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Start your entrepreneur journey

Pioneer 1.0 Programme

The Pioneer programme is the perfect starting point into entrepreneurship, providing you with the insights, knowledge and a practice ground to succeed with your future business, as well as learn vital skills to boost your career.

Note: Applications for the current Pioneer programme are now closed and details of the 2024/25 programme will be added to this page around August 2024.

About the programme

Pioneer 1.0 has a brand new look for 2023/24 with three key phases throughout the academic year, focused on developing your awareness of being an entrepreneur, starting a business and putting your skills into practice. 

  • This programme is designed to help you develop the knowledge and skills you need to successfully start a business.
  • We're delighted to welcome a range of entrepreneurs and business experts to the programme to share their startup journeys and provide guidance along the way.
  • Learn new skills, connect and work with like-minded Pioneer participants, and get the right foundation for your entrepreneur journey.
  • Pioneer 1.0 is a hybrid programme with some aspects taking place in person and others live online. 

When is Pioneer 1.0?

The Pioneer programme runs from November to June with three key phases to enhance your entrepreneurship awareness, accelerate your skills, and apply what you learn on the programme.

Term one: Enhance your Awareness

  • Apply for your place on the programme - please see application details below.
  • If successful, you will take part in a series of panel discussions with a range of awesome entrepreneurs on the following dates:
    • Panel session one: Wednesday 1 November 2023, 3.30-5pm, in-person at Malet Street
    • Panel session two: Monday 13 November 2023, 4-5.30pm, online
    • Panel session three: Thursday 30 November 2023, 4-5.30pm, online.
  • Gain valuable insights into the paths others have taken to succeed with their businesses.
  • Understand their motivations, journeys and advice on getting started in business.

Term two: Accelerate your Skills

  • You’ll be teamed up with fellow Pioneer students this term.
  • You will be provided with a business idea to work on and come up with a strategy to execute the business.
  • By the end of the term, you’ll submit a legal, financial and marketing strategy for the business idea.

Term three: Apply your Learning

  • This is your opportunity to put your learning into practice for your own idea.
  • Prepare a pitch and submit your application to be a Pioneer finalist, for the chance to pitch live to a panel of experts.
  • Prizes, mentoring and business support is up for grabs!
  • If you don’t have a business idea of your own, you can continue working on the business from your term two project and apply with this idea.

Apply for Pioneer 1.0

  • Applications for the 2023/24 programme are now closed.
  • Please check back on details for the 2024/25 programme around August 2024.
  • For support with your idea or existing business, you can book a 1:1 appointment with an enterprise advisor via the Handshake platform.
  • For other enterprise enqueries, please .