Future Ready: Entrepreneurship at Walford

15 April 2024
At Walford, we are dedicated to preparing our students for the ever-evolving landscape of the future. Our commitment to the development of enterprise skills resonates across all academic levels, serving as a cornerstone for fostering adaptability and resilience.

From the early stages in the Junior School, where the seeds of creativity and teamwork are sown, to the advanced realms of problem-solving, critical thinking, financial capability, and project management in later years, our students embark on a comprehensive journey of skill acquisition. This holistic approach ensures that each student emerges not only academically proficient but also equipped with a versatile toolkit essential for success in the dynamic world that awaits them. 

Year 5 Exhibition – Social Enterprises

The Year 5 Primary Year Program Exhibition at Walford in 2023 was a testament to the school’s commitment to nurturing young minds into socially conscious and skilled individuals. 

Focused on the central idea that ‘social entrepreneurship has a positive impact on communities,’ our Year 5 students delved into the realms of enterprise, exploring revenue streams and mastering data analysis. Demonstrating their adaptability in the digital era, students used technology to create innovative solutions, from mapping app interfaces to using co-spaces to build three-dimensional digital designs of their proposed retail outlets.

This learning experience was not just about enterprise, but also social responsibility, with each team interweaving a social intent aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. It was clear our students connected with their goals, showcasing inclusivity and empathy in their social enterprises.

Our impressive Year 5 students articulately pitched their ideas to the ‘sharks’ on the couch, addressing the needs they were meeting while confidently providing considered responses to impromptu questions. It was apparent that each had developed skills and confidence in presenting, and it was a true demonstration of their readiness for our Middle School and another useful string to the bow as they prepare for life beyond school.

Year 8 Start Ups – $20 Boss 

Moving to Year 8, our budding entrepreneurs engage in the $20 Boss initiative. This innovative group of students also used the UN Sustainable Development Goals to drive meaning behind their enterprising endeavours. These students honed their financial capability, navigating the challenge of starting a business with a mere $20 loan. Beyond budgeting, they delved into empathy exploration by undertaking interviews to gain a deep understanding of potential customer needs. They used this perspective building process to create products or services that were likely to successfully satisfy the target market before undertaking the design cycle to ensure their prototype would be valued by customers in their target market.

Their project management skills shone during preparations for Market Day, as they strove to ensure their production and promotion were timed and all was ready for the specified selling days.

The skills developed through this program are scalable and transferrable, preparing our students for the future workforce, regardless of their pathway.

Year 9 World of Business – Future of Finance competition

Our Year 9 Elective, World of Business, allows students to develop solutions for helping the next generation see money differently. This year, students’ innovative apps, addressing various aspects of financial literacy, earned them a spot in a Sydney incubator program in the Future of Finance Competition.

The Famnomics card game, JobJrny App, and Budget Builder App not only showcased their creativity and problem-solving abilities but enhanced their digital literacy and ability to work as a team. 

Famnomics: “Our solution is a family card game that matches the economic terms to each other, from a word and an explanation. It also has extra questions on the card that let the parents elaborate on the idea to teach their kids about each concept further, making it more personal and easier to play the game along the way.”

Jobjrny: “Our solution is an app called JobJrny, that includes all things ‘first job’. E.g. store locators, resume templates, information, recommendations and trial questions for job interviews. We want our app to be accessible for young people looking for their first job and employers that need workers.”

Budget Builder: “ Our solution is an app to teach about budgeting, there will be a kid mode and a young adult mode. These modes will have different settings. Our kid version has a parent authentication (aged 13 and below), allowing the parents to log in and see the kid’s game. In the young adult simulation (aged 14 and above), the player goes through different stages of life and learns how to earn money and budget in different situations. The player can get a job and use the money they earn to buy things in the simulation.” 

These students developed their digital literacy and teamwork through this future-focused challenge, and their experience in Sydney allowed them to increase their confidence and agency. As a result, all three teams have their work showcased on the Young Change Agents website.

Throughout these endeavours, a team of dedicated staff in both the Junior and Middle and Senior Schools support the development of critical enterprise skills.  

The Walford entrepreneurship pathway provides opportunities for growth for our students and a pathway to achieving their best in an evolving future landscape.

Alice Speirs
Head of Middle School