Entrepreneurship Advancement Programme

Supporting Startups

Entrepreneur Training

Develop skills and begin your entrepreneurial journey with our range of training programmed aimed at helping aspiring innovators develop and implement their business ideas.

Our ambition is to support as many aspiring entrepreneurs as possible whether they want to be freelancers, small businesses or startups. Our economy is driven by small to medium sized enterprises, so we want to provide the support needed to develop and grow a venture. We have several training programmes and opportunities that you can take part in.

Entrepreneurship Summer School

Have you graduated from college or uni in the last couple of years? Or are you due to graduate in 2022? Have you ever considered starting a business or becoming a freelancer?

Open to all recent graduates living in North East Scotland, The RGU Entrepreneurship Summer School returns in May 2022. This free and fully funded programme will help you gain important entrepreneurial skills for running your own business.

Over ten days and nine sessions, we’ll guide you through the process, helping you define your mission and values, understand the customer problem, develop ideas and innovations, as well as gain practical skills for running a venture such as marketing, budgeting, operations, registering a business and more.

During the in-person sessions at our very own space in the ONE Tech Hub, you’ll be tasked with exciting ‘apprentice’ style challenges to help you apply these skills practically.

Key workshop dates 

  • Session 1: Introduction and Induction (In person) - Friday 20 May, 16:00 – 19:00
  • Session 2: Setting your ambitions (Zoom) - Saturday 21 May, 10:00 - 12:00
  • Session 3: Defining what customers want (Zoom) - Monday 23 May, 10:00 - 12:00
  • Session 4: Developing your business idea (Zoom) - Tuesday 24 May, 10:00 - 12:00
  • Session 5: Your market and business identity (Zoom) - Wednesday 25 May, 10:00 - 12:00
  • Session 6: Business operations (Zoom) - Thursday 26 May, 10:00 - 12:00
  • Session 7: Setting up a business (Zoom) - Friday 27 May, 10:00 - 12:00
  • Session 8: Activity Day (In person) - Saturday 28 May, 10:00 - 16:00
  • Session 9: Activity Day (In person) - Sunday 29 May, 10:00 - 16:00

Who can apply?

This year the programme is funded through the North East Economic Recovery and Skills Fund. You can apply for the programme if the following apply to you:

  • You have graduated from any university/college in the last two years or are due to graduate in 2022.
  • Your home or term-time address is based in Aberdeen city or Aberdeenshire

Apply now

If you want to join this year’s programme, apply before Monday 16 May 2022. 

Startup Visa

Recent graduates of RGU have the opportunity to apply for a two year Startup Visa if accepted as part of the Regional Startup Accelerator Programme.

If you have an innovative business idea and you are you an international student the Startup Visa is an opportunity to extend your stay in the UK for two years while you work on a new business idea. Robert Gordon University is an endorsing body and will consider visa opportunities to those who successfully complete the RGU Regional Startup Accelerator Programme.

Download our guide for further information, eligibility requirements and application process:

If you feel you would be eligible or want more information, arrange a meeting with a member of the Entrepreneurship and Group by contacting innovation@rgu.ac.uk

While Robert Gordon University may issue limited endorsement letters to graduates of our courses, the Home Office remain responsible for all immigration decisions. RGU only offers endorsement letters for the Startup Visa, and we do not offer any endorsements for the Innovator Visa. Find out more about the Startup Visa:

Enterprise Enhancement Award

Are you at the early stages of developing an idea, or interested in being your own boss as a freelancer or small business owner? This free, self-paced, certificated award programme will take you step-by-step through coming up with and implementing your idea.

Through the programme you will have access too:

  • Online, self-paced topics on key steps of setting up a business
  • Access to downloadable resources and materials
  • Shared virtual spaces to interact with other entrepreneurs

For those who complete the award, you may be offered additional support such as:

  • Scheduled interactive workshops with other entrepreneurs
  • Sessions with a business mentor in a set number of one-to-one meetings
  • Use of co-working spaces in the City Centre and Garthdee
  • Certificate of Achievement from the programme

Students and staff will be able to access and work through online topics at any time but there will be two deadlines to submit for the award each year. The award is offered to current students in on-campus programmes through online self-paced topics and to graduates as our Entrepreneurship Summer School.

Entrepreneurship Toolkit

For those interested in exploring entrepreneurial skills or want access to materials and resources to support them to develop a business – visit the RGU Entrepreneurship Toolkit. This online space includes:

  • Recorded Innovation Masterclasses from innovators and entrepreneurs
  • Short microlearning topics introducing key innovation topics and can be completed in less than ten minutes
  • Forums and collaboration spaces with other entrepreneurs
  • Downloadable resources and materials
  • Access to our Enterprise Enhancement Award and events programmes.

Take the first step on your business journey with the toolkit:

Creative Entrepreneurship Short Course

Are you a creative looking to set up a business or develop your practice? Whether that is fashion or photography to crafts or gaming, we believe that creative businesses are a vital part of developing our economy.

Through a series of workshops, online resources, and guest speakers, participants will create a portfolio of evidence of their developing business over eight weeks and earn a fifteen-credit postgraduate qualification.

The course is run in partnership with Look Again and is run multiple times a year.

Innovation Skills

Do you want to develop your professional skills either to start a business or work in a job? Our Innovation Skills workshops are designed to broaden the mind of our communities and provide practical training on tools and approaches to new innovative thinking.

A selection of these free workshops shall be focused around practical entrepreneurial skills such as social media marketing, legal structures, intellectual property, business finances and more. If you don’t have a business idea yet and want to learn or be inspired, these sessions are a starting point on your entrepreneurial journey. Find out what events are coming up:

RGU Innovation Award

As part of your course, you may already be gaining innovation and entrepreneurship training if one of your modules is accredited with a RGU Innovation Award. This cross university certificate recognises student skills in creativity, problem solving and innovative thinking which are critical skills for the future.

The award has three levels which should be completed in order. Level 1 can be obtained through completing an accredited module, attending an open workshop or undertaking an online training course. Level 2 will invite participants from various courses across the university to a practical challenge and Level 3 will involve working through a series of online materials to develop innovation leadership skills.  

Find our more about the awards and submit an application:

or contact innovation@rgu.ac.uk

Other Resources

If you are looking for more support, then you can get in touch with our team by emailing innovation@rgu.ac.uk and speaking to us, otherwise, these are some additional useful resources you can use for free.

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