Monday, December 7, 2015

News: Rotherham College receives funding for entrepreneurs

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Rotherham College has launched an initiative to give students an insight into managing a real-life commercial business thanks to funding from UK Steel Enterprise's 40:40 challenge to mark their 40th anniversary.

The creative project known as "Flashback Design" is aimed at students aged 16-18 studying courses at the college - from accountancy to fashion design - to get hands-on experience in the running a business.

Collaborating with Rotherham Youth Enterprise (RYE) and The Makers Emporium in Rotherham, the College will teach students how to manage financial records and support them in contributing designs to be printed onto blank products as well as ready-to-wear clothing.

Detailed design briefs were submitted to Art and Design students and the most suitable designs will be transformed into printed products and placed on display at The Makers Emporium in the award-winning Rotherham town centre.

After the academic year finishes, the project will re-start in September, welcoming new students to take part.

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Tata Steel subsidiary UK Steel Enterprise launched the 40:40 challenge earlier this year to mark its 40th anniversary – a pot of £40,000 open to schools and other youth organisations to work with students aged 18 or under. The challenge is part of the overall work UK Steel does in the region, supporting businesses and organisations in steel regions across the UK.

With UK Steel's support, Rotherham College are keen to keep the "Flashback Design" concept sustainable, giving the students the opportunity to increasingly take ownership through additional work experience in product launches, online marketing campaigns, pitching ideas for products and developing their own products to be sold through The Makers Emporium and elsewhere.

Ann Hardy, assistant principal at Rotherham College, said: "This exciting and creative project will provide our students with the opportunity to manage a real-life commercial business.

"It's fantastic to have this backing from UK Steel Enterprise – without the funding we wouldn't be able to provide the equipment and opportunity for budding entrepreneurs to gain valuable experience in producing commercially viable products. Students will see the profits from the sale of the products reinvested in the business so that future students can continue the project’s legacy and keep it going on a rolling basis.

"The College is working closely with Rotherham Youth Enterprise and The Makers Emporium to provide help and support to young entrepreneurs to develop skills in running their own business, which they can then take forward after completing their studies."

Allan Wood, who manages the applications for the 40:40 Challenge at UK Steel Enterprise, added: "This is a great creative initiative to get students thinking about business management and longer term career opportunities with the support from college tutors and local businesses.

"We're delighted to support the project and we're excited to see the funding kick-start a sustainable business for students to learn from and develop, inspiring future entrepreneurs of the region."

Rotherham College website
UK Steel Enterprise website
Rotherham Youth Enterprise website

Images: RCAT

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