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Students shine at Gazelle Local Launch…

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Warwickshire College’sMariane Cavalli Warwickshire College student entrepreneurs stole the show at a special Gazelle Local launch event at the Heritage Motor Centre on Monday evening.

Companies and entrepreneurs from across Coventry, Warwickshire and the surrounding areas were invited to the Gaydon museum to hear about the launch of Warwickshire College as a Gazelle Local college – a college with enterprise and entrepreneurialism at its heart.

They heard from speakers including Mariane Cavalli, Principal and CEO of Warwickshire College, Michael Hayman, Gazelle Entrepreneur and Founder of Seven Hills, Emma Jones, Gazelle Entrepreneur, Founder of Enterprise Nation and Co-founder of StartUp Britain and Ben Ramsden, Gazelle Entrepreneur and Founder of Pants to Poverty.

Mariane Cavalli told the audience about the vital importance of creating colleges as places of enterprise and entrepreneurialism.  The audience heard that the current FE model of teaching was no longer fit for purpose and that changes need to be made to the way we educate our young people.  Further education needs to teach individuals not just about skill development but also about developing entrepreneurial mindsets to help students not only take jobs but make jobs too.

The Gazelle Colleges Group combines the exceptional experience of entrepreneurs who have succeeded in business with leaders in further education and the wider public sectors.  Now, business leaders and entrepreneurs have the unique chance to help the next generation develop the business skills, mindset and attributes they need to succeed in the challenging economic climate we face today.

Warwickshire College students showcased how they are already embracing the entrepreneurial mindset.  Horticulture student, Josh Egan-Wyer has set up an innovative plant identification website, using QR codes to link to a mobile-friendly website.

Sports student Dyneal Fessal spoke about his ambition of setting up his own exercise company, encouraging people to get fit to the sound of Caribbean beats, while Jodie Govera and Beth Morgan talked about setting up their businesses at the college’s newly developed business  units at the Henley-in-Arden centre.

Mariane Cavalli, Principal and CEO of Warwickshire College, said: “I’m really pleased with how our Gazelle Local event went.  It is brilliant to see just how many local businesses and entrepreneurs are keen to help students succeed and contribute to local wealth creation.

“The Gazelle Colleges Group is working towards the transformation of its colleges through entrepreneurship. Thanks to our Gazelle Local launch we have received numerous offers of support in a variety of forms, be it offers of bursaries or sponsored placements, work experience or even business people offering to give their time to deliver masterclasses for our students.

“I would like to thank the businesses and entrepreneurs who have taken the time to attend the event and pledge their support to Warwickshire College in our drive to becoming a truly entrepreneurial college.”

Michael Hayman, Gazelle Entrepreneur and Founder of Seven Hills PR agency, said: “I think the event has been a fantastic advertisement for the work of Warwickshire College in supporting the creation of a new enterprising generation in the county.

“Central to this is their critical role in the Gazelle Colleges Group where we are working hard to create entrepreneurial outcomes for young people around the country.”

Ben Ramsden, Gazelle Entrepreneur and Founder of Pants to Poverty, added: “Seeing the launch of Gazelle Local surrounded by such a dynamic bunch of educationalists and entrepreneurs has not just been exciting for me but also for the whole local economy.

“If the material benefits of the relationship between my small business and Gazelle can be replicated by the businesses here and Warwickshire College the future is very bright for entrepreneurial education and the revival of our economy.”

To become part of Gazelle Local, and help Warwickshire College to develop as an entrepreneurial college, contact Julie Taylor, Director for Enterprise and Entrepreneurship at Warwickshire College on 07809 163010 or email jtaylor@warkscol.ac.uk

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