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Developing a taste for entrepreneurship in students

The student/entrepreneurship dimension is a strategic issue for our establishment. It is based on a real desire to investment on the part of our students. ESA wishes to disseminate a culture of entrepreneurship to the greatest number of students, irrespective of their curricula. Our educational approach is based on a Participative Entrepreneurial Pedagogy taught to students throughout their entire curricula. It starts from the idea that entrepreneurship is not just the creation of a business, but also the totality of the in-house (entrepreneurship) and external (creator/buyer) organisations.

1. Raising awareness

For a decade now, ESA has been running two competitions aimed at raising awareness and encouraging students to concretise an innovative project. The project should be creative/motivational in nature, irrespective of whether it is fully completed and without constraints.

  • Call for innovative ideas: contest open to all students pursuing their studies at ESA, from BTS to Bac+5. The selection is made by a professional jury composed of representatives of the school, including lecturers in “creators of businesses”, from the association of former students who have graduated from ESA, and business leaders. A grant of €2,000 to encourage the Entrepreneurial Spirit of the students of ESA.
  • Creation or Take-over of a Business: competition oriented towards the creation of new products and services, new applications or technological solutions in the areas of Agriculture, Agri-food and the Environment. It is open to Alumni. A grant of €3,000 to assist young entrepreneurs in setting up their business.

2. Training

ESA has a module called “ESA & ESAIP inter-school Entrepreneurship & Innovation3. The goal is to make entrepreneurship a lever in terms of sustainable integration into the labour market, facilitate the entrepreneurial activity, create synergies through the different academic profiles and revive the entrepreneurial spirit. A project-based teaching where collective intelligence is valued. The training is original since it brings together students of ESA and ESAIP, and alumni.
Supervision is ensured by ESA-ESAIP professionals and institutional partners, “CCI-Angers Technopole and Banks”.

  • Targeted skills :
    • Creation of the “Genesis of an entrepreneurial project”
    • Understanding of the world of business
    • Construction of the Business Model of your project. Grasp of the value proposition
    • Formalisation of your entrepreneurial project, “Financing and legal dimension”
    • Ability to make a case for and communicate “Techniques for valuing an entrepreneurial project”

Support : Assistance, Work Placement in companies, Institutional tutors, School and Technopole Incubator.

3. Support

3. The Initiative Laboratory is a special place that is conducive to encouraging students’ creativity and desire in terms of entrepreneurship. Here they can develop themselves any project that requires analytical or experimental support.
The laboratory and facilities are available to the students who are supervised by the educational team. It is an area for creativity, innovation and experimentation for the students, irrespective of the study programme project and without being assessed.

4. Reliance on networks

ESA, member of the PEPITE CREER cluster (www.creer.lunam.fr), started activities to incentivise and encourage entrepreneurship and initiative among students. The actions include:

  • Entrepreneurship marathon: inter-establishment
  • Circuit rider training programme in entrepreneurship & creativity “PEPITE CREER”: starter training for students on the Angevin campus (ESA, ENSAM, ESEO, ESAIP, UCO, University of Angers, etc.) from Bac + 1 to doctorate, who wish to develop their creativity and entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Student-entrepreneur status: this status allows students and young graduates to develop an entrepreneurial project in a PEPITE (starter programme). A diploma granted by the establishment, “étudiant-entrepreneur” (D2E) (student-entrepreneur), accompanies the status: It allows a student to carry out his project with a maximum of security and visibility.

Entrepreneurship point of contact: Driss ELOTHMANI, Lecturer-Researcher, has been designated by the School’s administration to coordinate the Student-Entrepreneurship programme and to represent ESA in the various networks: PEPITE CREER UBL, CGE, Ecotrophélia France, Les Entrepreneuriales, Le Prix de l’Initiative du Crédit Agricole, etc.

5. OSER: Junior entreprise

Junior enterprise is a national movement which brings together 12,000 students in 160 Juniors. OSER (Ouest Service Etudes Recherche) is ESA’s junior enterprise. It has some 250 student-engineers ready to respond as far as possible and with flexibility to the needs of its clients. OSER acts as consultants. It offers services to professionals in agricultural sectors and, in the process, the organisation allows our students to develop their personal skills: management, customer relations, accountancy, speaking in public, etc.