Rachel Davis - Director of Warwick Enterprise
As Director of Warwick Enterprise, I lead the education portfolio for innovation and entrepreneurship across the University of Warwick. This includes growth and integration of curricula and co-curricula provision as well as graduate start-up as a viable career option and broader support for alumni. As part of the senior leadership team for the Innovation Group I am also lead for the Creative Futures initiative; delivering inspiration, education, incubation and industry partnerships for the Creative & Digital Sector in the Coventry & Warwickshire region.
I am experienced educational developer and authentic leader with 21 years education management and leadership experience in the FE and HE sector. I categorize myself as an ‘intrapreneur’ focussed on the creation of high quality innovation in teaching and learning solutions. I have applied my expertise within and outside of the curriculum; in the creation of physical and digital space to support learning, teaching & research; and through the development of strategy and leadership for institutional initiatives.
I’m creative, flexible and motivated by the potential to support positive outcomes for others and society. Launching and building Warwick Enterprise will be a significant vehicle for delivering such value and I’m passionate about working in partnership with students, staff, individuals or organisations who share this mission, in order to make this happen. I am also a devoted parent to my daughter, a gender equality advocate, water sports enthusiast, more recently a runner and lover of tapas.
Richard Groves - Enterprise Pathway Manager
I have worked at the University of Warwick for the past seven years and my role, as the Enterprise Pathway Manager, is to create and buld opportunities for innovation and entrepreneurship at Warwick and to support our entrepreneurial students and graduates in developing their enterprise skills, entrepreneurial mind-set and the growth of innovative ideas.
Our team offer one-to-one support and guidance for enterprising ideas, access to Warwick’s Innovation District and opportunities for development, funding, mentoring and networking.
Prior to working at Warwick, I spent the first part of my career working in student advice and guidance at the University of Birmingham before becoming Business Development Manager for the UK's leading provider of employment and support services for people with barriers to work, where my main focus was developing business and partnership opportunities within the learning, skills and education sector in the West Midlands.
Debbie Smith - Enterprise Development Officer
My role is to identify and deliver enterprise-related opportunities that foster a culture of student/graduate enterprise, innovation and entrepreneurship on campus and beyond. Working with multiple stakeholders across the University and wider community I work to weave enterprise into the conversation and advocate enterprise where possible.
In this development role I enjoy supporting our exceptional students and graduates in developing enterprise ideas and/or bringing about positive change. We're always looking for opportunities for us to make more impact - socially, environmentally and economically (both locally and globally). By delivering events that raise awareness, inspire and educate e.g. workshops and challenges we support students/graduates in developing their enterprise and employability skills, (business) ideas and/or making a difference.
I also offer 1:1 guidance for students and graduates to support them with idea development. Here I direct people to appropriate support within our enterprise ecosystem, along with highlighting relevant idea development and/or funding opportunities that can support students/graduates with moving their ideas forward, such as the: Student Enterprise Fund and Lord Rootes Fund (and more).
So, if you have an idea you'd like to explore, please do get in touch.
Clare Green - Creative and Digital Communities Manager
Clare specialises in building networks and communities of creatives and artists. She is currently leading Creative Futures, an initiative designed to connect the University of Warwick with the region’s creative sector. Creative Futures will inspire students and graduates about creative and digital careers and support start-ups and companies in a new business incubator in the heart of Leamington Spa.
She has extensive experience of managing creative industries networks and running events, hackathons and festivals such as Brains Eden festival – UK’s largest student Game Festival as well as R&D projects on play, behavioural change and social impact.
David Voss - Learning Technologist
David is passionate about using technology to improve delivery and engagement of learning to students. He works as the teams Learning Technologist supporting the team with the technology supporting all learning programmes and technical support relating to other methods of interaction with students.
Vicky Jepson -
Vicky is a well connected media professional with a wealth of creative industry knowledge, expertise and experience. Her media career started at the BBC, where she established herself as an awarding television producer, specialising in factual entertainment and documentaries, working with high profile presenters, including Jo Brand, Graham Norton, Alan Titchmarsh and the Hairy Bikers.
Vicky went freelance over 10 years ago, and whilst continuing to produce programmes for network television, she has developed a portfolio career, drawing on her flair for communication, strong editorial skills and proven track record in running projects on time and to budget.
In addition to heading up the Creative Futures Incubator at the University of Warwick, Vicky has a number of clients including Creative England, BBC Academy, The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office and training organisations Inside Knowledge and The Media Trust. Her work takes her all over the world, from BBC network centres in Birmingham, Manchester and London to British embassies in Belgium, Saudi Arabia and Barbados, where she runs media training sessions.
Peter Ptashko - Entrepreneur in Residence (Social Innovation & Enterprise)
Peter Ptashko FRSA is a social entrepreneur, funder and supporter of social entrepreneurs and currently an independent entrepreneurship change management consultant working with a range of clients in both the Public and Private sectors, holding a series of leadership and Board-level positions across these two sectors (with a focus on the sectors of Education, the Arts and Music).
He has over 10 years experience working in the field of social enterprise globally, having launched his first venture in 2005 at the University of Warwick - raising £25,000 in only 7 hours. Since then he has worked for UnLtd: the UK foundation for social entrepreneurs, supporting thousands of social entrepreneurs to start and grow their businesses across (in particular) the Education Sector, securing an investment of over £10m from universities across England.
He is the former Director of the Global Social Entrepreneurship Network (GSEN), coordinating its 60 members in over 70 countries to better support social entrepreneurs around the world - providing them a voice and expertise to flourish wherever they may be. Before this he was based previously in their Mexico office, with a focus on Impact Investment in Latin America.
He launched 'Cambio' in 2019 as a response to the growing need for mainstream, high quality, internationally-informed, tailored and boutique support to social entrepreneurs in the UK, and beyond. He regularly works with a range of entrepreneurs, charitable and corporate clients to help them deliver their work more impactfully and entrepreneurially; leading through an environment of constant change.