For more than three decades, Jean-Jacques Degroof has held leadership roles as a banking executive, corporate board member, and entrepreneur. A former researcher and Sloan Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School of Management, Jean-Jacques Degroof has since been involved with the university as a mentor and member of entrepreneurial and alumni groups.
Though MIT is most commonly associated with the technology, engineering, and business worlds, the school has also played a prominent role in the arts and culture of both the Boston area and the United States. To further support the intersection of the arts, technology, and entrepreneurship, the school organizes an annual Creative Arts Competition that recognizes MIT students who develop innovative projects in this sphere. All business ideas entered in the competition must either use the arts or creative disciplines in conjunction with technology and entrepreneurship.
Winning teams receive a $15,000 grant, plus additional support and mentorship through the START Studio and the Martin Trust Center for Entrepreneurship at the Sloan School of Management. First prize in the 2018 competition went to Hapticomix’s Project Daredevil, which creates virtual reality experiences for visually impaired individuals, while second prize went to a project that develops abandoned sidewalk shops into artists’ studios.