We would like to create a Bangor Junior Enterprise. It would be a not-for-profit organisation, formed and managed exclusively by university students, providing consultancy services for companies, institutions and individuals. Junior Enterprises are popular across Europe and elsewhere. They are similar to real companies, with the main goal of enhancing the learning of their student members through practical experience (especially in giving valuable work experience), and in promoting society wide benefits.
Its approach would be multidisciplinary, involving consultancy on a number of areas, depending upon the expertise of its members, and with advice from across the university. For example, advising on environmental science and sustainability.
Junior Enterprises already exist in many universities across the world, and they can promote a valuable experience connecting students with the challenges associated with real companies, giving them a valuable insight into. Despite being popular across Europe and America, there are comparatively few Junior Enterprises in the United Kingdom. This would be the first recognized Junior Enterprise in Wales!
From a student perspective, the Bangor Junior Enterprise would provide students would provide students with experience in how to strategically manage and develop a company, skills which are useful across all fields. It will also offer opportunities to apply theoretical skills learned on university courses into practice, through projects addressing complex business challenges. A junior enterprise would thus be a laboratory to develop skills, encouraging a systematic overview of problems facing companies today, recognising opportunities, planning, implementing and obtaining results.
From the perspective of the university, the knowledge retention rate is higher through Learning by Doing in Junior Enterprises, in comparison to internships or business simulation games. It enhances the employability rate of students up to 20 percentile points. It also fosters the growth of local SMEs (small and medium enterprises) and creates more businesses opportunities and competitiveness. A Junior Enterprise would span the worlds of academia and business, providing a valuable networking opportunity for the university with existing local businesses.
To create the Bangor Junior Enterprise, we would have to follow some steps:
1) We would begin by considering the best way to promote the idea (through YOUR IDEAS from the Student Union)
2) Establish the scope of the Enterprise, defining:
a. The mission and vision of the company
b. The main company problems it will address and consequentially the fields of consultancy it will offer (Business, Sustainability etc).
c. The Structure of the company: The divisions and job description sheets (Head, Marketing and Communication, Human Resources, Analyst, Coordinators of specific fields, External Board (Teachers, researchers)).
d. The resources needed (mandatories and desirable) with `payback time – as a not-for-profit organisation, to maintain its functionality.
e. The implementation plan
f. A plan of communication plan how to attract clients.
3) Validation and adjustment on the business plan
4) Structure: Starting the bureaucratic process to create the Enterprise.
5) Foster: Find opportunities and potential clients (put in practice item 2.f)
6) Create: Start a pioneer project in the practice with a Company.
a. Make a feedback analysis and improvement action plan of the project
b. Use a successful project as business case to communicate and attract other companies
8) Scale-up: Getting more projects, and in the future might hire more students or implement new solutions fields.