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Innovative Youth Challenge

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News created: 06 Sep 2010

A passion for Business is being sparked in high school students throughout the state thanks to the work of a dedicated team of Macquarie University staff and students.

The Business Pitching Competition was won by Monte Sant’ Angelo Mercy CollegeMacquarie student group ‘Students in Free Enterprise’ (SIFE) have again hosted the Innovative Youth Challenge (IYC), a friendly competition in which high school students are introduced to business principles.

The IYC consisted of a daylong seminar on campus in which Faculty of Business and Economics staff presented on Business Plans, Accounting and Finance, Marketing and Branding, Leadership and Innovation, and Public Speaking. One week later, the high school teams returned to Macquarie to participate in a Business Pitching Competition, competing for the title of ‘Most Innovative Youth’.

The program encouraged students to engage in practical elements of business planning and the step-by-step process of actualising ideas. Students were provided a means through which to translate material learnt in the classroom into entrepreneurial vision.

“For the SIFE students involved, running IYC is a leadership experience,” says Dr Chris Baumann, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Business and SIFE’s Faculty Advisor, and also a IYC’s Marketing workshop presenter. “It facilitates networking with academics and has the effect of seeding the entrepreneurial spirit in the wider community.”

“Through IYC, high school students come to understand the importance of a strong economy. In the Marketing workshop we discuss the basics of branding, and many students seem to develop an interest in the fascinating world of brands within the short time frame of the presentation.”

“Business has in most cases become very global, so we need to better understand consumers across cultures in order to succeed in this globalised world. Seeing the students’ engage with these important concepts and passing on my 'fire' for Business and Marketing is one of the biggest rewards a teacher can ask for,” says Dr Baumann.

This article first appeared in the Macquarie Globe, Edition 32, 2010

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