Since its launch in 2012, ‘Enterprise Challenge Qatar’, which is designed to encourage the spirit of entrepreneurship among young people, has attracted an increasing number of participants. More than 100 volunteer mentors and 1,100 students from 13 universities and 25 schools across Qatar participated in the ECQ 2015-2016 edition.
Volunteer mentors and teachers of the winning teams received special awards and certificates of appreciation in recognition of their efforts and dedication to the growing success of the programme in schools and universities.
“As a mentor, I feel proud that I was able to make a positive impact by planting the entrepreneurial seed in the minds of young people, who will be tomorrow’s business leaders and will essentially help diversify Qatar’s economy, said Moza Fahri, a volunteer mentor, who gave her time to mentor schools in northern communities.
Rima Al Homsi was recognised as The ‘Mentor of the Year’, for her efforts and dedication as a volunteer mentor for the programme who worked with many schools across Qatar.
The ECQ programme has different tiers for high school and university students and is made up of two parts comprising the Ethical Business Challenge, which tests participants’ ability to balance the economic, environmental and social performance of their company; and the Business Simulation element, which familiarises students with general business concepts from inception through to trading, finance, sales, marketing and production.
This year, to make the competition more challenging for school students, the ‘business pitching of ethical and original business ideas’ was introduced to the programme. This additional aspect saw the finalist teams pitching their business concepts to a panel of expert judges, showing how they would start up a small profitable business within their schools and universities.
“By inspiring the youth to become future business leaders, this programme contributes to building a thriving private sector in Qatar,” said Sheikha Al Anoud Al Thani, Bedaya Centre vice-chairman and Qatar country m\Manager for Silatech.
Rob Sherwin, general manager of corporate affairs and deputy country chairman of Qatar Shell, said: “It is thanks to our expanding community of volunteer mentors that our winning students have acquired the business skills and the practical tools to ultimately succeed in a real business environment and hopefully fulfil the goals of the Qatar National Vision 2030.”
Last year, Qatar Shell signed an MoU with the Ministry of Education and Higher Education to support ECQ, and promote the competition in independent and private secondary schools in Qatar. In addition to this agreement, Qatar Shell partnered with Qatar Voluntary to engage more volunteers in training students.