Broker partners with high school to teach business skills

by Julia Corderoy24 Jun 2015
A central coast-based finance broker has partnered with a local high school to educate students on financial literacy and how to run a small business.

Mhairi MacLeod, the founder of the award winning brokerage, Astute Ability Finance, told Australian Broker that she has teamed up with Tumbi Umbi high school’s economic department.

“The commerce teacher invited me to come and chat with her about what I could do in the sense of possibly sponsoring their commerce department,” she said. 

“One thing lead to another and what we have come up with is looking to show kids how to be entrepreneurs – how to set up a business, where to start, how to name a business, what’s involved with ABNs and things like that.”

MacLeod will join the economics class for lesson per week, where she will organise open discussions to share ideas and ask questions, as well as help the students apply the knowledge more practically in a project that will count towards their syllabus.    

“We are also looking at setting up a mini business where the kids can actually generate an income for the department. I will donate $500 as a start-up for this coming term and with that $500 we will get things in place like registering a name and setting up a web page. Five hundred dollars doesn’t sounds like much, but the kids have access to do most of it by themselves,” she told Australian Broker.

“It is yet to be discussed what product we will actually be selling but one of the things I do in my business is give away stylus pens – the pen that you can plug into your iPhone or iPad. So, we could have 500 of those made up and the kids will have to sell those stylus pens to other students to inject funds back into their project for the following term, and we will keep building that business. 

“It might be stylus pens for term one and then something else for term two and so on. It will teach them how networking and working with each and every one of their family members and friends and each other, we can actually build a business.”

Whilst the the program won't centre around driving students to mortgage and finance broking specifically, MacLeod says she would be thrilled if it encouraged more young people to enter the industry.

If the program runs smoothly at Tumbi Umbi, MacLeod hopes she can implement the program in a second high school on the central coast.
 

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