Alexandrea Derrer is a biomedical engineering student at The Ohio State University, graduating in 2021. She completed OIF’s Venture Boot Camp in winter 2019. Here’s what she thought of the experience. 

What encouraged you to complete the Venture Boot Camp with OIF? 

I completed the Venture Boot Camp at OIF because I have always been interested in the startup world. However, as an engineering student, I am typically only exposed to the innovation side. I want to have a well-rounded perspective on startups, and venture capital is a very important part of startup culture.

What was the most valuable exercise of the VBC? 

For me, as an engineer, having a chance to really dive into the financial documents taught me a lot. I am very good with numbers, but working with numbers from a financial standpoint is a different ballgame. I learned a lot about finance from this exercise.

Who would you recommend to complete the Venture Boot Camp? Any advice going in? Coming from a non-venture background, what surprised you the most about venture capital? 

I would recommend the Venture Boot Camp to any student interested in startups. The skills we learned are hands-on and very valuable. My advice to students is to ask questions. You’re there to learn and not expected to know everything coming in. A student will gain the most knowledge from the Venture Boot Camp by recognizing when they may need more background to solve a problem.

Do you see venture/entrepreneurship fitting into your future career? If so, how? Did the Venture Boot Camp change your perspective on this? 

I certainly see venture and entrepreneurship fitting into my career. With an engineering background and growing venture knowledge, I feel that I have a unique perspective. I am able to look at deals from both an engineering and a profitability standpoint. Venture Boot Camp helped me see that my options are unlimited as long as I am willing to put in the work to gain knowledge.