Applications are now open for the 2023 Austria to America experience! Austria to America (A2A) is an in-person exchange program designed to promote entrepreneurship and leadership among young Austrians by introducing them to American entrepreneurship methods and networks.
We spoke with A2A alum, Andjela Cegar, about her experience in Austin this past summer after she had a few seasons to recharge and reflect. Andjela was new to the whole entrepreneurship experience. She was studying Corporate Communications in Vienna. She applied to A2A to open new opportunities and gain experience for her future professional (and personal) goals.
Andjela: “As someone new to entrepreneurship and the startup scene, I gained so much knowledge in this field that I keep benefitting daily. Through the A2A exchange, I was shown a new path of possibilities I could pursue. The energy and environment I was exposed to made me realize that I don’t want to take on a passive role in my life. Having ideas is great if you act on them. And what I truly cherish about this exchange programme was my mindset shift. Be courageous. Realize your ideas. Fail. Try again. Without this experience, I wouldn’t have the courage to apply for the IOC Young Leaders Programme, which would be a crucial step in my professional career. Last but not least, the network you gain from A2A is priceless.”
Last year, 3DS hosted Austria to America in Austin, TX, where we introduced Austrian participants to the buzzing entrepreneurship scene focused on climate and sustainability. In 2023, we will be hosting students in Boston to connect Austrian leaders and connect them to industry experts in the blue economy, climate tech, and social innovation industries.
Check out this video from last year’s cohort.
Andjela’s experience with A2A introduced her to a lot of entrepreneurial concepts and terms that she had not encountered before in her university studies like the Lean Canvas, venture capital, and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). She believes having knowledge of these topics and knowledge will definitely give her an edge when applying for future opportunities.
Andgela: “Whenever I was unsure about an opportunity that has the potential to be something unique, I always thought about this quote:
“Nothing is more expensive than a missed opportunity.” – H. Jackson Brown Jr.
At the end of the day, you have nothing to lose by applying to A2A 2023. Especially if you are a newcomer like me, there is only so much more to gain. You never know when this new knowledge might get in handy; trust me, there will be situations like that. Never ever doubt yourself about not being good enough for an opportunity. You are. Get out of your comfort zone and have the courage to try something new.”
Learn more about A2A from last year’s participants in the Fireside Chat video below. A2A is a program of U.S. Embassy Vienna.