"I've never thought about questions like this before!"

April 28, 2021

On April 22, 2021, it was time again for Girls' Day - the largest career orientation project for female students worldwide. On this day, companies, businesses and universities all over Germany open their doors to female students from the 5th grade onwards. The Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation Research (ENI) at the University of Stuttgart was also represented with the How-to-Startup offer.

"Awakening the entrepreneurial spirit in school students is an important component of startup culture," says Prof. Alexander Brem, head of ENI, "which is why we are all the more pleased that our offer was so well received by girls."

Disguised as a classic board game with figures and playing cards, the How-to-Startup game comes with many surprising twists and approaches and, above all, one thing: depth. Dr. Jordi Mauri, startup coach at ENI, who developed the game himself, led the girls through the first part of the game on Thursday, completely digitally and above all with a lot of fun.

A round card called "ikigai" forms the heart of the game. The girls, who had come together in teams of 4 or 5 each, first started by thinking about themselves, filling out the "ikigai" piece by piece and asking themselves questions like "What am I very good at?" or "What can I do for hours without getting tired?" but also "What does the world need from me?" and "What can I contribute in a meaningful way?"

"I've never thought about questions like these before," say some of the participants. What's exciting about the game is going through a multifaceted process, from looking at the individual with all their skills and passions, to working together as a team, to actually thinking through a business idea.

"Raising awareness among the female students and getting them excited about the topic of entrepreneurship and starting their own business was and is a major concern for me," says Dr. Jordi Mauri. "I also find networking with schools and thus having direct contact with the students really exciting and inspiring in such a cross-sectional project that incorporates many topics. We're also always happy to receive inquiries from schools that would like to try out our How-to-Startup game as part of a project!"


This image shows Melanie Minderjahn

Melanie Minderjahn


Career Service - Inner Development, Public Relations

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