The University of Leicester has a range of pathways through which it can support students and graduates to gain and develop skills to become more enterprising and entrepreneurial, whether this is to start a venture, become an enterprising employee and/or academic. Engaging our students and graduates in enterprise learning and entrepreneurship through impactful experiences and opportunities develops talent enabling our students and graduates to become active citizens by contributing to the economy and society.
Across our three Colleges the University has embedded enterprise education within the curriculum and provides a range of engaging extra-curriculum opportunities and programmes:
Enterprise in the Curriculum
The University of Leicester has embedded the principles outlined in QAA Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Education, Guidance for UK Higher Education Providers January 2018, skills development by incorporating these into the ‘Transferable Skills Framework’which is used across the University’s three Colleges to underpin teaching and learning providing a platform which enables the provision of enterprise education.
Lean Start-up Methodology
Within teaching and learning the Lean Start-up Methodology principles are utilised to equip students with the skills to test and validate their ideas quickly and effectively. The Lean Launchpad programme implemented as a Physics module gives an example of how within the curriculum cohorts of students are equipped with the skills and opportunities they need to test and validate their ideas with support from experienced entrepreneurs. Similar activities are taking place within the University’s Informatics and Mathematics Schools along with development in progress to make ‘with enterprise’ degrees more widely available across all discipline areas.
Support for start-ups through Leicester Innovation Hub opportunities and facilities
Leicester Innovation Hub (LIH) at the University of Leicester is working closely with industry to collaboratively turn research expertise and business ideas into innovative products, services and processes which is part funded through European Regional Development Fund(ERDF). LIH provides students and graduates working on new business ventures access to a series’ of networking and workshop events, workspace, funding, a network of experienced Entrepreneurs in Residence, research expertise and our Social Impact Teamsupporting the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
The University of Leicester is member of the UK Space Agency’s UK Space Incubator Network (UKSPIN) which delivers a pre-incubation programme focussed on developing scalable, innovative knowledge based start-ups; for both space and non-space start-ups to utilise the application of space technologies in their businesses. The ‘Space Industries Accelerator’ (SIA) programme provides this support and is part funded by the UK Space Agency and run by the Leicester Innovation Hub.
An active catalyst for growing a strong entrepreneurial ecosystem
Joining forces with entrepreneurs and partner organisations the University of Leicester has led an initiative funded by the Leicester & Leicestershire Local Enterprise Partnership to boost support for local existing and aspiring entrepreneurs. Through a better coordinated approach across the city the Start-up Leicester Co-Working Project has improved access to information on support, updates, funding, workspace and activities/events to start-ups and entrepreneurs through www.LeicesterStartups.com as well as establishing new co-working facilities in the city.