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Holyhead School Pupils win favour from city’s Senior Business Leaders

posted Dec 15, 2015, 1:54 AM by J Grant   [ updated Dec 15, 2015, 2:04 AM ]
On 26th November, two teams of students from Holyhead School took part in The Pitching Challenge to present their project ideas to senior business leaders from across the city. 

The students are representing Holyhead on inter-school competition The Community-Apprentice, run by youth charity Envision. Loosely based on the TV show The Apprentice, teams of young people compete to develop, and crucially demonstrate, their skills whilst managing their own projects. But in this case, they compete not to see who can make the most money, but who can make the biggest positive impact on their community.

The programme allows pupils to tackle real life challenges which require them to manage risk and to develop their decision making, team building and problem solving skills.

Our lucky students are being mentored through the programme by Highways England, the national company who operate, maintain and improve England's motorways and major A roads. For more information about Highways England, please visit: 
highways-england. The mentors are helping students to reflect on the skills they are developing through their projects, such as organisation and problem solving and explore how these are relevant to the world of work. 

A key focus for the students through the autumn term has been developing their communication and empathy skills. Students have had to identify an issue which concerns them in the community and explain why this matters in a film which must be no more than two minutes long and filmed in a single take.

Team Mentality are concerned about how much stigma is attached to young people suffering with a mental health issue. They are working with Birmingham Mind to design a multi-layered social media campaign. You can watch their film at Team Mentality Film

Team Homeless Heroes are concerned about the increasing number of homeless people in Birmingham and have teamed up with SIFA Fireside to provide winter survival packs. You can watch their film at Team Homeless Heroes Film

Students have subsequently had to work together as a team to develop a plan for what they want to do to tackle the issue they have chosen.

On 26th November the teams took part in the pitching challenge which was held in the intimidating surroundings of KPMG, a global network of professional services firms providing Audit, Tax and Advisory services. 21 teams from schools across the city took part giving students the opportunity to watch each other to help them learn what makes a successful pitch.

Students were pitching for grants of £100, feedback and advice from panellists about how they can make their projects most successful. Our teams were up in front of judges from Highways England, Marks & Clerk, KPMG, Cogent Elliott, Public Health and GBR Phoenix Beard.

Panellist Corrine Harms of KPMG commented “The students presented with confidence and showed a great deal of empathy for their chosen issues. They didn’t falter when asked some very tricky questions, I was really impressed.”

Amandeep, of Team Homeless Heroes said “What a great experience to pitch in front of business professionals about something we are truly passionate about, this experience has really brought the team closer together.”