A French view of the new Franco-Canadian programme in Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Vancouver

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Last week, I was in Vancouver to open the new programme in Entrepreneurship & Innovation that we have set up with Simon Fraser University. Like many programmes of this type, this has taken several years to get started. The Dean of SFU, Daniel Shapiro, and I initiated the idea several years ago so it was great to finally see the Canadian and French students getting to know each other. Whilst I was there I asked some of the students their reasons for selecting the programme. This second post gives the French perspective.

Anne Semeria chose this programme because she felt that entrepreneurship and innovation  would give her a broad perspective to how businesses work. She feels that she will begin her career in a company and later set up her own business. The programme will be highly beneficial in preparing her for this.IMG_5727

She was also delighted to be in Canada having already heard so many good things about the country.

“I’ve just been here for three days and it’s amazing. It’s beautiful, the landscapes are beautiful and the people are amazing. They are just so nice. Really! It’s true.”

Though she hasn’t started the courses as yet, she understood that teaching methods would be different in Canada.

“I know I have to respect deadlines, that’s not a problem for me and just the difference of atmosphere will be really great and I can take advantage of this.” she said.

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Olivier Handelsman had the opportunity to go either to New York or Vancouver during the second semester at Grenoble EM but said that he had been “literally obsessed” with entrepreneurship and innovation for many years. He also wanted to study abroad as soon as he could during his time at the school and states that:

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 “A lot of friends have told me that Canada is a beautiful country and a very good country to study in.”

His first impression of the SFU campus was that it was very big with many different services and that people are very friendly.

 “If you don’t know where to go there’s always someone somewhere who can tell you. There are lots of sport facilities, shops, mall stores, café, restaurants etc. It’s like a huge city and you feel just at home.”

He looks forward to being able to exchange a lot about cultures and personal experience with the Canadian students and then developing business contacts in the country.

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Sarah Viala came to Grenoble EM with a very clear idea that she wanted to get as much international experience as possible during her studies. With that in mind, the Transcontinental programme was the logical choice in the second year. She spent the first semester in Beijing and is now delighted be pursuing her studies in Vancouver.

I found this programme amazing.” she says.

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“I am able to discover two completely different countries in one year. I’m very interested by innovation and marketing of high tech products so I think this kind of programme is exactly what I’m looking for in order to boost my career.  So this is why I think it’s a good match, being abroad and following the kind of program that matches my personality and my goals.”

Comparing her experience in China to her forthcoming experience in Canada, she speculated that Canadians would be “a little bit more relaxed compared to Chinese people” and that there would be “more room for put your personality in what you are doing.” She hoped that the mixture of French and Canadian students would allow them both to discover more about each other.

 The campus is very big, even compared to the Chinese campus, and very different.

“In France of course there is not that kind of concept and in China it was different because there are fewer activities on campus. There are more than 100 clubs here and I think it’s a good way to integrate into the student community.”

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Yann Chevalier also began his second year on the Transcontinental programme in China.

 “I think it’s a great opportunity to compare two different cultures.” He said.

After a few days in Vancouver he realised that:

IMG_5736“People are different in Canada; they are very relaxed and very open-minded. They like to talk to people and to explore new ideas.”

Studying in China helped him learn about the networking. “It’s really important because when you want to do business you have to know many people and many important people. That’s what we call ‘Guanxi.’ I also learnt about the Chinese culture, how to meet people and  how to introduce to Chinese people.”

His first impressions of SFU was one of a huge campus with more than 30 000 people.

It’s a city within the city. I think it will be great to study here and I already know that I will miss Canada when I leave.” 

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Many thanks to all the students for their participation and to Dr. Sarah Lubik for allowing me to attend the beginning of what looks like a very interesting course on New Venture Planning. The organization of the programme so far has been first rate.  

See also:

AN EXCHANGE IN SOUTH AMERICA.

ADAntoine Diaz is a GEM student on exchange in Brazil at the University of Sao Paulo. He discusses withMark Thomas the differences between the two school systems, what he is studying there and the plans for the future.

 

A new joint Franco-Canadian Masters programme in Entrepreneurship & Innovation: Perspectives and expectations from Canadian students.

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Last week, I was in Vancouver to open the new programme in Entrepreneurship & Innovation that my school and Simon Fraser University have set up. Like many programmes of this type, this has taken several years to get started. The Dean of SFU, Daniel Shapiro, and I initiated the idea several years ago so it was great to finally see the Canadian and French students getting to know each other. Whilst I was there I asked some of the students their reasons for selecting the programme. This first post gives the Canadian perspective.

Looking back at the Transcontinental program, one year after…

My name is Laurent GREGOIRE; I was a student in transcontinental New York during 2013. I am currently working at Alstom’s Finance Department for a one year internship where I manage financial aspect of energy projects all around the world. 

 

2 Comments

Filed under Business Schools, Canada, Entrepreneurship, Exchange study programs, France, Innovation, Management, Study Abroad

2 responses to “A French view of the new Franco-Canadian programme in Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Vancouver

  1. I believe every student must benefit from this programme. Especially when there’s possibility to experience and try different marketing techniques on such contrasting cultural backgrounds. It’s important that everyone develops a distinctive approach which can resonate with the right people.

    • Mark Thomas

      Thank you for your comments, Jay. I have just spent a week with the same students and they are all really enjoying the experience. Both the Canadian students and the French students are learning from it and it is great to see them interacting. Best wishes, Mark

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