Schoolchildren become radio stars for the day during Global Entrepreneurship Week

24th November 2009

YOUNG CHILDREN from 10 schools across the city and heart of Devon faced a tough but exciting challenge on Friday November 20th as they went head-to-head in a competition to create the perfect radio advertisement.
Sponsored by Devon Education Business Partnership, Exeter College, City & Guilds, and Heart, Enterprise Day was the third annual event of its kind, and will took place this year over two sites as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week UK 2009 (
At the Thistle Hotel, Queen Street, Exeter, the Year 10 pupils and their teachers saw the conference rooms where Exeter Chamber Of Commerce regularly meet for networking events, as they prepared presentations to give to a panel of judges later in the day – their mission to convince them they have come up with the perfect plan to ‘sell’ the local company they have chosen to represent to potential customers.
Meanwhile, in Exeter College’s neighbouring CCI building, the groups took it in turns to go into the Media Suite where staff and students helped them record their marketing messages, complete with sound effects and music of their choice, in just 15 minutes – the time allocated as part of the competition.
Not only will the team with the best radio advertisement have it aired on Heart, but this year, for the first time, they will receive a cash prize of £250 awarded by City & Guilds to spend on equipment for their school.
There was also be a £100 prize given by City & Guilds on the day to the team thought to have given the best presentation, again to spend on provisions for their school.
Patrick Roberts, head of Exeter College’s College Adviser Team which reaches out and works with schools and communities across Devon, said: “Young people are becoming increasingly exposed to the business world through hugely popular programmes on television such as Dragon’s Den and The Apprentice, and business ‘celebrities’ such as Sir Alan Sugar. An event such as this one allows them to gain a real-life understanding of the business world and how it works in a non-threatening environment. It may even inspire some to go on to become some of our great entrepreneurs of the future.”
Kathy Snow, of Devon Education Business Partnership, added: “From our perspective, we see it as a really good example of all agencies working together in Devon – schools, the College, the local business community, and the media.
“In the past, we’ve had all-singing, all-dancing performances from participating schools. We’ve even known schools to bring in their own guitars to use during the recording sessions. It’s a real hands-on experience for the children, in which they learn about all kinds of business techniques, from time management to problem-solving, communication, visual presentation, and marketing.
“While there can only be two prize winners this year, as in previous years, the children will be able to go home having gained a unique insight into the world of business which may hopefully even encourage some of them to one day take some of their ideas further once in the adult world. In the past, representatives of local businesses involved have also found themselves leaving the event freshly-inspired at the end of the day by the original ideas that children can often come up with.
Sara Bond, Managing Director of radio station Heart, said: “Here at Heart, we fully endorse this project and are extremely proud to be working with our fellow partners to aid in the development of our local young people. On the day, we offered real and worthwhile hands-on advice to the pupils, and providing the winners with a market-leading advertising platform from which they can showcase their work. We very much look forward to this year’s project.”
City & Guilds Marketing Manager Clive Russell added: “We are delighted to support innovative events that make learning exciting for young people. City & Guilds aims to equip all learners with the skills and experience to help them get their dream job. This year’s Enterprise Day provided an invaluable and memorable opportunity for the students to expand their creative skills by putting them into practice.”