Italy Starts Program Creates International Community of Aspiring Entrepreneurs

Italy Starts, John Cabot University’s Peer-to-Peer Entrepreneurship Mentoring Program, recently recruited 55 Mentors from various partner universities in the U.S., Armenia, Nigeria, and Lebanon. Gina Spinelli, Executive Assistant to the Vice President for External Affairs and Special Projects, and Michel Rosuelo, Coordinator for Partner Schools Admissions, invited JCU’s partner universities to encourage their students to become Mentors from remote in the Italy Starts program.

Aimed at third and fourth-year students enrolled in Italian high schools, Italy Starts was created by the JCU Institute for Entrepreneurship as part of the Percorsi per le Competenze Trasversali e per l’Orientamento (PCTO), a mandatory program that provides Italian high school students with practical work experience. The objective of Italy Starts is to encourage cross-cultural learning between undergraduate students who have had some training in entrepreneurship or business, and Italian high school students, within the broad spectrum of entrepreneurship-focused mentoring.

Participating JCU/partner university students (Mentors) volunteer to be connected to Italian High School Students (Mentees) to solve real business problems or develop business models for their business or social venture idea. Mentees are then required to deliver a short PowerPoint presentation at the end of the program.

“Applications to participate in Italy Starts 2021 were more numerous than expected. In the spirit of the entrepreneurial mindset that we foster throughout the University, we captured the opportunities presented by the online delivery of this program. We opened the Call for Mentors to students at JCU’s partner universities. The result is a truly international group of Italy Starts Mentors that have been trained to guide all the Italian high school students who applied to participate in Italy Starts 2021,” said Gina Spinelli.

“The 15 Teams have just begun their 5-week journey toward the development of their Business Plan for an idea to resolve a perceived challenge to the environment. Final presentations will be given on June 25,” Spinelli added.

Universities participating
American University of Armenia
American University of Beirut
American University of Nigeria Yola
Bridgewater State University
Butler University
John Cabot University
Loyola University Maryland
Rider University, New Jersey
Saint Mary’s College Indiana
San Diego State University
University of Massachusetts-Boston

Italian High Schools participating
Liceo Classico Interculturale, Collegio San Carlo, Milano
Istituto di Istruzione Superiore “Blaise Pascal”, Pomezia (RM)
Istituto di Istruzione Superiore Evangelista Torricelli Roma Liceo Foscarini, Venice
Istituto di Istruzione Superiore Pietro Scalcerle, Padova
Istituto Magistrale Statale Margherita di Savoia, Roma
Istituto Omnicomprensivo Fabio Besta, Orte (VT)
Liceo Ettore Majorana, Roma
Liceo Giordano Bruno Roma
Liceo Pilo Albertelli, Roma
Liceo Scientifico Statale Donatelli-Pascal, Milano
Liceo Scientifico Statale Giovanni Keplero, Roma
Liceo Scientifico Statale Isacco Newton, Roma
Liceo Scientifico “Maria Curie” di Pinerolo
Liceo Scientifico Vito Volterra, Ciampino (RM)
Liceo Tito Lucrezio Caro, Roma

Find out about JCU’s Programs for High Schools, all offered in English and free of charge.