Institute of Economics and Management student and her team teach entrepreneurship to school students

With the help of the charitable fund Captains, a team of Tomsk State University students submitted an application to the Presidential Initiatives Foundation and won a grant for the project. They used the funding to establish the Start-Up School—an educational program on entrepreneurship for school students. In Tomsk the project is coordinated by Ekaterina Shatalova, a student from the Institute of Economics and Management. Thanks to this program, since 2021 schoolchildren from different parts of the country have been learning to create their own startup projects.

Start-Up School is a modular training program for school students in their ninth year and above: under the supervision of university students, they learn how to create a startup project from the conception of a business idea up until the project's market implementation.

Throughout Tomsk and Tomsk Oblast, Start-Up School is coordinated by Ekaterina Shatalova, a student at TSU Institute of Economics and Management pursuing a major in management. At the end of 2022 she won a prize of 100,000 rubles in Your Move, the all-Russian student forum, from the forum's partner—the charitable fund System—in the special category “Most Sustainable Project”.

Ekaterina Shatalova, a student from the TSU Institute of Economics and Management, receiving the prize for “Most Sustainable Project”

Photo taken from Your Move's website

Since 2021, Start-Up School has been active for two seasons—this year the participants will see the launch of the third season. By the end of the second season, over 2,000 school students finished three modules of the business fundamentals and entrepreneurship course, with over 250 entrepreneurial projects reaching completion.

“To give you a couple of examples, I can name Sofia Leshchiner and Alyona Lankina from the school Eureka-Development, who created the online confectionery store Ne SoLeno. There they cook desserts using non-conventional ingredients suitable for various diets or individual needs,” shares Ekaterina Shatalova. “Another prime example is Mikhail Chirva from Novosibirsk and their team, who created HeyHi—an app for networking and meeting new people. With this app they were able to familiarize over a hundred young entrepreneurs from the whole country with each other, and some continue maintaining the new bonds even now. And Elizaveta Manchak from Krasnoyarsk was working on the project Practice-Oriented Games Digital Platform.”

Since the Start-Up School has launched, there have been over 1,000 meetings with teams, which is more than 2,000 schoolchildren and their mentors. Over 150 teams shared their project ideas and received valuable advice, recommendations, and suggestions from current business giants. In addition, during the program’s lifespan, the organizers of Start-Up School have already trained about 200 mentors and attracted more than 70 expert entrepreneurs to the project.

In 2023, the program will be implemented in 13 regions of Russia, which encompass Tomsk, Omsk, Leningrad, Tyumen, Samara, Novosibirsk, Sverdlovsk, Rostov, and Belgorod Oblasts, the Republics of Tatarstan, Crimea, and Bashkortostan, and Krasnoyarsk Krai.