Envision Community Apprentice Winners 2018!

Friday 27 April 2018

Loosely based on the TV series The Apprentice, Community-Apprentice is an inter-school competition which requires young people to develop, and crucially demonstrate, the competencies most valued by employers. Envision is a ten month process that is run across Birmingham, Bristol and London which includes three exciting cross-school challenges which provide milestones throughout the process to keep teams motivated and on track.

  • The Film Challenge requires pupils to work as a team to communicate why the issue they have chosen matters. They must do it in under two minutes in a single take.
  • The Pitch Challenge requires them to prepare a project plan and pitch to a panel of judges made up of senior representatives drawn from local companies and government in a bid to win funding.
  • The Boardroom Challenge takes places after teams have finished their projects. It requires teams to present the difference they have made to their coaches to evidence the competencies they have developed. To help prepare students for this challenge, reflection is embedded in the programme.

At Ark Boulton Academy thirteen Year 10 students were chosen to participate in this programme. Below is an account of their experience.

We were first required as a team to choose one of the charities out of the five options that were presented to us. We chose ‘SIFA Fireside’ which helps provide shelter and free hot meals, healthcare, and hygiene necessities for the less fortunate. Our team name was inspired by this – ‘Ark Shelter’. This charity was selected as it would enable us to showcase our ten virtues in school which include: charity, service, and compassion.

Through a mixture of weekly coaching sessions (provided by Envision staff), we were able to develop our grit, confidence and teamwork.  We were partnered with the NEC who supported and provided us with volunteer mentors. These mentors passed on their knowledge and experience on improving our fundraising and presentation skills.

The first fundraising event we organised was held at the NEC. We had to persuade visitors passing by to get involved with our project, it was challenging but really helped boost our confidence! After this successful fundraiser we were required to raise money within our school, so during our lunch and breaks we ran different activities such as guessing the number of sweets in a jar.

As a school we were able to surpass our mandatory target by gathering tinned foods and clothing for the homeless setting us out among all the other participating schools. The last event held on the 26th April gave us an opportunity to present all the setbacks and achievements that we experienced throughout our journey with Envision. Our presentation showcased our unique qualities, determination, commitment and the desire to make a difference.

After the ten months, the Community-Apprentice competition in Birmingham reached its end with the announcement of the winning team: ARK BOULTON ACADEMY! We were chosen as the winning team for going above and beyond to promote an extremely sensitive issue in a mature and measured manner within our school and out in the wider community. Our team was said to be “a team full of lively and striving personalities, who impressed us with their creative presentation and their dedication to help make a difference.”

We believe as a team we have developed in many ways, especially with our cooperation and communication skills.

Asmine and Haleema – Year 10 Envision Group