Engaging Wellington high school students in their entrepreneurial journey

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington is proud to be a new sponsor of the Young Enterprise Trust (YES) Wellington Regional Awards. The awards were held at Pipitea Marae in Thorndon on Friday 21 October.

six girls five in uniform
“Victoria University of Wellington aims to build entrepreneurial mindsets throughout a students’ journey from high school, through university, to the workforce. This is a natural fit as regional sponsor for the work YES does within schools,” says Rebecca Needham, Director of Strategic Partnerships and Engagement at the University.

Anita Ravji, Entrepreneurship Community Manager based at the university’s Atom Innovation Space, presented the Innovation award to two inspiring teams, who have spent the last year turning their ideas into a venture:

  • Eyes Open NZ from St Oran’s College (pictured) won the Greater Wellington Region Award
    Eyes Open NZ created an air freshener with an aroma that provokes alertness, as a response to the large number of fatigue-related vehicle incidents on New Zealand roads. Unlike other air fresheners, their product is sustainably produced and can be attached to a vehicle’s air vent.
  • Study Style from St Mary’s College won the Wellington City Region Award
    The team at Study Style found that that there is no room in schools to nurture or even acknowledge the diversity of students learning styles. Their quiz and website helps students to identify their study styles and aids them to study in a way that maximises their personal learning strengths and implement effective studying habits, regardless of their course material.

All teams during the YES programme were involved in creating, researching, validating and pitching their idea as a venture. It takes courage, creativity, hard work, and determination to fully develop a product or try out a new service, and to start from a young age is truly inspirational.

This is the first year the University has sponsored Young Enterprise Trust, strengthening its relationship with an organisation whose purpose is to ensure all young people have opportunities to develop an entrepreneurial mindset to help them thrive in business, community, and in life.

In turn, the university will provide opportunities for YES students to continue their ventures and develop new ideas while studying at University with:

  • Personal support from The Atom team,
  • a coworking space,
  • connecting students to mentors, and
  • invitations to events across the Wellington entrepreneurial ecosystem.

The winners at the Wellington Regional Awards  will go on to compete at the National Awards in December.

Find out more about The Atom—Te Kahu Te Ao Innovation Space and its service for students.

To connect with the university on any matter related to Entrepreneurship, contact Anita Ravji, Entrepreneurship Community Manager at: anita.ravji@vuw.ac.nz