The La Trobe University 2023 Entrepreneurship Bootcamp, which included 14 presentations from industry, enabled students to learn enterprise and entrepreneurial competences – required for the future of work.
Participants heard from representatives across a wide range of businesses and sectors, including InnovAction, Wavemaker Impact, PROJECT ROCKIT, Common Interest, The Marketing Essentialist, Arrow Digital, Pearce IP, Mist, AirTree, Startup Victoria, Scale Investors, AusIndustry, Will HQ and 25eight.
"The room was brimming with passion, innovative ideas and determination for tackling long standing issues and improving the world," said Rosie Thomas of PROJECT ROCKIT.
In addition to student takeaways, the in-person bootcamp was also an opportunity for industry to showcase organisations, share insights – and get in front of up-and-coming talent.
“Professional, fun, and filled with energy. I especially liked how the students had been carefully selected and therefore being strongly engaged in the program. Motivated participants are key to programs like this,” said Nicklas Wallberg of Common Interest.
Each team was assigned an Industry Advisor, Entrepreneur Mentor and Alumni Coach.
Over six days, participants worked in teams to explore idea validation and value proposition, and learnt about:
- Drafting business plans
- Competitor analysis
- Marketing and social media best-practice
- Intellectual property
- Raising capital
Entrepreneurship Bootcamp concluded with a celebration evening and pitching contest. With $6,000 in the prize pool, competing students vied for a first-place prize of $3,000, with the runner up and People's Choice each receiving $1,500.
Team RAANS (Nathan Gatt, Rhys Soto, Amina Ali, Sally Morgan and Angela Bellington) took out the top prize with their Personal Protective Equipment solution.
Hot on RAANS' heels was Team Tenat (Emma Morris, Samet Alan, Thanush Selvakumar, Therese Ilagan and Natasha Nagle) with a solution and preventative measure to address environmental problems with antimicrobial materials.
People’s Choice was Team Shark Tank (Ali Basim, Shanira Idrus, Sreekanth Devireddy, Yogesh Kumar and Nihit Naphray) with their innovative software solution for career management.
“In this bootcamp I developed my communication skills and how to network. From (there), I went to a meetup and met some great people who offered me an internship,” said Sreekanth Devireddy, who is studying for a Master of Information and Communications Technology.
The overall program framework, with its emphasis on developing critical thinking, highlighted the potential and drive of La Trobe University students and graduates. Industry leaders witnessed first-hand the fresh concepts and ideas coming out of the University.
It was a great opportunity for participants to explore their own ideas, prototype solutions, and learn key presentation skills ahead of the major open pitching competition for La Trobe and community in October 2023. PitchFest will attract real venture capitalists and boasts a $30,000 prize pool. Winning teams from the Bootcamp pitch night are invited to participate in PitchFest.
For the past seven years, the La Trobe University Innovation and Entrepreneurship team has been delivering leading programs for emerging entrepreneurs throughout Victoria and Australia, as well as collaborating with international partners to support start-ups engaging with the global market. Initiatives are designed to help participants realise their full entrepreneurial potential through programs, workshops, hackathons, one-on-one coaching and mentoring sessions, and by connecting students with industry partners.