas are good or bad. They just help them plan the next steps to determine whether the idea is worth pursuing." Center staff also follow up with visitors to offer services to help move their ideas forward. This year the school will expand Pitch Dingman to three campus locations, including the Dingman Center and the schools of engineering and public policy. MICROLOAN FUND Gabelli School of Business, Fordham University, New York City Sometimes entrepreneurs need only small amounts of money to move their ideas forward. That's why the Gabelli School's Center for Entrepreneurship established a fund through its Fordham Foundry incubator that offers microloans from $500 to $5,000 to help entrepreneurs take small steps such as buying new technology or launching a marketing campaign. To develop and manage the fund, the school received help from its partner company BNP Paribas, a global bank based in France. center director II Luscri. After the school moved it to January, during the week right before the spring semester started, the energy surrounding it increased. "Now, the trip is the last thing they do before the semester starts, so they come back filled with excitement." In addition, some students land summer internships with Silicon Valley companies, positions that would be filled by May. The center is now considering taking students on similar trips to Los Angeles to meet alumni working in the film and television industry, and to Washington, D.C., to visit Capitol Hill, in conjunction with Villanova's Center for Marketing and Public Policy Research. who enter the incubator. In addition to mentorship and a small stipend, the program gives the fellows a formal title and position for the year that they can list on résumés, says center director Jeff Skinner. "Even if their ventures don't work out, they've accumulated valuable skills. This program gives them an additional year of 'résumé air cover.' " LANDING Tecnológico de Monterrey (ITESM) Mexico City, Mexico In 2004, one of ITESM's largest campuses constructed a new facility, where campus leadership decided to dedicate office space for an international company to move into the building for one year. That was the start of a program that ITESM now calls "Landing," in which the school gives state-of-the-art companies offices on campus and helps them navigate the Mexican culture and business climate. In return, the companies advise students, collaborate with faculty, and help the school develop academic programs. "We make sure that each company we choose has a significant project for students and faculty to work on," says Luis Arturo Torres, director of ITESM's Garza-Lagüera Institute. In the last few years, Landing has taken off—at any given time, more than 100 companies are "landing" at one of ITESM's 15 technology parks in cities across Mexico. And when they're ready to move on, some leave behind working labs and software for the school's classrooms—and even hire the school's graduates. Torres points out that the office spaces are small, but they're not intended to be permanent. "The idea is only for them to come to get used to the region. They move to larger locations as they start to grow," he says. "It's a win-win situation." BizEd November/December 2013 29

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