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20 October 2010 | PR 10/162

Apprentice winner inspires student entrepreneurs at Loughborough Students’ Union

Lee McQueen

Lee McQueen, 2009 winner of BBC’s The Apprentice, captivate his audience of promising student entrepreneurs. Photograph by Emily Kearns, LSU Media

Loughborough University’s Student Enterprise group has got its 2010/11 programme off to a flying start with an inspiring evening presentation by Lee McQueen, last year’s winner of the BBC hit TV show The Apprentice.

Lee was invited to the university to talk to Loughborough students about his experiences of winning The Apprentice, working for Lord Sugar, and launching his own business.  Lee kicked the presentation off with plenty of laughter and he proceeded to entertain and capture the audience’s attention through to the very end; he even continued to entertain a large crowd of the students after his presentation had ended.  We all remember Lee’s passion, enthusiasm and animated style from the hit TV show, and this came across in abundance as he talked to the students about his journey.

Lee openly acknowledged the fact that his education wasn’t of the highest standard and University life was very much the “unknown” for him.  He went on to say it was his positive attitude, his drive to succeed and sheer hard work that pushed him to achieve so much and is what led him to be in the position he is today. 

Winning The Apprentice was no easy task and Lee explained; “It was such a surreal environment!  You were cut off from the world, a bit like Big Brother!”  It was great to hear insider knowledge of his time on The Apprentice and to hear about his strategy to win, which was... “Not to go out in the first round!”  Jokes aside, Lee set out from the very beginning to win the show and bag the top prize, working for the “Governor” himself, Lord Alan Sugar.  Lee worked alongside Lord Sugar and his son, Simon Sugar, for over two years on a new project, Amscreen.  Lee learnt invaluable lessons of financing and taking a new product to market and learnt firsthand how to set up, run and manage a company.

All of his experiences have led Lee to where he is now; setting out on his own.  His new company, Raw Talent Academy, aims to train up talented individuals who display the raw abilities needed for the sales environment.  Hard working, determined, passionate, goal orientated, enthusiastic, personable are some of the key qualities needed for a career in sales and Lee wants to ensure that everybody who has these raw attributes; whether you have a degree or are fresh out of school, are given the opportunity to grow and develop into the sales people of the future.  “Sales” was once a dirty word; Lee and the Raw Talent Academy will demonstrate that this is not the case.

Student Enterprise Forums have been running for many years at Loughborough University thanks to Marina Pickles, Student Enterprise Manager.  These regular events provide students with a great opportunity to network and learn from real-life entrepreneurs.

Amy Bowmar, Student Enterprise Officer, was delighted that so many students came along and enjoyed the event; “It was fantastic to see such a great turnout and to see students getting involved with one of the many services the university provides.  Student Enterprise is great; not only do you get to hear some great motivational advice from somebody like Lee, but you can also channel his advice and experiences into your degree, career path or business start up.” 

Camilla Burrows, a Geography student at Loughborough University who attended the event said afterwards, “It was not only interesting to hear about Lee’s business life history but it was also inspiring and thought provoking for my future.  I was able to take away many valuable ideas that will be useful in my career decisions.”

The event proved to be great success and demonstrates ways in which you can enhance your personal development while at university in a fun, sociable, inspirational and educating way.  For more information about Lufbra Student Enterprise visit www.enterpriselufbra.co.uk


For all media enquiries contact:

Amy Bowmar
Student Enterprise Officer
Loughborough University
T: 01509 635046
E: A.Bowman@lboro.ac.uk 

Notes for editors:

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It was awarded the coveted Sunday Times University of the Year 2008-09 title, and is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in national newspaper league tables. In the 2010 National Student Survey, Loughborough was voted one of the top universities in the UK, and has topped the Times Higher Education league for the UK’s Best Student Experience every year since the poll's inception in 2006. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, the University has been awarded six Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

Loughborough is also the UK’s premier university for sport. It has perhaps the best integrated sports development environment in the world and is home to some of the country’s leading coaches, sports scientists and support staff. It also has the country’s largest concentration of world-class training facilities across a wide range of sports.

It is a member of the 1994 Group of 19 leading research-intensive universities. The Group was established in 1994 to promote excellence in university research and teaching. Each member undertakes diverse and high-quality research, while ensuring excellent levels of teaching and student experience.

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