Wednesday 3rd June 2009 by C. Freeman
Hundreds of students from Brooke Weston and Corby Business Academy are striving to win a Young Enterprise Shield after developing their own companies and products. The Year 8 students will be responsible for marketing, costing and product design, under the guidance of trainers from Young Enterprise. The students develop a name, company logo, product and marketing strategy during the two-day project.
Winning ideas from each school will be presented to executives from Brooke Weston, Corby Business Academy and Young Enterprise East Midlands at Rockingham Speedway. After deliberation the overall winning school will be presented with a shield while the other will be awarded a trophy. It is likely that the event will become an annual fixture in the schools' calendar. The first group of students are already on the programme with the second cohort from each school completing their tasks later this week.
Mr Robin Neighbour, development manager with Young Enterprise, is leading the sessions at Brooke Weston. He said: 'The students are following our Enterprise in Action programme where they work on key issues of business and entrepreneurship. They are split into small groups where they take turns leading sessions, making decisions and updating the Young Enterprise website which tracks their progress. A key task is to make a product that returns a profit margin of between five and 15 per cent and the hardest thing for them be getting their costs right.'
The students also have input from business professionals. Mr Martyn Hale who runs VCT, a technology marketing company in Kettering, wants to pass on some of the skills he has learned developing his own business over the past 13 years. He is mentoring students on this Young Enterprise programme, but also plans to work alongside business students from other year groups at Brooke Weston.
He said: 'It's about teaching children hands-on skills which can be applied to a whole host of different activities. It's about team building, taking risks, understanding consequences and taking responsibility. There's such a wide range of things that they are learning which they will apply as they go on into the world of employment.'