Delphine Van Iseghem
Lecturer, Vice Dean – Department of Commercial Sciences & Business Management, VIVES University of Applied Sciences
In March 2018 six students from VIVES University of Applied Sciences (Kortrijk, Belgium) participated in the two weeks Intensive Programme “Driving Urban Entrepreneurship” at Technical University of Applied Sciences Wildau, Germany. When reading through the reflective essays the students drafted afterwards we are convinced it was an inspiring journey.
Some students really appreciated the immersion in different cultures: “Working in multicultural contexts and teams is an excellent opportunity for development. Exposure to diverse people and experiences can uncover that you might be making incorrect assumptions or missing out alternative perspectives due to overreliance on your own cultural background. That’s what I’ve experienced during the ECMT+ project in Wildau.”
Others consider developing entrepreneurship skills as the added value of the programme:
“I am very grateful that I had the chance to join the program, as it was a very interesting experience. The opportunity to work on a product/service from the creation, initial idea until the pitch in front of investors was a challenge. To see how every step happens in practice and work on it as a team was really valuable. In the future I would like to start my own company, so this experience will be invaluable.”
Sometimes working together in groups is a challenging experience: “It really is a learning experience and I (unfortunately) learned that the hard way. Although my group failed, most of the others succeeded. Furthermore, we can learn a lot from failures, more so than from successes in my opinion. This has been a great learning experience nonetheless and I would recommend anyone to apply for a programme like this. Working in a multicultural team is something that is very important. Especially nowadays, the world has become a much smaller place than it once was thanks to the improvements made in communication technology.”
The IP was a great learning experience that can be recommended to anyone who wants to develop international skills: “I am really grateful for the opportunity to take part in this IP and want to thank the European Union for funding such projects. I think some improvements can still be made, but we are certainly on the right track towards developing a fully functioning project from which every person can benefit. Not only as a student, but also as a teacher, people should be able to develop their international skills even more.”
Students regret such a project will only last until 2019.
 Julie Meerschaert, student of the Advanced Bachelor International Management , VIVES University of Applied Sciences
 Dimitri Decru, student of the Advanced Bachelor International Management, VIVES University of Applied Sciences
 Andres Harinck, student of the Advanced Bachelor International Management, VIVES University of Applied Sciences
 Emiel Verhellen, student of the Advanced Bachelor International Management, VIVES University of Applied Sciences