ST Mary’s University College Belfast has joined forces with Young Enterprise NI to introduce a trusted and valued entrepreneurship programme to the Business Studies students at the Falls Road College.
The students have quickly put theory into practice with four friends formulating a company Sip Secure and creating a product designed to protect your drink while on a night out.
So impressed were the Trade Fair judges with the BEd Year 3 Business Studies students that they were awarded the ‘Best Start-up’ award for the creativity in creating a product with a high market application. The judges were highly complimentary of the St Mary’s team, whom they described as “very impressive young men who are both highly engaged and knowledgeable”.
John Brolly, Marketing and Communications Manager at St Mary’s University College Belfast said: “This is the first step by St Mary’s in what will be a strong partnership with Young Enterprise to develop the entrepreneurial skillset of our students.
“I would like to congratulate our Business Studies students who have shown incredible energy, creativity and speed of thinking in developing a business plan as well as delivering a product that deals with a significant issue in our society.”
Carol Fitzsimons MBE, CEO of Young Enterprise NI added: “Young Enterprise is delighted to have St Mary’s University College on board with us this year for the Start Up programme.
“As the future teachers in the classroom, having the students participate to develop both their own enterprise skills, as well as understand the value for the young people they will teach in future, has been great to see.
“The students were enthusiastic at the Trade Fair with their product, which deals with a current social issue, and it is great to see them getting fully involved in the project.”
Welcoming the partnership, Francis McVeigh, Associate Lecturer in Business Studies at the College said that it allows students to put into practice theory taught in business lectures; share in the vision and develop a business idea which is close to their hearts.
“The students involved are good friends, turned business partners, who have developed many transferable skills but most importantly students have experienced something special, memorable, and enjoyable,” she said.
“The entrepreneurial spirit is very much alive and vibrant within the Business Studies Department at St Mary’s, and we know that these fine young student teachers will become beacons in the future as they introduce similar Enterprise Programmes, in their own respective teaching career pathways.”