Young Entrepreneurs

2 phases are better than 1 – Young Entrepreneurs 2023 Onsite is here!

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Finally, the Onsite – Phase II of Young Entrepreneurs has started!

You don’t know what the Young Entrepreneurs program is? Don’t worry… You can make up for that by reading the previous blog posts, in which we present the YE 2023 edition, also thanks to the YE Ambassadors for sharing their experiences on our blog, from previous years.

In a nutshell: Young Entrepreneurs is a nonprofit, international, hybrid program, about entrepreneurial education for youth:

  • Since its creation by the Startup Wise Guys Foundation, it has operated as a non-profit organization. with the aim of empowering the new generation of entrepreneurs and change-makers.
  • It’s international since it allows youth from every corner of the world to participate.
  • Finally, it’s hybrid since it offers two phases: Phase 1 is fully remote; while Phase 2 is fully on-site.

The program takes the form of a Summer School, conceived and created by the Startup Wise Guys Foundation in 2020. Over the years YE has got positive feedback not only from participants but also from an extensive network of local and international partners, first and foremost Swedbank Estonia and the Estonian Business School.

But before we say more about the two YE 2023 cities, we want to briefly go over the milestones achieved during the online phase of the program:

In 2023, the Startup Wise Guys Foundation organized its fourth edition of the program. Over 600 students from more than 45 countries have applied this year. Out of these applicants, 400 students were eligible and entered the online Phase of the program. In this phase, they learned about the key aspects of the entrepreneurial mindset from Cristobal Alonso, the CEO of Startup Wise Guys, and his co-author Stoyan Yankov. The insights shared in their book "PERFORM - The Unsexy truth about (startup) Success" formed the foundation of their learning.

These milestones could never be achieved without the contribution of all the partners in the Young Entrepreneurs network, which is truly one of the most unique programs in Europe, and beyond: 20 University partners, 32 community partners, various youth associations and entrepreneurial hubs, all are part of this program!

Out of 600 applications received, and 400 accepted, only 105 participants successfully completed phase 1 of the program and were invited to continue their YE journey.

A total of 50 talented participants will be featured in Phase 2 of the program (that’s right, only 50!!! or 8.3% of the applicants). Phase 2 – onsite part of the program is much more practical with a hands-on focus. For the first time in YE’s history, the program will be held not only in Tallinn, Estonia but also in Cluj-Napoca, Romania!

In each of the two cities, between 20 and 30 young entrepreneurs will participate in 18+ lectures, 6+ founder stories, 2 company visits, and also 4 social mingles, and a final 2 days hackathon to put into practice their learnings. In total, the two summer schools in Tallinn and Cluj have more than 40 local and international mentors, as well as support from local governments and the Startup Wise Guys Foundation Holding and Foundation team. 

YE Phase 2 Onsite part has just commenced, so the story of the 2023 edition is about to be written. However, special appreciation on behalf of the YE team and the Foundation goes to the organizations that we work with on a daily basis to implement the program: Swedbank Estonia- which is a leader in the Baltics and Nordics for human and financial investment in the startup sector, he the Estonian Business School in Tallinn, and Babes Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca. They continually demonstrate what it means to be an esteemed educational institution and they will be the ones to host the YE activities this summer. Also, special thanks to Eversheds Sutherland, one of the world’s top law firms, for believing in young entrepreneurs, and Hokkaido University (Japan) for offering 5 students the opportunity to visit Estonia and the Startup Wise Guys. Finally, to many philanthropists, who responded positively to Herty Tammo’s call, who is one of the founders of Startup Wise Guys, and offered the opportunity for additional youngsters to participate, free of charge, in Phase 2.

The summer school, in addition to lots of fun and networking, aims to equip the participants with the tools that help them to  “think like entrepreneurs,” which means not only founding a startup but approaching life without fear of creating, making mistakes, learning, and starting over. 

We are practically at the halfway point – we are at the start of Young Entrepreneurs Phase 2: Energy is spread among more than 15 nations, and will focus in Cluj-Napoca between July 17 and July 26. And in Tallinn between July 31 and August 9. 

See you there!