ITS Berkeley hosted Eric Labaye, the new President of Ecole Polytechnique, France, with a delegation of representatives from École Polytechnique April 29, 2019 to discuss current and future collaborations between UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering, ITS Berkeley and École Polytechnique, and presented a Special Recognition award to Attaché for the Science & Technology Office at the Consulate General of France, San Francisco, Philippe Perez.
“We have a tremendous history with École Polytechnique, and it has been so exciting to create, collaborate, and foster programs through our two institutions to provide new and innovative opportunities for students,” says ITS Berkeley Director Alexandre Bayen.
Stemming from a pilot program in 2013, resulting in a Memorandum of Cooperation in 2014 between ITS Berkeley and École Polytechnique, the two institutions have been collaborating on Learn2Launch, the Silicon Valley Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program that brings French students to the University of California, Berkeley for a hands-on semester-long entrepreneur degree.
This year, Learn2Launch hosted its sixth cohort, including numerous students from Ecole Polytechnique, and has been a flagship transatlantic entrepreneurship program, from which numerous successful companies started, including Spot Angels, Prynt, ezyGain, Doctrine, and Wingly.
Recently, a new partnership was launched in 2017 to provide the Transportation and Entrepreneurship Module for the Executive Master degree program of Ecole Polytechnique, which brings professionals to Berkeley for a week of executive education on Transportation Systems, Networks, Vehicles and The Silicon Valley Ecosystem.
Bayen and Learn2Launch Executive Director Laura Melendy and Executive Faculty Director and Lead Instructor Mark Coopersmith provided a review of existing programs Learn2Launch and Executive Master (Transportation/Entrepreneurship Module) to Labaye, Rachel Maguer, Vice President for Marketing and International, Relations, École Polytechnique, Paul Marcille, International Development Manager for Americas, École Polytechnique and Perez.
“We have enjoyed hosting École Polytechnique students on our campus and teaching them concepts and methods to move innovative ideas to market through immersion and experiential learning,” says Melendy. “Coaching students and seeing their ideas grow on our campus is so thrilling.”
The École Polytechnique delegation also met with Bayen, Shankar Sastry, Director Blum Center for Developing Economies, Lee Fleming, Director of the Fung Institute for Engineering Leadership, Costas Spanos, Director CITRIS and the Banatao Institute, and Larry Rohrbough, Executive Director of Team for Research in Ubiquitous Secure Technology (TRUST) for a discussion on the existing partnership with Siebel Energy Institute and future partnerships that could develop between centers on campus.
The École Polytechnique delegation wrapped up their morning meetings with College of Engineering Dean Tsu-Jae Liu and Anthony St. George, Assistant Dean, International & Corporate Partnerships, College of Engineering, for a conversation on potential future collaborations with the college and École Polytechnique.
"We had an engaging conversation with École Polytechnique leadership about innovative models for graduate education," says Liu. "The College of Engineering looks forward to growing its partnership with École Polytechnique."
Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Professor Laurent El Ghaoui and Professor of Economics Pierre Olivier Gourinchas joined the delegation, Perez and Bayen for lunch and a Special Recognition award for Perez.
“Phillippe has been an incredible partner to work with at the Consulate General,” says Bayen. “He has helped ease transitions and processes, and been a champion for the educational work we do.”