An Entrepreneurs Unearthed pilot program in 2019.And from next year, the Entrepreneurs Unearthed program will be expanded to more ABCN member companies. The program has been developed over the past three years in our Development Hub, an incubator for new programs, with terrific support from EY and CBA. The aim was to craft an innovative approach to preparing young people for the changing world of work by exploring what it means to have an entrepreneurial mindset. While factors such as globalisation, automation and digital disruption pose many challenges, they also present a great opportunity to empower young people to develop entrepreneurial skills that will enhance their future career opportunities.

During the four Entrepreneurs Unearthed sessions, students work in teams with workplace mentors to develop an innovation that addresses an everyday problem, using design thinking methodology. In between sessions, the student teams are required to work on their pitch presentations for delivery to a panel of judges during the final session.

It has proven to be a very engaging approach, inspiring many student participants to champion entrepreneurship more broadly. One former participant from Cranbourne Secondary College, Hamza Tanoli, later joined the Monash Entrepreneurs Club committee. The university student club runs networking and pitching events. Another former participant, Nathaniel Diong, founded the Future Minds Network, a youth-focussed social enterprise that helps high-school students create social impact projects.

These examples illustrate the power of Entrepreneurs Unearthed to raise students’ aspirations. As one mentor participant said: ‘It’s a great way to realise how your skills are applicable to entrepreneurial ventures – and an easy way to make a small difference in the lives of others.’

In 2020, we plan to offer up to 10 programs to interested member companies in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. Expressions of interest have closed for the 2020 programs and we plan to have a full rollout for all member companies in 2021.