This places the institution and county firmly on the map for leadership in social enterprise.
‘The Outstanding HEI (higher education institution) Supporting Social Entrepreneurship Award’ was made to the University as part of the first annual ‘Champions of Change Recognition Awards’, presented by UnLtd (the world’s largest social enterprise start-up programme supporting 8,000 entrepreneurs) and Hefce (the Higher Education Funding Council for England).
The judging panel for the event commented that they were “especially impressed by the University’s adoption of a clear strategy for facilitating and promoting social enterprise and entrepreneurship for staff and students, and the manner in which it has been effectively integrated into curriculum development”.
The news comes in the midst of Universities UK’s national ‘Universities Week’, a series of country-wide activities designed to highlight the benefits and value of higher education. It also follows the University’s launch at The House of Lords on Monday (13 June) to showcase its ambitions to become the No. 1 University for social enterprise in the UK.
The Dare to be Different conference also featured a joint speech from University Vice Chancellor, Professor Nick Petford, and Councillor David Mackintosh from Northamptonshire County Council (NCC). The pair highlighted the commitment between the University’s and NCC to transform Northamptonshire into the leading socially enterprising county.
Winning the Outstanding HEI Supporting Social Entrepreneurship Award highlights the outstanding social enterprise work already being carried out by staff and students at The University of Northampton.
We are delighted with this outcome, and the Award has all the more value coming from UnLtd and Hefce. It was also very appropriate that we are presenting in partnership today with NCC. By working closely with the Council we are putting Northamptonshire on the map and supporting people to become more entrepreneurial.
Professor Nick Petford and Councillor David Mackintosh from Northamptonshire County Council (NCC)
Along with a host of other enterprising initiatives, the University, in partnership with the County Council, has launched inSpirE Northamptonshire – to provide support, resources and help with funding to new and existing social enterprises throughout the county.