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National Award For Belmullet Students At Enterprise Finals

Date: 14-05-2024

Students from Belmullet won the “One to Watch” award at this year’s Student Enterprise Programme National Finals. The Finals of the Local Enterprise Office initiative took place on Thursday last in Mullingar.

Supported by Local Enterprise Office Mayo, three student enterprises represented Mayo in the National Finals: Senior: Fly Fitness, (Ballinrobe Community School); Intermediate: (Owen's landscaping, St Louis', Kiltimagh) and Junior: (Easy Carrier, Our Lady's, Belmullet).

The students from Our Lady’s School, Belmullet, won the “One to Watch” award in the junior category.  Their student enterprise was called: ‘Easy Carrier, which sells portable handholds to relieve discomfort when carrying heavy plastic shopping bags. The products can be stylised to suit the customer’s needs or desires.

There were 81 student businesses in contention across three main categories for the Final in what is Ireland’s largest entrepreneurship programme for second level students.  28,000 students from almost 500 secondary schools across the country took part.

Peter Burke, Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, who took part in the ceremony, congratulated the students saying: “Congratulations to everyone who made it to today’s National Finals. With over 28,000 students taking part in this year’s programme, it is a huge achievement to make it to the Finals and shows a real flair for entrepreneurship. Some amazing businesses and entrepreneurs have come from this programme – the majority did not win any prizes but are still running successful businesses today. So, to those of you who won something today, a huge congratulations, but most importantly, to you all, this is the first step on the path, you are the entrepreneurs and business leaders of the future and everyone here today is excited to see what you do next.”    

John Magee, Local Enterprise Office Mayo said: “The Student Enterprise Programme continues to showcase the very best of Irish ingenuity and entrepreneurship amongst our secondary school students. This year produced a varied selection of businesses, from agricultural products and homemade gifts to pet apps and seaweed harvesting and some amazing winners across the board. We see every year that the National Finals are not an end point for our student entrepreneurs, but a stepping stone on the next stage of their entrepreneurial journey. From our class of 23/24 we hope to see some of our next great wave of Irish business leaders and global entrepreneurs emerge.”

The National Final students, who competed across three categories, Junior, Intermediate and Senior, were all exhibiting their businesses which were judged by a team of national businesses experts and mentors.  Each student enterprise was challenged with creating, setting up and running their own business, which must show sales of their service or product.  The judging panel included business owners and representatives from enterprise agencies and associated bodies. 

The Student Enterprise Programme is open to students of all ages at secondary level, with three separate categories - Junior (1st year), Intermediate (2nd and 3rd year) and Senior (4th, 5th and 6th year, LVA, LCA and Youth Outreach).

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