700 students to participate in Student Enterprise Awards

By Mary Dennehy

STUDENT entrepreneurs are getting down to business and have submitted unique entrepreneurial ideas into this year’s South Dublin Student Enterprise Awards.

Launched in September, some 20 local schools from across South Dublin County are engaging with the annual awards programme, which this year sees more than 700 students participating and submitting around 280 individual business ideas – which they will develop into profitable businesses.

SEA Dinner

The national awards are run locally by the South Dublin Local Enterprise Office [South Dublin LEO], with the local leg supported by IT Tallaght – which hosted a recent dinner for the teachers from participating schools and representatives from IT Tallaght and South Dublin LEO.

A local judging event takes place in February, with category winners going forward to represent their hometown in the national event in April – and historically, South Dublin County’s young entrepreneurs, and idea-makers and employers of the future, have reaped many successes at the national finals.

Ena Coleman, SEA co-ordinator in the Dublin South Local Enterprise Office, said: “[The competition] is an excellent opportunity for students to experience what it is really like to start up their own business as they have to brainstorm for ideas, identify target markets, carry out market research, source materials to produce their own product or service, develop a company brand, create a sales and marketing strategy, manage and record all of their finances and finally compile all of the above activity and information into a detailed business report.

“With the help and support of their teachers and the local coordinators the students will experience first hand the trials and tribulations of being an entrepreneur.

“The lessons they will learn and skills they will develop will be invaluable to them in later life when they themselves look to setting up their own businesses.”

She added: “Students in South Dublin will be aiming to match and even surpass last year’s success stories when they won the over-all Intermediate category (Dara Ward – Colaiste Eanna) at the National Finals in April 2015, as well as scooping an Innovation Award in the junior category (Aaron Murphy Taylor – Colaiste De Hide).

“Our senior entry, Dylan Leon had also previously won at Junior and Intermediate stage within the county and will definitely be a name to look out for in the future.

“South Dublin has an excellent record with enterprise across all age demographics and this process aims to encourage and develop this trend.”

For further details on the awards, visit www.studententerprise.ie, www.localenterprise.ie /SouthDublin or call South Dublin LEO on 4057073.



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