(Editor’s Note: Sudan Zhuang, one of the students taking the NYC entrepreneurship  immersion course, Sudan edit#EntreTechNYC, contributed this post for Information Space. The School of Information Studies course visits a range of startups and established entrepreneurial ventures, and takes place all this week.

Sudan is a freshman student in the iSchool’s Information Management and Technology undergraduate program. Her hobbies are traveling, painting, going on food adventures, and experiencing new cultures.


As soon as all the details about EntreTech NYC were announced on Sunday , I couldn’t wait to start this tech trip th next morning along with my fellow Syracuse University faculty members and students. After spending my very first day visiting and exploring startups in New York, I have come up with a list of 5 Do’s and 5 Dont’s for being on an EntreTech NYC trip.

Top 5 Do’s

1. Be Prepared

Come prepared with as much information about the startups you’ll be visiting as possible. Prepare a list of questions that you want to ask at each specific startup. Keep in mind that good preparations leave good impressions.

2. Be Confident

At the end of each tour, there’s a Q&A session where you are able to ask questions. It is very important to begin introductions with a firm and warm handshake (make sure the handshake is not overpowering.) No one likes to talk to you without knowing who you are and what you are studying, so always introduce yourself before ask any questions.

3. Be Punctual

EntreTechNYC 2015 Group

As soon as the schedule for each day is given, you have to keep in mind that punctuality is the key to ace this trip. It is not fair to visitors, alumni, and the other students if you are late to events, therefore it is very important to be on time to meetings and other visits.

4. Be Engaging

Make eye contact often–a must. It shows confidence and connects you with the person you are speaking to. Remember the name of the person you are talking to and politely ask he/she for a business card or contact information at the end of the conversation.

5. Be Respectful

When you visit each company, you have to remember that it is a privilege, not a right. Whenever you are walking into their offices or workplaces, make sure to keep your voices low. Remember you are expected to represent Syracuse University in a good manner as well.

Top 5 Dont’s

1.Don’t underdress

The dress code is business casual, and wearing appropriate clothes and shoes will help you survive a long day of traveling back and forth in New York City. Plan on a pair of comfortable shoes and formal business wear intended to give a professional and businesslike impression.


Photo via Julie Walas Huynh

2. Don’t wait to ask questions

It is very important to know that the timing for each visit is set and that we’re switching between different startup visits. During the Q&A session, if you have questions, it is better to raise your hand and ask them right away, since time is limited. You never know when you will be interacting with the speakers again.

3. Don’t overpack

This is a five-day tech trip in NYC, not a fancy vacation for you. Do not pack items that are unnecessary. As long as you bring appropriate clothes and shoes, you are good to go. You are also sharing your room with one or two roommates, so you don’t want to have too much stuff all over the room.

4. Don’t Sleep Lategeneral assembly

As mentioned in the beginning, each day of visits is going to be a long and exhausting one. It is very important for you to keep up with your sleep, because you don’t want to feel tired or fall asleep the next day during visits.

5. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

EntreTech NYC is a program designed for both graduates and undergraduates. Some students in the group may tend to be more knowledgeable than you are. However, the point of coming on this trip is to learn, so you have to be confident and never be afraid to ask each other questions or voice concerns. Others are more than likely to respond to you if you show your curiosity and interest.

Have you ever been on EntreTech or a similar immersion-trip program? Do you have any do’s or don’t to add? Please let us know here in the comments!