Africa 2018 - call for participation

Africa 2018 - call for participation

by Simon Gifford -
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Call for participation in Africa 2018: a pan African virtual accelerator programme

Association of African Universities and Mashauri

Call for participation image

Mashauri have developed an online programme that teaches university students how to be an entrepreneur while they actually start a business. This form of experiential eduction has proven to be the best way to acquire an entrepreneurial mindset that not only encourages entrepreneurship but also allows the student to stand out from the rest if they seek to become employed.

Our model has been tested in South Africa and India and we are now looking to roll it out to other African universities across the continent. Recognising that every geography has their specific challenges when it comes to implementing such online education, we are seeking up to 6 universities to work with us in co-creating and running a pan-African venture accelerator in October and November of 2018.

The Programme

We will take students through a process of conceiving a business idea through to developing and testing their value proposition in the market. The programme will end with a pitching event and graduation at each of the universities; and a final "pitch-off" among the winners from each participating institution.

Our programmes are housed on our online learning platform that include training, mentor input, tools, templates, motivational material, quizzes and project based activities.

Mashauri entrepreneurial learning platform

Students are individually tracked through the process and encouraged to keep progressing to the end. Real mentors assess their inputs; and offline activities also encourage interaction between students and professors.

Selection of participating universities: 30 September 2018

Programme timing: programme commence in October 2018

Programme length: 6 to 8 weeks

Student numbers: 20 to 30 per institution

Benefits for your institution

Virtual incubatorThe benefit of participating in this initiative is that it will allow you to position your university as one of the African leaders in entrepreneurial education. Furthermore, it will create an opportunity to reach out and play a role in your local community and entrepreneurial ecosystem.

The programme itself will offer a wonderful opportunity for up to 30 of your students to gain some valuable life-skills as they develop an entrepreneurial mindset.

What type of institution should apply

We are seeking higher education institutions who recognise the importance of imbuing students with the cognitive skills that go with obtaining an entrepreneurial mindset - including elements such as initiative, problem-solving, attitude to risk, self-confidence, communication and opportunity seeking.

Your university should be open to testing innovative ways of education and be prepared to work with us in co-creating and managing the programme.

Specific requirements:

> Approximately 3 hours per week from an entrepreneurial professor or a project manager, for the duration of the programme (6 to 8 weeks).

> A space large enough for the student entrepreneurs to meet on a weekly or bi-weekly basis with a projector hooked up for online interaction

>Management (with Mashauri support) of the final pitching competition.

> Management (with Mashauri support) of the student selection process

> $4,000 contribution to the programme (which represents a 60% discount on the standard price) billed in local currency

Mashauri rationale

Although as a virtual organisation, Mashauri is global in nature; we have a stated goal of making a difference in developing economies and specifically Africa.

In our experience, it is not entirely straightforward to simply launch a generic online programme in any geography and still expect high completion rates. Most countries and regions have their own challenges be it technology infrastructure, perceptions of entrepreneurship and institutional capacity. We are therefore launching this programme to help us better understand these contextual issues across a number of African countries simultaneously.

In so doing, we believe we will uncover and learn to address these challenges in a way that will allow us to best tailor our programmes to optimise the benefits in the continent.

Application for the programme

If you would like to be considered as a participant for this pan-African programme, please complete the short application form below and we will get back to you to set up an initial discussion.

Deadline for application 28th September 2018

Note that completion of the application does not guarantee you will be able to participate, but neither does it commit you to do so either.

Application form