MIT Bootcampers on Demo Day

From MIT Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp to Infinity and Beyond — Part 2/3

The blast of knowledge and depth of friendships formed within a week are just two of the magnetic qualities of MIT’s Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp. ‘Drinking from the MIT firehose’ barely touches the sides in describing it. Blend the cultural richness of the participants (over 36 countries of origin, ages ranging from 17 to 55 years, from all sorts of educational backgrounds and walks of life) with the calibre of the speakers and mentors and the result is a life-changing, unforgettable week. The exciting backdrop to the Bootcamp was the roaring South Korean startup scene — one that has been backed by massive governmental funding (over $3.7 billion).

During the first few days we worked from within D.Camp, in the heart of Gangnam District’s Teheran Valley and shifted to Born2Global in the Pangyo Techno Valley for the last few days.

Sally, Rachel, their team and all Bootcampers worked hard (for almost 20 hours per day!) — and their days were broken up with a series of introductory visits to the Google hubs: Campus Seoul and Maru180. This gave them a first-hand taste of the depth and quality of the accelerator and incubator infrastructure in Seoul. It is all designed to nurture budding innovative enterprises, from overall spatial layouts to the smallest ornamental details.

overview and locations of Seoul startup hubs

Bootcampers learnt from world-class MIT Senior Lecturers, who personify the MIT motto “mens et manus” (translates from the Latin to “Mind and Hand”) by being first and foremost doers, before they are teachers: Bill Aulet, serial entrepreneur and current Managing Director of the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship; Elaine Chen, Founder and Manager at ConceptSpring, and Charles Fine, Dean of the Asia School of Business.

our teachers, mentors and guest speakers: left to right, top to bottom: Charles Fine, Elaine Chen, Bill Aulet, Aman Advani, Hyungsoo Kim, Rodney Brooks, Douglas Hwang, Hyugseok “Dino” Ha, Young J. Cha

Sally and Rachel drank in the words of wisdom and anecdotes from the eminent Guest Speakers, an array of legendary entrepreneurs who gave them priceless tips and insights not only about the business side, but perhaps more importantly, in their very human and courageous attitudes to challenge and adversity: Rodney Brooks (Chairman, Founder and CTO of Rethink Robotics, Founder of iRobot and creator of Roomba), Hyungseok “Dino” Ha (Co-founder and CEO of Memebox Corporation ), Hyungsoo Kim (Founder of Eone Timepieces), Young J. Cha (Founder and CEO of On Demand Korea), Aman Advani (CEO and Co-founder of Ministry of Supply), Douglas Hwang (Director of Product at ComiXology), Joohwan Jung (CBO of Kakao), Adam Blake (Co-founder of ThriveHive that was in fact acquired for $11.8 million USD during our time at Bootcamp).

If you missed Part 1, click here to read it. And you can read final Part of our 3-part series: “From MIT to Infinity and Beyond” here.

Co-authored by fellow-Bootcampers 2016, Sally Coldrick and Rachel Hentsch