Published on January 23, 2013 | by Felix Clarke0
UAL students offered loans to start in business
A new business start-up scheme has been launched to help graduates and undergraduates at UAL.
The initiative is a result of the government’s allocation of £82.5 million to create start-up opportunities, training and provide funding for young entrepreneurs over the next three years.
UAL students and graduates under the age of 30 can apply to receive loans of up to £2,500 to help start and develop their creative enterprise.
Project manager for the enterprise scheme at UAL, Pei-Chin Tay said: “There has been a very positive response for the UAL Start-Up Loans scheme so far, especially by UAL students and graduates who have already set up small businesses and wish to take them further.”
“What is unique about this programme at UAL is the specialised legal and finance support we have built in to guide applicants along the process.
“It’s so much more than a loan.” Elena Mingas, loan recipient
“We hope that it would encourage artists and designers to take their ideas to the next stage, and we look forward to supporting more enterprising creative practitioners in realising their ambitions.”
Tay explained that the business mentoring scheme that is associated with the funding is highly valued and hopes it will encourage those who are less confident to apply.
“From both experience and statistical evidence, we know that almost half of our graduates do become self-employed and there has been a growing appetite in entrepreneurship as a viable career path,” she said.
Start-up pioneer and the first loan recipient Elena Mingas said on the Start-up Loan website: “It’s so much more than a loan; the mentoring and the corporate support, such as being given a six months free virtual office from Regus, have really helped me to focus on building my business.
“It’s great to see the government supporting growth in this key sector.”
Nigel Carrington, UAL vice-chancellor
UAL vice-chancellor Nigel Carrington said: “This is a timely scheme that I hope will capture the imaginations of our creative students and graduates by giving them the opportunity to realise their entrepreneurial ambitions.
“The creative economy is hugely important to the UK, and London in particular, so it’s great to see the government supporting growth in this key sector,” he said.
The scheme is only open to those living in England and intending to open a business based in this country.
The funding is for a maximum of one year and is designed purely to kick-start the enterprise.
Application information can be found here. The application deadline is January 31, 2013.