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Every day, changes that occur in the world generate new opportunities. Students need to understand their own capabilities, skills, assets, network and passions, and those of their team members in order to identify an opportunity that can become the foundation of a new business that they can build.

Developing the Skill   Joint Business-Engineering Courses
Dare to Dream $500 Venture Shaping Grants
Michigan Business Challenge (round one)

Firing up Undergrad Entrepreneurs

Peter Adriaens, Professor of Entrepreneurship

A mobile-phone application for paying parking fees and a service plan for water-damaged electronic devices were among the innovative business ideas posed by undergraduate students last fall in Business Basics for Entrepreneurs, the University’s first campus-wide entrepreneurship course designed for undergraduates. “At the undergraduate level, students come in with great ideas, but they are miles removed from starting a business,” says Professor of Entrepreneurship Peter Adriaens, who teaches the one-semester course. “We help them think about the framework around the idea to shape it into a business and the complexity of the different pieces of the puzzle that must be in place.” The Zell Lurie Institute collaborated with the College of Engineering’s Center for Entrepreneurship, to offer the course with support from the Williamson Collaborative Entrepreneurial Education Fund. Using contemporary examples from Facebook, current movies and popular celebrities to illustrate fundamental business concepts such as value creation and customer segmentation, Adriaens guides undergraduates through the process of developing a viable business model. He also helps them acquire entrepreneial skill sets, including business planning and resourcing, that are essential for launching a successful start-up. At the conclusion of the course, individual students and teams present three-minute pitches for their businesses. “They leave with an understanding that there is more to a business than just an idea,” Adriaens says.



Related Opportunity Identification Stories:
   Peter Adriaens, Professor of Entrepreneurship
   Ankur Shah,
BBA ’13
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