Budding entrepreneurs from a West Yorkshire school have gone head-to-head in an ´Apprentice‘ style challenge as they prepare to enter the competitive job market.
280 sixth-formers at Heckmondwike Grammar School completed the school‘s annual Challenge of Management Conference, attending a series of business and management workshops and receiving guidance and assistance from staff representing a wide range of companies.
Employees from organisations including Lloyds TSB Commercial Finance, BAE Systems, ITV Yorkshire and Newcastle University were on hand to act as advisers to the students as they managed a virtual company, presented a persuasive business plan to a ´bank manager‘ and took part in a competitive business game, during the three-day event.
On the final day, the sixth-formers were split into teams and, in an ´Apprentice‘ style test of entrepreneurial flair, their presentations were judged by Dr Graham Worsdale, associate dean of the University of Huddersfield‘s Business School.
The aim of the conference was to boost the 17 year-olds‘ communication, team working, time management, decision-making and problem solving skills.
Charlotte Jackson, regional manager for Lloyds TSB Commercial Finance, who also acted as an adviser at the event, said: “Not only are we committed to supporting the communities in which we operate by funding businesses‘ aspirations, but we‘re keen to donate our time to important local projects such as the Challenge of Management Conference.
“It was really rewarding to work alongside such enthusiastic students, helping them to consider real life business and management decisions that will stand them in good stead as they embark on their careers.”
Lynne Morton, sixth form placement co-ordinator for Heckmondwike Grammar School, said: “The school and its year 12 pupils are extremely grateful to all the organisations that helped to make the Challenge of Management Conference a huge success.
“As the job market becomes increasingly competitive, it is more important than ever that school leavers are able to access hands-on careers events and advice that can make a real difference to their employment prospects.”
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