THE budding entrepreneurs of tomorrow were given the chance to pitch their business ideas to industry experts during a fascinating student/ teacher ‘ brainstorming’ session at the Charleville Park Hotel last Monday.
Hosted under the auspices of the North Cork Schools Enterprise Programme, the seminar saw 450 junior and senior cycle students from 13 second levels schools across the North Cork region put through their paces.
Facilitated by The Entrepreneurs Academy, one of the country’s leading innovation training companies, the informal session encouraged pupils to set up and run their own mini-business during the academic year. The aim was to help them learn about entrepreneurship by encouraging a new generation of business leaders to flourish.
With the help of the academy’s expert team, the students learned about an array of exciting new business ideas being developed across the globe and how they can use these to successfully establish and develop their own ideas for the mini-company initiative.
Following introductions, the students were divided up into groups to do some brainstorming of their own, pitching ideas to their peers on which to base their own start-up businesses.
Kevin Curran, Head of Enterprise with the Local Enterprise Office (LEO), said the seminar offered both pupils and teachers a welcome insight into the techniques needed to make their business a success.
“Over years that this national programme has been running, the north Cork region has proven to be one of the strongest in the country. This is due in no small measure to the many teachers who work tirelessly to help their students learn about the importance of entrepreneurship,” said Mr Curran.
“We in the LEO are seeing the benefits of this with each passing year with increasing numbers of start-up businesses established by students who participated in the programme,” he added.
Garry Lowe, co-ordinator of the North Cork Schools Enterprise Programme, said he was struck by the sheer enthusiasm of participating students. “There was a lot of positivity in the room here today. We hope the students will take on board the processes they have been shown and apply them again and again over the coming months. Today’s event could quite easily change the way they view their future careers,” he said.
Ann Doherty of St Mary’s College Charleville, said the day was a great way for her students to kick off the academic year.
“We’re so proud to be the reigning senior champions of student enterprise in North Cork and hope to continue our success with the programme this year,” she added.
The next event in the North Cork Schools Enterprise calendar will be the Christmas Trade Fair on December 7 when students will display their products and services to the public.
Students from Davis College Mallow who attended the Cork North and West Local Enterprise Innovation Day for Schools Enterprise Programme, with Joan Kelleher of the Mallow -based Cork North and West LEO and programme co-ordinator Gary Lowe.
Students from Millstreet Community School who attended the Cork North & West Local Enterprise Innovation Day for the Schools Enterprise Programme ‘17/18, with teacher Shane Breen and Kevin Curran, Manager Local Enterprise Office Mallow.
Students from the Nagle Rice School, Doneraile, with their teacher Brian Coleman, LEO business advisor Joan Kelleher and programme co-ordinator Gary Lowe.
Students from Patrician Academy, Mallow, with teacher Elaine O’Regan.
Students from Colaiste Treasa Kanturk.