The scheme is led by the Dorset Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) and will also prepare students for the workplace.
Attended by 16 students from Years 11 to 13, the first meeting of the school’s Young Chamber council was chaired by President Rosie Shepherd and Vice-President Charlotte Watson.
It comes after the school hosted the official launch of the Young Chamber programme for business leaders, schools and representatives from education in September.
DCCI Young Chamber advisor Will Montgomery, who has worked both as a teacher and in business, highlighted the importance of the programme, which has attracted keen interest from schools and businesses.
He said: “The Young Chamber provides unique access to the business community for students through the DCCI’s business links.
“Lytchett Minster’s council idea is fantastic. It’s about working together and using that interest in business to help drive the students forward.”
Headteacher Andrew Mead was enthusiastic about the programme, which is part of a national British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) initiative.
“We’re grateful to the DCCI because the launch inspired the students who were invited,” he said.
“It’s as if we’re now pushing at an open door as there will be a great deal of benefit for the students by working with local employers.”
By being part of the Young Chamber the students will have a chance to develop their leadership skills, employability, problem solving and teamwork among other skills sought after by employers.
Lytchett Minster’s Young Chamber is being sponsored by Broadstone-based Walker Wealth Management Ltd.
Director Lee Walker, who has 26 years of experience in the financial services sector, was present at the first council meeting.
He said: “This is an exciting opportunity and it will be great to help the students along the way.
“The programme will help to bridge that gap between school and work life and it is crucial for them to learn about business at this early stage.”
Walker Wealth Management Ltd, an Associate Partner Practice of St. James’s Place Wealth Management plc, specialises in providing high quality personal advice on the various aspects of wealth management, including corporate financial planning, tax reliefs and pension guidance.
Lytchett Minster Young Chamber President Rosie Shepherd, a Year 13 student, will be assisted by Vice-President Charlotte Watson in chairing each fortnightly meeting of the council.
Rosie said: “The Young Chamber will help us prepare for the business world and the many opportunities it will bring.”
Charlotte, a Year 11 student, said: “To be able to get that initial link between businesses and develop our experience is so important.”
Lytchett Minster’s Young Chamber will be self-funded and students discussed fundraising ideas at the council meeting, including holding a school fete, hosting business breakfasts and getting involved with careers fairs.
Students were also appointed to various positions within the council, such as finance executives, marketing and communications executives and a secretary.
Activities will include talks, workplace visits, mock interviews, careers events, mentoring, work experience and workshops.
Lytchett Minster School, based in the village of Lytchett Minster near Poole, has over 1,400 students on roll and is currently an Ofsted-rated ‘good’ school, with its sixth form rated as ‘outstanding’.
St Aldhelm’s Academy in Poole was the first school in Dorset to sign up to Young Chamber earlier this year. More than 80 businesses have expressed an interest in becoming involved so far.
Any schools interested in joining the Young Chamber project should contact Will Montgomery via phone: 01202 714817 or email: Will.Montgomery@dcci.co.uk.