The scheme sees year 12 and 13 Taranaki school students set up and run a real business. They are required to create a product or service and bring it to market with the guidance of local business mentors.
WITT Te Pūkenga is a long-term supporter of the Young Enterprise Scheme, most recently as a sponsor of the Ideation Validation Award.
“Programmes like the Lion Foundation Young Enterprise Scheme are a great way for rangatahi to get hands on experience of real-world roles, which aligns to how WITT Te Pūkenga ākonga learn on a daily basis,” says WITT Te Pūkenga Executive Director John Snook.
Participants develop a range of skills to help them with their future careers including communication skills, problem solving, innovating, creative thinking, financial management, attention to detail, teamwork and perseverance.
“This partnership further cements the strong relationship between the Chamber and WITT Te Pūkenga and showcases the many rewarding pathways young people have to further their education in Taranaki, said Taranaki Chamber of Commerce CEO Arun Chaudhari.
WITT Te Pūkenga offers a range of business courses from diplomas through to a new Postgraduate Diploma in Applied Management.
“The Postgraduate Diploma in Applied Management caters for those who work full time job and need to study part time and pathways through to completing a masters in partnership with university,” says Snook.
Supporting a programme that works with up-and-coming business students and entrepreneurs dovetails into WITT Te Pūkenga plans to have a learning and innovation hub, Te Aūtui – the cloak-pin, in the CBD.
“With support from mana whenua, Te Aūtui is our answer to providing a central and accessible way to deliver programmes and courses to support the growth a development of those in work to benefit them and the local business community,” adds Snook.
Chaudhari says that Taranaki has an abundance of young talent.
“In 2021 YES students in Taranaki were awarded three out of 13 National Excellence Awards. The Chamber nurtures growth and entrepreneurial activities for our youth through the YES programme.”
“WITT coming on board as the principal sponsor ensures that we continue to support our high school entrepreneurs.”
The YES programme has been running in New Zealand secondary schools for 25 years and is managed by the Taranaki Chamber of Commerce in Taranaki. The programme also receives funding from Toi Foundation.