A group of second year management students presented their business proposals to top executives at Bedford Borough Council.
The students were taking part in the University of Bedfordshire’s Business School Practice Week Challenge, an initiative which flips the usual classroom-based teaching model to bring real-life professional business practice into the curriculum.
An intensive week of planning by the students culminated in a series of presentations to a panel featuring the Mayor of Bedford Dave Hodgson and the borough council’s chief executive, Philip Simpkins.
The teams of students had one week to produce presentations, including a rationale for proposed developments, a financial breakdown and an implementation plan.
About 50 students were selected to attend the final-day session, hosted in the University’s Bedford campus theatre. Four groups, each limited to 12 minute pitches, presented to members of the borough council’s senior executive group, followed by questions from the Mayor and his team.
The winners were Team Prosperity, who worked on a proposal to encourage investment in Bedford. The group gave a spirited presentation with strong competitor analysis of other boroughs’ strategies, and received their winners’ certificates from the Mayor.
Cllr Hodgson invited all four of the finalist teams to meet with him at the Council in the New Year to discuss their ideas further.
Mr Simpkins said: “There is a lot of merit in all four projects. I’m sure that we can work together to come out with a deliverable product.”