Our Custom Made programme made its debut at Our Lady’s Convent High School this week, where it was a hit with students and volunteers alike. The programme challenges students to respond creatively to an enterprise challenge, taking on different roles within a company to design and pitch a fashion brand to win a place at London Fashion Week.
The day began with volunteers leading a presentation and exercises to get the Year 9 students thinking about entrepreneurship, pitching and branding. The challenge then began for real, with students split into groups to act as Fashion Houses for the day. Each student chose one of 5 job roles within their ‘company’ – such as Designer, Event Manager or Finance Manager – and got to work on building a brand and creating their fashion line.
Many groups had strong messages that represented their brand, like those created by Janet, Yanet, Katie, Kristina & Bernice of Team BeeU (pictured). Their t-shirts and bags were designed with a message of confidence and inclusivity for all young women, and they went on to perform in the grand finale fashion show, demonstrating their excellent presentation skills.
The students relished the opportunity to express themselves creatively while learning enterprise skills for the future. One told us how much they enjoyed pitching their team’s products: “I loved that when we presented, it gave me an insight of how I could, in the future, present a business of mine.”
Thirteen volunteers – from Standard Chartered, Aon and Schroders – gave up their time to support the day. They got a lot out of taking part as well: “The programme helped with my supervision and presentation skills,” said Amina Danesi, an Associate at Standard Chartered. “It’s a great team-building exercise for the kids and will definitely prepare them for the future.” Her colleague Maria Duong, International Graduate, said it was “inspiring seeing the students tackle the activities with creativity, enthusiasm and originality”.
“We were delighted to bring Custom Made to Our Lady’s,” said Samantha Dodd, Senior Programme Manager at Inspire!. “The students rose to the enterprise challenge magnificently, and their designs were of an exceptionally high standard. It’s so important that local young people get opportunities like this to build skills for their future careers – and even more important that they’re this fun!”
For more information about Custom Made, or any of our work-related learning programmes for secondary schools, please call us on 020 7275 6060 or email us at email@example.com.