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Government and Google urge children to embrace digital entrepreneurialism

15 Nov 2012
Students presenting in parliament

A number of UK politicians, entrepreneurs and Google executives held a meeting in parliament on Thursday with a group of 16-18 year old students to inspire them into starting their own business.

The students attending the event, called "Silicon Valley comes to Parliament", were all taking part in school programmes that aim to encourage entrepreneurism.

Business education charity, the Young Enterprise, helps teachers manage the year-long programmes, along with business mentors.

Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow, welcomed the pupils to parliament.

"This is the third year of this programme and its purpose to enable 100 young people to meet entrepreneurs, whose innovation has come to change all our lives," he said.

"We are seeking to inspire secondary school children to become entrepreneurs by showing them what's possible."

Meanwhile, minister for culture, communications and creative industries, Ed Vaizey, said the pupils should take inspiration from the increasing number of entrepreneurs and start-ups in the UK.

"We in the UK have to have a strong element of self-confidence. We do already have Silicon Valley in the UK. All over the country there are tech businesses," said Vaizey.

"If I could have my time again I'd definitely start out as an entrepreneur."

Shadow business secretary, Chuka Umunna, told the pupils that they are in unique position as the first generation of digital natives to make a real impact on the technology industry.

"You're the people with the energy and with the talent. You're the ones meeting the challenge, by innovating, and making things the rest of the world want to buy. That is ultimately how you will take advantage of the opportunities that this new world provides," said Umunna.

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