Here are the nominees for the Student Enterprise Champion category. These students have made an outstanding contribution to enterprise which has significantly impacted on the success of their respective Enterprise Society.
Luke Tregidgo - University of Bath
Luke has been involved in BANTER Bath Entrepreneurs for the last 4 years. In this time he has chaired the society, entered the Business competition, started a company and booked entrepreneurial speakers.
This year he has supported Student Enterprise 11 which gives students the chance to start a business for a day in an empty shop in Bath. He took a leading role in the organisation of this project raising the number of participants from 48 to 184.
He has driven enterprise in new and innovative directions by creating Bath's new flagship digital competition, Apps Crunch, which challenged students across departments to develop a mobile application. He gained sponsorship, created a network from the local tech community and negotiated the prize – attendance at XML, international digital conference. David Maher Roberts one of the judges and CEO of The Filter described it as “the beginning of the relationship between the tech community and the University”. This competition has led to two successful startups, one of whom is currently seeking intellectual property for the app they developed in Apps Crunch.
He has helped create a buzz around enterprise resulting in an increase in membership of over 100% to over 650 members.
Clara Hargreaves & Thibault Jeangout - University of Bristol
Clara and Thibault took the helm of InHouse Media (www.inhouse-media.com) in October 2011 and breathed new energy into a faltering project. InHouse is a student-run production company, offering cost-effective film and video production to student groups and university departments by using student volunteers who are rewarded through professional training, unparalleled work experience, and funds to work on their own production projects.
Clara and Thibault spend almost all their waking hours on InHouse and have built a hugely motivated team of 15 dedicated film-makers from practically zero in October. They’ve sourced expert training, won contracts, run innovative skills development projects for their team, completed twelve paid-for contracts (including five university departments, five student projects, and two external charity projects), and raised over £5000 in income – double any previous efforts – for a not-for-profit activity!
They have succeeded in generating both a huge amount of enthusiasm, and a really professional ethos amongst this group of new recruits. Their dedication, positivity, and man-management are an object lesson to all of the student entrepreneurs around them in Basecamp. In the words of one of their team of students: “Thibault and Clara are really good at getting everyone involved... very supportive and great business leaders!”.
Rishit Radia & Jessica Drew – University of Exeter
Along with my colleague, Jessica Drew, we initiated SIFE society (Students In Free Enterprise) at University of Exeter. SIFE is an international non-profit organization which is dedicated to nurturing the entrepreneurial skills of university students in a way that is both effective in developing their future careers and meaningful to the community. Jess and I front a student-led SIFE Exeter team attempting to develop sustainable projects that create economic opportunity for others. Our official affiliation with Exeter Student's Guild was in October 2011, and over the period of 5 months of running we have initiated a total of 7 local social enterprise projects in Exeter. At our Exeter campus, we have about 80 active members, while our SIFE partners in Exeter Cornwall campus have about 35. We have managed to raise about £1000 for our projects through membership fees, grants, as well as fundraising.
We have worked very closely with our University's Employability and Graduate Development (EGD) Dept. as well as with The Innovation Centre. We encourage student enterprise at the university by providing a platform for students to initiate commercial projects as well as through our social enterprise projects.
Vadims Frank Sondors – University of Southampton
Vadims Frank Sondors’ (Frank) energy and drive, along with his enterprise skills and business acumen, make him an excellent nomination.
He has secured £1500 funding for Fish on Toast society for entrepreneurs. This is the biggest funding for the society this year and has enabled it to run their usual activities and also invite major business leaders to speak.
Vadims is the Student Enterprise Officer for the Students’ Union and has mentored students through the process of setting up a company. He has secured £500 worth of funding from the Students’ Union to create an event where students can pitch their businesses and win seed money to kick-start their ventures. He has liaised with the Enterprise Advisors’ Team to improve incubator space, which will help to boost the student enterprise activities next year. Together, with other Enterprise Societies, he has created the Student Enterprise Committee that will be responsible for overseeing the enterprise budget for upcoming years.
Vadim’s energetic promotion of the Southampton ‘Apprentice Competition’ has made this year’s activities a real success. Lastly, he has integrated an Enterprise Web Section within the Student Union's website to update and publicise future enterprise events.
The following links evidence Vadim’s work.
Mia Oesterby and Noel Azirar - University of Surrey
Since taking over from Mia Oesterby as president of Surrey Entrepreneurs, and in keeping with our constant contribution to enterprise at University of Surrey, my objective is to encourage students to think outside the box. A quote I believe in is “never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
I have been building a more sustainable model for on-going society development, both now and in the future. This year our agenda offers members multiple resources within our training workshops, inspiring events, networking and projects, https://www.facebook.com/surreyentrepreneurs/events. An example of an enterprise society project we hosted in December is our £10,000 Funding programme which demonstrated an innovative approach in development and execution, making a significant impact on student/graduate enterprise skills and new ventures created.
Within my own experience of setting up a start-up and leading a student organisation, I know how important it is to receive mentoring from experienced entrepreneurs and business people. Therefore, building a network with Surrey University alumni mentors to support our members has been an important element in our society growth.