Clara B. is 24 years old and lives in Southern France. After studying in the Global Entrepreneurship Program in 2014-2015, Clara decided to work her start-up idea called BeeShary. In ths interview, she talks about both her business venture as well as about her entrepreneurial experience in the Global Entrepreneurship Program.
Why did you choose the Global Entrepreneurship Program?
I have a background in finance. I studied for 4 years at Edhec Business School in Nice and I gained some professional experience in different financial institutions. However, directly after graduation, I had the great opportunity to work for a social enterprise in Bangladesh for 6 months. During this time, I realized that I really want to have an impact on this world and start my own business. Therefore I researched higher education programs for entrepreneurship and I was amazed by the Global Entrepreneurship Program. What I loved most about the Global Entrepreneurship Program was that it offered the unique possibility to travel the world, study with people from various cultural backgrounds and actively start my own business during the program.
What were the highlights of your experience in the Global Entrepreneurship Program?
Reflecting the year of the Global Entrepreneurship Program, I have 2 major highlights. First, 2 fellows of the Global Entrepreneurship Program students and myself brought the Startup Weekend powered by Google to Hangzhou, China. During the World Entrepreneurship Forum 2014 in Lyon, I got in contact with Rodgrigo Baggio who was awarded “Laureate for Social Entrepreneur”. He and I exchanged the idea of bringing “Startup Weekend Change Maker”, a pitch challenge which promotes social entrepreneurship, to China. Et voila, after three months, a lot of emails and a lot of talks, Giuseppe from Italy, Vanessa from Germany and myself were hosting an event of 120 people wanting to have a social impact on the Chinese life. For us three, this adventure was a great challenge!
During the World Entrepreneurship Forum 2014 in Lyon, I got in contact with Rodgrigo Baggio who was awarded “Laureate for Social Entrepreneur”.Et voila, after three months, we organized a Startup weekend event in Hangzhou, China.
Second, the opportunity to work and live together with people from all around the world on a daily basis was definitely a rewarding challenge but more than that, it broadened my cultural horizon. In one year, we celebrated Diwali with Indians, we enjoyed homemade turkey for Thanksgiving and we watched fireworks in Shanghai for the Chinese New Year. Quite a journey!
What have you been working on since you finish the program?
The Global Entrepreneurship Program was the starting point for my own startup: BeeShary. BeeShary is an online platform which connects curious travellers to local people who want to share their culture and tradition.
I founded my firm one month after graduation. Now, three months later, I successfully finished my crowd funding campaign and I am about to go live with my platform.
Has the Global Entrepreneurship program help you get where you are professionally? And if so, how?
Definitely! The Global Entrepreneurship Program was one year of dedicated training to learn how to start my own business. I had to permanently pitch my idea and got challenged by fellow students, professors, and industry experts on a regular basis. I received very valuable feedback and now I feel confidant to turn my dream into a success story.
What advice would you give to the future students of the Global Entrepreneurship Program?
Be open, active and appreciate criticism. The Global Entrepreneurship Program is a great platform for future entrepreneurs and it can open a lot of doors to you. But you have to be dedicated, know what you want, and work hard to get it. And after all, the year is full of fun; so take your time for that, too!