Nathalie @ Swissnex Boston

2014-05-19-19 04 45This week was very busy. We started Monday morning with our weekly meeting at swissnex. Then we attended the ‘Deans Health and Life Sciences Challenge Demo Day’ at the Harvard Innovation Lab. The competition supports startups to improve patients’ care and quality of life. The six finalist teams received mentorship, seed money and specialized programs. The winner of the ‘MIT $100k Launch Competition Finale’ was represented at the Deans Challenge too and got the second prize.

I visited the Naturejobs Career Expo the next day. Swissnex had a stand and was representing the Swiss research landscape and the possibilities to study abroad in Switzerland. There were a lot of alumnis and graduate students interested in job application. Besides the different exhibitors, the visitors could attend conferences and workshops. It was a great exposition for the young people as they could learn about different topics (like strategies for a successful job search, resume and cover letter, networking, transferable skills etc.).

10276991_10152382455725822_6914358842145325923_n2On Wednesday we were invited to the MassChallenge finalist announcement. 128 startups were selected for the final competition and the accelerator program. MassChallenge had over 1600 applications this year. They never had so many people wanting to be an entrepreneur. For the finalists, the 4-month program is a great opportunity: At the end they all will be transformed by large mentorship network and various workshops. Among the 128 startups, 4 Swiss startups have been selected!

Our last event was on Thursday night: the Venture Café. Swissnex had a table for promoting the Global Pitchfest in June. Venture café is a weekly conversation meeting for innovators and entrepreneurs to find one another. We had conversations with early stage startup entrepreneurs about Switzerland and the swissnex event. The Global Pitchfest is part of the venture leaders program. 20 of the top Swiss startups are coming to Boston for a 10-days boot camp. At the Pitchfest each entrepreneur will have one minute and one slide to pitch his business idea.

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