On this episode of The Studentpreneur Show, Taegan interviews Professor Jim Friedman. Together they talk about the opportunities Miami University offers, his background, and advice for studentpreneurs.

Miami University is a leading school in experienced-based learning through their Institute of Entrepreneurship at the Farmer School of Business. The Institute of Entrepreneurship began with a single class in the early 1990’s. Today the institute invests in over 300 students through the Entrepreneurship Minor and Co-major.

An Entrepreneurship Major is not a stand-alone option because the faculty “want students to have passions in other programs.” Only providing a minor or co-major option expands the opportunities for students and society. Students can choose from four tracks in entrepreneurship at Miami University: start up entrepreneurship, social entrepreneurship, corporate entrepreneurship, and creativity innovation.

How does Professor Jim Friedman help students at Miami University?

Professor Friedman is head of the creative track, and his specialty is helping students evaluate and improve their thinking.Friedman’s background has prepared him for his leading role at the Institute of Entrepreneurship. With all its twists and turns, from television to starting a non-profit and several businesses, Professor Friedman draws from his experiences to instruct students. 

After earning his PhD in communication, Miami University invited him to join their faculty. He applies so much of his own experience to teaching. Experienced-based learning removes the possibility of “teaching people to swim from a textbook,” which we all know results in sinking.

What business opportunities does Miami University offer students?

Miami University offers many opportunities to their students. Students interested in business at any level can participate in the  Startup Weekend. Interestingly, Freidman mentions that one businesses initiated during the Startup Weekend is now over the 20 million dollar range.

Another great opportunity is the venture capital investment competition (VCIC).  Understanding the full spectrum of skills and roles necessary for businesses to thrive, Miami University helps students develop a wide range of skills, including how to invest.  Students use the VCIC to expand their skills and knowledge of investing in companies. Instead of only practicing pitching to investors, they practice writing investment proposals to the companies making the pitches.

Last but not least, Professor Jim Friedman shares his top three tips for studentprenurs! You’ll need to give THIS EPISODE a full listen to hear it all!