Friday, December 14

The University of Sydney Business School partners with FD Global Connections to Improve Students’ Entrepreneurial Skills

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Students at the University of Sydney Business School won’t be relaxing this winter break. Instead, they will receive an expert-led crash course in Design Thinking methodology and gain critical professional and cross-cultural collaboration skills in the US.

The US Future of Business Study Tour was designed in collaboration with Sydney-based FD Global Connections, which works with Australian companies to prepare for and launch their business in the USA. This first-of-its-kind program will enable the students to gain hands-on entrepreneurial skills and work on real-world projects in conjunction with Boston Consulting Group Digital Ventures.

Working from New York University Stern School of Business in New York City as well as Georgetown University in Washington DC, participants will be exposed to design thinking theories and processes which are regularly used in organisations, governments and markets in the US and globally.

Students will also have the opportunity to learn directly from business, startup and government leaders, making the program a unique opportunity to foster much-needed collaboration between business, higher education and government.

The recent, ‘Out of Sight, Out of Mind’ report by PwC found that Australian businesses were suffering from a ‘collaboration deficit’ with only 7.7% of local businesses collaborating with international firms while innovating products and/or processes. Worse, the report found that Australia ranked second to last among OECD countries in collaboration between businesses and higher education or government institutions on innovative projects.

Trena Blair, Founder and CEO of FD Global Connections says the US Future of Business Study Tour is an example of how Australia can start improving its marks.

“Innovation does not happen in isolation. We must foster stronger collaboration between Australia’s business and startup community and our universities and government organisations in order to prepare the next generation of top entrepreneurs for a global future and an increasingly competitive business environment.”

“Australia is already falling behind in collaboration which could see us slip further down the innovation ranks. This program presents an opportunity for young business students to gain valuable cross-cultural experience and to better understand global markets and cultures,” added Ms Blair.

More than a dozen students are expected to participate in the inaugural program which will include workshops, site visits, pitch nights and networking events including a Q&A session with Ambassador of Australia to the US Joe Hockey.

“Our new experiential international programs are designed to build the capabilities of our students in areas such as inventiveness, problem solving, resilience and cultural competency. The US Future of Business Study Tour will give students a valuable understanding of innovation and the US market and we’ve already seen a great response from the students who are eager to take part,” says Professor Rae Cooper, Associate Dean, Programs, The University of Sydney Business School.

“If Australian businesses collaborated to the level of the five best collaborating OECD nations, it would inject $23.5 billion to GDP over the next 10 years. This program is just one way that we can continue to strengthen the ties between business, higher education and government to the benefit of students and the Australian economy as a whole,” added Professor Cooper.

The program is only open to students from The University of Sydney Business School.

More details about the program are available at: http://sydney.edu.au/business/study/opportunities/us-future-of-business-study-tour

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Paul Towers is a passionate supporter of the Australian startup ecosystem and the Founder of Startup Soda. Originally, Startup Soda was solely a newsletter that helped curate the best content from the Australian startup community, more recently however it has turned into a media platform with the aim of improving coverage of Australian Startups, Founders and VC's.

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