Inspiring young minds: Mitra and the university outreach program for young entrepreneurs

By May 24, 2016 Idea, News No Comments

A few weeks ago, Mitra Innovation took part in a university outreach program as part of a community development initiative.

We were invited to the University of Moratuwa in Sri Lanka (where we have one of our offices) by Dr. Sujeewa Rathnayake – an IFS Endowed Senior Fellow in Innovation and Entrepreneurship. The University of Moratuwa is one of the top government universities for engineering degrees in Sri Lanka, and we were happy to attend.

Under the guidance of Dr. Rathnayake, the University is currently organising ‘Shark Tank’, which is; an intra-university competition aimed at energetic young entrepreneurial undergraduates.

The objective behind Shark Tank is to bridge the gap between new product development concept owners, and angel investors who are willing to help financially.

The competition is great for a University known for engineering because it helps to train the hardcore engineering minds into entrepreneurs with business minds. The entrepreneurs (made up of eight teams) are encouraged to not only come up with great ideas, but to also align those ideas to corporate situations and needs. In short, learning how to turn fantastic ideas into great start-ups.

As part of the outreach program, Mitra had the privilege of teaching the young minds how to get ready for the big ‘Investor Pitch Day’. Mitra was perfect for this kind of educational activity as this is how we help our entrepreneurially minded clients on a day-to-day basis.

  • As part of Mitra’s teachings, Asela Mendis (an experienced Business Analyst at Mitra Innovation) taught the students how to organise the pitch for their products.
  • Dammika Ganegama (Managing Director at Mitra), and Suraen Shanmuganathan (Product Manager at Mitra) then taught the students how to deliver a successful five-minute pitch to investors.
  • Pulani Ranasinghe (a new member of Mitra) also attended in order to talk to some of the students who were looking for some one-on-one advice.
  • Some of the University professors also spoke to the students about entrepreneurial practised theories.

It was a great day and we enjoyed meeting the next generation of bright, energetic, entrepreneurial minds. It was clear that the students were passionate about their ideas and were keen to take on the advice about how to not only win the competition, but to succeed in their entrepreneurial endeavours later in life.

We look forward to seeing some of these students’ products on the market in the future. They had fire in their bellies and we hope they set the world alight with their great ideas!\

Pulani Ranasinghe | Associate BA
mitra innovation

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