The Importance of Graduate Training in Entrepreneurship: Study of Entrepreneur Life Course of Former Students of the Faculty of Human Kinetics
A multiple case study qualitative methodology was chosen, using semi-structured interviews and content analysis as core research techniques. A triangulation strategy was used by gathering data not only from the participants’ CVs but also from several sources such as informal contacts with some of the participants’ acquaintances, as well as former participants’ teachers and field specialists. The sample consisted of seven entrepreneurs – former students of different FMH graduate courses – aged between 37 and 52.
The results showed several entrepreneur profiles, depending on the features highlighted by the participants, regarding their entrepreneurial live and their relationship with graduate training. Different factors were referred to as influencing subjects’ entrepreneur life course (entrepreneurial attributes, family, and contact with the working environment, contextual/social factors, graduate and post graduate training), revealing the importance of their education experience, which allowed them to develop technical, scientific and management skills.
In conclusion, we can argue that, besides training (and if possible, within it), the knowledge and the contact with the entrepreneurial and professional fields, along with work experience, and the performance of tasks and activities that require initiative, will enable people to understand, foresee, plan and, then, take the risk to initiate enterprises. Finally, several recommendations are introduced, viewing the promotion of entrepreneurship at FMH. These recommendations are likely to be easily adopted in other Higher Education contexts.
Keywords: Entrepreneurship, Higher Education, Training, Work Experience
Ana M. Peixoto Naia
Guest Assistant (Teacher), Department of Education Sciences