The Schools:

Today, students from five secondary schools across the East of England – Cottenham Village College, Neale Wade Academy, Sheridan House School, Sir Harry Smith Community College and Thomas Clarkson Academy – made their way to Cambridge city centre to take part in our Enterprise Competition. The trip was a fantastic opportunity for students from Year 8 through to Year 10 to put their Staying Positive and Problem Solving skills to the test with the support from professional business volunteers from the world of construction.

The Business:

Mott MacDonald is an employee-owned management, engineering and development consultancy working around the world. Their network of experts, active in 150 countries, finds opportunities in complexity, turning obstacles into elegant, sustainable solutions.

The Challenge: Decisive Developers

The day started off with the students interviewing the volunteers to find out about their different roles, responsibilities and the Essential Skills required to do their jobs. Students then went on a tour of the premises, which allowed the teams to see the great variety of jobs available in the world of construction.
Taking on the role of Developers, students were then challenged to apply their Problem Solving skills to establish on which site to choose to build their new tall building. Taking the location and needs of the community on board, teams then worked together to build a tower using limited materials. During the build, the teams’ Staying Positive skills were put to the test as new challenges arose, which put the developers’ budgets under strain.

The day culminated in teams pitching their plan for development to the judges, who posed as local and new residents, to see if their building was suitable for construction.

What they said:

  • “There’s a lot of different needs in the team we brought along – including pupils from two different schools – but they’ve been fantastic and worked together to produce some excellent ideas!” – Teacher
  • “There has been some fantastic ideas presented to us. We might just take them back to the design team!” – Volunteer
  • “It has been really interesting to find out about the different roles in a construction and engineering company. I am interested in designing one day, now I have a bit more of an idea of how I can make it happen.” – Student
  • “I have really enjoyed working with people from Mott MacDonald. We got to ask them so many questions about their jobs. I’ve learnt a lot.” – Student

Thanks to everyone for such a great trip day!

Enabling Enterprise are working in partnership with schools and businesses to support students to build enterprise skills and aspirations. Find out more by contacting us or visiting

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