• Entrepreneur & Business Competition Gives Engineers More Business Skills

    Nottingham University Business School (NUBS) is running the Engineers in Business Competition for the third year, giving business and engineering students the opportunity to enter the ideas they create for their Entrepreneurship & Business (E&B) studies into the competition.

    SMALLER E&B Business Module Poster Desgin Final 1 September 2016 jpeg

    Sponsored by Sainsbury Management Fellows, the Engineers in Business competition is aimed at undergraduates who want to learn about entrepreneurship and experience the ingenuity process.

    Competing teams must include engineering undergrads. By encouraging more commercial education for undergraduate engineers NUBS and SMF are enhancing students multi-disciplinary skills, increasing their employability and inspiring students to use their engineering skills in business innovation when they graduate. Since the competition was launched two years ago, there has been a 25% uplift in participation.

    By encouraging more commercial education for undergraduate engineers NUBS and SMF are enhancing students multi-disciplinary skills, increasing their employability and inspiring students to use their engineering skills in business innovation when they graduate. Since the competition was launched two years ago, there has been a 25% uplift in participation.

    The NUBS/SMF Engineers in Business Competition invites students interested in taking the Entrepreneurship & Business Module to enter their original product concept into the competition at the end of the course module. The students’ product concept must meet a real need in society, be well-researched and developed.  The competing teams are judged by SMFs, themselves engineers with business qualifications, who are entrepreneurs and business leaders.

    During the judging, the competing teams must convince the judges of the viability of their idea by explaining the rationale for the product, their R&D process, understanding of customer needs, as well as their thoughts on finance and marketing.

    To date first-prize winning teams have brought two innovative concepts forward and won cash and career mentoring prizes:

    • Precicio Polo created a prototype of a new design for the traditional polo mallet head which makes it easier to wield by people of smaller physical stature; this typically applies to female and young players. The aim is to even out the playing field for women by reducing the mallet’s weight, improving accuracy and durability and thus increase the level of participation in the sport.
    • Team SenSei created a prototype of a sensory glove that emitted a gentle alert indicating the proximity of objects, allowing blind people to navigate safely through everyday life.

    SMF President David Falzani said, “Some of the most important global challenges we face today are not just technical challenges, but require the ability to link technologies to an understanding of the market mechanism, business skills, and entrepreneurial commercial thinking. These challenges include delivering and growing secure and affordable supplies of clean water and of energy to meet the needs and expectations of a fast-growing global population.

    “Some of the problems can be alleviated by injecting the creativity and excitement of commercial education and commercial opportunity into undergraduate degrees. It may also impact upon other common criticism of technical graduates in general. Typically these are reported as a lack of personal communication and team-working skills and too narrow skills set. The Entrepreneur & Business Module and Engineers in Business Competition addresses key skills gaps and inspires students to use their engineering skills to solve problems in society.”

    If you are a university/business school interested in running the Engineers in Business Competition, contact Cathy Breeze.

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