Local Enterprise Office Wexford have announced that teenage entrepreneurs from Creagh College Gorey Ramsgrange Community College and CBS Wexford will represent Wexford at this year’s Student Enterprise Programme National Final on Thursday 9th May.

The students all took part in the County Final on Thursday March 7th, which was held at the Wexford County Council Offices in Carricklawn. 1,390 students from 18 Schools across Wexford took part in the annual programme with 135 students showcasing their enterprise projects on the day.

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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.

In the Junior Category, the student representing Wexford at the National Final is: Oisín Casey from Second Chance Golf Balls at CBS Wexford.

In the Intermediate Category, Holly Cassidy, from Sparkly Clean, of Ramsgrange Community College will be representing the county at the Final.

In the Senior Category of the competition, Wexford will be represented on May 9th by Matt Furlong & Adam Connolly from EcoFire at Creagh College Gorey. 

Special guests at the County Final included John Flemming Cathaoirleach of Wexford County Council, Eddie Taaffe Interm Chief Executive, Liz Hore, Director of Services, Economic Development & Planning, Breege Cosgrave, Head of Enterprise and Economic Development and Sean Kehoe MD of MachineLab, a well known local entrepreneur.

Commenting after the finalists were announced, Cathaoirleach John Fleming remarked “Our national finalists are excellent ambassadors for the programme and we wish them the very best of luck on the 9th May at the National Finals.  Supported by their dedicated teachers and parents they have embarked on a remarkable journey, delving into the real world of entrepreneurship and gaining invaluable experiences that will serve them well in years to come”

Speaking at the county final, Breege Cosgrave, Head of Enterprise and Economic Development, of Local Enterprise Office Wexford congratulated the students, saying “We have a very successful student enterprise programme here in Wexford, with over 1,390 students from 18 local schools taking part this year. 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”.

Interim Chief Executive Eddie Taffe stated “I am encouraged and especially optimistic when I see the second level students of Wexford who have, over the course of the last six months used their creativity, innovation and entrepreneurial spirit to develop and run a mini company. Through their commitment and resourcefulness they have proven themselves as committed problem solvers, original thinkers, and capable entrepreneurs and business-people. Wexford County Council are delighted to host the Student Enterprise County finals and we look forward to supporting the next generation of business leaders in a few short years.”

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 the 9th May. 

Since the Student Enterprise Programme began in 2003, over 380,000 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 2023 / 2024 at www.StudentEnterprise.ie, 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 www.studententerprise.ie and by searching #studententerprise on social media.