Budding entrepreneurs now have the chance to study the secret of running a good business from one the most prestigious Ivy League universities. Venture for India (VFI), a not-for-profit-organisation, has launched a programme in collaboration with Columbia Business School, through which it will send 15 young graduates from India for a three-week workshop in New York.
The VFI team will be visiting leading graduate and postgraduate schools across India, including in Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi, Pune and Kolkata, to select 15 students.
At the end of the three weeks, the students will be placed for a period of two years in various start-ups wherein they will be mentored by the leadership teams in those companies.
“During the three weeks that the students will be at Columbia, they will not only be taught the basics of running a business but they will also get a chance to meet entrepreneurs in New York and to visit the New York Stock Exchange. This is a skill-based course,” said Chirag Arya, president, VFI.
According to Arya, VFI fellows will be guaranteed a two-year job placement at the end of the programme. “We are reaching out to various start-ups and big companies right here and we will match one fellow to a company. It will be a full-time job, but one Saturday of the month for the period of two years they will have to attend a workshop conducted by us,” he adds.
Jack McGourty, director of community and global entrepreneurship at the Columbia Business School and a faculty member teaching graduate courses in entrepreneurship, innovation and technology management, will be leading the workshop in New York.
“Becoming an entrepreneur does not just mean that you will want to start a business right after college. It just means that you want to create new things and that can happen even if you are employed in a big company. The age group we are targeting for this fellowship is between 22 and 28 years. We are not necessarily looking for MBA students though. Shortlisted students will be put through a rigorous personal interview,” said Arya.
In order to connect with students suitable for the fellowship, the organisation has partnered with organisations like Mumbai Angels, Bangalore Angels and National Entrepreneurship Network. Students can also apply through the official website. The last day for applications is February 28, and the programme will begin on May 13.