Successful R&D Business in Any Part of the World: LETI Trains Young Startuppers
At LETI Inter Week, international students learned about skills and tips necessary to launch a successful startup by taking part in workshops and business games, discussing business ideas, and visiting R&D labs as part of the International Startupper School.
The Hard and Soft Skills track held within the LETI Inter Week introduced its participants to the know-how and skills necessary for a successful career in the innovative business environment.
The International Startupper School, organized by the Inprotekh Institute and International Projects Office, introduced the basics of running a successful R&D business in any part of the world. The track was opened by the lecture of Nadezhda Pokrovskaya, Professor of the Innovation Management Department. The interactive lecture discussed trends and principles of innovation management that work everywhere. The theme was continued by Ilya Bogatyrev, a 4th-year student of INPROTECH, who presented the "LETI Startups" acceleration program aimed at the implementation of student tech entrepreneurship initiatives.
«Geography expansion of the projects participating in our startup accelerator program certainly proves the global youth interest in entrepreneurship activities. And at the same time, it is a challenge for us, as each project is unique, and cross-cultural features will play an important role in the acceleration process. But we are ready to accept such a challenge and welcome international participants."
Students visited the university's laboratories. The first was the CDIO lab, organized for students who want both learn from the lectures and apply their knowledge and capacities in the related fields, bringing ideas to life. The new CDIO lab opens its doors to inventive opportunities for any student. Visitors were also impressed by the anechoic chamber, which conducts experimental research in electromagnetic compatibility and antenna measurements.
On the second day of the International Startupper school, Ksenia Tikhankina, Assistant of the Department of Public Relations at LETI, spoke about efficient communication tools, for example, the "elevator pitch," a few-minute presentation to persuade the investor. Participating master students subjected their business ideas and prospective startups to expert assessment.
The program was continued by an insightful visit to the LETI R&D Park. The students learned about research in sports and rehabilitation, exoskeleton testing, the development of drone control systems, and other capabilities of the Motion Capture and Simulation Systems laboratory. Andrey Aksenov, Associate Professor of the Department of Laser Measurement and Navigation Systems, and assistant Olesya Maltseva demonstrated the functionality of the laboratory equipment, which allows the virtual reconstruction of various objects, as well as the human skeleton for analysis of the musculoskeletal system.
Following that, students visited a Youth Laboratory on Hyperspectral Technologies, which are used in high-precision methods of material diagnostics. LETI researchers adapted them for applications such as the restoration of archival documents, personal identification, and the study of archaeological finds.
Anastasia Vasilyeva, Assistant of the Department of Photonics and Junior Researcher of the Project Office, gave a tour of the Laboratory of Lasers in Microelectronics, which was opened not so long ago in the LETI R&D Park. Now the laboratory has three laser units and an optical 3D scanner. This equipment allows research on the micromachining of photonics and microelectronics materials, processing various materials ranging from metals to certain types of organics, and high-precision welding of various thin-sheet metals and alloys.
The third day was devoted to business games using methodologies and techniques of the Process Factory, which was opened in September 2022. Students practiced quality management and lean production tools in the game mode. They simulated specific business situations: from selling equipment to receiving payment and delivering finished products – and solved complicated problems playing roles of company employees.
"This program was great because it introduced students to entrepreneurship and offered essential skills to build a startup. I learned lean management skills, how to present my ideas better, and how to communicate with other people. I think that this experience will come in handy when I graduate and want to start my own business. I enjoyed the lab visits - I visited places I didn't even know existed."
Active participants of the International Startup School received certificates and an invitation to the LETI Startups Accelerator Program to use new ideas and skills in practical applications.
The "Hard and Soft Skills" track also included a workshop and testing of the "Digital Botanical Garden" application, created by VibeLab, the youth IT laboratory of LETI. The developers introduced participants to the principles of the creation and operation of intelligent quest platforms. They could download the application and test it in navigation and quest modes in the Botanical Garden.