Student-led Social Enterprise is on the Rise

As an alternative to protesting, students are channelling their energy through causes they care about into business plans, thanks to the symbiosis of increased awareness and support for social entrepreneurship, says Head of the Centre for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching (CELT) Dr Claire Thomson

A combination of mounting support in the sector, mixed with a frustration of increasingly visible social problems, students are proactively seeking solutions by creating social enterprises to address local, national and international issues.

Students from all subject areas including, science, engineering, business and humanities are getting involved and using both their academic and cultural backgrounds, to create and inform businesses which address wide-ranging social problems.

Entrepreneurs require problems that need solving and students with a heightened awareness of today’s social problems are no exception, hence the rise in this type of activity.

Bishop Grosseteste University (BGU) students recently had the chance to devise solutions to the global issue of food waste as part of the ‘Make Your Mark’ challenge which tasked them to think of improvements to help limit food waste at BGU.  To access more information regarding this, visit Make Your Mark Challenge.  The winning student came away with a well-deserved £150 but it was the passion and enthusiasm for the topic which led to students actively participating and generating a raft of ideas for positive changes at the University.

BGU would like to work with local sixth formers in the Autumn/Winter 2020 term on October 14th on a similar social enterprise challenge.  CELT Co-ordinator, Linette Wallace stated “Ideally we would like to work with 3 schools on the BGU campus, who will work together in groups on a social issue, kept secret until the day!  The students will formulate social enterprise concepts which will be pitched for at the end of the event.”

As well as philosophical reasons prompting students to get involved, there are practical reasons too.  Sarah Moseley, Enterprise Manager commented that “Social enterprises can help to make the transition from university life into the commercial world a reality.  Most recruiters say that entrepreneurial qualities are essential in new graduates, so working on this type of activity is a good opportunity to fine hone those skills and add more personality to your CV.

We would like local secondary schools to get in touch if this activity is of interest to you for your students.  There will be also a chance for your students to visit a few key areas on the BGU campus on the day which may help with them thinking about transitioning to university life.

As we can only book in 3 schools for this activity on the day, please book as soon as possible to reserve your school by using the form below.  Or if you would like to speak to someone further about the event, please contact: outreach@bishopg.ac.uk



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