Student scholarship underpins community engagement initiative
Last week (25 January 2017) a new community project, encouraging people to shop locally, and supported by Cardiff University, was launched in Grangetown.
The new Grangetown Business Forum was spearheaded by Grangetown resident, Steve Duffy (Grangetown Community Action) and grown out of a community project between Cardiff Business School, Cardiff University’s Community Gateway engagement project, and Grangetown Community Action.
The University’s Community Gateway project originally approached the Business School in relation to an issue raised by Steve Duffy who had witnessed the increasing challenges faced by small businesses in Grangetown. He felt that a new business forum would be beneficial, leading to improved collaboration between the businesses with the scope to launch a ‘shop local’ scheme in the future.
In late 2015, Dr Eleri Rosier, from the Business School’s Marketing and Strategy section, charged her 250 strong second year Marketing and Strategy class to explore and scrutinise these ambitions and provide a set of recommendations for the Grangetown Community Action group. This formed part of the students’ essay assessment. Dr Rosier selected the ten strongest responses and shared these with Steve Duffy.
Dr Rosier explains what happened next: “Steve returned to us in the summer of 2016, interested in looking again at the original recommendations. He provided us with a new brief based on actually implementing the recommendations. I gathered together a small group of MSc Strategic Marketing students to respond to the brief. They designed a feasibility study, which included primary data gathered from shop owners and consumers in Grangetown. This fed in to the final proposal submitted to Steve and it is this fantastic work, from our undergraduate and postgraduate students, which forms the basis of the new business forum.”
Dr Rosier added: “Feedback from students suggest that they love working on a "live" project rather than on a purely theoretical academic piece of work. They have also commented that they feel more connected to the city in which they are studying by working on the Grangetown projects, which aligns with the School’s Public Value strategy which promotes social improvement alongside economic improvement.”