Swansea University's School of Management is thrilled to announce that it has received the prestigious Small Business Charter Accreditation.

This recognition is awarded to business schools and schools of management in the UK and Ireland that demonstrate outstanding support for small businesses, foster student entrepreneurship, and contribute to the local economy. The Small Business Charter Accreditation serves as a beacon, guiding entrepreneurs, small businesses, and local economic stakeholders to institutions like ours that possess the expertise to empower their growth.

This accolade not only bestows upon our School of Management and the university the honour of a nationally recognised accreditation but also opens doors to a range of benefits. Accredited business schools gain access to capacity-building activities, wield influence through nationwide advocacy, and secure the opportunity to deliver and secure funding for programs related to business growth. One prominent example of this is the Help to Grow Programme, an initiative exclusively available through Small Business Charter accredited universities.

However, this accreditation represents just one milestone in our long-term journey. Swansea University and the School of Management have been steadfast supporters of small businesses and entrepreneurship since our inception. We have undertaken numerous significant initiatives to bolster the innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystem not only within our region but also across Wales and the UK.

To earn the Small Business Charter Accreditation, business and management schools must undergo a rigorous assessment gauging the effectiveness of their business support, entrepreneurship education, and engagement with the local economy. This achievement was the culmination of over two years of dedicated effort. Prior to the assessment, our team prepared a comprehensive 16,000-word application supported by a wealth of data, totalling 260 megabytes, meticulously collated using Microsoft Teams.

The two-day online assessment involved the participation of over 50 individuals, including university staff, students, alumni, small business representatives, business -representing groups, and various other stakeholders. This evaluation provided a unique opportunity for the School of Management, the wider university, and our supporters to showcase our entrepreneurial heritage, the continuous development and excellence of our entrepreneurial education strategy, our external engagement and support for small businesses and the broader business community concerning enterprise and innovation, as well as the outstanding facilities we offer to students and small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

David Pickernell, Professor of Small Business and Enterprise Development Policy at the School of Management said, “This is a great achievement and shows our ongoing commitment to fostering small business and entrepreneurship”.

The assessor’s summary also mentioned, “This is undoubtedly an entrepreneurial university and management school where enterprise was a constant and embedded strategic theme...  SU SoM are representative of the Welsh economy and the wider ecosystem and are without doubt deeply embedded within the enterprise, entrepreneurship, and general business community of their local, regional, and national networks.”

Achieving the Small Business Charter Accreditation is a testament to the dedication and hard work of the entire School of Management community, and reflects our unwavering commitment to fostering entrepreneurship, driving innovation, and contributing to the growth of small businesses and the local economy.

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