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Enterprise and Entrepreneurial skills are highly valued by employers as they will will enable you to seize opportunities, be creative and develop problem solving skills. It is one of the 19 Graduate Attributes which the University hopes that you will have developed by the end of your studies.

Get involved

There are hundreds of opportunities to be enterprising while you are at university – you are only limited by your imagination. Students have typically used an enterprising mindset to create new societies, raise funds for charities, become involved in social action projects and change the way courses are delivered.

If you need some inspiration to get you started, read some stories of successful entrepreneurial projects:

For more information on volunteering opportunities, visit our volunteering and part-time work page.

Starting a business

What do you do if you have spotted a gap in the market and want to develop a business you can run while you are at university – or just after? Who can answer your questions about initial startup, funding, tax, marketing and ongoing support?

There are several key agencies who provide support to students and recent graduates:

  • Scottish Institute for Enterprise provide on campus business support and advice, competitions to test your ideas and ideas creation workshops.
  • Business Gateway offer start up advice, funding and support as well as free seminars to get you started.
  • The Prince’s Trust (Scotland) provides support and finance to young people aged  18-30. Support includes business start up advice and business mentoring as you get your business off the ground.
  • UnLtd aims to help and support young people who want to create a business where the profits will be used to support initiatives in the community, ie a social enterprise.
  • Pathfinder Accelerator offers you the chance to pressure-test a Life Sciences-based business idea. This 12 week practical programme will equip you with the skills required to develop a business model that will give you the best chance of success.


Want to test your idea for a business before you commit yourself? Then enter a competition and see what others think.

The following competitions are promoted by the Careers and Employability Service each year:

Further competitions that you may also be interested in:

Further Information

For initial advice and guidance about becoming more enterprising or signposting to assistance in starting a new business contact:

  • Mrs Janice Montgomery, Senior Careers Adviser, University of Aberdeen Careers and Employability Service. Call +44 (0)1224 273601 or email j.montgomery@abdn.ac.uk
  • For queries regarding the practical aspects of business start up or to discuss your ideas email Mrs Dawn Shand, Regional Business Adviser, Scottish Institute for Enterprise at d.shand@sie.ac.uk

You can find links to a wide range of useful Self-Employment materials in our resources section.