Enterprise Week 2007 comes to Cambridge

Published: 7 November 2007 at 11:38

School and college students take part in ‘Dragon’s Den’ style business idea presentations at university.

Anglia Ruskin University is staging a week of special activities to mark national Enterprise Week (12-18 November 2007), the biggest annual celebration of all things enterprising across the UK.                                         

The week is run by the Make Your Mark campaign which aims to kick-start a more enterprising culture among young people in the UK.

The activities involve Year 10 students and college students from the area who will be introduced to some challenging and inspiring activities by students and staff from Anglia Ruskin University’s Ashcroft International Business School.

Last year over 448, 000 people took part in over 3,184 events nationwide.

The activities include running a business planning competition for five sixth-form groups from around the Cambridgeshire area. Part of the activity will be self-guided study and workshops co-ordinated by staff from Anglia Ruskin but staged at the participating schools and colleges.

The rules will include that the business has to be a social enterprise and that is has to meet a need arising from a social problem, for instance: Traffic Congestion, Obesity, Mental Health, Community Cohesion or Recycling / Waste Reduction.                                           

The groups will also be told that they need to pay special attention to the ‘triple bottom line’ of their business which means they will need to be able to justify the decisions they have made from an environmental and social perspective, as well as the more traditional financial approach.

At the same time, groups of Year 10 students from 5 local schools will be taking part in an enterprise challenge organised by the Widening Participation team at the University. The groups will be given a brief to design a product not currently on the market, secure funding in order to make the product and produce an advertisement which will appeal to their target audience. The groups will then ‘sell’ their products to a group of judges.

On Friday 16 November the business planning competition teams will be on campus for a ‘meet the experts’ session to help prepare them to present their plan to a ‘Dragon’s Den’ team of judges with all teams and an audience in attendance. Prizes will be presented at the end of the day.

Stephen Alambritis, Chair of the Make Your Mark Campaign, said:

“Already over a third of young people feel they have the personal qualities needed to develop a business idea.  During Enterprise Week we want to inspire even more people in their teens and twenties to have ideas and make them happen, whether they are starting up their own business or social venture or by making their mark at work. It’s up to all of us – and especially teachers, parents and employers – to support them along the way.”

For more information about Enterprise week see: http://www.enterpriseweek.org/