The Innovator Trust recently held a graduation ceremony in Worcester in recognition of graduates from its Youth Entrepreneurship Programme (YEP). Formed in 2017 by the Innovator Trust in partnership with Vodacom, the programme aims to equip local youth with the requisite set of skills to become cutting-edge entrepreneurs.
Two entrepreneurs honoured at the ceremony are Joheinn Steenberg and Candice Lucille Ketch, who were announced as Top Achievers.
Starting out on this journey twelve months ago, Ketch, who describes herself as tenacious, said she was most excited about meeting people who shared a common goal: to learn how to navigate the business world as young entrepreneurs.
Steenberg agrees: “I am passionate about meeting people with great minds and whom I can learn from. This programme encourages and motivates you to give your best.”
The tailor-made programme is designed to drive innovation and create job opportunities that could bring significant changes to the local economy. To achieve this, it requires a person with tenacity and resilience; someone who is determined to succeed - even in a community where it is not likely that you would be given the opportunity to do so.
“I am ambitious and grab hold of every opportunity that might be beneficial to my life going forward,” says Ketch, who adds that her greatest strength is the ability to pick herself up, even on her “very low days.”
The Innovator Trust YEP presented itself as a life changing journey to Ketch. “I was not satisfied with where I was in my life. I needed more.”
Steenberg says the programme chooses you. “I believe that this programme chose me and I am grateful for what I’ve learned from it; that there is so much more to me than what my circumstances allows me to do and that is what I’ll be taking with me wherever I go from now onwards.”
On being honoured as a Top Achiever, Ketch says she is thankful that her hard work was recognised, despite her bumpy start during the programme. “I regained momentum and gave my best in the projects assigned to me.”
For Steenberg, graduating from the programme symbolises a job well done. However, for someone who cites learning from his mistakes as his greatest strength and being a people-pleaser his greatest weakness, Steenberg believes he could have achieved more. “In the back of my head I know I could’ve done better.”
Where to next?
Armed with the enthusiasm to take their learning to greater heights, both Ketch and Steenberg plan to study further.
“I want to get my degree in project management next year, do an in-work-training course, and hopefully build myself up the corporate ladder,” says Ketch. “I have learned the value that a single individual can have in the business space and I will utilise my new found skill set to distinguish myself from the rest.”
For those wishing to be successful in business, Ketch advises: “Get your degree and get as much experience that you possibly can. Believe in yourself; don’t die with your music on your lips.”