Gradstart offers Local Enterprise Office client companies financial support to hire top graduate talent and develop a talent pipeline.  One Irish or International graduate can be hired at any one time for a two-year period by companies.  During the placement, the company must define the a project aligned to its growth plan for each graduate to complete.  Graduates are also assigned an in-company mentor to support their development.

Key Points to note:

  • companies must be incorporated.
  • companies must operate in the manufacturing or internationally traded services sector.
  • Companies must employ a minimum of 5 staff.
  • Roles in any discipline are eligible for support, except for direct sales and direct marketing positions.

Financial Support



Language Support


(€15,000 per year) or 50% of

individual graduate salary

costs (whichever is lesser).


(€21,000 per year on a

maximum allowable salary

of €30,000 per year) or 70%

of individual graduate salary

costs (whichever is lesser).  

The graduate role must

clear requirement for

language proficiency.

How to apply:

All company applications for funding should be discussed with Jacqui or Bríd in the Local Enterprise Office Waterford prior to submission.  The scheme is open for applications on the Enterprise Ireland Online Application System using the LEO tab.  All applications for Gradstart can be made throughout the year.