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Want to become an entrepreneur?

Here's how Staffordshire University can help you

Have you got a passion for entrepreneurship? Do you have ambitions to start a company and build something for yourself?  With a focus on practice over theory, the Peter Coates MSc in Entrepreneurship is a full time course that helps innovative ideas flourish.

You don’t need to know what business you want to create. You don’t need to have a worked up business idea. You don’t even need to know what industry you want to work in. You just need to know that Staffordshire University is here to help you make your dream a reality with the Peter Coates MSc in Entrepreneurship.

And if you do have an existing business idea or start-up, this could be the ideal environment to develop your ideas and realise your ambitions.

At the end of the course, you'll even have the chance to pitch your business plans to earn investments of up to £200,000, making this the perfect launching pad for your business.

Want to find out more?

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Our experts will call you back at a time that suits you.

Join an online information session to find out more about the course.


As part of the Peter Coates Fast Forward programme, The Peter Coates Foundation is providing full bursaries for those eligible - applicants must apply separately to the Foundation to access that funding.  Furthermore, at the culmination of the course, individuals or teams of graduates will be able to pitch for either a £20,000 growth grant – designed to support smaller businesses – or up to £200,000 equity investment in their business idea.  Successful individuals and teams will also get the opportunity for ongoing mentoring and start-up support, as part of the Peter Coates Fast Forward programme*.

* Note the Peter Coates Foundation is responsible for the Peter Coates Fast Forward Programme including the allocation of bursaries and potential investments, independent of Staffordshire University and the Peter Coates MSc in Entrepreneurship.

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Educating and empowering our next generation of local entrepreneurs is the key to the regeneration of our City.

Peter Coates

Join an information session

Our online events are short sessions where you'll have chance to meet course leaders, chat with other aspiring entrepreneurs, and get answers to your burning questions about this exciting course. Choose the date that works for you, and register for an event to find out more.

Support and mentors

Our Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIRs) and mentors bring with them a wealth of experience when it comes to setting up and developing a business. They share their expertise to help motivate and inspire each cohort of new and developing entrepreneurs, as well as being a critical friend, asking challenging questions and offering support as you navigate the experiences of starting-up a business.

What’s more, our EIRs and mentors help to provide a link between the university and industry, which opens up networks to support entrepreneurs as they pursue their passions.

James Routledge

Entrepreneur in Residence, Founder at Sanctus

I'm James and I am an Entrepreneur in Residence - I'm a founder, creative, writer and community builder. 

James's profile

Josie Morris MBE

Mentor, Managing Director at Woolcool

Josie is MD at Woolcool, a UK based, 2nd Generation, family business founded by her mother in 2009.

Josie's profile

Baljinder Kuller

Mentor, Founder & Managing Director of The Supply Register Limited

I’m Baljinder, the founder of the tech-driven education recruitment platform, The Supply Register. My passion has always been around education and disadvantaged children and young people.

Baljinder's profile

Farrah Barber

Mentor, Founder at Uniformed

Farrah is the founder of a charity that provides school uniforms to disadvantaged families, and volunteers for the Business in the Community network to support economic regeneration in the North.

Farrah 's profile

Vanessa Webb

Mentor, Co-founder at Nurture Health and Care Ltd

Vanessa has worked in various roles across the healthcare sector, and is currently co-founder of Nurture Health and Care Ltd.

Vanessa's profile

Mark Badyra

Mentor, Chief Executive Officer of Appital

Mark Badyra is the CEO of Appital. An experienced equity capital markets professional, Mark founded Appital to unlock latent liquidity in a market for size and bring enhanced bookbuilding and price formation capabilities to institutional investors.

Mark's profile
  • If you want to find our more about the Peter Coates Entrepreneurship MSc or studying at Staffordshire University, then we're happy to help. Simply fill in this form and we'll call you back at a time that's convenient to you.
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Dr Laura Walton-Williams

Director Of Enterprise Edu Ass Professor

Laura has been a lecturer at Staffordshire University since 2004. Actively involved in research in forensic science, she also conducts consultancy in the examination of evidence of a biological origin. Laura's areas of expertise include DNA an…

Laura's profile

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the focus and goal of the course?

The one-year course has a focus on practice, not theory, and will introduce students to commercially relevant concepts, contacts, and opportunities, giving them the skills and support that they need to accelerate their success.

Who is the course for?

It’s for people who want to fast forward their careers as entrepreneurs and unlock the value of their ideas.

How much does the course cost?

For eligible applicants, the Peter Coates Foundation is offering full bursaries to cover the whole course cost (which for UK students is £11,000). At the end of the course, there is also the opportunity to pitch your business plans for an investment of up to £200,000!

How is the course structured?

The course contains taught modules and one independent study module where you will engage with developing your entrepreneurial ideas. Each of the taught modules will run over five weeks and you will study one module at a time.

How long is the course?

The course lasts approximately one year.

How many days will I need to attend teaching sessions?

Each of the modules is designed to group the teaching together in two to three days each week, to allow you time to work on your business ideas and their development outside of the classroom.

 How many face-to-face contact hours will there be?

There will be a maximum of 12 hours, and an average of seven hours, of face-to-face contact hours per week.

Do I need to have an existing business idea?

No, you do not need a business idea before you start, but if you already do that is great. The course will include ideation sections where you will be developed in the process of developing and assessing the feasibility of ideas.

I have an existing business can I still join?

If you have a new small business or a ‘side hustle’ and you would like to scale it up, you are welcome to join. The course will support the development of new growth ideas and the assessment of their feasibility.

Do I need an undergraduate degree or a particular qualification?

Applications are open to students with both academic and non-academic backgrounds. The important thing is that applicants have the fire and desire to start their own business and become a part of Stoke-on-Trent’s emerging entrepreneurial community. Many successful entrepreneurs do not have strong academic records for a variety of reasons and the entrance criteria for the MSc has been designed to allow talented ambitious people to acquire the skills they need even if they do not have a strong academic track record.

How do I apply for a bursary to cover the cost of the course?

Bursary applications are open to all UK students in receipt of an offer for the Peter Coates MSc in Entrepreneurship from Staffordshire University. Applications are submitted through the Peter Coates Foundation website. Partial bursaries may also be awarded for students from higher income households. Priority will be given to local applicants, Staffordshire University graduates, and students from lower income households, but the main criteria is that applicants intend to use the opportunities provided by the Peter Coates Fast Forward Programme to ultimately create a new business venture in the local area.

Is there venture funding available for graduates of the course?

Yes, at the culmination of the course, individuals or teams of graduates will be able to pitch for either a £20,000 growth grant – designed to support smaller businesses – or up to £200,000 equity investment in their business idea.  Successful individuals and teams will also get the opportunity for ongoing mentoring and start-up support, as part of the Peter Coates Fast Forward programme*.

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