Community and Lifestyle

Funding for schools to develop ag entrepreneurs

Beef Central, 03/03/2018

APPLICATIONS are now open for secondary schools around Australia to apply for a unique entrepreneurial learning program for Year 9 and 10 students.

The “AgriFutures startup.business” education program is a collaboration between two organisations – AgriFutures Australia (formerly the Rural industries Research Development Corporation) and startup.business (more information below this story).

Its aim is to engag high school students in rural and regional Australia in thinking about solutions for problems facing agriculture using innovation and an entrepreneurial mindset.

AgriFutures Australia will sponsor seven schools across the country to each receive a $7,000 education program.

It says the program “will take secondary students on an immersive journey into the entrepreneurial startup scene to help solve the problems facing agriculture in Australia”.

A key aim of the AgriFutures startup.business pilot is to show young people how the skills and mindset of entrepreneurs can allow them to create their own jobs.

“We learn because of our curiosity, because of the challenges we face, because of the things we do … and as we learn we grow. That’s why we’ve brought together entrepreneurs and academics to design a unique program of learning,” said Jo Burston, serial entrepreneur and CEO of Phronesis Academy, the parent company of startup.business.The

There are currently four jobs in agriculture for every university graduate studying an agricultural-related degree (Pratley, 2017).

Education in entrepreneurship aims to overcome some of the barriers that currently exist in rural and regional areas.

AgriFutures Australia Managing Director, John Harvey, said a key objective of AgriFutures Australia is to attract capable people into careers in agriculture.

“This program will be a wonderful tool to expose high school students to different ways of approaching national rural issues, and importantly expand their horizons in terms of what a career in agriculture could look like,” he said.

To be eligible for the program, schools must be a secondary public high school and offer Commerce, Agricultural Studies or Geography to Year 9 or Year 10 students.

Schools must also be located in a rural or regional area, and commit to delivering the program to a minimum of one class in Term 2 and Term 3 of 2018.

Applications are now open. Teachers or school representatives are encouraged to apply online at: www.agrifutures.com.au/people-leadership/agrifutures-startup-business/

Applications close Monday, 12 March 2018 at 5.00pm AEDT.

startup.business was co-founded by Jo Burston and the late Dr Richard Seymour, former Program Director of Entrepreneurship & Innovation at The University of Sydney, on the premise that entrepreneurship is important for us all, as it’s been shown that entrepreneurial firms account for the clear majority of employment growth. The youth of today will probably end up working for entrepreneurial firms (if they don’t go out and start their own). Startup.business brings entrepreneurial learning in action into classrooms, with programs designed for 10–17 year olds to equip the next generation to create real social and economic impact.

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