Even during a pandemic, Indiana University Bloomington students are pressing forward with their innovative and entrepreneurial ventures. They include Jacob Lampf, who is working on a venture called Hire Degree.
Hire Degree is an on-demand student talent program connecting startup and growth companies with university students via ongoing, remote, part-time job opportunities.
“By connecting growing companies with talented individuals just getting a jump-start on their careers, organizations save much-needed capital while investing in ambitious students,” Lampf said. “Student candidates are able to apply their studies in real time while gaining relevant work experience all from their home campuses.”
Crimson Catalyst: What were you feeling nervous/uncertain about regarding campus resources for innovation this semester?
Jacob Lampf: What remains uncertain is whether the entrepreneurial spirit of the organization can prosper in a virtual setting. While much has been done to ensure the program’s success, it is only as strong as the engagement of other students. And, with many moving variables surrounding the pandemic, including quarantine and poor mental health, motivation is the No. 1 driver of success. Getting as much engagement as possible, even in offshoot meetings, will be vital to the program’s effectiveness.
CC: What have you experienced this semester so far to address your uncertainty/nervousness about campus resources for innovation?
JL: What I’ve done to remedy the uncertainty is actively participate in our weekly client standups with the other Shoebox clients. I see no point in staying on mute with my camera off; gaining the confidence to meet new people, despite the virtual setting, remains my No. 1 goal as a part of the incubator. You never know who might have that one skill you need or could make that key connection to a vital stakeholder.
CC: How have you benefited from these campus resources?
JL: Taking a litmus test of the progress other groups have made week by week has given me some assurance that I am on the right track. Seeing others struggle with many of the same issues I encounter proves that I am not alone in this new journey. Frankly, I see this as the hallmark benefit of the Shoebox program in the Shoemaker Innovation Center.
The Shoebox helps student entrepreneurs build, launch and sustain their businesses. Student startups can apply for 24/7 access to the Shoebox’s office space, which is located in the Shoemaker Innovation Center, Luddy Hall 2150. The Shoebox also collaborates with the Hoosier Hatchery pre-incubator at the Kelley School of Business and Bloomington’s Dimension Mill startup accelerator. To apply for coworking space, write to email@example.com.