Enterprise agencies join forces to create 'ladder of enterprise' for young Scots

Two enterprise agencies have joined forces to create an “uninterrupted pathway for entrepreneurial young people” in Scotland.

Enterprise education charity Young Enterprise Scotland (YES) and social enterprise Elevator said their “ladder of enterprise” would provide support stretching from primary school right through to college.

Complementary programmes from the two organisations mark different rungs of the ladder. Participants will gain entrepreneurial skills, such as teamwork and good communications, while “immersive challenges” will offer the experience of running a company.

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The first ladder of enterprise is being introduced in Lanarkshire. In schools, Elevator will liaise with YES volunteer and local area chair, businessman Joe Docherty, who helps deliver the company programme.

Gary McEwan of Elevator and Geoff Leask of Young Enterprise Scotland.

Geoff Leask, chief executive at YES, said: “Young Enterprise Scotland has a strong pedigree for enterprise learning in schools and colleges. However, as young people leave education, we’ve not been able to know with confidence that those ready to take the next tentative and exciting steps into business will have the correct support structures for the next phase of their journey. That now changes with the alliance with Elevator.

“This new alliance will ensure that there is a ‘plug in’ point for the students inspired by our enterprise programmes. By creating a ‘ladder of enterprise’ more young people will have the support to go on and start up their own businesses. It is a game-changer for us.”

Gary McEwan, chief executive of Elevator, added: “Collaborating now has never been more important: the economic damage caused by Covid-19 is eye-watering.

“Elevator and YES have a shared vision to encourage and support the entrepreneurial leaders of the future. Both our organisations operate nationally, we’re both driven by a commitment to the greater good and together we can offer a continuous development path for all young entrepreneurs, as well as a collective voice to champion young people in enterprise.”

The alliance will offer students of YES’s company programme and Bridge 2 Business initiatives another step in their enterprise journey by linking in with Elevator’s business advice and enterprise hubs.

The programme’s backers said it would expand the options for young people as they enter working life.

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