Local MP, Caroline Dinenage organised for 30 pupils from Bridgemary school to visit Google’s Campus London yesterday to learn what it means to be an entrepreneur.
To inspire young people, Google has created Future Founders, a youth entrepreneurship programme, which aims to tackle myths and perceived barriers to entrepreneurship, encourage a mind-set of experimentation and bold thinking, and educate young people about the support and advice available to start-up founders. Students also learn about the positive social impact of many start-ups.
According to research by YouGov, only 34% responded that entrepreneurship aims to make a social impact and only 32% believe they would benefit from starting their own business. 56% perceive it as risky, 21% as unstable and 11% as reckless. This might highlight the need for more inspirational examples as one in three young people don’t know anyone who runs their own business.
The programme, aimed at 15-18 year olds, will not only include stories of young UK entrepreneurs but also invite attendees to pitch their social entrepreneurship ideas and make a first step towards applying for UnLtd funding, which offers social start-up grants to young people ranging from £500 to £5000.
Caroline Dinenage MP went to meet the pupils at Google Campus London to see what they were up to. Commenting on the event, she said:
“It was great to see Bridgemary pupils today being inspired by the fantastic team at Google Campus. I sat in on the neighbourhood session, when the pupils identified positives and negatives about living in Gosport and came up with ideas for social enterprise companies. Their ideas were truly impressive and given that we have low business start-ups in Gosport, I sincerely hope that some pupils will come away from today feeling inspired to be the entrepreneurs of the future.”
Sarah Drinkwater, Head of Campus London, said,
“No matter what their eventual career, we know that teaching students about entrepreneurship builds critical thinking, communication and collaboration skills. These are highly important skills for young people as they prepare to enter the world of work, but can also ensure that the UK’s start-up ecosystem flourishes in the years to come. By running the Future Founders programme with Bridgemary we hope to inspire the next generation of innovators who will shape Britain’s future.”
Having set up her own business Caroline is a strong advocate of entrepreneurship and keenly champions the growth of small businesses in Gosport and Westminster. In the last Parliament she was the Prime Minister's Small Business Ambassador for the South of England and sat on Parliament's Business, Innovation & Skills Select Committee.