Inauguration of the 20th Annual Entrepreneurship Competition and Showcase (ECS)
Under the Patronage of His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, and Chancellor of the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT), Mr. Saeed Bin Redha, CEO of Global Village, inaugurated Dubai Women's College (DWC) 20th Annual Entrepreneurship Competition and Showcase (ECS) formerly known as The Bazaar in the presence of Dr. Howard Reed, Director of DWC.
The 3-day entrepreneurial event, which runs until December 23, 2010, was organized to provide a meaningful learning experience to all DWC students who showcased their entrepreneurial talents to the community and raised funds for charity. The annual event is an integral part of the DWC teaching curriculum integrated across all programs and providing students with the opportunity to apply knowledge and skills learned in the classroom to real life business projects. Students create an original business concept to implement during the ECS. Students begin by presenting a mini business plan to a panel of teachers to obtain a "trading license". Upon approval, students prepare a detailed plan of tasks to be done with a timeline. Students take responsibility for all aspects of their business including purchasing, production, setup, pricing, promotion, and customer service. After the event, students write a reflective final report and presentation analyzing what they have learned during the project.
DWC's new faculty member, Nao Valentino, Manager DWC Business Faculty member said "The ECS is a great way for students to sharpen their business acumen and test their entrepreneurial spirit. Tomorrows business leaders emerge from the experiential learning environments fostered by DWC and the Annual ECS."
The annual event aligns with DWC's strategic priority focusing on developing strong entrepreneurs who can act as strong participants in the development of Dubai's economic market. This year, a total of 128 businesses participated in DWC's 20th Annual ECS and covered several industries including food and beverage, printing, e-services, education, retail, and others. Students this year focused on how to substitute junk food with fast healthy food and adopted policies that are environmental friendly by cutting down on plastic bags and replacing them with reusable cotton bags and by printing less posters to advertise their products.
Shankar Subramani, Business Faculty member who is facilitating the management of the ECS this year together with a student-run Business called Al Waha, commented that ECS has always been an event that DWC students look forward with immense enthusiasm as it gives them an opportunity to practice their entrepreneurial skills and connect it to the subjects they study. It channelizes their energy towards creating a business venture and over the three day period it brings fruition to all their prior efforts. It also makes them reflect after the event about strategies that worked well and more importantly the ones that did not and learn from this experience.
Zak McLaren, DWC's Dean of Foundation and Developmental Programs said, "The DWC ECS is one of the most important anchor events on the DWC academic calendar. It allows students to put into practice the theoretical knowledge and skills learnt in the classroom. As an entrepreneurial learning activity it is a great way to showcase the talents of all levels of our students."
For over 20 years, DWC has been an HCT flagship institution providing world-class education for women in the UAE. With a mission supported by the ELITE principles: Excellence, Leadership, Innovation, Technology, and Entrepreneurship, DWC has been recognized as being at the pinnacle of higher education in UAE.