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Ballymahon, Granard and Moyne teenage entrepreneurs heading to the National Finals

Final of Co. Longford Student Enterprise Programme sends teenage entrepreneurs from Ballymahon, Granard and Moyne to the National Finals

Teenage entrepreneurs from Ardscoil Phádraig in Granard, Moyne Community School, and Ballymahon Vocational School will represent County Longford at this year’s Student Enterprise Programme National Final on Thursday, 9 May in The Mullingar Park Hotel.

The students all took part in the County Longford final on Thursday, 29 February which was held in The Longford Arms.  An estimated 250 students from seven local schools took part in the annual programme.

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 28,000 students from just under 500 secondary schools across the country take part in 2022-2023.  The programme supports students to create, design and market their own business, all with the hope of reaching the national final. 

County Final 2024

Junior Winner - Maria Kelly - Hat Scents - Ardscoil Phadraig

In the junior category, Longford will be represented at the national final by Maria Kelly from ‘Hat Scents’ at Ardscoil Phadraig, Granard. Grainne McKenna and Sarah Mollaghan from ‘Trendy Threads’ at Moyne Community School will be representing the county at the national final in the intermediate category. Finally, in the senior category of the competition, County Longford will be represented on 9 May in Mullingar by Kiera Hopkins, Lára Flood and Grace Cassells from ‘Handle Holders’ at Ballymahon Vocational School. 


Intermediate Winners - Grainne McKenna & Sarah Mollaghan - Trendy Threads - Moyne Community School

Along with Director of Services with Longford County Council Barbara Heslin, special guests at the Longford final event included Longford County Council Cathaoirleach Cllr Colm Murray, Senator Micheál Carrigy, and elected members of Longford County Council, Cllr Seamus Butler, Cllr Mick Cahill and Cllr Colin Dalton. Longford Chamber of Commerce representatives Brian Crossan and Joe Raleigh were also in attendance. 


Senior Winners - Kiera Hopkins, Lára Flood & Grace Cassells - Handle Holders - Ballymahon Vocational School

Longford has a successful track record in the Student Enterprise Programme. Caitlin Morris from Moyne Community School created history last year by winning first prize in the Intermediate Category at the national finals in 2023. Other recent Longford successes include Best Endeavour in 2022 for ‘Saoirse’s Bakes and Cakes’ from Moyne Community School, Best Commercial Potential in 2021 for ‘Handy Hooks’ from Ballymahon Vocational School, Best Commercial Potential Award 2018 for ‘Reel Easy’ from Moyne Community School and second place in the Senior Category in 2017 for ‘J & S Kitchen Aid’ from Mercy Secondary School in Ballymahon. 

Speaking at the county final, Cathaoirleach Cllr Colm Murray said, “We have a very successful Student Enterprise Programme here in Longford. Our national finalists are excellent ambassadors for the programme, and we wish them the very best of luck in May - we will all be supporting them.” 

Director of Services with Longford County Council Barbara Heslin congratulated all of the students involved, adding “What our students are learning from the programme is that with the right support 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 teamwork, 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 Final, taking place in the Mullingar Park Hotel on Thursday, 9 May 2024.

For local updates, check out or follow Local Enterprise Office, Longford on social media.

Names of participating schools in Student Enterprise Programme 2024

1. Ardscoil Phadraig, Granard

2. Mercy Secondary School, Ballymahon

3. Ballymahon Vocational School

4. Cnoc Mhuire Secondary School, Granard

5. Meán Scoil Mhuire, Longford

6. Moyne Community School

7. St Mel's College

Names of winning enterprises

Junior Category

Business Name


Overall Winner

Hats Scents 

Ardscoil Phadraig, Granard 

Runner Up

Wolly Woof Beds

Moyne Community School




Intermediate Category



Overall Winner

Trendy Threads

Moyne Community School 

Runner Up

Ark Mugs

St. Mel's College, Longford 




Senior Category



Overall Winner

Handle Holders 

Ballymahon Vocational School 

Runner Up

Selfcare Sundays 

Ballymahon - Mercy Secondary School 




Best Business Report


Ballymahon - Mercy Secondary School 


Bear Buddy

Cnoc Mhuire Secondary School, Granard 


DM Bird Houses 

Ballymahon Vocational School 

Special Merit

The Chute Scoop

Moyne Community School

Special Merit


Meán Scoil Mhuire, Longford 




Educator of the Year

Ann Hall

Ballymahon Vocational School