United Nations International Day of Education - X-Forces Enterprise
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United Nations International Day of Education

XFE Founder and CEO Ren Kapur MBE has long been a passionate advocate and thought leader championing education and in particular, education linked to enterprise skills. To mark the United Nations International Day of Education today, we are delighted to share Ren’s article in support of this great worldwide initiative.

The United Nations International Day of Celebration is such an important marker not only for today, but to help future-proof all of our destinies.

The UN day is “in celebration of the role of education for bringing global peace and sustainable development.” As we start this new decade faced with many challenges – the flip side of which is of course, opportunities – I cannot think of a more important time to recognise the role that education plays in helping us, individually and together, to build and fulfil our personal talents and capability, for the better of all.

History shows us how the use of enterprise skills has been at the very core of mankind’s development: from the wheel to putting a man on the moon!

The role of enterprise skills as life skills has been a lifelong passion of mine and I was humbled to be appointed National Champion for Business Administration and Finance for the 14 – 19 year Diploma qualification by the then Education Secretary Ed Balls in 2009. Enterprise skills have shaped my life for the better and helped many members of the Armed Forces community transition to become entrepreneurs or “intrapreneurs” through the thousands of training hours delivered by X-Forces Enterprise (XFE).

Definition of Enterprise

We can be forgiven for thinking of enterprises only in a business context. Whereas for example the Cambridge Dictionary definition of enterprise is: “good at thinking of and doing new and difficult things, especially things that will make money.”

Challenges ahead

The start of the 21st century may well present us with our biggest challenges yet – and many unknowns.  I passionately believe that we must equip young people and, indeed people of all generations, with the enterprise skills they need to tackle those challenges. And, yes, I believe that the business community can lead the way to find solutions that are economically viable and value-creating, however, we wish to measure that.

Enterprise for Life®

As Visiting Fellow of the Lord Ashcroft International Business School, Anglia Ruskin University, I am privileged to be working with some of the greatest minds in the UK to develop further my Enterprise for Life® concept and look forward to updating these pages with exciting news about our plans as they develop. I am delighted to have the support of Prof Gary Packham, Vice Chancellor and Dean, Faculty of Business and Law and thank him for his comments on our work:

“Anglia Ruskin University has been involved in a wealth of work across society and in particular involving understanding the skills and attributions that enterprise enables across multiple career choices. It is great to be working with Ren to harness further how enterprise skills can be translated across borders and for benefit of students and society – enterprise for life®”

Celebrating achievements

Meanwhile, there is no resting-on-laurels to share these ideas with those who could benefit. For example, this year X-Forces Enterprise (XFE) will deliver the second of our pilot Enterprise for Life® workshops for Army Cadets, following on from the resoundingly positive feedback to the first course, where we were truly inspired by how each cadet group chose to use enterprise skills to tackle a societal challenge.  They are our role models for the future and it was fantastic to celebrate their success at an awards ceremony hosted by XFE partners London Stock Exchange.

Joining us at the London Stock Exchange amongst other partners were Capita who share our passion for education. And as a further demonstration of our shared commitment Capita will join us in showcasing the Finalists in the Soldiering On Awards Education, Training and Development Category next week. I invite you to watch this space and join us in giving a huge shout out for the amazing people and organisations from within the Armed Forces Community who also recognise and clearly demonstrate the value of education in the support of others!

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