The Boost Turku Entrepreneurship Society, a students’ organization that connects students, young entrepreneurs and experienced professionals from four higher education institutions in Turku, Finland, has within the past year joined forces with the ICTentr project co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union.
In September 2017, Network Manager Anssi Ketopaikka and Liisa Lehtonen visited the three partner universities in Vietnam: Ho Chi Minh University of Technology, the University of Danang and the Hanoi University of Science and Technology. During their journey Anssi and Liisa toured the Vietnamese student clubs and met the actors involved with entrepreneurial activities. The purposes of the visit was for Boost Turku to showcase types of activities run by students and identify existing activities which could be shared within Vietnam and in Turku. The visit has been fruitful for both sides. The BizTech talks from Ho Chi Minh University of Technology have been identified as a potential concept to be streamed to Danang, Hanoi and Turku. Also Anssi and Liisa believe that the brand new co-working spaces at the Hanoi University of Science and Technology is worth benchmarking in future development projects.
The activities conducted at each partner university are very diverse but Boost Turku team can see the potential in exporting them within Vietnam and to Turku.
In Ho Chi Minh University of Technology, the OISP Youth Union and OISP Student Ambassadors are supporting the students in developing essential soft skills. The BizTech Talks, an event where Vietnamese Entrepreneurs come to talk about their experience and present their business idea, caught Anssi and Liisa’s attention. Discussions have started to bring the event to Turku via streaming. With the support of the ICTentr project, the BizTech Talks concept could be organized at the two other Vietnamese universities. Find the article from HCMUT here.
At the University of Danang several activities related to entrepreneurship are well established, such as the incubator. Students are also applying their know-how to concrete cases given by the teaching staff. Students from the University of Danang were particularly interested in how to overcome the fear of failure and how to bravely take risks. The Boost Turku will suggest organising together some activities for the students to overcome that fear during a next visit.
At the Hanoi University of Science and Technology a group of motivated students is working on productizing and commercializing their know-how. For example the club specialized in Artificial Intelligence was asking advices from Boost Turku’s team to get funding for this kind of specific expertise. In Hanoi entrepreneurs can also take advantage of the newly opened coworking space. The Boost Turku team was very impressed with the facilities and wishes to develop similar structure in Turku as well. The coworking space has the potential to enhance collaborative work with businesses and spread an entrepreneurial attitude throughout the campus.
During their visit, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between each Vietnamese partner university, Boost Turku and Asia Renko Consulting Oy.
The next step is for Boost Turku to guide the existing student clubs in the right direction to encourage collaboration activities between Hanoi, Danang and Ho Chi Minh City. Anssi Ketopaikka will be visiting these universities again in December under the ICTentr project and with the project team from the University of Turku. In the meanwhile the priority will be given to plan joint events.