Santander and University partner to reward students with ‘big ideas’

The University of Northampton has launched a new programme of support, in partnership with Santander Universities, aimed at students with an entrepreneurial streak.

The University has been awarded a grant of £70,000, via Santander Universities’ £1 million Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Fund, for the Enterprise Boost Accelerator programme grant.

The grant, which aims to help students make their business ideas a reality, was announced at a launch event at the University of Northampton’s new Waterside campus.

Vice Chancellor, Professor Nick Petford, and Matt Hutnell, Director of Santander Universities, launched the new grant which offers up to £1,500 of funding to any undergraduate student with a new venture idea or business plan, but lack the finances and contacts to put it in to practice.

Prof Petford hailed this opportunity for students, stating:

“The benefits of the programme are both financial support and training, so if you want to start up your own company through this scheme then there’s up to £1,500 funding available through a competitive bid process."

“But it’s not just about the grant – we will put you through an accelerator training programme to develop your skills in entrepreneurship, finance and we will also link you into local employers. If you’ve got an idea that maybe resonates with a certain sector, whether it’s IT or healthcare, we can then network you in."

“So in addition to what you’ll be learning from your undergraduate degree, you’ll have a brilliant opportunity to network right into the world outside in the way that you see best.”

Matt Hutnell said: “Santander is committed to supporting higher education as well as local communities across the UK. We were delighted to attend the launch of the University of Northampton’s Enterprise Boost Accelerator programme, which will support such a fantastic programme that teaches the skills needed to set up a new business or to become more employable.”

“But it’s not just about the grant – we will put you through an accelerator training programme to develop your skills in entrepreneurship, finance and we will also link you into local employers. If you’ve got an idea that maybe resonates with a certain sector, whether it’s IT or healthcare, we can then network you in."

For more information on the Santander Enterprise Boost programme, you can email enterpriseboost@northampton.ac.uk.