How to Explore Entrepreneurship During Your MBA

How to Explore Entrepreneurship During Your MBA main image

What options and avenues do you have to explore entrepreneurship during your MBA?

At INSEAD, almost half of their MBA graduates run their own companies at some point in their careers, from high growth ventures to entrepreneurial projects within corporations. So, few schools are better placed to help you explore entrepreneurship and decide if it’s the right path for you. 

Here are just some of the things INSEAD offers its MBA students.

Entrepreneurship courses

The INSEAD MBA portfolio contains more than 15 entrepreneurship electives which are designed so you can match the courses to your career goals. Whether you want to start your own venture from scratch, become a social entrepreneur, a corporate intrapreneur or a turnaround specialist, you will find a suitable set of courses to give you the tools you need for a successful start.

INSEAD (EiR) program

The INSEAD (EiR) program connects MBA students with experienced entrepreneurs — many of them INSEAD MBA alumni— in a personalized, one-on-one setting. Whatever your plans, the EiR program gives you unprecedented access to experts who can help you find better answers and solve problems.

We currently have 90 entrepreneurs across both campuses who cover a wide range of domains and industries. In addition, there is also a virtual EiR program that allows students to meet EiRs via Skype, thereby expanding the network all over the globe.

INSEAD Venture Competition

The IVC is a flagship event open to both MBA and Executive MBA (EMBA) students. A dynamic, multi-stage competition, the IVC sees teams compete for cash prizes to support the development of their new ventures. IVC teams receive mentoring from successful alumni entrepreneurs along the way and pitch their ventures to seasoned investors. Created as a biannual event in 2000, the previous 33 competitions have produced many successful ventures, including BlaBlaCar and Prodigy Finance among others.

INSEAD Entrepreneurship Club

The student-run INSEAD Entrepreneurship Club (IEC) hosts speaker series, networking events and career treks as well as idea sharing and pitching sessions to provide support for students from the phase of business idea development and validation to actual business model implementation.

Field trips

The school offers field trips which focus on building businesses in a particular region such as China, India, Russia or Silicon Valley. Led by INSEAD faculty, these trips offer fantastic opportunities to meet with many local executives and investors, as well as INSEAD alumni living and working in that region.

Extracurricular activities

The INSEAD Centre for Entrepreneurship (ICE) looks to promote entrepreneurial ambitions and activities within INSEAD. Three key activities under its realm are the Startup Bootcamp, the Entrepreneurs-in-Residence (EiR) program and the INSEAD Venture Competition (IVC).

Startup bootcamp

The popular Startup Bootcamp is an intensive and interactive training program held over a weekend. Many business ventures started by INSEAD MBAs were originally formulated in the bootcamp, before being further developed in various classes.

Collaborative working spaces

According to Compass’s Startup Ecosystem Ranking 2015 report, which has insights on the world’s top start-up territories, Singapore and Paris are among the top 15 locations in the world for entrepreneurs. 

In Singapore, Block 71, “the world’s most tightly packed entrepreneurial ecosystem” according to The Economist, is right across the street from INSEAD’s campus. 

In Fontainebleau, a collaborative workspace called “The Mews” houses INSEAD’s aspiring entrepreneurs directly on campus, as a first step towards an incubator.


LaunchPad is a hub specifically for the INSEAD community, to help students and alumni connect to each other and entrepreneurs, business leaders, researchers, angel investors, venture capitalists and philanthropists.

Your fellow cohort

INSEAD MBA students come with a wealth of experience, knowledge and ambition, from all corners of the globe. You will meet many students who have an entrepreneurial background whether they come from accelerators, VCs, fundraising or start-ups. These same people might one day make great advisors when you’re launching your own business.

Learn more about studying at INSEAD.

Written by Craig OCallaghan

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