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Young Entrepreneurs Panel

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Curtin University Dubai nurtures the next generation of aspiring entrepreneurs.

In a fast-paced world of business and innovation, the role of universities in shaping entrepreneurs of tomorrow is crucial. Curtin University Dubai stands at the forefront of this endeavour, steadfast in its commitment to nurturing the next generation of entrepreneurs. With a dynamic blend of academic excellence, industry partnerships, and innovative programs, the university has created a conducive environment for students to not only dream big but also turn those dreams into successful ventures.

As part of this commitment, Curtin Dubai held a Young Entrepreuners@Curtin panel discussion with its students, who have led their own companies to success. Estelle Tahthia Jalapit, Shayan Sayani, Hussain Mehdi, and Shruthi Jaganathan were the four students who shared their experiences with the community.

Shruthi Jaganathan

Shruthi Jaganathan, a professional photographer, says, “My parents played a pivotal role in shaping my entrepreneurial journey, as their hard work, dedication, and entrepreneurship in their own business served as a constant source of inspiration. Furthermore, the unwavering support and encouragement I received from both my parents and my elder sister have been the driving force behind my decision to embark on this entrepreneurial path. I’m excited to share three major milestones in my journey. Firstly, being selected to participate in prestigious Middle East events not only expanded my network but also provided invaluable exposure for my business. Secondly, expanding my services to include videography and social media content creation for UAE-based brands marked a significant evolution, solidifying my market position. Additionally, receiving the Golden Visa earlier this year was a significant recognition of my contributions to the region. My advice to students interested in entrepreneurship is to always embrace the journey, never fearing failure but seeing it as an opportunity to learn and grow. Patience and unwavering faith in their endeavours will be their strongest allies as they navigate the challenges and rewards of building their own path in the entrepreneurial world.”

“Balancing my studies and my business is all about passion, meticulous organisation, effective time management, and the constant prioritisation of tasks to ensure that both aspects of my life receive the attention they deserve. Curtin Dubai has been instrumental in shaping me into the confident and capable individual I am today. The university’s dedication in providing valuable opportunities, expanding my network, fostering personal growth, and the unwavering support of its cooperative lecturers have empowered me to strive for a better tomorrow and make a lasting impact in my entrepreneurial journey.”

You can find her work and get in touch for any photography needs through her handle: @shruthi.jaganphotography.

Hussain Mehdi

Hussain Mehdi runs Gold Fixers, a jewellery repair business, and his thoughts are, “I have always aspired to be an entrepreneur since high school. While at school and university, I used to flip cars for a living. Now, under Gold Fixers, we’ve crossed 1000 repairs last month, and that’s a huge achievement. We’ve been operating for around 11 months and have been profitable since day one. The only advice would be that if students have an idea, they should implement it as soon as possible. Because ideas don’t make money, businesses do! I am currently pursuing a Postgraduate degree in Cyber Security while running a business full-time. I try to take a few hours out of the week to focus on the course, the rest of the time, I’m busy with business, and by speaking at events such as the Young Entrepreneurs panel, Curtin has helped my business get better reach. I was able to introduce our services to a larger group of people.”

For any jewellery repair needs, you should definitely consult with @goldfixers.

See what Gulf News has to say about Hussain here.

Estelle Tahthia Jalapit

“I’ve always wanted to be a businesswoman ever since I could remember. I spent every sleepless night during my teenage years searching on the Internet for ‘how to start a business’ or ‘business ideas for teenagers.’ Growing up, my parents always told me to work hard for what I wanted. Yes, they’ll provide my needs — but I have to work hard for my wants. This upbringing inspired me to be an entrepreneur at such a young age. My business, The Quintessential Events (TQE), has been featured on Weddings by Emaar and Vida Hotels on Instagram. I have worked with brands like HIBROWS and numerous Dubai influencers and celebrities, including Safa Siddiqui from Dubai Bling on Netflix. TQE has also worked with numerous renowned hotels in Dubai, such as Address Hotels and Palazzo Versace. I would say, If you ever thought of starting your own business, go for it. Start small; write your thoughts and ideas down. Never stop thinking about it; work on your dream every single day, even through small steps. Most importantly, always remember not to give up. If entrepreneurship is for you and if it really is your passion, it will happen at the right time, with the right discipline, routine, and self-development. But honestly, it’s more on me being very passionate about what I do. I am very driven as a person; I love to juggle numerous productive things at once. This is because I want to excel in all aspects of my life. However, I found that having a proper daily routine, such as journaling, exercising, and overall self-development activities, helps a lot. Having a routine keeps me mentally and physically able to juggle my studies and my business. I would say Curtin Dubai has moulded me into the person that I am today. One of the previous units I took (Strategic Career Design) helped me with my career plan. I reflected on what I wanted in life because of that particular project. It prompted me to start my career journey and desire to start my own business. Overall, I love how Curtin Dubai encourages its students to start their career journey even while still being in university,” said Estelle Tahthia Jalapit, Co-Founder of her events company, @thequintessentialevents.

See what Gulf News has to say about Estelle here.

Shayan Sayani

Shayan Sayani, owner of ‘Rapid Care’ (@rapidcare_uae) car maintenance business, adds his advice: “What inspired me is a desire for creative freedom, a passion for problem-solving, and a desire to impact the world positively. Our milestones so far have been to obtain initial funding, launch a new product or service, acquire the first few consumers, achieve profitability, and expand the business. My advice to students interested in entrepreneurship would be to begin by identifying a real problem to solve, undertaking extensive market research, establishing a solid network, and being prepared for obstacles. 

Managing studies and a business requires effective time management, setting priorities, and possible delegation of tasks. Maintaining a healthy balance between work, family, and school is essential. Curtin supported my goal by providing  supportive mentorship, seminars, and networking opportunities.”

Everyone’s goals and journeys are unique, and Curtin University Dubai’s commitment to grooming future entrepreneurs goes beyond traditional education. It’s about fostering a mindset of innovation, creativity, and resilience. With a focus on hands-on experience, industry connections, and a global perspective, Curtin is shaping not just entrepreneurs but also the future of entrepreneurship itself.

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