Elevate have become 2021 Junior Achievement Student Company of the Year 2021, sponsored by HSBC Bank.
The team – Abigail Pontee, Claire Clucas, Sam Gill, Hannah Lancaster and Jadwiga Niski from St Ninian’s High School competed against 20 student teams to take the title after impressing the judges with their idea for paper soap, which disintegrates after washing your hands. Their product is an eco-friendly and affordable option for cleansing your hands.
Over the last nine months more than 120 students from Ballakermeen High School, Castle Rushen High School, QE II High School, St Ninian’s High School and Ramsey Grammar School participated in the company programme, the world’s top entrepreneurial programme for young people in education.
Sponsored by HSBC Isle of Man and organised by Manx charity Junior Achievement, the company programme is supported by 30 volunteer business mentors who donate their time to work with the teams.
The students, aged 16 to 17, form a mini- company consisting of no more than six members. They are tasked to raise money to get their business off the ground then take their product or service to market.
Each team member is allocated a role, which includes managing director, finance director, operations manager, company secretary, sales and marketing and IT.
After running their business for nine months the student companies came together to take part in the national final that determined who would take home the HSBC JA Student Company of the Year title and trophy.
In the current challenging economic climate the programme is all the more crucial as a means for providing students with invaluable work experience for their CV.
Research carried out by Junior Achievement Europe indicates that up to 15 per cent of students who take part in the programme go on to become self-employed before they reach the age of 30.
Junior Achievement CEO Sue Cook said: ‘Over the last few months students have faced a lot of uncertainty and disruption as their education has been unavoidably paused. We felt it was all the more important this year, therefore, to provide them with an opportunity to develop their skills and gain some valuable work experience.
‘The aim of the programme is to get young people to reflect on and learn from their experiences of running their own business. The programme can help them to identify potential career opportunities they would perhaps otherwise not have considered and to explore how best to develop their career pathways.
‘I’m extremely grateful to HSBC for their continued support and congratulate everyone who took part in this potentially life-changing programme.’
The HSBC Award for Junior Achievement Company of the Year went to Elevate from Ballakermeen High School.
Runner-up – Orion from Ballakermeen High School for their Aroma shower steamers.
Third place – Eclipse from Ballakermeen High School for their eco- friendly phone cases.
Other awards were:
- Utmost Wealth Solutions Award for Outstanding Team Member – Ben Corkhill from Ramsey Grammar School.
- KPMG Award for Positive Social Impact – Empower from Ramsey Grammar School for their eco-friendly home for bees.
- Zurich International Life Award for Inspirational Leadership – Ellie Baldwin from Ramsey Grammar School.
- Maggie Galloway Award for Volunteer Mentor of the Year – Jim Woodall.
- Continent 8 Technologies Award for Best Use of Marketing – Cayman National Bank.
- Junior Achievement Award for Best Trade Stand – Orion from Ballakermeen High School for their product the Aroma Shower Steamer.
Celton Manx Special Recognition Award – Georgia Cowley from Ballakermeen High School.
- ELS Award for Innovation in Business – CEASIUM from Castle Rushen High School for their tech-friendly wristband to replace go cards on public transport.
- HSBC Financial Excellence Award – Team Summit from Ballakermeen High School.
- Junior Achievement Students’ Choice Award – Jumpstart from Ballakermeen High School.