From left: BISP Headmaster Neil Richards, Economics and Humanities teacher Darren Turnbull, Academy Director Tim Pearson, and Academy Consultant David Mayes.

The new BISP Business Academy was launched on Tuesday (9 September).

According to Academy Director Tim Pearson (the team are Academy Director Tim Pearson, Economics and Humanities teacher Darren Turnbull, and Academy Consultant David Mayes), this new initiative between the school, business communities, educators and volunteers was created with the aim of inspiring business-minded young people to dream big and achieve their potential.

“It has been a long-term goal of mine to create an enterprise scheme of our own which will give those students with a real passion for business the opportunites to experience the real ups and downs of running their own company,” says Mr Pearson.

“I have been delighted at the uptake of students wishing to participate in the academy and their desire to get started was clear as soon as they walked into the room. There was a real buzz!”

In his opening remarks to the inaugural Academy of 19 students, Headmaster Mr Neil Richards emphasised that the students would be using real money, and understanding how the business world actually works.

“I may not be in finance, but I know to always invest in a good thing, and so I’m investing in you. I’m providing a fund of 30,000 baht that I want to see turned into 100,000 baht within a year.”

He promised that if the students could achieve that, he’d increase the figure next year. He also emphasised the need to be ethical in business; “good businesses don’t just help themselves, but also help others to grow”; and the need to be creative in a competitive world. “Make sure you stand out from the norm.”

Mr Turnbull said that he knew a handful of multimillionaires, and has asked them why they do what they do. The answer was, “for a sense of achievement.” He also added that, “In a world full of graduates, you need to do especially well to look special – the BISP Business Academy offers that opportunity.”

The academy will run as an extra-curricular educational programme as part of the BISP aspirational curriculum, and will focus on business management, finance and entrepreneurship.

In teams set up as actual businesses, the BISP Business Academy students will initially develop their own market entry strategy for a product or service of their own choosing and submit their business plan to the Academy Director and the Academy Consultant.

Upon agreement, these businesses will begin to operate and trade just like any other business, with a targeted 12 month goal for achieving profit.

Alongside this, under the guidance of our external consultant, the academy students will experience real-time trading of stocks on the financial market, an experience that will prepare them for the dynamic world of financial trading.

Mr Mays, or Dave as he asked the students to call him, says that the Academy will teach the students how to be financially free. A self-made man, and his own boss, he added that, “No-one likes being told what to do. If you run your own company, the only person you have to report to, apart from your customers, is yourself.”

Mr Pearson added: “The competition between the businesses has already started and the students have began working on business names, ideas for products and their roles within the businesses. This is fantastic to see!”

The Academy is open to all students from Years 10 to 13, and runs every Tuesday afternoon.

For more information, contact Tim Pearson: [email protected]