A team of entrepreneurship students on a pioneering course at BGU in Lincoln has won national competition to build up business contacts. The six first-year students who make up IgniTE are among the first to study for a degree in Business (Team Entrepreneurship) at BGU.

Teams from the four UK universities which offer a similar Team Academy course competed over 14 days during National Customer Weeks (20th October to 2nd November) to build up as many genuine customer connections as possible with a view to winning real business from them.

The four universities are BGU, Northumbria Business School, University of the West of England (UWE) and Falmouth University.

IgniTE, made up of Sophie Thomas, Dominique Salsbury, Matthew Potter, Faye Costello and siblings Raif and Jordan Mason, won the first-year prize and came second in the country overall.

“This is a fantastic achievement for IgniTE which is the smallest in the competition with just six members,” said Elinor Vettraino, who set up and leads the new Team Entrepreneurship degree at BGU. “Even though this course is in its first year we earned 14 points in total, beating all of the other first, second and third-year companies bar one. Just six weeks into the course our entrepreneurs have already been making money, building a quickly growing business network and impressing everyone they meet.”

IgniTE team leader Raif Mason and one team member will now get to travel to any of the other UK Team Academies for up to a week, where they will be able to develop new networks and collaborate on projects.

Unlike other students, who attend lectures and tutorials, take exams and write dissertations, BGU’s team entrepreneurs set up their own businesses in order to make real money. All of the course assessments are directly linked to supporting the team entrepreneurs’ businesses. The BA (Hons) Business (Team Entrepreneurship) programme is also mapped to a Chartered Management Institute qualification so when the team entrepreneurs leave they will have a professional Level 5 Diploma in Leadership and Management from the CMI as well.

By the end of the course they may have made enough money between them to send every student on a round-the-world trip for up to six months. They also learn about corporate social responsibility and in their third year they have the option to go overseas and support a social enterprise.

To find out more about the course contact Elinor Vettraino by emailing elinor.vettraino@bishopg.ac.uk or by calling 07731489797.

11th November 2015