IN ITS vision to produce proactive, forward-thinking graduates with innovative and entrepreneurial competency, Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) is offering a fresh curriculum and training programmes through the Entrepreneurship Village, or EV, to develop its students’ skills and nurture entrepreneurial thinking.
EV will join a host of other UBD faculties and institutes at the UBD Open Day 2015 on February 14-15 at the Chancellor Hall to showcase its programmes and initiatives in creating a more entrepreneurial thinking society amongst the learning population.
EV was established in April 2014 with the aim to inculcate the younger generations with an entrepreneurial mindset that will produce employees sustainable to the real labour market for the country as well as result in productive and sustainable entrepreneurs for the economy. It is an initiative by the Ministry of Education, spearheaded by UBD to facilitate its workshops, trainings and forums on entrepreneurship, innovation and sustainability. Such programmes are available to all UBD students in their undergraduate as well as post graduate studies.
Undergraduate students have the choice to undertake the incubation programme in their Discovery Year, which occurs in the third year of their studies. In the programme, students learn to develop their communication and leadership skills, while building a vision towards their business projects. The programme, however, is not limited to individuals who wish to start up a business.
“Most students come in without a single (business) idea,” said Adna Rahman, coordinator of EV. He added that the goal of EV is to nurture the students’ mindset to become more focused on their goals and groom them to become more confident in interpersonal communication and networking to create opportunities for themselves. The activities done in the programme revolve around building a business goal out of the students’ passion or hobby.
The incubation programme also allows for cross-faculty student collaborations, where students from different academic backgrounds learn to leverage their respective expertise to build a niche business idea. This approach mirrors the expectations of the “real world”, where collaborations are increasingly being undertaken across industries, Adna said.
Students in the Masters of Business Administration (MBA) Programme will also spend part of their programme in the EV, where candidates learn to sharpen their existing skills and knowledge of their industries through peer support groups, while learning new challenges to allow the post graduate students to test their classroom skills and theories learned within the reality of the business world.
According to Adna, the incubation programmes and other initiatives at EV are suitable for individuals who wish to find a focus in their career and improve on their interpersonal skills, while creating a link between their passion and their career.
“The main objective of EV has always been to stimulate entrepreneurial thinking and the creation of a more self-reliant and independent mindset that will lead to a society that can sustain itself in facing the volatile economic challenges.”
Aside from programmes at UBD, EV also offers training programmes for aspiring entrepreneurs and conducts workshops with Flagship programmes mainly for the three categories of market that it serves: Core education, Higher Education, and the Community.
These include the programmes Success Weekends for the Higher Learning and the Vocational and Technical students, Residential Success Weekend and the Community Incubation Programme (CIP).
EV believes the ultimate goal is to create an entrepreneurial society that emerges mainly from the education platform that will shape the leaders of the society to become more entrepreneurial and independent while contributing sustainably to the economy.