Latest #EntEd news from our EEUK members

Written by Lynn O'Byrne

UAL Creative Hack: cross-college collaboration tackles social and environmental challenges

Led by University of the Arts London’s Careers and Employability, in collaboration with teams from their six colleges and institutions, this dynamic creative hackathon with social innovation at its core, took place over 3 days in February. 80 participants came together to learn from expert speakers and mentors, ideate, innovate, create, and then present their ideas to a panel of industry and entrepreneur judges. Three teams shared the £3000 prize fund, along with further mentoring, so that they can develop their initiatives and hopefully go on to change the world!

Click here for the full story.

Strathclyde: Global Entrepreneurship Monitor report: worldwide impact of the pandemic is mixed

The latest Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) report shows that countries have experienced variable impacts from the pandemic – out of 38 economies that took part, 16 saw their total early-stage Entrepreneurial Activity dramatically fall. The ‘GEM 2022/2023 Global Report – Adapting to a New Normal’ observes that the quality of entrepreneurship ecosystems is now better in the East, with UAE, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, and India taking the top four spots.

Middlesex: Special session on Growth and Sustainability

Dr Chris Moon delivered a special session on Growth and Sustainability for 30 local SME businesses in Barnet. This followed the successful workshops on Micro Business and is part of the Barnet LB and Middlesex University partnership in which the programme was co-created with Barnet council and MDX colleagues. The next step is to work on a joint Net Zero initiative. Further information: Chris is a fellow of EEUK.


Manchester: PGCert Entrepreneurship – learn to think entrepreneurially
With a proud history of innovation and partnership with industry, The University of Manchester and Masood Entrepreneurship Centre (MEC), are here to support and empower the next generation of entrepreneurs every step of the way. Our new PG Cert in Entrepreneurship is a part-time online programme and can be completed flexibly in twelve months. This is designed for entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs who want to learn fast and develop business ideas quickly. Explore new opportunities, develop innovative business ideas with commercial potential and create your own future with the PGCert in Entrepreneurship. Read more here.

Strathclyde: UK sliding in quality of entrepreneurship ecosystem, ranked 25th globally

The UK is ranked at number 25 of 51 countries on the quality of entrepreneurship ecosystem economies according to the new Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) National Entrepreneurship Context Index (NECI). The ranking, reported in the ‘GEM 2022/2023 Global Report – Adapting to a New Normal’, is a slide down from rank 18 last year, with the index score decreasing from 4.9 (in 2021) to 4.7. UK’s NECI score is below that of other comparable economies such as the USA (5.2), France (5.1), and Germany (5.1).

Brunel: Kicking Off the Ford Design Challenge: The Future of Mobility

100 students from Brunel University London started their journey on the D-Ford Design Factory London Challenge: The Future of Mobility. This 6-week challenge creates a culture of collaborative innovation for enterprise through students exploring new ways to design, develop, and shape the future of transportation. This challenge provides students with the opportunity to meaningfully contribute to the transportation industry. Students dive into the current trends and challenges in the transportation sector, learn from Ford’s experienced professionals, and gain new perspectives through mentorship and support from the wider Brunel team.

UCL: MSc Entrepreneurship Pitch Day

The UCL School of Management hosted the MSc Entrepreneurship Pitch Day, where students presented innovative business ideas to investors and venture capitalists. The event drew a record-breaking attendance of 178 people, including mentors, alumni, and UCL students. Our guest-speaker, Noa Havazelet, Head of Google for Startups Accelerator, shared invaluable tips for first-time entrepreneurs. Cash prizes, sponsored by the Engineers in Business Fellowship, were given to accelerate business growth. Nikhil Aggawal (Swyftin) and Lola Fitoussi (Genz’) won £1,000 each for Best Ideas, while Ina Jovicic (eNOugh) delivered the Best Pitch, and Niyati Takiar (Sport for all) won the Best Showcase award, with each winning £1,000.

Latest #EntEd news from our EEUK members

Written by Lynn O'Byrne

Baishev: “Generations of Independence-2022”

In December 2022, “Generations of Independence-2022” competition of innovative ideas   was held to support young entrepreneurs in the Aktobe region. There are representatives from Baishev University in the following categories: 1. Education and Science – Rysgul Dauletova. 2. Arts and Culture – Kenzhegul Serebayeva. 3. Information Technology – Adilkazy Yessengaliyev. The winners were awarded 300,000 tenge grants to develop their startups. Congratulations!

Lancaster Good Place Lab on the ETC Toolkit

Can creativity be encouraged in an online environment? Lancaster University digital self-guided course Good Place Lab provides an example of critical thinking and problem-solving practice transferred to online environment co-created with students. The course is structured as a sequence of steps based on an innovation challenge related to improving a campus university environment. Learners will be able to explore concepts of innovation and gain insights into how design thinking methods can be applied to innovation. The course can be accessed on the ETC toolkit HERE.

Baishev: Low-code and No-code capabilities

On December 22, 2022, a meeting was held at the creative hub of Baishev University with Zhaksybek Nurtles, the founder of  the  service and the mentor of the Techpreneurs program. At the event, Zhaksybek Nurtles shared his insights and told how students, young professionals and entrepreneurs can use no-code tools in their work and projects without spending a lot on development.

Newcastle/Bristol: Evidence of Engagement with the Threshold Concepts in Entrepreneurial Thinking tool (part of the ETC Toolkit)

Have you used this tool?  We’d love to know! Dave Jarman (University of Bristol, Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, CfIE) and Dr Lucy Hatt (Newcastle University Business School) created a tool (2021) which includes:

–  Explanations of what threshold concepts are
–  A walk through the process used with CfIE to develop a set of threshold concepts entrepreneurial thinking
–  Three ways of doing this in your own context

Please follow this link or contact directly.

Lancaster: NSS Entrepreneurial Opportunities 

Last year, Lancaster University adopted optional question set B14 Entrepreneurial Opportunities in its National Student Survey.  When the results came in, the most surprising finding was that only a very small proportion of students seemed to have been asked these questions nationally.  We are keen to get a better understanding of which organisations have or haven’t adopted these questions, the reasons for this, and whether those who have are benefiting from this data in some way. LU’s Enterprise Programme Manager, Simon Harrison, would be very grateful for any EEUK members willing to share their own perspectives.  Please drop him an email via

Latest #EntEd news from our EEUK members

Written by Lynn O'Byrne

Lboro: Connect, Create, Commercialise and Champion
Loughborough University’s enterprise team recently successfully launched our new communities – – open to our students, graduates, staff and external members. Our new communities aim to contribute to Loughborough’s deepening focus and commitment to innovation; allowing members to receive more tailored opportunities based on where they are in their entrepreneurial journey.

The launch event itself facilitated excellent networking opportunities, featuring speeches from our Vice-Chancellor Nick Jennings and two of our Pro Vice-Chancellors: Rachel Thompson and Dan Parsons. As well as showcasing multiple innovative start-up’s from our students/graduates.

Find out more about our communities here.

Westminster: Secured a £5.8m grant from the Office for Students (OfS)
The University of Westminster has successfully secured a £5.8m grant from the Office for Students (OfS) to build innovative training spaces at 29 Marylebone Road, London. The nine-storey building is set to become the UK’s most inclusive Centre for Employability and Enterprise, with accessibility, inclusivity and sustainability at its heart. It is due to open in Summer 2024, if planning permission is granted, and will bridge the gap between education and the business world. These facilities will boost employability outcomes for students and will provide access to university-level learning for employers and the local community. Find out more here.

Baishev: Creative Spark UK Study visit
The Creative Hubs UK Study Visit was hosted by the British Council and Advantage Creative from 20 to 26 November 2022. As part of this visit, 20 professionals from 7 countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia visited the leading creative hubs and university business incubators in Leicester, Birmingham, Loughborough, Coventry, and Derby. The goal is the exchange of experience, and new knowledge for the development of creative industries following the example of the UK. This tour was also attended by Azamat Baimaganbetov, the Head of Technological Entrepreneurship Programs at Baishev University.

Manchester: ARC Pitch Funding brings us closer to achieving One World Together
Dr. Nicola (Niki) Banks from the School of Environment, Education and Development secured £45,000 for her One World Together social enterprise in the ARC 2022 Pitch Final. The ARC Accelerator programme is focused on turning social science research ideas into businesses or social ventures. Niki presented One World Together: a community for Global Citizens where you can enhance the impact of your charitable giving while engaging directly with the local communities and organisations that your funds support in the UK and low-income countries around the world. Find out more

UCL: Become a business mentor for UCL startups
Share your expert knowledge with the next generation of UCL entrepreneurs through the UCL Hatchery Mentor Network. We’re seeking industry and academic experts, as well as former and current entrepreneurs, to guide our startup founders on their journeys by providing personalised mentorship. Find out more here.

UWTSD: PGCert in Enterprise Skills
UWTSD are accepting students to their PGCert in Enterprise Skills. Using the Entrecomp framework, the course walks students through the entrepreneurial competencies directing them to use the knowledge to create a new enterprise. The course uses contemporary case studies ranging from Banksy, Jay Z and Innocent Smoothies to create value in a harmonious way. UWTSD is the first course on the planet to teach using an Open AI powered chat bot. Students can use the insane abilities of the chat bot to know about the world augmented with a dataset crowdsourced from the cohort to give answers to frequently asked questions. Find out more here.

Latest #EntEd news from our EEUK members

Written by Lynn O'Byrne

UCL:Presents you won’t find anywhere else from UCL’s entrepreneurs

If you’re looking for truly unique gifts this season, UCL’s startups have something for almost everyone on your list. From virtual reality games that make history fun for children, to a bracelet that results in 10 trees being planted in Kenya, discover presents you won’t see anywhere else to suit all tastes and interests.  All the businesses featured have been supported in their journey by UCL Innovation & Enterprise.

RNCM: 50th Birthday Gala

Exclusive Gala evening marking the pinnacle of the Royal Northern College of Music’s 50th anniversary celebrations. Friday 23rd June 2023, 6pm. This exclusive Gala evening marks the pinnacle of the RNCM’s 50th anniversary celebrations, taking over the whole building with hundreds of musicians, spectacular performances in our Concert Hall and Theatre, 3 course dinner, drinks, and dancing. A fitting celebration in aid of the RNCM’s Music for Health project, part of the RNCM50 Fund! Join us for a truly memorable and joyous evening. £5,000 for a table of 10. This includes a £4,000 donation towards the RNCM.  Email:

Derby: Derbyshire Festival of Business

The Derbyshire Festival of Business has returned for another year of connecting and supporting local organisations whilst showcasing Derbyshire’s extensive business capability to future clients, customers, and investors! The Festival offers a wide range of events that takes place online and at venues across Derbyshire. There is an extensive selection of free workshops, masterclasses and networking activities offered throughout the festival, helping to support businesses within the region. The aim is to offer help and support, educate, share information and knowledge, whilst creating forums for networking, engagement and business growth. Find out more about hosting or attending an event

EEUK marks the passing of Lord Young

Written by Alison Price

Lord Young will be remembered by EEUK as the trailblazer who subtitled his 2014 seminal Government report “Enterprise for All” with the key strapline “The Relevance of Enterprise Education”.

It can appear that policy documents, reports and government proclamations make little difference to our work , but with the launch of Lord Young’s report “Enterprise for All: the Relevance of Enterprise in Education” (June 2014) there was for the first time in England a review of the educational ‘enterprise offer’ as experienced by all learners across the education sector.

Prior to his review, there was only limited appreciation of the entrepreneurial education journey as experienced by students, other than work for the APPG for Micro business by key EEUK members early that year.  Through the creation of an educational lens for his government review, Lord Young’s work placed the student and their entrepreneurial learning experience in the context of our national education system and publicly called for “lifelong experience of enterprise in education” which was:

  1. Captive and meaningful to young people through real-life contact with business and work, particularly for those put off by more theoretical or academic learning; and made relevant in the way the curriculum and exams are designed and delivered.
  2. Continuous beginning with inspiration and a first taste of enterprise in primary and secondary education, and then the application of that learning through further and higher education, and later in life.
  3. Coherent first, as strong and consistent government message to empower educators to embed enterprise in their teaching; second, to in the way we measure and distinguish the impact of an institution’s enterprise activity and third, through better coordination and consistency in what already exists, to ensure that all young people are able to access enterprise-related programmes. (Lord Young 2014 Enterprise for All p4)

This report and on-going work may have been, for some of us, far too focused on the work within business schools, but it resulted in the creation of the award for the UK’s world-class business schools, The Small Business Charter (SBC). This award celebrates business schools that play an effective role in supporting small businesses, local economies and student entrepreneurship and by providing business schools with a nationally recognisable accreditation, Lord Young drove the sector wide engagement which furthered the SEC challenge work which had ultimately created EEUK.

Since 2014, there has disappointingly been no further government leadership in England. This ensures Lord Young’s report stands as the latest English position and retains the prominence of  key challenges he set us as enterprise educators. He stated that our current curriculum “may not be sufficient unless accompanied by an enterprising attitude” (p1) and called for “not a change to the curriculum, but a change to how it is taught” (p24).

Although this challenge laid down in 2014 and remains our challenge today. Lord Young’s legacy has  been the declaration of a national ambition to create an enterprise education experience that is “captive; continuous and coherent” throughout our entire educational system. He has driven us to

EEUK continues to respond to his challenge and invites you to join us, whether you are new to enterprise or have worked in the sector long enough to recognise the legacy his work has given us all, in all that we do as we recognise “the relevance of enterprise education” and seek to deliver “enterprise for all”.

Joining the dots of Enterprise Education: creating effective enterprise eco-systems

Written by Rachel Brown, University of Greenwich

The University of Greenwich partnered with Enterprise Educators UK on Thursday 24th November to deliver a one-day conference in the university’s new entrepreneurial hub, the Powerhouse, exploring how to work effectively both within and outside higher education institutions to build enterprise eco-systems.

We were joined by over 35 enterprise educators from universities across the UK who participated in discussions exploring where enterprise education should be delivered in institutions, which local key players should be involved, and the role universities play in enterprise development for both students and external stakeholders.

Professor Leigh Doster, Pro-Vice Chancellor and Executive Dean of Greenwich Business School opened the day with an introduction to the University of Greenwich, highlighting the university’s recent Small Business Charter accreditation and the upcoming Help to Grow scheme.

Rachel Brown, Head of Enterprise and Innovation at the University of Greenwich discussed how the university has begun to ‘join the dots’ of building effective enterprise ecosystems by created the Powerhouse, the university’s enterprise hub which now houses the Generator and Greenwich Research and Enterprise (GRE)teams, and provides space for entrepreneurial teaching, learning and practice via a co-work space. The Generator collaborates with a range of other teams across the university to increase the reach and effectiveness of their programmes, including academics, the employability centre, and the alumni team. It has also been enhanced by the creation of the Generator Advisory Board in 2020, a group of local organisations and entrepreneurs who advise on strategy and support the growth of initiatives.

Phil Kennedy, Head of Operations at Foundervine explained how Foundervine has built an inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem outside of a HE setting by focussing on removing barriers for communities who are under-represented in enterprise.

Joe Blomfield, Enterprise Officer at the University of Greenwich led a panel discussion with three student and graduate entrepreneurs, exploring the question of how student entrepreneurs can contribute to the growth of entrepreneurial ecosystems. Abdirahman Ahmed, Marianna Alshina and Zsuzsanna Toth discussed their individual experiences of the Generator, and all agreed that universities had a key role in developing support networks for entrepreneurs, both for current students and alumni. The Generator also took this opportunity to proudly showcase products made by student and graduate entrepreneurs, ranging from vegan leather wallets and belts to handmade African print children’s clothing.

Anthony Crowther, NX Hub Manager at Goldsmiths, University of London delivered a session about the benefit of universities engaging with their local communities, discussing the importance of Goldsmiths’ Civic University Agreement which provides a framework for key local organisations in Lewisham to work together.

The final session featured University of Greenwich alumni and serial entrepreneur Dr Byron Cole talking about the ‘Power of Networking’ and the influence of this on his own entrepreneurial success.

If you’d like to participate in developing any of these discussions further please contact us on

Latest #EntEd news from our EEUK members

Written by Lynn O'Byrne

Middlesex: Barnet Micro-Business Growth Programme
Middlesex University partnered with Barnet Council to provide a unique programme of short training courses, specifically designed to support the growth and development of local micro-businesses. Ten short courses were designed and delivered to provide businesses with the tools, knowledge and confidence to grow, and over 50 unique businesses benefited from the co-designed programme convened at Middlesex University. Following their attendance, 20 businesses are being allocated an MDX student/graduate intern, who will shortly start working on helping them implement growth strategies. Dr Chris Moon, fellow of Enterprise Educators UK, delivered workshops on Entrepreneurship and Sustainability as part of the programme.

Napier:Innovative online learning in entrepreneurship Education,
This publication explores how educational scaffolding can facilitate the delivery of online experiential activities to improve the entrepreneurial learning experience and the performance of music management students by using information and communications technology tools within the virtual learning environment. A case study methodology was adopted to present two scenarios of innovative online learning delivered in a postgraduate programme in music management. The findings show that, by strengthening industry links, tutors can build a portfolio of online practical activities that represent the ‘real-life’ industry, helping to forge long-term, collaborative partnerships to facilitate learners’ acquisition of more meaningful knowledge and opportunities. Read more.

Robert Gordon University: Innovation Award gives student the edge
Imagination is key to using innovation to help solve problems. Using imagination and the innovative meta skills acquired through the RGU Innovation award, Azibaolanari Okungbowa a RGU postgraduate Procurement and Supply Chain Management student, determined how Big Data Analytics can be deployed to help solve the problems of climate change, especially within supply chain. Big Data Analytics is vital to reducing scope 3 emissions, thus the topic “The Contribution Of Big Data Analytics In Reducing Scope 3 Emissions” emerged. This research was used in a CIPS global symposium competition in the UK, with Azibaolanari emerging top 6 amongst other finalists.

BCU: The STEAMhouse Pre-Incubator
Within the Pre-Incubator is a suite of a programmes designed to build knowledge, confidence, and networks, and equip participants with the attributes every entrepreneur needs with one programme. This is referring to our STEAMhouse Hatchery Programme, which is a ten-week boot camp where eligible participants create and cultivate a business plan with the help of expert mentors from all aspects of business, workshops, access to great facilities and taught sessions. The finalists receive a cash prize, a space in our Pre-Incubator and a furnished business plan that they can use to launch their venture.

Glasgow: Adam Smith Business School leads on £1.2m project to develop data-driven entrepreneurship
The Business School is leading a new €1.2m project to develop data-driven entrepreneurship across a consortium of EU universities.The work aims to develop partner Universities entrepreneurship capacity, increase the volume of student and staff start-ups, and upskill roles that support innovation and commercialisation. The work will cover everything from agri-tech and the space sector, through to precision medicine and fintech. Partners include Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Corvinus University in Budapest and industry partners such as, Fintech Scotland, ARM Advanced RISC Machines, Barclays Eagle Labs and Censis

Bristol: SETsquared Bristol’s Enterprising Women 3.0
Applications are now open for SETsquared Bristol’s Enterprising Women 3.0 – a supportive and inclusive business support programme, fully funded by NatWest, to help women take their business or idea to the next stage. You’ll benefit from SETsquared Bristol’s world-class business support and a valuable network to connect with. All costs for the programme are covered, apart from your own expenses. The opportunity is open to tech and non-tech businesses/ideas. Apply by 8 December

UCL entrepreneurs win global Techstars investment

Two UCL startups have been selected for prestigious Techstars Accelerator programmes, which provide investment opportunities for early-stage entrepreneurs.Startups BoxxDocks and Charter have secured coveted spots on the London and Space programmes respectively. Read more here.

A writing retreat? In term time? Are you kidding me?

Written by Vivienne Neale, Falmouth University

I need time to think

It’s very difficult to step away from the frenetic pace of HE teaching and attend a writing retreat. It almost appears anachronistic when anyone dares to say, ‘I need time to think.’ It’s ridiculous really when this is exactly what we should be having space to do regularly. 

Write, write, write

That aside, I cannot recommend a writing retreat opportunity more highly. The ISBE, EEUK REntEd SIG received funds to set up such an experience at the Edgbaston Park Hotel and Conference Centre within the University of Birmingham during October 2022. The Enterprise Eleven (+1) convened and dedicated two full days to writing. Enterprise and Entrepreneurial practitioners sat in the Grafton building, a warm Arts and Crafts inspired location on campus and pledged their troth to achieve tangible outputs from their ’write, write, write’ sessions.

We all welcome creative and constructive conversations

It was daunting, yes but what was specifically interesting from my perspective was the gender balance. It was 11:1 in favour of women and it created a supportive, humble, and highly professional tenor. There was an extraordinary array of talent and experience around the table that enabled constructive and creative conversations alongside peer mentoring at every stage of the process.

Accountability is everything

It also helped that the accommodation further highlighted the special nature of the retreat and offered space for reflection and plenty of frenetic typing and revisions. Having committed to specific goals that were revisited at the end of the event it felt managed and accountable. Consequently, every delegate, in the main, achieved their aim or were in touching distance at least.

We wrote and watched prime ministers come and go

The opportunity to discuss and chat generally about our institutions, research ambitions, the state of entrepreneurship, the resignation of the prime minster and all points between was a chance to share and create potential future collaborations.

There’s always time to explore entrepreneur education

Certainly, it was a chance to be amongst like-minded individuals that were all delighted to share tips and tricks, observations, and suggestions. I sincerely believe that everyone benefitted, friendships were rekindled and created too. It was also fascinating to reach into other professional lives and begin to understand some aspects of the varied and important work that is being carried out in this field under the guide of entrepreneur education.

To step away and draw breath should not be underestimated

To have the physical and headspace opportunity to write up and think carefully about projects and ideas cannot be underestimated. I know the organisers could see how successful the event was and how fruitful potential collaborations might be. The size of the group was intimate enough but allowed for discussion across fields These included factors that affect high growth companies; how professional modules can be further integrated and embedded into undergraduate provision; refugee remorse as a factor stifling progression; research collaborations and the impact of micro internships on paid work opportunities. This is just a snapshot of the research work output.

It is a significant investment of time, energy, resource, and brain power

Yet, if you can take the opportunity to attend a writing retreat, especially one organised by UKEE and ISBE, I would fight tooth and nail for the chance to attend.  Like any boot camp, things happen, perspectives change, goals are set and most importantly are achieved.  Having a couple of days to talk to other professionals working within enterprise education is also motivational and collegiate. Honestly, such an enterprise is highly recommended, and I thank Dr Emily Beaumont, Dr Breda O Dwyer organisers for their foresight and enthusiasm.

Vivienne Neale lectures in Entrepreneurship on the MSc Programme at Falmouth University.

Latest #EntEd news from our EEUK members

Written by Lynn O'Byrne

Sussex: Startup Cycle’ 

Students at the University of Sussex took part in a sustainability-themed ‘Startup Cycle’ tour of Brighton’s business community.  The group, including participants from the university’s accelerator programme, travelled the city by bike and foot to hear from startup founders and see inside work spaces. Their stops included a guided tour of co-working space PLATF9RM with founder talks, and a trip to ethical supermarket HISBE Food. This year Sussex extends its provision for social entrepreneurs, partnering with University of California Berkeley to offer social impact contest Big Ideas, supported by a new early stage programme, Ideas Lab.

Keele: EEUK Associate Awarded Honorary Doctorate

Georgian Technical University are celebrating their 100th birthday and the academic council have awarded Dr Colin Rigby an honorary doctorate for the introduction of enterprise to their education and also a visiting Professor role.  Colin commented in his acceptance speech “This is one of the greatest honours of my professional career so far, I am very much looking forward to taking up my role as a visiting professor. This is the beginning of our journey and I look forward to the continuation of our amazing team here at GTU particularly after successfully gaining EEUK membership through Creative Flame”.  





Manchester: Development of a Data Warehouse for the Assessment of Entrepreneurship Education and Venture Creation
Colleagues from The University of Manchester presented their work at the British Academy of Management Conference on “Development of a Data Warehouse for the Assessment of Entrepreneurship Education and Venture Creation” Papadopoulou, K.A., Phillips, R.A., Salder, J., Salehi, F. Measuring the success of entrepreneurship education (EE) is complex. Metrics used are varied, students may be from any school and had varying interaction with EE making any meaningful tracking difficult. A data warehouse is proposed to collate information from a variety of sources in an organised manner to allow educators to identify effectiveness and how EE may be measured. Read the full article here.

Bristol: Breakthrough Bursary

Calling all UK tech entrepreneurs from a minority ethnic background – take your business to the next level! Apply for SETsquared Bristol’s Breakthrough Bursary to access heavily discounted business support. SETsquared’s incubation programme can help early-stage startups with market readiness or help existing businesses to scale and raise investmentIf you want help to grow your business and make an impact in the world, apply by 7 November.

KCL: New Ventures and Innovators join King’s Accelerators

The Entrepreneurship Institute has welcomed 20 of the brightest and highest potential ventures from across King’s College London onto its King’s20 Accelerator. Cohort VII will participate in an intensive programme to accelerate their first stage of growth, with access to leading expert mentorship, investment opportunities, coaching and the chance to develop the 7 skills of an Entrepreneurial Mindset to aid their success. Eight innovators will also start their 12-month journey on the Innovator at King’s Accelerator. The second cohort of eight innovators are companies that have been developed from King’s research, founded by researchers and PhD students.



The Weave Brings Social Innovation to its Region.
Most businesses are stuck solving today’s problems and addressing the current needs of society. Rarely do they have the energy or time to engage with a future yet to be imagined and wholly unknown. That is why we designed and delivering the North Essex Social Impact Hackathon from the 18th to the 20th of November. The event brings the region’s universities and small businesses together to collaborate and develop social innovation. The best ideas have the opportunity to access a £20k fund where dreams can become a reality. More details here


Reflections on the role of engaging with Academics to embed in the curriculum for Student Enterprise teams – a University of Westminster perspective

Written by Zsofia Kunvari

This blog post shares insights from the work carried out by Westminster Enterprise Network, at the University of Westminster and does not intend to reflect the experience of all Student Enterprise teams and may not be directly applicable to all HEIs.

Author: Zsofia Kunvari, Enterprise Education Officer, University of Westminster

Enterprise teams sit far and wide within universities but whether they’re attached to Research & Knowledge Exchange, Careers & Employability, or other directorates, one problem often remains: How to bridge the gap between extra-curricular Enterprise activities delivered by Professional Services and the curricular provision delivered by Academic colleagues?

Academic Engagement as an area of activity within Student Enterprise – as well as a job title for a growing number of enterprise team members – covers the challenging task of aligning interests within and outside the curriculum.

My role as an Enterprise Education Officer, focusing on Academic Engagement, started 10 months ago as a brand-new role in my team, without a specific blueprint for how to do it. In this blog, I am hoping to shine a light on some of the challenges and wins that arose from committing to improving communication and collaboration between stakeholders across the extracurricular and curricular provision.

Whether having a dedicated team member responsible for this work or just embracing it as a shared team objective, investing resources into Academic Engagement can achieve three practical outcomes for your Enterprise team.

Better internal communications to generate more collaborations

Efficient communication between Student Enterprise teams and Academic colleagues is often challenging to achieve because of a lack of understanding about which strategies yield the best results. Starting by researching which communication channels for staff are available, understanding which of these channels are Academic colleagues engaging with the most and developing targeted strategies to communicate more regularly and more accurately with them.

Identifying problem-solution fit to address institutional targets collaboratively

By investing time speaking with Academics to understand which precise challenges they face in teaching, student experience and graduate outcomes, embedding enterprise and employability, or other relevant aspect of their work, this will inform the development of targeted interventions which your team can co-create with Academics to address these specific challenges.

Making Enterprise Education accessible without barriers to entry

With a greater than ever emphasis on engaging a majority of students in Enterprise activities, including hard to reach groups, embedding enterprise in the curriculum means giving exposure to all students enrolled on specific modules or courses, instead of relying on the availability and interest of a select few in the context of an extra-curricular provision.

At Westminster Enterprise Network, we used these three desired outcomes to guide the design and development of valuable and long-lasting collaborations between our team and Academic colleagues. We designed of our engagement workflow by strategically positioning the curricular experience as the first engagement in a linear step-by-step journey. The in-classroom experiences designed and delivered collaboratively with Academics, are well thought-through with relevant assessments, as well as the impact on student experience and graduate outcomes in mind. We are aiming to put the students in a good position to enrol into the rest of the extra-curricular activities our team offer to further develop and test their projects.

Our most recent developments include:

Tackling communication channels from the get-go

To circumvent the problem of mass and last-minute emailing, as well as relying on social media promotions, we recognised that we needed a more concerted effort in sharing our content where academic colleagues gathered information from. This included for our team, designing documents in the preferred format for Academic colleagues and presenting edited information to create an intuitive user journey without information overload.

Focusing on Live Employer Briefs as one effective and scalable intervention

Our team acts as an intermediate between industry and employer contacts and Academics to develop bespoke briefs for modules which support authentic assessments. Live briefs are presenting a real-world problem faced by an employer and presented to the students for them to produce a response. The briefs are selected to match the content of modules. Academic colleagues are responsible for designing the assessment, but the brief content is brought on by the employer with the opportunity for students to engage with the employer in a pre-brief Q&A.

With this approach, students get to use entrepreneurial skills (problem-solving, research, communication, leadership, pitching an idea…) in an accessible setting. The students can then decide to pursue entrepreneurship further having had a bitesize experience of the skills and mindset that may be required to develop their own project. In the first trial Semester, we are delivering five Live Briefs (fully or partially embedded in a course) with eight external employers involved to benefit over 200 students overall.

A hackathon to transform coursework into entrepreneurial projects

Built over several years’ iterations, our team is introducing a new large-scale extracurricular event that brings together in-class learning, employability, and a package of funding opportunities available to develop projects. Instead of students having to choose carefully between investing time in extracurricular Enterprise activities and staying on top of their studies and assessments, students will now be able to bring their coursework project into the hackathon to further develop it. In designing this new hackathon, the main objective was to reduce the time commitment we asked of students by designing a bridge event where they could take their existing coursework project and with our team’s support could turn it into an entrepreneurial project in receipt of pre-seed funding to encourage their first steps. After the hackathon, the students would access the rest of the support services on offer.

What we have learnt so far:

Trial, error, and iterations

Not everyone communicates the same way and when a university is so diverse in its offering, so are the problems and potential solutions. Sometimes the response we get is a hard no, and that is okay. You might be surprised to see that if you don’t give up but go back with a different offer, it might turn into a resounding yes. We keep good records of communications and contacts (CRM is a reliable companion) and we iterate our pitch as we go along. What we keep in mind are the overall strategic objectives our team have been set. Not all asks can be addressed straight away, and sometimes collaborations can be parked temporarily until the timing is right. Diligently gathering insights from conversations with Academic colleagues may just be the best way to tackle institutional targets more effectively by bringing a wider pool of colleagues and services to work together.

Be hungry for feedback and evaluate impact

Our team now knows the best platforms where to engage with Academic colleagues and how to collaborate to offer their students a first experience of Enterprise in the curriculum. In my role, I experienced the benefits of building closer work relationships with Academic colleagues, and we have already seen that our collaborative approach appeals. I make a point of regularly engaging with colleagues to ensure I am in the know about how our team can best contribute to enhance their course experience. Alongside this work, we are building a robust feedback and evaluation framework to capture the short term and longer-term impact of this Academic Engagement work through event feedback questionnaires, as well as measuring how these interventions affect the student experience and graduate outcome results.

With this blog, I wanted to share our team’s experience and what we learnt along the way. There is no doubt that Academic Engagement and embedding Enterprise in the curriculum ultimately leads to engaging with a larger proportion of students and removes some of the common barriers. Aligning Academic Engagement interventions with the extra-curricular offer creates a valuable loop which increases overall engagement levels and avoids delivering activities in a vacuum where opportunities to seamlessly guide students to further support are missed.