Grainville and Jersey College for Girls are developing young entrepreneurs, a cross between ‘The Young Apprentice and Dragons Den’ but with real money.

Entrepreneurship, in its broadest sense, has been embraced by Jersey College for Girls and Grainville School who have partnered up with Barclays Wealth, Ernst and Young, JT and Ogier in the ‘Young Entrepreneurship Challenge’.

On Thursday 31st January the Young Entrepreneurship Challenge began with an official launch at The Pomme D’Or Hotel (9.00 a.m. – 12.00 noon). This innovative project (six months in the planning), when launched will involve 120 participants ranging from students, teachers and corporate mentors as the initial entrepreneurial ideas of students are explored and developed into real and practicable propositions. Ten teams from each school will look to use their initial investment of £100 to demonstrate their business acumen, for profit or to benefit their community. Teams have eight weeks to impress the judges before facing a final Dragons Den with business leaders, who, on 31st March, will judge each team before identifying the winners. An official awards evening, again kindly supported by the four corporate partners, will be held at the end of April and bring to a close this exciting and motivating initiative.

Nick Kershaw, Group Chief Executive of Ogier, said "The Young Entrepreneurship Challenge gives students an excellent opportunity to begin to develop business acumen as well as achieving academic success and as major employers in the Island we are delighted to support it"

John McGuinness, Headteacher of Grainville said, "Jersey needs young entrepreneurs to take an idea and make it work. The young entrepreneurs of the future are students now. This initiative encourages the development of real business experience. I am extremely grateful to our sponsors for their foresight and support with this exciting project. May the challenge begin!"

Carl Howarth, Headteacher at JCG said "This project is about building the skills for Jersey’s future prosperity. It is also an excellent example of business and education working in partnership to invest in our young people. Our students are incredibly creative and very business minded. With the support of their mentors, we will undoubtedly plant the seedlings of successful future enterprises for Jersey."

In numbers:
 Two schools: JCG and Grainville School, 4 leading companies: Barclays Wealth, Ernst & Young, JT and Ogier 20 teams of students aged 11-18 each with a business idea 8 weeks to develop their entrepreneurship skills 1 business mentor to coach and support each team