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LBS Enterprise for Schools

By Lauren French

Last Friday we invited year 10 students from 4 secondary schools onto Campus for #LBSEnterpriseForSchools. 

LBS Enterprise for Schools’ was born from the ‘Pitch Days’ competition, where Degree Education and Career Centre colleagues battled it out to pitch their innovative ideas. The winning team (Niomie Benjamin, Sammy Engele and Alex Petterson) and Makayla Brown became the Organising Committee to nurture the pitched idea to fruition.

It was also an opportunity for staff in the department to give something back to the community with 26 members of staff volunteering on the day to help make the event a resounding success.

The day involved students from local schools King Solomon Academy and Paddington Academy, as well as The Abbey School in Faversham and Hatch End High School in Harrow. The central focus of the day was for students to develop ideas for a new app which facilitates learning. Bonus points were given to teams that added an element of ‘social impact’ or ‘giving back’ into their idea. 

The students were placed into their separate teams to develop their app idea. Each team was allocated a member of staff from Degree Education as captain. The students were given talks and workshops over the course of the day to help them develop their app idea, finishing with them pitching their ideas to a panel of judges consisting of three internal Degree Education and Career Centre staff and one student representative. 

Meet the judges! (L-R): Jai Hansel (Student Representative), Kathryn Georghiou (Co-Founder, Kat's Whiskers and Senior Manager, Academic Planning DE&CC), Gareth Howells (Executive Director, MBA, MiF and Early Career Programmes) and Cathy O'Leary (Leadership and Career Development Coach and Trainer, DE&CC)

The day’s packed agenda included a Faculty keynote from Jeff Skinner and learning presentation skills from alumnus Andrew Tollinton, President of the LBS Toastmasters Club. In addition, students had the chance to meet six London Business School entrepreneurs representing Le Salon, Taste of Kenya, MarkIt!!, Kat’s Whiskers, Sportskred and Life-Unlock.

“I found the real-life scenarios very useful. Real people, real businesses – it provided a lot of takeaways and has boosted my confidence. It has been a great day!”

- Bonnie, The Abbey School, Faversham

Congratulations to The Abbey School, led by Jane Charlton, Associate Director, Alumni Relations. Their winning app idea was designed to eradicate the stigma associated with mental health, provide support for those that need it and promote overall wellbeing through a focus on mind and body.

“Our vision was to allow teenagers from in and around London to experience London Business School and #LBSEnterpriseforSchools did just that and more” explains Niomie Benjamin, Organising Committee. “We are incredibly proud of the event and the students who took part, and strongly believe that experiential opportunities like these are what will truly make a difference to their futures. We’re looking forward to organising subsequent events.”

Organising Committee (L-R): Sammy Engele, Niomie Benjamin and Alex Petterson

  “The experience has broadened my knowledge of business and pitching ideas. The day was really enjoyable and has given us the opportunity to learn some great skills.”

- Nabihah, Paddington Academy, West London

“LBS Enterprise for Schools was a great opportunity to encourage young students to be future entrepreneurs. I was delighted to share the story of how, with the help of the School’s Incubator I founded my start-up, Taste of Kenya, to the participating schools during the event. It is vital to show the youth that any dream can be realised. If they have the passion, ability, and business acumen they have the resources to build their future. They just need to believe it.”

- Zipporah Gatiti (EMBALJ 2014 alumna), Taste of Kenya