Students aspiring to be entrepreneurs embark on MIT GSL Nepal program

Himalayan News Service

June 22, 2018

Kathmandu, June 21: Thirty five students aspiring to be entrepreneurs with ideas for potentially game-changing technology start-ups have embarked on the MIT Global Startup Lab (GSL) program in Nepal, which is being conducted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in collaboration with Kathmandu University and Ncell.

The aspiring entrepreneurs, who were selected from among 150 KU students and alumini that submitted their ideas for participation in the program, are currently participating in a week long residential camp learning skill sets required for building startups.

The students are being facilitated by 4 MIT instructors and are learning course in programming languages and entrepreneurship, based on MIT’s unique approach. Components of the course include detailed technical curriculum, market research, team development, business model execution, idea pitching, guest lectures, and networking events, among others, all to help students realize the potential of their ideas.

The course is very interesting and the boot camp so far has been very fruitful! It is not just about attending lectures, but involves learning by doing. This is helping me to better understand how to work on startups and technology,” said Sujay Hada, one of the students participating in the program.

MIT GSL, run by world’s one of the most prestigious universities MIT, is recognized for successfully empowering technology entrepreneurs and cultivating the startup ecosystem in emerging economics. For last 18 years, the program has promoted economic development by nurturing young technology entrepreneurs in 25 countries, including India and Sri Lanka in South Asia.

Studying in MIT had been my dream. I am excited for being selected and getting the chance to participate in this program. I am thankful to Ncell for bringing MIT GSL to Nepal and helping me realize my dream,” said Ronesh Shrestha, another students participating in the MIT GSL.

By the end of the week, the students will group up into a total of 11 teams, and collectively work on their business ideas. Being a residential camp, the students are spending full time together – engaging with each other during trainings, honestly discussing their ideas and working on business framework for realizing their startups.

We have disclosed our areas of interest. Some of the fellow trainees have shown interest in my area of focus, so I am discussing with them for team formation. My specialization is in the field of marketing; I am looking to tie up with participants that are technologically adept,” said Deepali Bhattarai, another participant.

Once through the closed camp, the students will break for regular schedule. They will, however, meet every day in an incubation center, which Ncell is contributing to set up. The center is equipped with necessary logistics. MIT instructors will also be available round the clock to support the students.

Through this phase, the teams will develop on their ideas, develop business plan, test them and finalize prototypes. The teams will then pitch to a panel of Jury on August 2, 2018, when the program ends with Demo Day.

The MIT GSL program is being implemented for the first time in Nepal in a collaboration that Ncell initiated with MIT and KU as a part of Ncell’s Corporate Social Responsibility to nurture technology entrepreneurship among young talent.