Date posted: 16/02/2021

Supporting the next generation with the Young Enterprise Scheme

Chartered Accountants ANZ is committed to developing the next generation of difference makers through the Young Enterprise Scheme.

In brief

  • CA ANZ has been a proud sponsor of the Young Enterprise Trust for over 10 years
  • Young Enterprise Scheme (YES) is designed for Year 12-13 students in New Zealand
  • Members can get involved by volunteering as a mentor or judge.

Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CA ANZ) has been a proud sponsor of the Young Enterprise Trust for over 10 years, inspiring the next generation of difference makers throughout Aotearoa New Zealand.

Their flagship programme The Lion Foundation Young Enterprise Scheme (YES) is an experiential programme designed for Year 12 and 13 students in Aotearoa New Zealand, and provides them with an opportunity to discover what it takes to set up and run their own business.

"We have been one of the main sponsors for the Young Enterprise Scheme for nearly 12 years as we believe that it is important to equip students with the knowledge and skills they need to run a business and manage their finances effectively," says Peter Vial FCA, NZ Country Head for Chartered Accountants ANZ and former judge for the Young Enterprise Scheme National Excellence Awards.

Nitha Vashti was the recipient of the 2018 YES CEO of the Year award, having co-founded Project Ātaahua through the scheme in February 2017. Nitha now works as the Finance & Operations Coordinator at Young Enterprise.

"Winning the 2018 YES CEO of the Year was a huge recognition of my hard work and dedication to Project Ātaahua. Although I was the CEO of Project Ātaahua, and not the finance person, I still credit my YES experience for teaching me how to budget, run a marketing campaign, sell, and actually start a business. It taught me skills that are transferable outside of business," says Nitha.

For Nitha, her YES experience was enhanced by the mentorship element of the scheme that served as an opportunity for her to ask questions. She says that the feedback and advice she received from YES mentors and judges not only encouraged her to keep working on her business idea, but inspired her to put in the hard yards to achieve her dreams.

"When you're just starting out, haven't been to university, and are new to what it means to run a business, it's amazing to receive so much praise and support from the judges who have already had so much business experience throughout their careers," says Nitha.

One of the best days of my working year is having the opportunity to sit on the Young Enterprise judging panel, and be a witness of the excitement and energy students bring to the competition. Although my role as a judge is to mentor students, I have ended up learning from them, and have been inspired by their ability to think outside the box
Peter Vial FCA NZ Country Head for Chartered Accountants ANZ and judging panelist for the Young Enterprise Scheme National Excellence Awards

"A mentor once told me that I wouldn't know what I would want to achieve if I didn't ask. This piece of advice has stuck with me going into university, and applying for jobs and internships. There's no harm in asking about opportunities that will help you to learn and grow."

With New Zealand students from Years 12 and 13 participating in YES, professionals and CA ANZ members are presented with a rewarding opportunity to connect with accounting students and get them excited about the merits of the accounting profession by volunteering as a mentor, judge or coach.

Reflecting on his experiences as a judge for the Young Enterprise Scheme National Excellence Awards, Peter says that not only do students find great value in the expert advice that YES volunteers contribute, but the volunteers themselves also benefit.

"One of the best days of my working year is having the opportunity to sit on the Young Enterprise judging panel, and be a witness of the excitement and energy students bring to the competition. Although my role as a judge is to mentor students, I have ended up learning from them, and have been inspired by their ability to think outside the box," says Peter.

"A lot of reverse mentoring occurs throughout the program and on judging day. It's great to hear about how focused the next generation are on sustainability, and purpose beyond profit. They might only be 15 to 17-years-old, but these students have so much to offer, including the ability to think critically and innovatively to find solutions."

Get involved - join the Young Enterprise family

Discover how you can get involved in the Young Enterprise Scheme judging panel and help shape future difference makers today.

Find out more