VolkerLaser returns to Shireland Collegiate Academy

On Tuesday 16 April, two colleagues from VolkerLaser joined a team from Grant Thornton UK LLP, to host an educational workshop at Shireland Collegiate Academy in Smethwick.

Shireland Collegiate Academy Volunteers

Following a successful session last year, Grant Thornton invited VolkerLaser to return to the school to help host the 2024 School Enterprise Programme for their Year 7 students. The programme gives students an opportunity to run their own microbusiness and develop financial and entrepreneurial skills through real-life experience. They can then take the profits generated and invest in entrepreneurs’ businesses in the developing world.

Joanne Hailey and Mark Jones from VolkerLaser signed up for the opportunity, acting as teachers for the day. Using collaboration and teamwork, the Year 7 students were challenged to generate business ideas with their peers and to pitch their chosen business model to the class in a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style presentation at the end of the day.

“It was great to have the opportunity to give back to the local community. It was a wonderful day and seeing the pupil’s enthusiasm for the tasks we set out was very rewarding.”

Jo Hailey

Jo Hailey - VolkerLaser volunteer

Jo Hailey from VolkerLaser

Mark and Jo will be invited to the winners day at Grant Thornton, once the winning teams from each class has undertaken their ‘trading period’.

Jasvir Chumber, advisory associate for Grant Thornton, and organiser of this year’s School Enterprise Programme said: “Jo and Mark were both brilliant on Tuesday, it was a pleasure to work with them both. We couldn’t have run the programme without our volunteers, so we really appreciate all the time and effort.”