Mayfield School crowned overall winners at Apprentice Vs Dragons Den 2022/23 final

Article summary: ‘Team EP’ from Mayfield School were crowned the overall winners at the event, which celebrated the end of National Apprenticeship Week 2023.

Last Thursday, February 9, we held our second ‘Apprentice Vs Dragons Den’ final at Access Point. The final 4 teams presented their project ideas to the panel of Dragons, which were products aiming to solve one of modern life’s problems. The teams demonstrated their creativity and dedication to the project through the variety and depth of their ideas, which ranged from money-saving apps to stab-proof clothing.

First to take to the stage were the ‘TPA Avengers’ (Shaun Wiles, Hussein Samateh, Hassan Samateh and Abdullah Khadir) from The Portsmouth Academy who presented their navigational app ‘Eco Travel’. The app tracks the amount of air pollution across the UK and takes users via the cleanest route with the least amount of air pollution. Taking into consideration the rising asthma rates in the UK, the team wanted to find a way for people to keep track of their health and help those with breathing difficulties to live a healthier life.

The second team to present their idea was Team ‘Bobble Savings’ (Jess Peett, Heidi Fehr, Evan Bolzonmonk, Charlie Takhar and Toby Garne) from Horndean Technology College with their money-saving app. The team were inspired by the cost-of-living crisis and wanted to create a solution to help people better track their spending habits. Bobble Savings compiles coupons, compares supermarket prices to find the cheapest food options and gives users the ability to plan meals and shopping lists.

Up next was Team ‘EP’ (Eesha Haroon, Sara Sonny, Christiana Obe and Sama Bayoumy) from Mayfield School with ‘E.P electronic parking’. Their solar and wind powered electric car charging points aim to bring convenience to electric car owners, as well as give businesses an opportunity to support the 2030 ban on petrol and diesel cars. The charging points are also supported by an app for the customer to view the battery level of their car, nearby charging points as well as including coupons and discounts.

The final team to present was ‘Urban Peninsula’ (Cara Pocock, Olivia Mott, Joseph Brown and Bailey Senior) from The Academy Selsey, with their stab-proof clothing. Acknowledging the rising levels of knife crime, the team hopes to create a safer society with the protective clothing. Collaborating with big brands and celebrities to promote the product and marketing on social media platforms, the team hopes to reach their target audience and make the country’s streets a safer place.

The panel of Dragons consisted of: Former PETA CEO and joint chair of Wessex CIPD, Huw Chapman, Ian McCrindle, UK Engineering & Operations Training Manager at DP World Southampton, Kelly Sunderland, European HR Employment Law and Training Director at PEI Genesis, James Sessions, Chief Financial Officer at Prysmian Group and Tony Mason, Vice President CFO at PALL Corporation.

After all presentations had been given, the Dragons faced the tough decision of deciding the winners for each category. They expressed how impressed they were with each of the teams’ ideas, but also their confidence in presenting their products.

Dragon Ian McCrindle said: ‘When we asked the questions we didn’t go easy on them, but they dealt with it so well and to have that confidence at such a young age is just absolutely amazing to see.’

There were 5 awards in total, with each winner receiving £100 in vouchers, and the overall winner received £500 in vouchers. The other winners of the night were as follows:

- Overall Apprentice Vs Dragons Den Winner: Team “EP” from Mayfield School
- Best Presentation: Team “TPA Avengers” from The Portsmouth Academy
- Best Design: Team “Urban Peninsula” from The Academy Selsey
- Best Business Plan: Team “Bobble Savings” from Horndean Technology College
- Best Concept: Team “EP” from Mayfield School

Georgia Stewart, school engagement coordinator, organised the event and said: ‘Apprentice vs Dragons Den is such a fun and exciting event to be a part of. It's a great opportunity for young individuals to take part in and a chance to kickstart their career. The ideas and dedication which are submitted from the students are amazing, it shows us what great futures are ahead.’

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