Enterprising Corby students show off their skills

Happy Hands of Corby Business Academy at the Young Enterprise Trade fair at RS Components
Happy Hands of Corby Business Academy at the Young Enterprise Trade fair at RS Components

Students from three Corby schools showed off their talent for business at a trade fair held at RS Components in the town.

The event was held in support of the national education charity Young Enterprise and pupils from Brooke Weston Academy, Corby Business Academy and Lodge Park Technology College took part.

They have benefitted from financial support from the company’s charitable forum RS My Community, which enabled the Year 12 students to set up and run five business enterprises.

The trade fair was the ideal opportunity for the teams to promote and sell their products, ranging from handmade candles and friendship bracelets to personalised phone cases and mugs, to RS employees.

In addition to financial support, employees at the company acted as business advisers to the groups, helping them develop all aspects of their companies.

Patrick Tierney, export account administrator at RS Components and business adviser one of the companies Kraftees, which sold USB bracelets, said: “Helping the students develop a business from scratch was a rewarding experience. They have to learn every aspect of running a real company from meeting and dealing with suppliers to having company shares. As each member of the team adopts a specific role such as HR adviser or managing director, they really get to understand how their individual responsibilities fit and therefore work together better as a team.”

Robin Neighbour, from Young Enterprise who attended the fair, said: “There are 1.5m unemployed 16 to 25-year-old young people in the UK today. The role companies such as RS play in the scheme help prepare students and give them vital skills they need in business today.”

The event ended with the presentation of the Bernie Howell trophy, named after a former RS employee who was a keen volunteer with the Young Enterprise scheme and who has since passed away.

It is presented to the business demonstrating commercial acumen with their sales and marketing approach, including best trade stand display.

It went to Happy Hands from Corby Business Academy with its personalised mugs and recycled gifts.

Fred Knowles, RS’s global head of inventory management, said: “Everyone demonstrated a high level of understanding of running a business and the challenges that presents.”