AVP Urban Challenge 2014


Want to REALLY understand what makes a customer tick? This is your opportunity!

AVP Urban Challenge is an opportunity to learn about customer service and innovation in Philadelphia and New York. Led by native New Yorker and current US Ambassador to Finland Bruce J. Oreck, you will gain hands-on experience and skills to serve customers in a more effective way. Partnering universities on the trip will be Philadelphia University and Pace University in New York, both leaders in new ways to experience innovation and entrepreneurship. Participants pay only 500 euros for the whole trip!

The trip will take place between the 3rd and 14th of September, and will be divided into two main parts: the “Nexus Maximus” Global Innovation Summit in Philadelphia, and daily customer service related challenges in New York. Preceding the trip, the participants will be given the basic tools for understanding customer service, and will have a chance to network with our partners.

Aalto Urban Challenge provides you with:

  • Hands-on experience on customer service and customer care
  • Entrepreneurship and innovation know how from the big stars at PhilaU
  • New networks with students from Pace and PhilaU!
  • A view of New York and Philadelphia that people rarely see
  • Did we mention networking? Lots and lots of it!



“Nexus Maximus” Global Innovation Summit at Philadelphia University

Philadelphia university has partnered with us in creation of a four day Global Innovation Summit in Philadelphia. Teams consisting of both Aalto and Philadelphia University students will tackle real-life problems through several workshops and lectures. The learning objective is to introduce participants to high growth entrepreneurship and inspire them to think big.

Urban Challenge in New York City

After the Global Innovation Summit in Philadelphia, it’s time to put your skills and assumptions into test. Every day teams consisting of both Aalto and Pace University students will work on a challenge where they’ll be selling and servicing real customers on the streets of New York. After each challenge, key learnings are discussed as a group to think of better ways to serve customers and to improve the performance of next day challenge.


How to Apply?

We are looking for 15-25 highly-motivated students with ambition to grow and learn about innovation and customer service. Also PhD students are welcome!

The application process is divided into two parts: general information form, and a brief video interview.

Application part one: The video interview

The platform for our video interviews is kindly provided by Dreambroker. Here are instructions for the video interview:

  • For video interview platform click
  • Click the “Upload” button to send your video. You can either record your video while in Dreambroker or upload a video file from your computer.
  • The maximum length of the video is two minutes.
  • Please include the following in your video:
    • Tell about yourself.
    • Why would you be the best candidate for the trip?
  • After you have uploaded the video to the server, please put your name in the “Title” box and click “Send”.

Application part two: General information form

In addition to the video interview, please fill your general information into the Google form on the bottom of this page. The form is enough, there’s no need to send extra files such as CV.

Application period starts the 8th of May and will be closed on 26th of May 2014 at midnight.

The selected participants are informed before mid-June.

If you are wondering whether this program is for you, don’t worry, IT IS! Everybody needs to understand customers better, especially you!

More information will provide:

Mikko Rajala

Global Partnerships

Aalto Ventures Program

mikko.t.rajala (at) aalto.fi

+358 40 8323750

Note that unfortunately we cannot give study credits for this learning experience.