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Students break into business

ROKEBY High School and Elizabeth College students have joined forces to break into the world of business with the recent launch of their social enterprise, Tasmanian Humble Products.

Born from a partnership between Rokeby High School, Elizabeth College and the Tasmanian School of Business and Economics, the pilot program was aimed at building entrepreneurial skills in young Tasmanians.

It involved a six-week course where students came together each week – outside of school hours – to develop a marketing plan under the supervision of lecturers from the Business School.

Fully designed, marketed and run by the students, the small business now produces handmade wine and spirit caskets from native Tasmanian timbers.

Tasmanian School of Business and Economics community engagement officer Dr Kate Burton said the program offered students unique exposure to business thinking, planning and marketing.

“It was quite a comprehensive study and included learning and thinking about budgeting, swot analysis, looking at competitors, future growth, production and resources,” she said.

“The students were deeply involved in all aspects of planning the business launch and the University of Tasmania intends to keep offering its support.

“We are looking forward to seeing what happens with the business in the future and where else it will take them.”

Echelon marketing advisor Tara Howell, who was involved in running the program, said the students were all “extremely innovative.”

“They were all very enthusiastic and motivated and having 15 students all thinking with a business mindset was pretty exciting to see,” she said.

“I think the future of Tasmanian Humble Products looks very bright – the students already have a number of short-term goals, as well a larger vision to expand their product range and continue a sustainable business.”

Rokeby High School principal Gill Berriman said Tasmanian Humble Products represented an “exciting new era” for the school.

“We are forging new territory in how a school is used – beyond the classroom, beyond year seven to 10 and beyond the hours nine to three,” she said.

“This program not only builds skills but opens the door for our students and shows them pathways into learning, training and the business world.

“Not only has the group developed a high quality Tasmanian timber product, it has a great looking website and comprehensive business plan.

“I look forward to a bright and successful future for every learner who is a part of our learning community.”

Rokeby High School student Jasper Cannock said he “really enjoyed” the Tasmanian Humble Products experience.

“Kids deserve to see what it is like to be an entrepreneur and it was very fun to see what we could do when we put our minds to it,” he said.

For more information about Tasmanian Humble Products or to purchase a wine casket, visit www.tasmanianhumbleproducts.com.au or call 6247 7800.