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New scheme to assist city’s young entrepreneurs

Aston students
Aston students

10th December, 2009

A new scheme has been created to help students or recent graduates in Birmingham get their own business off the ground.

B-Seen will extend the scope and reach of the region’s existing graduate employability initiatives such as Graduate Advantage and SPEED (Student Placement Entrepreneurship Education Scheme), by providing support to graduate businesses in knowledge-led industries.

It is funded by Birmingham City Council and will be delivered by Aston University, Birmingham City University and the University of Birmingham.

Helen Higson (Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Aston University) said, ‘B-Seen is a welcome addition to the range of schemes which graduates and students can access to help them in their careers. Entrepreneurship and innovation are key drivers for the region’s economy, and it is important that we support young people when they are starting out, to give them the best chance of success with their ventures.’

B-Seen will provide three levels of support. ‘Activity One’ offers a six-month tenure in incubator space, with a wage subsidy, training, coaching and mentoring. Each university will accommodate a minimum of ten businesses every six months, meaning that at least 90 businesses will receive this level of support in the project’s fifteen month timeframe.

‘Activity Two’ is a Graduate Business Club, available to current and past recipients of ‘Activity One’ assistance, as well as those preparing for start-up. The Club will provide networking opportunities through events with high-profile keynote speakers, sector-specific workshops and master classes.

‘Activity Three’ comprises information, training and support for graduate and student businesses, from informal advice and drop-in sessions, to formal workshops and lectures. This Activity will be delivered by the participating universities’ careers services.

B-Seen is available to any graduate or student from one of Birmingham’s three universities, or a graduate of any university who now resides within the ‘B’ postcode area.

For more information on B-Seen, including details on how to apply, email bseen@aston.ac.uk.

ENDS

For more information, or to arrange an interview, please contact Katherine Preston, Aston University, on 0121 204 3214 or k.preston@aston.ac.uk.

Employable Graduates; Exploitable Research