Connecting Students with Cool Companies: Your Ideas?
The basic idea is that a visit would consist of a tour of the company, a sit-down with the CEO or founder to explain what the company does, some snacks/lunch, and a Q&A session. The objective would be simply to expose students to local entrepreneurs and executives and the companies they run, not necessarily to get students jobs or internships (though if the company was hiring or looking for interns, they could certainly let the students know that.) A visit might last 90 minutes in total.
I'd want to start with some of the area's cooler companies -- those that wouldn't put the typical sleep-deprived undergrad to sleep (no offense if your company makes some really awesome expense account software.) I'd also want to start with companies that are accessible by public transportation, to make sure we have a really strong showing at the first few.
My list would include companies like Zipcar, Harmonix Music Systems, Genzyme, Biogen Idec, Heartland Robotics, Vecna Robotics, Conduit Labs, Brightcove, Ambient Devices, E Ink, HubSpot, Brickyard VFX, IDEO Cambridge, Vlingo, Akamai, Google Cambridge, A123 Systems, Microsoft NERD, EnerNOC, Cape Wind, and Viximo.
Who ought to be added to the list? And what should this be called? "Innovation Field Trips"? "Innovation Open Houses"? "The Innovation Lunch Series"?
It's the sort of thing that might require an underwriter or sugar daddy to make it happen (lining up companies to participate...ensuring that students find out about the events and actually show up...and that companies make the visits valuable), so I'm open to ideas on that, too.