SCET Forms Partnership with WOJ to Create a New Path for Tech Entrepreneurship for Students Around the World


November 13, 2020



The Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology (SCET) at the University of California, Berkeley is excited to announce a new partnership with WOJ, creator of an innovative tech education framework developed by the award-winning educator Esther Wojcicki and conscious entrepreneur Amit Hooda. The partnership will help SCET to advance its pioneering innovation curriculum by incorporating learning from the WOJ Global Moonshots pedagogy and enable WOJ students and scholars to gain access to Berkeley’s leading entrepreneurship ecosystem. The combined efforts will allow students from fifteen countries around the world to experience an unparalleled entrepreneurship education and lift up their local communities.

SCET director, Ikhlaq Sidhu, in a conversation with renowned educator Esther Wojcicki about how their teaching methods can work together to reach students around the world

“We are thrilled to welcome WOJ students to SCET, and to partner with WOJ to build skilled workforces and innovation centers around the world that respond to the needs of today’s companies while also addressing urgent social problems,” says Professor Ikhlaq Sidhu, founder and director of SCET.

Together, the WOJ and Berkeley SCET partnership will offer a globally-recognized program for young innovators that will prepare them for top jobs in tech, building on WOJ’s existing efforts to upskill local workforces and build hubs of innovation — local Silicon Valleys — in fifteen countries including India, Jamaica, Indonesia, Vietnam, the UAE, and Mexico. SCET will bring its award-winning Berkeley Method of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Engineering curriculums to work together with WOJ’s Global Moonshots pedagogy to deliver a one-of-a-kind innovation education to students in the program. Additionally, academics and researchers from WOJ countries will participate in a bidirectional visitation and information exchange with Berkeley scholars, allowing them to collaborate on topics related to AI, data, 5G, and other areas of mutual interest.

“It is exciting and humbling to partner with UC Berkeley SCET, a first-class center for learning innovation at my alma mater to empower students worldwide to improve their lives and the lives of their families by learning TRICK skills and tech skills so they can improve their lives and the lives of people in their communities and worldwide,” says Esther Wojcicki, Global Educator affectionately known as “WOJ” to her many students and admirers.

From left to right: Johnny Kang, Susan Giesecke, Ikhlaq Sidhu, Esther Wojcicki, Saumen Chakraborty, and Amit Hooda

The collaboration is intended to enlist SCET’s support to help solve the tech industry’s urgent worker shortage by equipping hundreds of thousands of students in the fifteen global countries with the 21 st century skills they need to be responsible global citizens and next generation entrepreneurs. WOJ is working to inspire young minds to solve problems in their home countries by connecting students from diverse backgrounds with Berkeley’s vast network and entrepreneurship resources. The ambitious goal is to eliminate global poverty through education.

“Our project-based learning model aims to eliminate poverty by teaching real-world problem solving skills instead of memorization,” said Amit Hooda. “We are thrilled to partner with Berkeley to increase our impact.”

The WOJ and Berkeley SCET teams engaging in a brainstorm session at the University of California, Berkeley campus, just outside of California Memorial Stadium

About UC Berkeley SCET

The Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology is a global innovation hub headquartered at UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering, where aspiring entrepreneurs take deep dives into the world of technology entrepreneurship and embark on the path to developing exciting new ventures. The Center researches emerging technologies in its labs and offers a suite of courses and programs for students, executives, and global innovators. The Center has recently launched new labs focused on innovation in data science, artificial intelligence, blockchain and meat alternatives. Additionally, academics from around the world visit the Center to learn about the Berkeley Method of Entrepreneurship, a unique innovation pedagogy that focuses on mindset training for innovators and entrepreneurs. UC Berkeley is the world’s #1 public university and ranks as the #2 university for startups and entrepreneurs, according to Pitchbook. UC Berkeley has been at the forefront of innovation in emerging technologies such as blockchain and cryptocurrency. 

About WOJ

WOJ teaching methods will be based on the transformative Global Moonshots pedagogy, developed over the past 36 years by Esther Wojcicki since 1984, which has benefitted tens of thousands of students in businesses and educational institutions. With a focus on a learning model called TRICK (trust, respect, independence, collaboration, kindness), WOJ’s project-based methods bring real-world problems and clients into the classroom to better prepare students for the demands of the workplace. WOJ will also prioritize flexible scheduling and payment models including scholarships and corporate sponsorships to ensure accessibility across gender and class divides, helping to strengthen and diversify the tech worker pipeline.