Jonas Gutierrez

One-hundred-and-twenty students from King Edward VI School in Morpeth visited Newcastle United last week to test their business acumen as part of national Enterprise Week.

Winger Jonas Gutierez made an appearance at the event to judge the results of a 'Magpie Market' enterprise task, a market-based activity where students worked together in teams to create and sell a new football shirt.

Using only paper, the students created a new football shirt for the Newcastle United number 18, and then using negotiation skills sold their new design to buyers. The task required teamwork, planning and creativity, all key to success in business.

Gutierrez said: "It is fantastic to see these young people working as a team on this enterprise challenge. The same principles apply in business as on the football pitch and I know how important it is to rely on your team mates to achieve goals."

The event was one of several activities run by Newcastle United Foundation during Global Entrepreneurship Week as part of its Enterprise Academy.

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills supports this initiative, which is all about engaging young people aged between 11 and 19 in the enterprise agenda through a range of interactive learning opportunities, so that they understand the basic principles of business and self-employment.

Newcastle United Foundation used the event to give young people a unique understanding into the running of a professional football club, using real business examples drawn from Newcastle United departments including marketing, customer services, catering, communications and HR.

The students were also offered behind the scenes tours of the stadium to provide an insight into how those departments work within the organisation.

Sam McLoughlin, the Foundation's Enterprise Academy co-ordinator, said: "The Football Club and the brand of Newcastle United is the perfect way to bring business to life for young people.

"Last week alone we engaged over 700 students in enterprise activities and with enterprise a hot topic right now, demand from schools for our programmes is growing fast."

Since the Enterprise Academy launched in 2009, Newcastle United Foundation has worked with over 60 North-East schools and engaged more than 6,000 young people in enterprise activities and courses.