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The entrepreneurial culture and resources at Loughborough University London

30 April 2021

4 mins

The Loughborough University London campus is centrally located in an innovation and technology hub, Here East –  home to a vibrant mix of innovators, inventors and visionaries looking to challenge the status quo. This enables Loughborough University London to collaborate effectively with organisations from a number of industries and sectors. As well as providing access to primary data from a broad range of sources, these collaborations help to shape the research focus to ensure research is delivering impact for industry and society.

There is an undeniable creative and entrepreneurial culture on Loughborough University’s London campus, which has enabled students and alumni to achieve great things, like forge new business plans, grow niche new start-ups and share innovative solutions to business problems. Thought leadership, entrepreneurship and innovation is the forefront of our vibrant London campus and our aim is to influence a narrative by understanding what needs to be done.

Whether you are a visionary, a conscious reflector, or a passionate trail blazer, at Loughborough University London we hone in on all of these qualities aiming for the future generations of our postgraduate students to be leaders in their fields and continuously have forward-thinking approaches and challenge society norms. Together with our unique location, the Future Space and Loughborough Enterprise Network (LEN) teams are here to support your entrepreneurial journeys.

Dr Salman Malik is a resident entrepreneur and business advisor at Loughborough University London helping students put their ideas forward and develop their enterprise skills. Dr Salman Malik (aka Sal) is an ex-scientist, an advisory board member and multi-award winning entrepreneur. Sal has solely founded a biotech start-up and successfully raised funding to work on the research and development of a process used to cost-effectively develop microparticles (i.e. drug delivery carriers). He was also awarded a prestigious Enterprise Fellowship from The Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE) which allowed him to transition as an academic into an entrepreneur and CEO.

As an ex-scientist, Sal has created a concoction of 8 key mindset features for entrepreneurs and thought leaders that he believes will aid in them becoming a success. Vision, a fearless attitude, problem solving skills, creating value, self development, resourcefulness, the ability to recover quickly from knock backs and most importantly being a DOER. Sal was previously a student entrepreneur and had this to say about his experiences:

“As a (once upon a time) student entrepreneur, I have always been convinced that one of the ‘safest’ places to commercialise your ideas and start a business has been within a University and, in particular during your time there as either a Undergraduate or Postgraduate student. A university provides a de-risked environment for sole/co-founders to network and connect with other team members. As a student entrepreneur, you have access to multiple sources of funding through mini competitions and enterprise funds giving you admission to endless resources, advice and support while developing your idea. Furthermore, the mentoring available through a university’s trusted network of alumni can also open doors for you as a founder or employee within the business.

One of the most notable things about being a student entrepreneur is your ability to generate innovative ideas. You are young, energetic, motivated, inspired, and are not distracted by some of the ‘background noise’ or responsibilities that may appear as you leave and enter employment, potentially get married and/or have a family. The appetite for risk is higher, the thirst for success is greater, and the surrounding collegiate ecosystem endorses enterprise making it the ideal scenario to cultivate your ideas/business. However, regardless of all of the above, accessing funds to take your ideas forward will always remain a hurdle and a competitive one too. As a student entrepreneur, there are sources of funding available to you as a student/graduate and are all very realistic opportunities to bring in cash to your start-up.

To find out more about the support available at the London campus for student entrepreneurs, please visit the Loughborough Enterprise Network (LEN) website and our careers and employability support (aka Future Space) pages.

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