It’s the best time to be a student! You know why?
Flashback : I did my engineering in 2010-2014 period and the most happening thing during my time was undoubtedly the startup boom in our state which was fuelled by the inception of entities like Startup Village and Technopark TBI. Most engineering students wanted to startup on their own. But the path to entrepreneurship wasn’t easy ..
Incubators in the state were flooded with applications from student entrepreneurs and couldn’t even process them easily. Though their needs varied most of them needed business mentorship as well as technical guidance. But due to the enormous volume of applications incubators couldn’t provide it to everyone. Students who wanted to attend major startup/tech events happening in the metro cities were forced to drop their plans since they couldn’t afford it. We rarely had quality events happening in our state.
Fast forward to now, things have changed. Govt. has launched a Startup Policy and we have Kerala Startup Mission (earlier Technopark TBI) to initiate various programmes for developing the student entrepreneurship in the state. Finally, it’s become much easier for students because of the following:
- Entrepreneurship development cells in almost every colleges
Under the leadership of Kerala Startup Mission, almost 130 educational institutes are now equipped with Entrepreneurship Development Cells. Students now have a dedicated organization to look after the entrepreneurship activities and mentor them to develop potential technology products that can be brought out in markets. They provide the students with a dedicated space with Internet facilities from where campus startups can work on and take their baby steps.
- More incubators and accelerators !
Currently, in our state there are around 8 active incubators and the students have the luxury of choices. More specialized incubators are on the verge of starting operations.
- Quality events
Under the leadership of Kerala Startup Mission, many events are already being planned are organized for students in various parts of the state. Also identifying the potential of expanding to Tier-II cities, investors and startups have already started to expand their presence in Cochin and Trivandrum. Cochin being one of the Smart City selected by Govt. of India is already getting a place on the Startup Map in India and some quality startup and tech events are happening already with many to follow.
- Travel support for students
Students who genuinely want to attend startup events or biz-plan competitions or even pitch competitions at metro cities can ask for travel assistance.
I hope the students make use of the opportunities available to them and make most out of it.