Pupils from Rushden Academy and Huxlow Science College had a unique opportunity to explore what it takes to run a successful business at a council conference on Wednesday (21 November).
East Northamptonshire Council (ENC) organises a Youth in East Northamptonshire (YEN) conference each year for secondary students across the district. This year’s conference was delivered in partnership with Enterprising East Northants.
The event aimed to provide young people with the chance understand the challenges and opportunities of running a business. Business owners and an apprentice spoke to students about their journey through business, and helped explore business thinking and decision-making. Pupils then put what they’d learnt into practice and pitched a proposal to the panel of experts.
After much deliberation, the business owners gave their feedback, and selected a winner ‘Z Zone’. The winner’s proposal was to develop a range of shoes, with features such as USB charge points, designed to attract different markets.
The schools, the businesses and East Northamptonshire Council are delighted with the success of the day. Talking after the event Millie, from Huxlow Science College, said; “it was inspiring” and Robert, from Rushden Academy, added: “It was an amazing experience to be able to come and do something different. I will never forget this!” Inspired by the success of local business owners, Hope, from Rushden Academy, added: “I am thinking about starting my own business in the future”.
Leader of ENC, Cllr Steven North, said: “This annual conference is a powerful demonstration of local community partnership; officers from different teams at ENC and local business owners shared a vision to inspire the next generation of entrepreneurs. Joining together in an initiative like this is a great way to demonstrate our commitment to a thriving and prosperous district.”
ENC Vice Chairman, Cllr Helen Howell, said: “The atmosphere in the room throughout the conference was excellent. Pupils gave impressive presentations and should all be commended for their resourcefulness and inspiration. These could be the young business leaders of the future.”
Enterprising East Northants would like to thank the businesses for giving up their time to engage the pupils; Customer Services at East Northamptonshire Council, Thrapston Tiling, The Splined Hub, Red Octagon and Level 7 Expertise.
Information about services for young people can be found on the YEN webpage.
Business Support from Enterprising East Northants can be found at www.enterprisingeastnorthants.co.uk