As the 2013/2014 academic calendar draws to a close, the Venture Matrix team reflect upon another fruitful year. The significant increase to enterprise projects with local Sheffield schools, especially through the city-wide enterprise initiative – The BiG challenge, resulted in over 200 students working and mentoring over 1,700 high school pupils through 150 projects. It is also noteworthy that 70% of the pupils, who were shortlisted for a Big Challenge award, had been supported by Venture Matrix students. A number of these students have now successfully been accepted on to PGCE courses, using their Venture Matrix experience as a key feature of their application form.
Additionally, the Venture Matrix team are currently receiving extremely positive feedback from external clients, who have been providing over 180 projects for Venture Matrix students from across the University, many providing personal references and testimonials for the student groups they have worked with. The external clients, from all three sectors, are often organisations that have previously not had any business relationship with the University. However, a pattern is now emerging whereby these organisations are now building their relationship with SHU outside of the Venture Matrix scheme by offering placement, internships, guest lectures and research projects.
Venture Matrix students have also raised over £3,000 for local charities as a result of their external projects. It has also been significant through feedback from external examiners, in particular Graphic Design, Business and ICT and Early Childhood Studies, that the Venture Matrix scheme is recognised for adding innovative value to the curriculum, in addition to developing student’s skills.
Learn more about Venture Matrix here