Elif Seçkin & Maria Rodriguez Gradin - Erasmus entrepreneurs

Success stories

Recent testimonies of successful business networking - Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme

This is merely a selection of our success stories.
Want to see more testimonies? Use our search function »


New entrepreneur:
Elif Seçkin (Türkiye)
Age: 23
Company name: (Start-up)
Sector of activity: Education and training services

I would recommend this programme to anyone who has a business idea and wants to do something with it. Working with an experienced entrepreneur helps understand what running a business entails while also developing knowledge and social skills. An exchange abroad opens the mind and helps to see things from a more realistic point of view.


Host entrepreneur:
Maria Rodriguez Gradin (Spain)
Age: 32
Company name: sende.co (5 years of experience)
Sector of activity: Education and training services

With Elif we created a common ground where we can share our ideas, skills, knowledge and gain motivation out of it. While we were learning from each other, we were also practicing our ideas and analyzing the outcome of our actions. This helped her to progress with a more organized way and we as Sende had new perspectives to work on to make our space better.

Period of exchange: 06/2019 until 09/2019
Duration of exchange: 3 months


New entrepreneur, Elif Seçkin from Türkiye, learned about Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs during a training programme in Paris that she attended in February 2019. The training was about social entrepreneurship, which ended with an introduced to the programme.

Elif is a young woman who always wanted to become independent and "do what she wants” yet the idea of starting a business that would reflect her own values never really crossed her mind until she learned about the programme.

So, for her, this was a sign that would maybe lead her to start her business and become an accomplished woman entrepreneur and thus decided to apply for the programme.

Elif’s business idea is an online platform which would offer a wide range of psychological tests to help youngsters discover their abilities and tendencies. She thus prepared a solid business plan that she submitted to the Intermediary Organisation she applied with, and got accepted.

After some research in the online database, she came across the profile of Maria Rodriguez Gradin, owner of Sende, a co-working space located in Northern Spain. Maria has started her company five years ago.

After approving the collaboration proposal, Elif flew to Spain to work alongside Maria who will show her what business management entails and improve her business plan.

From the exchange, Elif wanted to know how things work and how to deal with a newly started business. Therefore, since the start of the exchange, she paid careful attention to every single detail. She attentively observing and learning from Maria.

The on-site experience helped Elif realized that deciding and acting quickly in situations was not totally how she imagined the process to be.

Together with Maria, they worked on the key aspects of running a social business. Her first week was about learning the online operations and the management of the company. Elif also got to know the entrepreneurs from nearby co-working spaces in Portugal, with whom she helped organising events for artists as well as the small community there.

She helped with the coordination of the event; maintaining and preparing schedules for arrivals, interviewing the digital nomads to understand better how they actually start their business and how they can manage it from remote.

Elif also got involved in social corporate social responsibility (CSR) actions. To this aim, she integrated the local community whom she enjoyed working with. She helped with the organisation of various social events as well as worked on the promotion and communication aspects of the event.

From this experience, Elif developed her knowledge and skills in various areas. She develop her social, events and communication skills, discovered marketing strategies, accounting and management. Yet, the most importantly, the human resources, critical thinking, leading and motivating and teambuilding.

"I had a closer glimpse of whole dynamics of a business. Being introduced to the whole scene was quite eye-opening to consider the submerged part of the iceberg” said Elif.

She also had a chance to meet respectable people which made her feel part of the entrepreneurial network with whom she can contact for advice or collaboration for future projects.

For more information, please contact the local contact points involved in the exchange:

New entrepreneur's contact point:

Host entrepreneur's contact point:

« Back to the overview