Two of Aston University’s first class Computer Science graduates, Samuel Jones and David Bennett, have recently set up a software product development company, Codevate Ltd, with the help of BSEEN (Birmingham Skills for Enterprise and Employability Network) programme.
Samuel and David had their first experiences of software development for clients through Aston Active Software Engineering (AASE), a student-run company at Aston that allows Computer Science students to work on internships for external and internal clients alongside their studies. AASE allows students to develop their project management and customer service skills by involving them throughout the product delivery process.
The entrepreneurs were also part of Aston’s Computer Science Society in the final year of their degree. Not only did they find the society a fun place where they met like-minded people, but it also encouraged them to focus on their future with ‘technology talks’ from leading technology companies such as BT, who opened them up to graduate opportunities.
Codevate Ltd’s main project is to develop an educational tool that will teach secondary school students how to understand computer coding by using audio visual cues. Samuel and David believe that technology is the future, and although many students use it, they do not know how to create it. They believe their hands-on learning facility is suitable for every type of learner.
Both Samuel and David agree that they would not be where they are today without the client-facing experience gained through AASE and the business development advice gained through the BSEEN programme. BSEEN has provided them with free office space at Innovation Birmingham Campus, as well as networking opportunities and advice from experienced mentors.
Samuel said of the BSEEN programme: “This experience has been huge learning curve for us, and the advice we are receiving through workshops and business mentors from BSEEN is bridging the gap between our aspiration and success. Our ambitions to become self-sufficient and have our product in schools now feel like they could soon be a reality”.