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Coursera and HEC Paris Partner to Foster Entrepreneurship Skills

By HER Team | Thursday, 30 Mar 2017, 16:41 IST

HEC Paris and Coursera launch their first fully online international degree program,   the Online Master’s in Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OMIE). Europe’s leading business school has created this degree in collaboration with Coursera, the world’s leading online learning platform. The program is designed for present and future business leaders who wish to drive innovation within their organizations or launch new ventures.

Students will work in teams over a six-month period on a project of choice, from the planning stages to bringing the idea to life. They will receive mentoring from experienced entrepreneurs and business leaders who will meet with them once a week. Successful graduates will be able to move their respective project into its next phase by applying for seed funding from HEC Paris, and have their project come to fruition at HEC’s incubator, based at Station F, the world’s biggest startup campus. Applications are now open for the first intake of students with classes starting in September 2017.

By the end of the program, successful applicants will understand how to combine talent and capital, manage rapid growth and reduce risk factors by using decision-making skills they have acquired. The program’s entrepreneurial angle also encourages students to explore a new way of thinking when faced with different opportunities in social ventures, governments, and life. “HEC Paris offers participants the opportunity to learn from world-class practitioners in their industries,” explains HEC Paris Dean Peter Todd. “Through innovative, fully online and interactive courses, participants will leave the program ready to launch their own venture or to innovate within their existing organizations. This is a unique opportunity to earn an HEC Master’s degree and join the exclusive HEC Alumni network.”

Coursera CEO Rick Levin is hopeful that the OMIE will make learning from a top business school attainable to people globally, particularly in India where entrepreneurship has exploded in recent years: “This is a degree for ambitious students who want to gain access to an international network of entrepreneurs and build high impact companies. Thanks to a unique curriculum based on stackable credentials, participants can benefit at each level of learning. They can choose a single course, decide to specialize in one program, or embark on a full-fledged degree. This degree represents remarkable progress in providing equitable access to education from a highly reputable business school.”

The online Master’s in Innovation & Entrepreneurship will be as selective as all other degrees at HEC Paris. But it is also designed to be flexible, allowing prospective students to start learning immediately on the Coursera platform with open enrollment Specializations. Once admitted, Specialization can then be credited towards the degree.

According to Dean Todd, the need for courses designed for entrepreneurial and innovative leaders is greater than ever: “As the aspirations of Indians change, more value has been placed on entrepreneurship education which aims to provide the required knowledge, skills     and motivation to encourage entrepreneurial success. It is also firmly believed that entrepreneurial instinct is not solely an in-born talent, but can be learned.

In fact, according to the India Entrepreneurship Report 2015, at an average, 73 percent of people believe that anyone can be trained or educated to be an entrepreneur.

For the past 135 years, HEC Paris has produced world-class innovators and entrepreneurs. Its more recent ability to build open courses will now be leveraged to develop a fully online degree for the entire world. The program will indeed expand access to a global audience of current and aspiring entrepreneurs and business leaders, drawing from Coursera’s 25 million learners globally.

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June 2018
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