Multidisciplinary Projects and Internships, oriented for the development of new products or services, developed by teams of students with different backgrounds and from different countries, in which students co-create and co-develop projects proposed by enterprises and other organizations, and innovative ideas are accelerated corresponds to the main innovation of LAPASSION. This innovation will be integrated in the students’ curricula, namely as final projects or internships, giving origin to the new paradigm of “Passion-based Learning”.
An objective is to train students in the development of real-world projects, with the need to cooperate with other students from different areas and countries, to create the perfect environment to deal with the learning of soft skills, to respond to the needs of enterprises and other organizations, and to be able to innovate. The center is not placed with the focus to create new business, a startup or a spinoff, like it is done in incubators, but also in preparing students for existing enterprises or organizations oriented to global markets, giving them the ability to innovate in this context. Cooperation and collaboration between participants of the students’ teams are the key aspects, emphasized in the “co-creation and co-development” words.
Creativity and Innovation spirit does not appear from nothing. It must be experimented and trained, step-by-step, in the Program Curricula of students, not only by planned exercises, but mainly by challenges posed to students, and involving uncertainty and ambiguity.
While already existing in some Programmes, there is a trend to launch these challenges for homogeneous groups of students, from the same Programme, with the same background. LAPASSION argues that heterogeneous creation and development are essential to prepare future graduates. The impact on employment, creativity, productivity, innovation, and global thinking will be enormous.
LAPASSION is a network of parts of other existing networks, namely:
- the Design Factory Network (2 partners, IPP, and DUOC);
- CONIF, the Rectors' Council of the 41 Brazilian Federal Institutes, including the 5 involved in LAPASSION (IFSUL, IFTM,IFG,IFMA and IFAM). IPP has a direct agreement with CONIF. TAMK cooperates with some Federal Institutes in the aims of a cooperation centered in Teachers Training.
- IFSul has a strong cooperation with Universities of Uruguay, namely with UTEC and UDELAR.
- CRUCH (associated partner), the Rectors' Council of the Universities from Chile, involving PUC and DUOC;
- AEP (partner) has cooperations with Enterprises Associations;
- UVIGO, USAL and IPP have a close cooperation in the Direction of CRUSOE, the Universities’ Network of Galicia, North and Centre of Portugal, and Castilla-León regions.