Scholar Achievements
Maryam Alireza assesses regions entrepreneurship potential during Jordan internship

CPISP scholar Maryam Alireza, an undergraduate at U Penn pursuing a double major in Economics and Political Science spent two months in Jordan as an intern at Endeavor - a global organization that aims to generate long-term economic growth in emerging economies by supporting high-impact entrepreneurs. Maryam worked directly with three diverse Jordanian companies: an animation studio, an Arabic online medical directory, and an Arabic version of Amazon. Her main tasks included assessing the companies’ growth potentials and critical challenges, preparing the entrepreneurs for participation in global panels, and represent her organization at various events. She explains that this experience has allowed her to gain insight into the region’s entrepreneurship ecosystem, as well as conduct research for her political science honor thesis:

“This is the perfect time to be learning about entrepreneurship in the MENA region. Entrepreneurship is being touted as the new solution to the Middle East and a remedy for some of its many political and social problems. As the Middle East is currently facing a rapidly increasing unemployment rate among its youth, entrepreneurship has been advertised as a way to allow these youth to challenge their energies into creating start-ups with the potential to generate both income and jobs. Although entrepreneurship does have the potential to lead to rapid economic development, the emergence and growth of entrepreneurs in the region will vary with the local conditions for starting a business. Therefore, I hope that through my time in Jordan working with Endeavor and later in Bahrain, I will be able to build a solid foundation for my investigation on the effects of business regulation on entrepreneurship in the Middle East, with a focus on Jordan and Bahrain.”


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