Jian Li here! Let me bring you through a class in UC Berkeley Extension.
At UC Berkeley Extension, the 5 of us from SUTD were put under the International Diploma Program for Entrepreneurship. Courses span across 4 months, with classes at 9.30am to 12.30pm, and 1.30pm to 4.30pm. The 9 courses are spread across this 4 months, each with a different number of classes. In our class we have 24 other students with us. They come from countries such as France, Brazil, Peru, Spain, Venezuela, Argentina, Korea and India. They also come from varying backgrounds; some were like us and came as part of their programme at their home university while others were looking to change their career paths.
For today, I will share on a course that I find particularly valuable. The Entrepreneurial Leadership course is conducted by Brigette Iarrusso, and it pushes us to examine ourselves each lesson to be a better leader. In class, we partake in activities where we can examine how we behave and react and reflect on it after class in journal assignments. Concepts and theories come in the form of reading materials and it helps us to not only identify but also understand how we act and how we can improve.
In a recent class, each group was tasked to first discuss about their vision and values prior to the class, and come in to class ready to build a 3D vision models to represent the team.
It was interesting to see how my team worked together to piece together what started as abstract ideas to build something that represented the vision and values we had discussed. Through the various materials we brought, we were able to exercise our individual creativity and interpretation, and receive feedback on it. For each detail we added, every team member had a quick say on what they thought of it.
Each team then presented their vision models and had very creative ways of presenting their vision and values.
I find the course valuable as it addressed something that was very different from SUTD. The course addressed the need for emotional intelligence and how to improve it. There was very little impetus on emotional development back in SUTD and I do not expect SUTD to do so. Personally I found that the course came at the right time for me. I have been trying to move on from certain blocks in how I work and remain motivated so that I can be prepared to move on in life as an aspiring entrepreneur. The conducive environment for experimentation and reflection has given me more insights about myself. Being able to practice and receive feedback also reinforces the learning.