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Ulster University, in partnership with Santander Universities, has launched its first ever Student Enterprise Fund.

The Fund aims to remove the barriers student entrepreneurs face in the early stages of realising their business ideas, while providing opportunities for other students to participate in one of these projects through freelance work or by being self-employed.

Student Entrepreneurs will advertise the vacancies for fellow students across all campuses who will be awarded a grant to complete the work.  Additionally, during the process, students will benefit from a range of support, tools, and guidance to help develop not only the venture, but also to develop professional and entrepreneurial skills.

Ulster University has been working in partnership with Santander Universities since 2011. To date the company has donated over £1.1million in funding support to enhance opportunities for student mobility, support internships, work placements and entrepreneurship.

The initiative was launched by the Ulster University Students’ Union Enterprise Centre, a partnership service offered by Ulster University Students’ Union and the Faculty of Research & Impact.

Chris Shannon, Student Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Manager at Ulster University Enterprise Centre said:

“This initiative will see students working together on enterprise projects that can contribute to a successful business launch. The Fund will support our student entrepreneurs to help grow their new business ideas and turn them into reality, through collaboration with other students supporting them at different stages of their entrepreneurial journey.

Innovation and entrepreneurship are the driving forces behind every growing economy and this fund breaks down barriers allowing for students to realise their dreams.”

Graeme Elliott, Relationship Manager, Santander Universities said:

“We are delighted to work with Ulster University to support the next generation of  entrepreneurs. We look forward to seeing the new businesses which will grow from this fund and have an economic impact across the UK.”

Sarah McAllanen, Product Design Student at Ulster University and Finalist at the 2018 Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Awards said:

“Ulster University encourages an entrepreneurial spirit and drive. This fund is a great opportunity for students to go beyond their studies and capitalise on their skills, ideas and potential – regardless of their social, financial or geographical background.”