With students wanting to be the next Elon Musk or Mark Zuckerberg they want to get as much information as they can. They want to learn and understand what makes a venture capitalist and angel investor tick day to day.
With the global economy in big favor of innovation, business university topics to address this are becoming more popular.
At Sy Syms School of Business adjunct professors and Yeshiva University alumni Bruce Taragin ’89YC and Moshe Bellows ’90YC wanted to teach venture capital basics in a different way.
Their class offers the perspective of experienced financial industry professionals and covers topics from both points of view, of the entrepreneurs’ and the investors’. At first what they wanted to teach more of a presentation style but then grew to be a semester-long class for it’s, Sy Syms honor students. The program includes guest lectures and field trips to incubators.
This semester for the first time, because of high demand, Angle and Venture Capital Investing are also being offered.
Students are eager to learn from real-life entrepreneurs and venture capital professionals.
Bellows, believe that by having students learn from people that are actually entrepreneurs, investors and accelerators/incubators, they will come away with a more practical skill set. They will learn things like interviewing founding teams, analyzing investment opportunities, having due diligence conversations with clients and proper legal issue spotting.
A Sy Syms senior, Joshua Zirman says, “Each week we get introduced to somebody new in the industry, either a VC [venture capitalist], corporate VC, entrepreneur, or angel investor. Each has a different perspective and teaches us different things about their industry and investing in their niche.”
On a school trip to Bay area of California, students picked up a lot. Zirman said. “Meeting with the managing partners of VC firms, with the help of Professor Taragin, gave us insight into what it takes to succeed in Silicon Valley and how to pick the winning companies. We both want to either work in VC or start our own companies. Before this trip, accomplishing these goals seemed like a distant dream but after the trip, we understood the tangible steps we needed to take to become assets in our future firms.”
Taragin and Bellows offer not just their professional insight into the material, but personal as well. With these two teachers who are glad to give back, students can’t help but learn valuable insights.