A Coleg y Cymoedd student has been headhunted by a thriving Welsh film company after she showed off her business acumen at enterprise events.
A-level student Atlanta Taylor, 17, from Llantwit Fardre, has been brought on board by Abertillery-based Anytime Films after they filmed two enterprise events that she was taking part in. She dazzled them with her sales and pitching skills and they’ve brought her expertise on board to help them win new business.
Atlanta is studying business, maths and law at Coleg y Cymoedd’s £40m Nantgarw campus, and will begin with Anytime Films after her exams in February.
Coleg y Cymoedd is part of the South East Wales Enterprise Hub, a group of seven colleges tasked with meeting the Youth Entrepreneurship Strategy funded by Welsh Government. Vocational and A-Level students at Coleg y Cymoedd take part in a number of enterprise-related events during the academic year which are designed to improve their skills, bolster their experience and expose them to potential employers.
Atlanta was first spotted by Anytime Films in April when she was representing Coleg y Cymoedd at the Big Pitch organised by the SE Wales Hub and Big Ideas Wales in the Pierhead Building in Cardiff. The challenge for the six teams of students from the South Wales colleges was to present a marketing plan and demonstrate how they would promote outdoor activities in the Valleys.
In July, Anytime Films met her again when filming Trading Places, an Enterprise event organised in collaboration with First Campus where students from the Hub colleges had to sell the products of Welsh manufacturers in a pop-up shop in Cardiff’s Royal Arcade. In the style of BBC’s Apprentice, Atlanta worked with students she hadn’t met before to pitch to manufacturers whose products they wanted to showcase. Her team won their two favoured choices: baby and toddler clothes and jewellery. Atlanta’s team liaised with the producers to discuss how they could best be showcased, produced a business plan and went on to win the most sales on the day.
Nathan Webb, owner and director at Anytime Films, said: “It’s really important to get young people that are full of energy and ideas in to companies. We’re really impressed with Atlanta and I think it’s great that Coleg y Cymoedd give their students these chances to further their skills. We look forward to working with her.”
Atlanta, who in her free time is a keen volleyball player and works in a bar in Llantwit Fardre, hopes to enrol at Northumbria University in Newcastle to study business leadership and corporate management, where she is hoping to get a volleyball scholarship.
Atlanta said: “I hope to be a successful businessperson one day but I’m not sure what type of company I’d like to set up yet. Taking part in these enterprise events while doing my A-Levels and getting involved with Anytime Films has given me a real boost, not only in terms of my confidence, but also for my CV.
“At Coleg y Cymoedd A-Level students are given a huge amount of opportunities and we’re treated as young adults with boundless potential. I really like the freedom to study when I want and I make the most of the high-tech facilities.”
Henry Yeomans, Welsh Baccalaureate coordinator for the Sixth Form Centre, said: “Atlanta’s strengths are in putting together and delivering presentations, and she is very keen and enthusiastic about achieving in business. In the Big Pitch event, many people came up to me to say how well she rose to the challenge, and I think she’ll go very far.
“At Coleg y Cymoedd we provide our students with a range of opportunities that put them into real life work situations. For some this helps them hone their skills while it can be a life-changing experience for others who discover resources they didn’t know they had. This is the most rewarding part of teaching for me.”
A-Level provision at Coleg y Cymoedd was launched last year with the opening of the brand new Nantgarw campus and a partnership between the college, St David’s Catholic College Cardiff and Cardinal Newman Roman Catholic School in Pontypridd. With over 600 learners the new centre is now the largest provider of A-levels in Rhondda Cynon Taf.
In August the first year of AS Level students at Coleg y Cymoedd, which included Atlanta, celebrated with a 100 per cent pass rate in many subjects signalling success ahead of next year’s full A-Level results.