Education > Engineering program


Getting a taste for enterprise

Not all Centrale Lyon alumni go on to create a firm. But all engineers do create value: they need to be able to conceive of new solutions, to construct viable collective projects, and boost product and/or process innovation.

The program of the School is therefore so designed as to stimulate initiative and entrepreneurship.
The student'(s first enterprise is in fact to construct his or her actual training course: it is designed to facilitate the realization of personal projects, with rigorous support from the teachers.

Throughout the studies, a whole series of projects help develop the capacity for risk-taking, creativity and decision-making.
Association activities also play a key role, encouraging as they do a sense of responsibility, teamwork, communication and openness to other people.

Renaud VAILLANT (2001), co-founder of CRYOLOG :

"Making a success of the launch of a new product means successfully transferring technology. I am not an expert in the technologies used in the product I am developing (a cold chain breakdown monitor), but my training as a general engineer enables me to manage complexity. General training, the School's enterprising spirit, but also a solid network: these are the essential ingredients in making a success of the recipe for a company start-up."

Launching an activity or a firm

Centrale Lyon's enterprise project seeks to foster a business creation spirit, in the form of start-ups or launching a new activity within an existing firm. The method is meant to be totally pragmatic, and the objective matches a clear expectation in companies - notably, Hewlett Packard, directly involved in the School's EIT (Entrepreneurship In Technology) project.

Intended for all of the students, EIT100 helps integrate the main concepts of entrepreneurship. It seeks to stimulate their interest with basic theoretical elements enriched by means of talks, meetings, debates and thematic workshops with recognized players in the economic and industrial world.
EIT20 is aimed at 20% of the students, enabling them to develop true entrepreneurship by means of highly technical projects, the annual Central Entrepreneurship competition, and tailor-made arrangements in 3rd year. These students enjoy personalized support, enabling them as appropriate to validate their projects and so to facilitate the emergence and success of start-ups created by students and graduates of the School.
With the support of top rank members of the professional world, the EIT project provides future engineers and technological entrepreneurs with a solid structure of training, support and coaching based on synergy between a Grande Ecole of general engineering and industrial sponsors. A strong partnership with the Ecole de Management de Lyon means that entrepreneurship can be gone into concretely, with an original twin-culture approach.

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