Meet our 2024 New Enterprise Competition winners!

The New Enterprise Competition (NEC) drew to a thrilling conclusion at the Engine Shed last night. The award ceremony brought out the best and brightest of the local entrepreneurial ecosystem.

The NEC is the Careers Service’s flagship start-up competition. Run by the Basecamp Enterprise Team, students, graduates, and staff, with support from mentors and experts, transform their business ideas into business realities. The final stage of the competition, the GROWTH stage, sees participants battle it out in pitches to a panel of experts for a chance to win a share of £25,000 of funding!

(Pictured from left to right are: Shabaj Ahmed (Progressable), Rachel Keys (Heartly), Ajeet Bhambra (Foundercentre), Artemis Fragkopoulos (SLANT), Deeshen Shah (Lettus Digest), Louisa Billington (Accomodeep), Weronika Stelmach (Weaving Change), Isobel Turner (Attic Catalogues), and Vasudev Menon (Invaai)). 
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My SME Internship: Ben – SatSense

Hi, I’m Ben. I’m a second year PhD student in the School of Earth Sciences, focusing on understanding ground deformation of volcanoes using satellite borne radar imagery.

In April 2024, I worked as an Earth Observation Intern with SatSense, a Leeds-based SME (Small/medium-sized Enterprise) that provides services assessing, monitoring, and alerting for changes in ground deformation for a wide range of clients using satellite-borne radar imagery.  

A photo of Ben wearing waterproof outdoor clothing smiling, with hills and a lake in the background.
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Creative community engagement with Sparks Bristol! 

City Challenges went off-campus with a trip to Sparks Bristol on Wednesday 8 May.  

SPARKS Bristol logo

The event started with a tour of the different departments at Sparks and a talk about what Sparks does, why it was founded, and what they stand for.  

Lucy, Volunteer Coordinator

Lucy, Volunteer Coordinator, said

“Sparks Bristol is a sustainability and creativity hub. It’s a community space in the centre of Bristol where we want people to explore what a fairer and greener future looks like. And they consider the climate crisis, the cost of living crisis, and what we can do with an empty, massive building right in the middle of the city.” 

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Hear from your peers who have achieved their PLUS Award!

With the Bristol PLUS Award deadline fast approaching in just over two weeks, noon Friday 7 June, we thought it a great opportunity to showcase the experiences of three PLUS Achievers from this year.

Yunfei, Katie, and Ana Lucia all spoke about their core experience of partaking in the PLUS Award at our Outstanding PLUS and PLUS Celebration event at the Bristol Beacon to a great reception from our audience. Not only was their skill development and pure passion for what they accomplished clear, but the authenticity in which they spoke speaks to their achievements.

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Working for a scientific SME: advice from professionals

“Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) make up a large proportion of the UK’s economy and account for approximately 30% of graduate employment” (AGCAS, 2022),

Finding and applying for work experience, including internships, or graduate roles, in SMEs can be different to schemes with larger employers. In April 2024, the Careers Service invited three professionals, who work in scientific SMEs, to share their advice:

Scientist carrying out an experiment in the lab
  • Dr Mark Benizett, VetIMD – Pioneering isothermal molecular diagnostics solutions for the animal health sector
  • Dr Clio Andreae, GenomeKey – Biotechnology using cutting edge machine learning and DNA sequencing to treat Sepsis
  • Dr Ed Jones, Kelpi – World-leading sustainable materials innovation business – harnessing the properties of seaweed to create compostable, marine-safe, low-carbon bioplastic packaging
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My SME Internship: Christa – Extracellular 

Hi, my name is Christa and towards the end of my third year studying for MSci Biology I took part in an SME Internship with Extracellular.

Throughout the internship, I undertook a variety of roles in and out of the laboratory working to support my colleagues and complete my own projects independently.

A photo of Christa smiling in the sunshine.

About Extracellular

Extracellular's logo.

Extracellular is a start-up company focusing on supporting cultivated meat companies to get their products to market. Cultivated meat is produced by cultivating animal cells, removing the need to raise and farm animals for food

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“It’s a seasonal thing”- the ultimate guide to finding holiday work 

Here in the UK, we have a booming seasonal job market.

Part-time work not only allows you to earn cash around your studies, but it also allows you to gain skills and experience future employers will be looking for; teamwork, communication skills, the ability to organise your own time and confidence in the workplace, to name a few.

So, how do you start looking for part-time seasonal work to fill your time in the summer holidays? Here are some areas that you could look into: 

A beach bar in the sunshine.

Hospitality

Hotels, restaurants, bars, and catering companies often require extra staff during peak tourist seasons. Seasonal hospitality jobs may include roles such as servers, bartenders, kitchen staff, and hotel housekeepers.

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Outstanding PLUS Awards: Honourable Mentions 2023/24!

Text reads: The Outstanding PLUS Awards.

The Outstanding PLUS Awards (OPA) recognise those Bristol PLUS Achievers who have gone above and beyond within their PLUS Award activity, giving students an opportunity to articulate and reflect on their impact and personal development.  

This year we had 139 nominations across the eight categories, the highest in the history of the OPA. Though there can only be one winner per category, the judges were extremely impressed by the hard work and dedication of those shortlisted and decided to give several honourable mentions. 

Let’s meet these outstanding candidates and celebrate them for their achievements, motivation, and self-development.

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My IKEEP project with Albotherm

Through the IKEEP programme, students undertake an intrapreneurial training programme, equipping them with the skills and knowledge to work in industry through subsequent paid project placements with SMEs. 

Afrida, who is currently studying for a Master’s degree in Project Management, recently completed one of our IKEEP project placements with Albotherm and told us about her experience. 


Can you tell us about your IKEEP project?  

A photo of Afrida, smiling in the sunshine and leaning against a stone wall.

I secured a project placement with Albotherm; a start-up specializing in advanced material technology who have developed a groundbreaking solution that adjusts its opacity based on temperature, utilizing sunlight to cool buildings passively during hot weather conditions.  

The focus of my project was to facilitate the commercial market launch of this material and to provide insights into potential market integration for Albotherm’s technology. My responsibilities included exploring three key market segments: skylights for industrial warehouses, office windows, and glass facades for commercial buildings.

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