Student Enterprise Programme

Student Enterprise Programme

thoor fire

Jack Losty, Diarmuid O'Fathaigh, Adam Diskin, Sean Hill from Gort Community School were named the senior winners of the Galway County Student Enterprise Awards and will represent Galway at the National Finals in May.Photo: Martina Regan

Local Enterprise Office Galway has announced that teenage entrepreneurs from Gort and Salthill will represent Galway at this year’s Student Enterprise Programme National Finals on Friday 5th May.  The Finals make a return to Croke Park for the first time since 2019.


The students all took part in the Galway County Final which was recently held at the Clayton Hotel. An estimated 140 students from schools across Galway city and county took part.


The enterprise education initiative, funded by the Government of Ireland through Enterprise Ireland and delivered by the 31 Local Enterprise Offices in local authorities throughout the country, saw over 25,000 students from just under 500 secondary schools across the country take part in 2021 / 2022.  The programme supports students to create, design and market their own business, all with the hope of reaching the National Finals.


In the Junior Category, the student representing Galway at the National Finals is Orlaith Connors from Gort Community School, who presented her enterprise, Orlaith’s Derrybrien Honey.


In the Intermediate Category, Charlie Carroll, Adam Forde. Aaron Keane, Rian Coyle. Jack Nolan from Coláiste Einde in Salthill will be representing the county at the Finals with their business, Galway Engravers.


In the Senior Category of the competition, Galway will be represented on May 18th by Thoor Fire Pits, a student enterprise set up by Jack Losty, Diarmuid O'Fathaigh, Adam Diskin, Sean Hill from Gort Community School with the support of their teachers Marie McNamara and Linda Tubridy.


In the “My Entrepreneurial Journey” category open to junior and intermediate students, Sheena Martyn

from Colaiste an Chreagain, Mountbellew will represent Galway in the National Finals. A full list of the Galway county winners is available below.


This year will see the introduction of three additional categories of optional competitions including – the ‘Best Business Website’ sponsored by .IE, the “Green Go Getter Award” sponsored by the EPA, as well as the “Smart Business Idea” award sponsored by Folens. These three new awards categories are in addition to the ‘My Entrepreneurial Journey’, ‘Social Stars’ and ‘Intellectual Property’ competitions.


Speaking at the county final, Valerie Kelly, Acting Head of Enterprise at Local Enterprise Office Galway congratulated the students, saying “We have a very successful Student Enterprise Programme here in Galway, with over 1,170 students from 30 local schools taking part this year. Our national finalists are excellent ambassadors for the programme and we wish them the very best of luck at the National Finals in Croke Park on Friday 5th May. In what has been a particularly challenging couple of years for students the programme has offered them an outlet outside of the usual school demands.  What our students are learning from the programme is that with the right supports and encouragement, they can take an idea from the classroom and develop it into a real-life business. The skills they learn along the way, such as business planning, market research, selling and team-work, will help them become more entrepreneurial throughout their future careers”.


The local students will be competing against hundreds of other student entrepreneurs from all over Ireland at the Student Enterprise Programme National Finals, taking place at Croke Park in Dublin on the 5th May. 


Since the Student Enterprise Programme began in 2003, over 350,000 students have taken part, learning key skills on how to create a business idea, start a business and grow a business.  The Student Enterprise Programme also has new range of online resources for 2022 / 2023 at, which will feature regular blogs and houses a full range of Student Enterprise resources for students and teachers.   


Further information around the Student Enterprise Programme is available from and by searching #studententerprise on social media.

2023 winners

1st Place Senior

Thoor Fire Pits

Gort Community School

2nd Place Senior

Land of Languages

Galway ETSS

3rd Place Senior

Ronan Clancy Wooden Products

Gort Community School

1st Place Intermediate

Galway Engravers

Coláiste Éinde, Salthill

2nd Place Intermediate



3rd Place Intermediate

Rebel Creative

Dunmore Community School

1st Place Junior

Orlaith's Derrybrien Honey

Gort Community School

Best Use of Social Media on the day


Holy Rosary College


Sunny Maxx

Holy Rosary College

Business Report

Kosy Krafts

Presentation College Headford

Sole Trader

Katlyns Candles

Coláiste an Eachreidh

Social Media

MD Car Velet

Glenamaddy Community School

Community Award


Coláiste Ghobnait

Best Website

Fancy Plants

Seamount College Kinvara


Funk Fathers

Seamount College Kinvara

Best Stand

Healthy Meals Good Deals

Holy Rosary College

Best Pitch/Interview

Down To Earth

Scoil Bhride The Mercy Tuam

Enterprising School

Pres College Headford

Smart Business Winner

Tomás McGrath

Presentation College Athenry

Entrepreneurial Journey - Inter

Sheena Martyn

Colaiste an Chreagáin, Mountbellew