“See what happens when you throw that
idea through this filter. Does it score a lot lower?” [Mark Wilson] The program is a great
exchange program to bring some faculty from Romania who are really trying to
build entrepreneurship in Romania and bring some of their practices here, but also have them come to Rochester and learn some of our techniques. “You have a lot of ideas, you’re going to throw a bunch away just based on mini filter.” [Mihai Dragomir] We had
the Revolution in 1989. Romania used to be a communist country in the former
Eastern Bloc in Europe. My country became a democracy. Our economic system is based on market economy and capitalist and of course the companies had to go through a whole line of changes in order to become competitive. [Corina Forascu] To keep it simple, entrepreneurship in Romania, in comparison with entrepreneurship in US, it’s
almost going down to zero. But this is why we are here to learn how to
stimulate people to start their own business and to keep it. [Mihai] I think the
biggest challenge that we have and the biggest advantage that exists here is
the entrepreneurial ecosystem. I think everybody knows that entrepreneurship is
a pretty risky business because many companies fail for one company that is
successful many hundreds can fail so getting any support is helpful. [Mark] I had the opportunity to travel to Romania and it was really exciting to see Romania is in
love with entrepreneurship and reinventing themselves and changing in
that very positive attitude to say we can do it we’re gonna change the country.
From a perspective of a culture of entrepreneurship, and education around
entrepreneurship and innovation, I would say it’s very similar actually. Rochester
has had a lot of large-scale changes from an economy and we are trying to rebuild that into an economy that is more entrepreneurial.
[Corina] I want to learn about how people are doing entrepreneurship here, about
entrepreneurship initiatives, about how can we do it back at home.
How can we improve our entrepreneurial skills not only for us as professors but
also for our students? [Mihai] The Romanian people are very open to collaborating
with other nations with other countries. The companies in the United States
represent a good model for us to change ourselves and to transform ourselves to
be more competitive. [Mark] I always learn, always from students and what they’re
doing and to have six professionals right in my class I’m definitely
learning and being inspired.