Many MBA applicants feel that they are purchasing a brand when choosing a business school, but the educational experience is what is crucial to your future, and no one will affect your education more than your professors. Each Wednesday, we profile a standout professor as identified by students. Today, we focus on Subramonia Sarma from the Indian School of Business.
Though not a full professor at the Indian School of Business (ISB), Subramonia Sarma helps drive a majority of the entrepreneurship programming at the school. As head of ISB Special Programs, he oversees the ELP, the Wharton Global Consulting Practicum and the ISB’s business plan competitions (including the Global Social Venture Competition). Sarma also personally mentors ISB students and alumni who seek to create and grow their businesses.
On campus, Sarma is perhaps best known for one of his contributions to Professor Kavil Ramachandran’s “Planning an Entrepreneurial Venture” class: the “Make as Much as You Can” Challenge, in which teams of up to five students and community members receive $10 in seed capital and then race to create the most profit in a span of seven days while conducting business solely within ISB walls. Students then submit three-minute slide and video presentations on their learnings in this entrepreneurial guerilla boot camp and compete for one of the top three prizes. Past student teams have created businesses that offer massages, singing telegrams, section tee shirts and seemingly just about everything else both legal and imaginable. One year, starting with a total initial investment of $400, the 40 student teams created a return of $8,000. According to Sarma, the only campus member not delighted with the outcome was the dean, who, to be fair to all, had to partake of each and every student team’s offering. At some point during their time at the ISB, nearly all students will come into contact with Sarma, who told mbaMission, “Part of my job is to help students do whatever they want to do.”
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