ABC chief executive, Nitin Shukla, welcomes the audience at the ABCurry Club.
Bdaily was at the recent Asian Business Connexions Curry Club at Excelsior Academy in Newcastle, where we heard from businesspeople, politicians and teachers.
The evening examined the role of businesses in supporting educational achievement, and served as a briefing for regional businesspeople on what to expect from the 2012 Olympics.
Stephen Savage from Newcastle City Council outlined the city’s plans for the Olympic torch relay, and talked enthusiastically about the opportunity for the region to promote itself throughout the duration of the games.
Mr Savage said: “It’s all about creating a legacy for the city, and the region, and showing people that we are capable of staging a world-class event on such a scale.
“One of the centrepieces of our celebration will be the five Olympic rings placed on the Tyne Bridge, that have been manufactured by a local company.”
McDonalds franchisee Ahmed Khan talked about the role of the multinational restaurant in sponsoring the Olympics, and its initiative to give top-performing employees from outlets around the country, the chance to work in the Olympic village over the course of the games.
Excelsior Academy’s executive principal Phil Marshall, and principal of Excelsior Academy’s Armstrong School, Lynn Aitchison, talked about the Academy’s focus on business and enterprise, and reaffirmed their desire to build on the relationship with ABC to provide further opportunities for their pupils.
Mrs Aitchison said: “We are absolutely delighted to host the ABCurry Club this evening. Excelsior Academy has started working closely with ABC this year, and we hope that it is the start of a very special relationship between the organisation and the Academy.
“Excelsior Academy’s specialism is business and enterprise, and that is instilled in pupils across all aspects of their learning and extra-curricular activities.
“To be able to work with an organisation that celebrates entrepreneurialism in the city is a fantastic opportunity for pupils who can see first-hand the outcome of working hard and succeeding in business.”
The assembled businesspeople were treated to musical and dance performances from some of the Academy’s talented pupils.
The Academy and ABC will be working together to launch a new work experience programme at the Academy, offering two-year apprenticeships to pupils aged 14-16.
Ammar Mirza, secretary general of the ABC, said: “The apprenticeship programme is just one of the opportunities that we are hoping to develop with Excelsior Academy over the coming years.
“Rather than just offering one or two week work placements, we will be offering apprenticeships to pupils which mean they can spend one day a week for up to two years working in our members businesses, helping them to gain real, valuable work experience relevant to their studies.
“I have been so impressed with the innovative outlook at Excelsior Academy and its focus on marrying academic success with an enterprising spirit.”