Over 120 Bradford College students took part in an exciting three day ‘Dragons Den’ style Business Conference that focused on narrowing the gap between education and the workplace.
Working in partnership with The Working Knowledge Group (TWKG), the College hosted ‘The Plunge’ - a three day ‘Dragons Den’ style event, which saw budding student entrepreneurs create and pitch viable business ideas to the ‘dragons’.
To prepare for the ‘den’, groups of Sixth Form, Business, Computing and Science students attended workshops about: Money, Sales and Marketing and People and Operations.
The teams then spent 15 minutes in four advisor meetings with business experts who evaluated the teams on their presentation, negotiation, listening and teamwork skills. The teams then pitched their business to a panel of judges from local businesses including: Yorkshire Building Society, Business Link, Phoenix, Rude, Green PR, C8 and The Works Recruitment.
The Working Knowledge Group exists to bridge the gap between education and the workplace. This is achieved by raising the aspirations and employability skills of students - and opening the eyes of employers to how young people can help drive business success in a rapidly changing economic environment.
Talking about their work, The Working Knowledge Group said: “We help people and organisations to realise their potential and build capacity with innovative and engaging programmes that have long lasting positive impact. Working Knowledge's activities cover a wide spectrum, preparing young people for the workplace, including those in 14-19 Education and Higher Education, through to those already in work.”
Tony Laycock, Programme Manager: Bradford College Sixth Form Centre, said: “We hope this competition has introduced our students to the realities of business and strategic objectives – helping to highlight the importance of being able to think and present on your feet as a team."
‘The Plunge’ is an excellent tool for budding entrepreneurs and a proven programme that delivers engaging activities and events involving students and regional employers. The three day conference was a resounding success, helping to promote self confidence, raise aspirations, improve team working and networking skills, enhance leadership, negotiation and communication skills. The budding entrepreneurs reflecting on the success of the event said it provided a clear understanding of business and the skills required to be successful!