Young Enterprise in the spotlight

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Selling their wraps, snoods and bags at last year’s Young Enterprise Christmas Fair is the team from Humphry Davy School, H’Art and Soles.
Selling their wraps, snoods and bags at last year’s Young Enterprise Christmas Fair is the team from Humphry Davy School, H’Art and Soles.

As part of the national Young Enterprise Programme, aspiring young business men and women from eleven of the county’s schools and colleges will sell their newly-created products at a Christmas fair on Saturday, December 5.

The fair will take place at Cornwall Services on the A30 at Roche, St Austell, between 10.30am and 4pm.

The Young Enterprise Company Programme is organised for young people aged 15-19 and runs for one academic year.

Similar to the way Sir Alan Sugar allows aspiring entrepreneurs to test their business skills in the hit TV show The Apprentice, this scheme gives students the opportunity to find out what it’s really like to set up and run a business.

Working as a team they must make all the decisions – from deciding on the company name and product to creating a business plan, managing the company finances, marketing and selling to the public at trade fairs. All this takes place with the support of a volunteer business adviser.

As part of the programme, the student companies exhibit at trade fairs, which allows them to sell to the public, and are judged by a panel made up of successful local business owners.

During that judging process the teams are interviewed, quizzed on their product knowledge and even ‘secret shopped’. If successful, they can progress in the competition to the area, regional and UK finals.

Taking stands at the Christmas Fair this year will be teams from Richard Lander School, Truro High School, Truro School, Truro and Penwith College, Fowey River Academy, Treviglas School, Tretherras School, Penrice Academy, Cape Cornwall School, Humphry Davy School and Penryn College.

Cornwall’s Young Enterprise manager, Samantha Wardman, said: “Approximately 130 students each year take part in the Cornish fairs and they work hard to impress the judges and the public with their products, trade stands and selling skills.

“It’s imperative the venue has a high footfall to give these young entrepreneurs a real opportunity to market their products so we’re delighted this year’s Christmas Fair will take place at Cornwall Services.”