Ovidiu-Aurel Ghiuță

Fulbright-RAF Visiting Scholar, 2019-2020
Discovering American Entrepreneurship through
the Fulbright-RAF Scholarship Program

My Fulbright-RAF Scholarship began in mid-August 2019 at the University of Rochester, Rochester, New York state. Living the ”American Dream” and discovering the Entrepreneurship in the U.S. were among my main objectives regarding my entrepreneurial approach, although I already started being familiar with this field at national and international levels a few years ago. I knew about the Fulbright-RAF Scholar Program since its launching, but I decided to apply for it only after I implemented courses of Entrepreneurship (undergraduate and postgraduate students) and Consumer Behavior (undergraduate students) for at least one class of STEM students at “Stefan cel Mare” University of Suceava.

Rochester and the Ain Center for Entrepreneurship of the University of Rochester represented a new step forward for my personal development as well as for my entrepreneurial mindset. The Ain Center of Entrepreneurship provided an excellent program and offered me the opportunity to attend and, most importantly, to actively participate in many events:

• courses of Entrepreneurship: “Screening Technical Opportunities”, “Generating & Screening Entrepreneurial Ideas”;
• conferences: The Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers Annual Event, 21Smart Communities, Regional Entrepreneurship Summit;
• meetings at Rochester Angel Network and the VC fund Excel Partners;
• official visits at several Entrepreneurship Centers of other universities from the east coast, such as: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard University, Cornell University, Babson College, Rochester Institute of Technology, Worcester Polytechnic Institute;
• students’ competitions Swarm Starter (UvR) Tiger Tank (RIT);
• mentoring students from UvR during Creative Collision Challenge;
• events at NextCorps incubator.

The weekly meetings with the two mentors, Professor Duncan Moore, Vice Provost for Entrepreneurship, and Professor Dennis Kessler, Director of Entrepreneurship Simon Business School, played an essential role for my entire academic experience as a Fulbright-RAF Scholar in the U.S.

The Program also provided me with the possibility to participate in a series of events in New York and Minneapolis designed for the Fulbright community where I met other grantees, increased my academic network, got involved in new projects and made new friends.

Finally, I would like to say that the Fulbright-RAF scholarship has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life and I am looking forward to sharing it in my home institution “Stefan cel Mare” University of Suceava, together with my newly acquired entrepreneurial approach. I plan to apply part of the strategies acquired in the U.S. universities in my home university, one of my main objectives being the launch of an Entrepreneurship Center similar to the Ain Center of Entrepreneurship of the University of Rochester.

I encourage all my Romanian colleagues to apply for a Fulbright-RAF scholarship at the University of Rochester: besides understanding and learning the entrepreneurial mindset in an active and inspiring academic environment, this is the best way to get more familiar with the U.S. culture, to network and put ideas to work.

My fulbright experience

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Students at the advising center

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Romanian-U.S. Fulbright Commission

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