connectUS is a prestigious project, now in its 12th year, organized by students for students at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW). The primary goal is to broaden future graduates’ business and intercultural understanding by linking theory with practice. After an interesting preparatory seminar with a wide variety of guest speakers, who give in-depth insights about life and business in North America, connectUS will finally expand its horizons by travelling to the United States – the country of limitless opportunities, and for the second time in the project‘s history to Canada. The main focus of the project is to provide a profound overview of the key components of success when doing business outside Switzerland.
Diminish 2 Flourish – Generate Wealth through Health
The aim of connectUS 2020 is to build on last year’s project success to deepen and further investigate how a healthy state of the environment, economy and society can increase wealth in all three dimensions and foster efficiency in business activities.
Increasing profits through working ecologically is the ideal precondition for the future. This year’s project team aims to elaborate ways how to flourish a business in accordance with a responsible use of resources. We will in particular investigate how companies can contribute to an efficient work environment in harmony with our nature. To do so, we will focus on the following four R’s of sustainability – Rethink, Reduce, Reuse, Recover.
Change your mindset to become a key player in the new era of sustainable development
Excessive waste production, emissions and accompanying pollution are omnipresent in today’s life and have led to severe damages to the health state of our planet and our society’s health. Studies show that serious lung diseases and cancer have emerged due to atmospheric pollution. People around the globe are recognizing the consequences of waste pollution and are therefore changing their lifestyle and consumption habits. To adapt to this shifting consumer behavior, a mindset change is inevitable. Reassessing business activities can help companies to differentiate themselves from competitors and stay competitive in the future market.
Diminish waste through innovative approaches and foster a healthy work environment
Thrown away goods, emissions and inefficient use of resources are waste, but also a loss of money. ConnectUS is dedicated to show ways how to save the superfluous energy and thus create new revenue streams thanks to the gained resources. To diminish waste, it is crucial to rethink business practices and invest in sustainable production, such as implementing green information systems and zero-waste policies. Concurrently, it is important to invest in employee’s satisfaction to reduce stress levels in order to create a healthy and efficient workforce, which will benefit the economic well-being of the business.
Bin less, recycle more and increase efficiency through a closed loop economy
The reuse of resources is essential to decrease the amount of waste which is produced nowadays. Innovative approaches decline the use of capacity, be it on human or nature, by reusing materials. Recycling and upcycling activities have emerged, as for example PET recycling, clothing production from used materials and water reuse in manufacturing. Also, the use of renewable energies and biomaterials which degrade safely are becoming common practices. Entrepreneurs from all over the world are moving towards a closed loop economy which implies reducing waste to a minimum by reusing materials. This business model contributes to a healthy environment and helps reducing costs.
Invest today in the recovery of the nature and discover new values for your business
Clearly, the earth needs regeneration, as it suffered from various contamination. To accomplish this, it is necessary to implement sustainable approaches when doing business and to take responsibility for the environment. The most effective weapon to fight pollution and waste of any kind is facing the transition to a circular economy. This step can aid in the environment’s recovery, which in turn helps maintaining social health. Simultaneously, it will unlock new economic growth potentials like added product value and increased supply chain efficiency.
Blaser supports the International Student Projects, because it is an investment in our future experts and management. As a globally active company, we are aware of the challenges, which are faced every day in the interconnected business world. This project opens its participants eyes to another culture, broadens their horizon and most importantly, makes them aware of dynamic business and growth potential in markets around the world.
Marc BlaserCEO of Blaser Swisslube AG
We have supported the project “connectUS” to give FHNW students the opportunity to put theory into practice in a new way. Furthermore, the exchange with business people from other cultures is of major importance and also fascinating. We as a company were able to gain multiple interesting insights for us and our clients thanks to the students working on this project.
Thomas NeuhausCEO of Autexis IT AG
By supporting these projects we recognize the standing of the local University of Applied Sciences and give students the opportunity to experience industrial business within an international context.
Beat VögtlinHead of HR Recruiting at Endress+Hauser Flowtec AG
Expert guest lecturers from various fields such as Management, Politics, Culture and Law, will offer a thorough introduction to life and work in the US and Canada.
Partners of all international projects have the possibility to present their company and recruit students from various fields of study.
Participating students get a unique chance to experience the meaning of the US and Canadian culture and business world in real life.
At the closing event, all of the flagship projects will reflect on their insights and experiences gained during the preparatory seminar and on-site seminar.