Last week, Young Enterprise (YE) launched Company Programme at Exeter School. Over 35 students were joined by a range of YE board members, volunteers, teachers and guest speakers. The event marked the pupils’ first steps in starting a company.
In anticipation of the year-long programme, pupils first heard from Marian Weston, YE Area Manager for East, North and South Devon, who gave an exciting preface for the year; and warned of the trials and tribulations of entrepreneurship! Marian also noted that “helping students make the connection between school and the world of work, the Young Enterprise helps schools offer a more effective careers programme – in line with Department for Education recommendations that place Gatsby career benchmarks at its heart.”
Lucy Palmer, Director of HR at leading law firm Stephens Scown, then took the stage. Drawing from experience in Human Resources and people management, Lucy highlighted the importance of communicating clearly across your team while defining the roles of your team members. Perhaps, one of best bits of advice that the pupils received! Lucy was then followed by an energetic talk from Louise Fellows, YE Chair for the area and Managing Partner at 02, who emphasised the importance of sales and finding your first customers.
However, the real stars of the show were last year’s finalists from Ilfracombe Academy. Lucien and Will confidently took the stage to discuss their journey with their team SOW (Save our World). SOW, are a company that sustainably printed trio of children’s books that educate children on plastic pollution. The SOW team represented the South West at the National Finals in London in July. The audience were captivated as Lucien and Will explained how the SOW team came to grips with printing presses, stressful trade fairs, and building a vast social media following in a matter of weeks. SOW are currently in discussions with Waterstones about publishing multiple books, and are planning to continue operations – testament to the impact of the Young Enterprise programmes.
It’s going to be an intriguing and exciting year following the progress of the newly formed YE. Watch this space!
If you would like to mentor Young Enterprise pupils please get in touch with Marian via email at [email protected].
Likewise, if you would like to stay up to date with the Young Enterprise programs in Devon please follow their twitter @YEDevonUK