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  • Writer's pictureBaker Institute Team

The Hatchery 2022 Reflections: "Entrepreneurial mindset will follow you for the rest of your life"

Read more from Hatchery student Kelly Chen '25, Computer Science & Business, as she reflects on her experience in the Baker Institute's signature summer experience, The Hatchery Student Idea Accelerator...

Author: Kelly Chen '25

"During COVID, toward the end of my senior year of high school, contactless payment became popular, so my dad and I saw the problem of the inefficiency of the coupon redemption process and saw an opportunity in the QR code payment. We researched coupons, payment gateways, POS terminal systems, etc. Then we came up with an innovative way to combine QR code payment with coupon redemption and filed a patent application titled Methods and Systems of Mobile Phone Payment with Coupon Redemption. Then we hit a bottleneck, and I wasn't sure what my next steps should be.

When I attended my first EUREKA Pitch Night, I was amazed and inspired by the diverse group of ideas and students' passion for their project, and from there, I couldn’t stop attending those pitch nights. I admired those students' courage to pitch in front of a large group audience and their ability to stay calm and think logically while answering judges’ questions. When I saw the Hatchery program, I saw it as the perfect opportunity to take my project to the next level. I wanted to practice pitching and share my project with other students.

My biggest takeaway from the Hatchery program was the entrepreneurial mindset and the design thinking process. I started the program thinking I had a solid solution that my target users would want but failed to think about any blocks that may prevent each party from partnering with us. Through my meetings with my mentor, Chris, he consistently reminded me to think from a different perspective and brought up many valuable concerns for me to ponder.

Secondly, I realized the importance of direct user feedback. In the end, it's your target user who is paying for your service/product. What you assume about your target users may not be valid. Therefore, direct user feedback is what really determines whether your idea is good or not. Lastly, you get to hear from many inspiring entrepreneurs about their entrepreneurial journey. Different from many speakers you may find elsewhere, Hatchery’s speakers are proud to share their success but also not afraid to share their failures, and they are very generous to help you on your journey. I also find it interesting to see how their individual personality played a role in their entrepreneurial journey.

I’ll definitely continue working on my project. Now I have a clear vision of my next steps. I’ll reach out and interview professionals working in different fields at bank companies about the most significant problems they see at their companies. This way, I can get some insight into what the banks need and their concerns, so I have solid testimonials and evidence to higher my chance of persuading banks to partner with us.

That sums up my experience at Hatchery. I would highly recommend joining Hatchery if you're interested in exploring entrepreneurship. It’s a unique learning experience for everyone, and this entrepreneurial mindset will follow you for the rest of your life. No matter what industry you want to work for in the future, this mindset and this type of experience are highly valued and can help you stand out in a pool of applicants.

Kelly's venture SkanPay is a payment Gateway Service that authorizes credit card or direct payments processing using a multi-element QR code that supports coupon redemption and payments.

In Case You Missed It: Read more from our Hatchery 2022 students about their experience in our one-of-a-kind program HERE.

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