Will Churchill was a Worthwhile graduate with Student Hubs in 2014-15. We asked Will how his placement led him to co-found two start-up companies.
“My journey into the social impact sector started off with my involvement in Enactus society during my time at university. Initially I started out working for Enactus UK but then moved on to undertake a placement at Cambridge Hub. After my placement I was promoted to take on the role of Social Enterprise Manager across all Student Hubs. It was my responsibility to make sure that there was something for all students to get involved with at hub universities.
During my time working for Enactus and Student Hubs, I noticed there was a gap in provision for students who had ideas for social action but a lack of resources, skills, and networks to take these ideas forward.
It was in 2014 when I left Student Hubs and co-founded UniHack. The aim of UniHack is to run university hackathons to engage more students in social issues and to help them build a personal and professional skill set. We worked with different universities to run one or two day long events, which would help students develop projects to tackle some of the most challenging problems faced in their regions.
It was one of the activities we did during a Worthwhile training session that led me to start my next venture.
During this session we were made to write down all the skills that we have and the skills that we enjoyed using; the skills that overlapped were those that we should be using in our everyday jobs. I’ve always been interested in web development and spent most of my spare time teaching myself how to code and programme, and for me this was the skill that hit the middle ground.
This led me to co-found Copy & Code, a company that provides web development and copywriting services to start-ups, small charities, and social enterprises to help them to launch their online presence. I thought there was definitely a gap in the market for affordable tech provision in the social space, as these services become expensive for risk-averse organisations.
Although my main stream of work is now Copy & Code, I’m still involved with Enactus UK as a mentor, and have done online development projects for Enactus and UniHack. I think my experience at Student Hubs definitely gave me the ability to manage several different projects at once, as you’re given a lot of early on responsibility during your placement.
I’ve really enjoyed working in both social impact and start-up sectors, and it’s been great that I’ve now been able to combine the two!"
This interview was conducted and written by Kavita Tailor.