For the sixth year in a row, delaware will be participating in the Vlajo ‘Entrepreneurs in front of the Classroom’ initiative. As Flanders’ biggest education project between schools and companies, it aims to warm students up to technology, innovation and, above all, entrepreneurship. By supporting the project, delaware wants to help youngsters discover and develop their entrepreneurial skills and professional potential.
Aiming to boost students’ entrepreneurial drive, at the beginning of every year, Vlajo reaches out to companies willing to share their experiences through interactive sessions and lectures. A number of delaware partners and managers have already joined the ‘teacherpreneurs’ in their quest to get young people involved.
Ever since 2013, Founding Partner and Chairman of delaware, Jan Delaere, has been giving multiple guest lectures, mainly at secondary schools in West Flanders. “During these sessions, I focus not just on entrepreneurship, but on intrapreneurship as well. We strive to uncover the full delaware story, sharing more than just the successes.” After all, delaware intends to demonstrate that being an entrepreneur can be a career path to look back on with pride. “It gives me great pleasure to see how several of my colleagues have joined the Vlajo initiative, encouraging and inspiring students to go down the entrepreneurial path themselves,” he adds.
Among these colleagues are Managing Partner Patrick Andersen, and Jan Vets, Partner at delaware. About his guest lectures, Jan Vets says: “I want to educate youngsters on the importance of entrepreneurship and its various forms. It’s a way of life.” This introduction to entrepreneurship could encourage them to make well-informed choices regarding their studies and careers. “It’s about showing students - who are about to graduate - what entrepreneurship could mean to them. By sharing our personal experiences, we hope to contribute to the future of these young people, preparing them to take their first steps into the job market. I usually like to impart a few words of wisdom on how to realize their dreams as well.”
In 2018, a second project was added to the original ‘Entrepreneurs in front of the Classroom’ initiative. This year, the Vlajo ‘STEM Entrepreneurs in front of the Classroom’ project will run from March 25 to May 17. More than 450 entrepreneurs will give guest lectures on their experiences in the wonderful world of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). Patrick Carmans, Senior Manager at delaware, will be one of them. He’ll be sharing his insights on digitalization: “I intend to compare today’s digitalization to paradigm shifts of the past and explain how we’ll have to shape our own future. In the end, I want students to get excited and show them the many opportunities these changes bring.”
The (STEM) Entrepreneurs in front of the Classroom project promotes interaction between schools and companies, paving the way towards valuable knowledge sharing. Both parties gain insights and find new ways to align. For young people, the program offers a chance to get acquainted with the business world and ask any burning questions they might have. For delaware, this is the perfect opportunity to get to know the employees of the future and better connect with the up-and-coming generation of millennials.