The National Association of College & University Entrepreneurs (we’ll just call it NACUE) are bringing their annual Student Enterprise Conference to the University of Kent for jam-packed weekend of knowledge, workshops and discussion.
Across the weekend of the 23rd and 24th of February, the 10th annual edition of the SEC will be hosted right here, at the Kent Business School, with 300 further education entrepreneurs expected in attendance. Since setting up in 2009, the organisation has gone from strength to strength with an ever-growing network of societies – currently in the region of 240 – with the express goal of making entrepreneurship more accessible to students.
Whilst events take place across the year, the SEC maintains status as the showcase and, indeed, is the largest conference dedicated to student enterprise throughout Europe. Coming to the University of Kent for the first time, previous host venues have included the University of Lincoln and Sheffield Hallam.
The weekend follows the theme of Change Markers with a focus on how entrepreneurs and business can change society in various ways – take Uber Eats, changing and disrupting the flow of traditional food delivery or Monzo Bank who exist not physically but, in isolation, as an app. Student entrepreneurs hold the key to the future and this conference seeks to provide inspiration to the next generation.
In excess of 60 speakers will descend on our vibrant cultural city to present talks, guide you through the process of business and entrepreneurship, hold exciting workshops and even take part in panel discussions – there is literally something to pique everyone’s interest and the weekend is thoroughly stacked.
Take, for example, James Buckley-Thorp who read Law at the University of Kent whilst also being an active member of the rowing society. Allegedly stunned at the revelation the society didn’t have their own socks, Buckley-Thorp took matters into his own hands and turned his dorm room into his business headquarters.
Rupert and Buckley are now a leading clothing brand that specialize in British-heritage inspired clothes and, wonderfully, varsity socks. Indeed Rupert and Buckley are now the Official Leisurewear Partner of the Cancer Research Boat Race – the feng shui of this business is perfectly in line.
Rebecca Smith, ASPIRE Project Officer, is particularly excited about the event, “it’ll be an amazing conference, there’s some really good speakers. I’m actually really looking forward to hearing Gandy’s story which is a flip-flop company that helps build orphanages. I won’t give too much away but it’s going to be a great weekend”.
NACUE themselves have described the conference as, “bring(ing) together students from across the UK to explore the importance of entrepreneurship through talks, practical workshops and networking opportunities. The two days packed full of fun sessions with speakers guarantees to not only inspire you, but to equip you with the tools to start your business”.
And what a weekend it promises to be, I for one cannot wait to get down there and hear from some of the brightest entrepreneurial minds of modern day so make sure you are there – February 23rd and 24th, tickets are available from £10.