900 local teenagers are planning to start their own businesses in Mayo

Minister Pat Breen launches the country’s biggest student enterprise programme with the Local Enterprise Offices
An estimated 22,000 secondary school students from 620 Irish schools, including 962 students from 15 local secondary schools in Mayo, are learning about the world of business by setting up their own enterprises through the Student Enterprise Programme with the Local Enterprise Offices.
The Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen T.D. visited the school of an award-winning teenage entrepreneur this week, to officially launch the 2017/2018 Student Enterprise Programme, which is the biggest enterprise education initiative of its kind in the country.

Mayo Schools Involved

The programme is run locally every year by Local Enterprise Office Mayo and schools from the county that taking part this year are:

  • Achill    Colaiste Pobal Acla
  • Ballina    St Muredachs
  • Ballina    St mary's Secondary School
  • Ballinrobe    Ballinrobe Community School
  • Belmullet    Our Lady's Secondary Sch.
  • Belmullet    St Brendans
  • Claremorris    St Colemans
  • Claremorris    St. Michael's
  • Crossmolina    Jesus&Mary/Gortnor Abbey
  • Crossmolina    St Tiernans
  • Foxford    St. Joseph's Secondary Sch.
  • Killala    Lacken Cross
  • Kiltimagh    St. Louis Secondary Sch.
  • Louisburgh    Sacta Maria College
  • Swinford    Scoil Muire & Padraig
  • Westport    Rice College
  • Tourmakeady    Colaiste Muire

For the national programme launch, Minister Breen visited Coláiste Chill Mhantáin in Wicklow, where 16-year-old Cillian Scott is a fifth-year student. Back in May, Scott won the Intermediate Category at the National Student Enterprise Awards in Croke Park for ‘Scott Engine Tables,’ a company which transforms car, truck and tank engines into furniture.

Minister Breen said: “Since the Student Enterprise Programme began in 2003, more than 150,000 students have benefited, and we want to keep nurturing Ireland’s future entrepreneurs and business leaders in the years to come. Entrepreneurship is the backbone of the Irish economy and initiatives such as the Student Enterprise Programme are key to fostering a more enterprising culture. I would encourage principals and teachers to get in touch with their Local Enterprise Office, to find out how they can get involved in the next Student Enterprise Programme.”

Michael Nevin is the Chair of the Enterprise Education Committee with the Local Enterprise Offices which runs the Student Enterprise Programme. Welcoming the official launch of this year’s programme by Minister Breen he said: “The Student Enterprise Programme enables thousands of students to explore the world of business, starting in the classroom. This is a very practical programme for second-level students, made possible thanks to the support of schools, principals and teachers in every county and local authority area.”

2017 was a particularly successful year for County Mayo, with winners in each category at the national finals of the Student Enterprise Programme. John Magee, Head of Enterprise with Local Enterprise Office Mayo said: “It is great to see so many young students and their teachers engaging in the Student Enterprise programme in Mayo year on year and we look forward engaging with our young budding entrepreneurs in the County to assist them in achieving their entrepreneurial potential. As we look to the future, the curriculum in schools is changing with more of an emphasis on enterprise in the classroom. The Student Enterprise Programme is a natural fit for teachers with new resources and supports available to schools throughout the county.”

Updates for teacher resource packs are available to secondary schools from the Local Enterprise Offices, free of charge, through the www.studententerprise.ie website.

Student Enterprise

At the national launch this week, the Minister was joined by student entrepreneurs and representatives from Coláiste Chill Mhantáin, the Local Enterprise Offices, Enterprise Ireland and the local authorities.