Photo : Zoe McCormack, Deidre Calnan, Ella McCormack & Molly Walsh, Junior Category winners from Sacred Heart, Clonakilty
Students from Skibbereen Community School took the overall senior prize at the recent West Cork Student Enterprise finals, which were held in Fernhill House and Gardens. They will now take their business ‘Be Bright’, a unique company creating safety lights for rowing boats to County Hall on March 24. The winners of the Junior Category, ‘Beez Wraps’, from Sacred Heart Secondary School Clonakilty will also compete against the North Cork winners for a place at the Student Enterprise National finals in Croke Park in May.
The winning teams have worked hard on creating their respective businesses since last September and beat off competition from more than 450 pupils throughout ten secondary schools in West Cork.
Speaking of their win, Oisin Boyle, Managing Director said, “To take first place in the West Cork finals is a huge achievement. We are delighted to represent West Cork and hopefully will also be chosen to represent the Cork North and West region at the national finals in May. Either way, we are going to continue on with the business, which we love working on, as it is the perfect solution to staying safe on the water. We are currently looking at new routes to market and have received many enquiries from rowing clubs both at home and abroad so the future is definitely bright!”
Other prize winners on the day included ‘Éire le Chéile’, a board game for the visually impaired who took second place and the award for Innovation from Mount Saint Michael, Rosscarbery, ‘Smashed’ from Sacred Heart Clonakilty and ‘Cartaí Choiche’, Colaiste na Toirbhirte Bandon (joint third place), ‘McCarthy Sports’, (Best use of Social Media) Clonakilty Community College, ‘Bam Cups’, (Best Display), MICC Dunmanway, and “Button Up” (Social Enterprise Award) Kinsale Community School. Madeline Stanley and Lauren Brampton from Schull Community College were awarded a special Entrepreneurs of the Future Award for their business venture ‘Sustainabilitrees’.
Speaking at the final of the West Cork Student Enterprise Awards, Ian Doyle, Mayor of Cork County said, “It is extremely encouraging to see the level of enthusiasm of the students at the end of a programme, which has given them the invaluable opportunity to see for themselves what it takes to build and grow a business. I congratulate all the teachers and commend them for their hard work and dedication, and giving their students the opportunity to partake in the programme, which teaches them lifelong lessons.
Kevin Curran, Head of Enterprise, Local Enterprise Office Cork North and West congratulated both students and teachers for their participation in the programme while also praising the immense task given to the judges, Stephen Rowe, Manager, AIB Clonakilty, Sandra Maybury, NetAassist and Kieran Collins, Ludgate Centre of choosing the winners.