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Future CEO Sheldon Chen Doesn't Give Up

The environmental engineering major and ELLC member hopes to follow in the footsteps of his entrepreneurial father.

May 16, 2014

by Zach Epstein

Sheldon ChenSheldon Chen, a member of the inaugural Entrepreneurship Living-Learning Community (ELLC) doesn’t give up. Not on the basketball court and certainly not in his approach to entrepreneurship. To give up would contradict his personal mantra. 

The environmental engineering major got his start in business selling goods on Taobao, a Chinese website similar to Amazon. Now at Drexel, Chen is honing his entrepreneurial skills both in the classroom and within the entrepreneurship community. From what we hear, he’s not such a bad singer either.

We spoke to the C-suite hopeful about his story.

How did you get to this point as an inaugural member of the ELLC?

I was in environmental engineering major to learn how to protect the environment in the future. Since my father was entrepreneur and he set up his own company, I thought the ELLC was the place I could learn how to start my own.

What does the ELLC mean to you? Why is it special?

The ELLC has been a nice experience for me, not only to learn the knowledge of dealing with business, but also to have the chance to start up my own company and experience the process of being an entrepreneur. Those experiences will help me a lot in the future. The most special is that we had the chance to experience the process of starting our own companies. That was fantastic. 

Tell me the best conversation you ever had. What made it so incredible?

The best conversation that I had was with my business teacher. He not only helped me about the knowledge of business, but also helped to start selling products on Taobao.

As an entrepreneur, are you an ideator, innovator, starter, grower or exiter?

I think I am an ideator. I always come out with new idea to share with my friends.

What is your personal definition of entrepreneurship?

I think for me, entrepreneurship is starting a successful company and helping to solve difficult problems of the world.

Why are you an entrepreneur?

Because I want to make money and use that money to help others.

Who is your personal hero? Why?

I think my personal hero is my father, who started his own company and made a lot of contributions to society.

Tell me something about you no one would ever know. Any guilty pleasures? Hidden talents?

No guilty pleasure, but a hidden talent is that I’m a pretty good singer.

What is your fondest memory since you came to Drexel?

Playing basketball in the gym and going to Silicon Valley trip with the ELLC.

If you had a catchphrase, what would it be?

My catchphrase is “No pain, No gain,” and “Never Give Up.”

Favorite movie? Captain America

Favorite book? Jane Eyre

Favorite Philly eating spot? Hot Pot

Favorite entrepreneur? Why? Steve Jobs. Even after he was fired from Apple, he never gave up.