Somerset College in Taunton is to launch the first Peter Jones
Enterprise Academy for Somerset, after it won a contract to help
educate the next generation of budding entrepreneurs.
The College will join 35 others around the UK to provide
one of the prestigious and innovative Peter Jones academies,
where students set up and run their own businesses and receive
mentoring from business people at the same time.
Entrepreneurship is currently high on the agenda, with Virgin
empire boss Sir Richard Branson calling for student loan-type
funding for young entrepreneurs to help kick-start the economy, at
the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Liverpool recently - the
largest global gathering of enterprise champions.
Peter Jones Enterprise Academies were started in 2009 by entrepreneur and star of Dragon’s Den, Peter Jones CBE, with a view to encouraging entrepreneurial activity within the UK and a desire to help create entrepreneurs through ‘learning by doing.’
“This is a fantastic opportunity for go-ahead, creative young people who are keen to enter the world of business,” said Sue Parker, Director of Enterprise and External Relations at Somerset College.
“They don’t have to be the next Sir Alan Sugar or Sir Richard Branson, but we are looking for students who have ideas for money making schemes, and want to do something really different and practical.”
The course will consist of students setting up and running their own businesses at a profit, on a full-time basis, with help from business mentors as well as College lecturers. They will also attend master classes, workshops and networking events, and have a four week work placement in a highly respected company.
“We are looking for businesses to get involved in teaching young people about entrepreneurship, so are keen to hear from potential mentors in industry,” said Sue Parker.
The course, which starts this September, will be open to students aged 16 - 19 and they will need to pitch for their places - with only 20 initially chosen. The one year course will gain them a Level 3 Diploma in Enterprise and Entrepreneurship (equivalent to two A levels).
The budding entrepreneurs will be expected to wear business attire at all times, and will have their own office space in Somerset College’s Hot House, which already houses a number of small companies.
Businesses or students interested in joining the Peter Jones Enterprise Academy should get in touch with Somerset College’s Business Centre on 01823 366555.
Caption: Sue Parker, Director of Enterprise and External Relations at Somerset College.