Pioneering scheme links students with business
- Credit: Archant
A pioneering link between a sixth form in Ipswich and the Institute of Directors (IoD) continues to go from strength to strength and celebrated a four year partnership this month.
In 2012, students from One in Ipswich were offered the chance of becoming the first group of 16 to 19 year olds in the country to be offered membership with the IoD. (They are still the only sixth form in the country to have this partnership).
A further 26 people joined in 2013 – and the latest group to benefit from this unique partnership attended a meeting at Scrivener Drive to find out more. 14 people have been chosen to play a part in the partnership this year. All had to apply and then were interviewed for suitability and then chosen to be part of the programme.
The students were joined by Mark Savage and Justin Bareham from the business team at One to talk about the year ahead with IoD.
Mr Bareham – a teacher of business and economics at One, said: “We have three strands to activities throughout the year. Firstly, AXA and other large insurance firms will be mentoring the students. Then our senior leadership team will be setting the students a problem to solve. Finally, all involved will get to work on a real life business scenario with external companies at the end of the year. In addition to that, everyone will get a host of new experiences via the contacts they make and the experiences they have.”
Two of the students who are part of the group have joined the business world already with one of student setting up her own business at the age of 14.
Georgie O’Callaghan is 17 and lives in Bury St Edmunds.
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She set up Geogie’s Chocolates’ in 2013. She said: “I go to markets at certain times of the year and Christmas is always a busy time for me. Last year I turned over £3,000 and I’m hoping to double that amount in 2016. I thought I would learn more out of setting up my own business opposed to getting a job. I decided to get involved in this IoD project because of the skills I will learn and to better my CV.”
Alex Shipp is working as a business consultant for his mother’s business. The 16 year old from Claydon, said, “It’s mainly my mum’s business. It’s a small café in the community (called The Community Café). I go there and give advice. I’m keen to run my own business in the future. If the café business does expand I hope to be a part of that expansion. In terms of the IoD, it is a good opportunity to network. I’ve heard good reviews from other people who have been involved in previous years so I was keen to get involved myself.”
Deputy Principal of One, Jenny Milsom added: “Our job is to provide our students with as many opportunities to achieve great things in terms of education and business. We are naturally delighted to be associated with this unique offering.”
This group form One will also get advice from a former One student - Jordan Holder. Since leaving the sixth form he has gained employment and remains a key member of the IoD in his role as young director officer.