A joint initiative is hoping to inspire the next wave of entrepreneurs in Mid and East Antrim. ‘World of Enterprise’ will showcase the array of business opportunities that self-employment can generate to students at Northern Regional College, inspiring them to take the reins and be their own boss.

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council has teamed up with the College and Ballymena Business Centre to deliver a project packed with top tips from specialist advisors and business role models across a wide range of sectors.

‘World of Enterprise’ will also highlight what support programmes there are available for students across all teaching faculties including media, hospitality, sport, tourism, health and wellbeing, counselling, childcare, business studies and various trades.

Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr William McCaughey said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for young people to really take control of their own future. There can be a fear of the unknown when it comes to owning your own business or working for yourself, and there needn’t be. With the right knowledge and support, which this project aims to share, it really can be the perfect platform to carving a successful future for yourself in whatever industry you want.

“As a business owner myself, I certainly understand the apprehension to go it alone, but it really can offer you many different opportunities. With the knowhow from Ballymena Business Centre and support from Northern Regional College, I look forward to hearing the successes of our future business people.

“One of Council’s priorities is to help boost our local economy, and what better way to do that than helping our young people forge a secure future for themselves in whatever business they wish to embark on.”  

Welcoming the initiative Anne Morrison, Curriculum Area Manager for Business at Northern Regional College, said: “Our students will have access to mentoring and be able to attend workshops that will equip them with the skills needed for self-employment as an alternative career path.

“Due to constraints placed on working conditions and access to services, there has been a significant growth in innovation over the past 18 months. Some of our students, thinking outside of the box, are looking to establish their own businesses. The World of Enterprise initiative could help their innovative ideas come to fruition.”

“The World of Enterprise initiative ties in very well with Northern Regional College’s role as the lead Hub for Entrepreneurship, promoting the benefits of creativity, innovation and self-employment among young people. We are looking forward to working with the local community and stakeholders to promote Entrepreneurial pathways for our students.”

Melanie Christie Boyle MBE, Chief Executive of Ballymena Business Centre said: “As students consider their future career options, which is often based around employment, we want to plant the seed of enterprise to raise awareness of self-employment.

“By helping young people believe in their own ability, build their enterprise support network and apply new skills acquired at NRC, we will better prepare our next generation of entrepreneurs to have the confidence to pursue new innovative business ideas.”

To find out more about World of Enterprise visit www.ballymenabusiness.co.uk or contact Melanie on T: 079 3035 8982 or E: [email protected]

For more information on business support available in Mid and East Antrim email E: [email protected]

For a full list of courses available at NRC please visit W: www.nrc.ac.uk