City College Brighton and Hove is nurturing the new generation of entrepreneurial talent with an innovative new project, 'City Entrepreneur'.
Groups of students will run a small business for a short period of time. Students from across the College applied for start-up capital and the best 10 applications were taken forward into the trading phase. Each successful group has been given £50 start-up money and will also be allowed to raise an additional £50 in capital (e.g. from selling shares to family/friends). The business ideas include personalised Christmas cards, jewellery, design services and hand-knitted scarves.
Each student business has been allocated a mentor from the business community. These mentors include high-level executives from businesses such as EDF Energy and Red Seven. Trading will take place over 8 weeks and the winner will be announced during a prize-giving ceremony. The overall winner will be the group which makes the most profit but there will also be prizes for elements such as best advertising campaign and best teamwork. Companies will be registered and given a strict set of trading rules which they will be expected to adhere to.
Principal Phil Frier says:
"Enterprise is all about having ideas and then making them happen. City Entrepreneur aims to equip young people to take these business ideas forward through 'learning by doing'. By providing this opportunity, we'll be nurturing entrepreneurial talent throughout the whole college while at the same time strengthening the excellent links with the local business community that we've already established.
City Entrepreneur won't just focus on profit-making. It will also offer students some of the vision, skills and know-how required in the current economic environment. The project is about providing a 'real-life' opportunity to encourage the positive qualities of enterprise - questioning, experimentation, risk-taking and empowerment - allowing students to turn their ideas into a reality."
EDF Energy's Community Executive David Sheppard says:
"To be working with City College on such an exciting project as the City Entrepreneur scheme is a fantastic opportunity. Not only is it great to enhance EDF Energy's volunteering programme in this way but it also enables stronger ties to be built with the College. The scheme will encourage a number of future, EDF Energy Team Managers to not only enhance the skills they will be using use on a day-to-day basis but it will also allow the students access to the vast amount of knowledge and expertise that our employees have. It's a win-win situation for the College and EDF Energy."
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