Some of Kildare’s finest young entrepreneurs displayed their business talent at the county finals of the Kildare County Enterprise Board (KCEB) student enterprise awards.
The finals took place on Monday, March 4, at Killashee House Hotel in Naas and were attended by a large crowd of students, teachers, parents, public representatives, members of the local business community and Michael Malone, Kildare County Manager.
Athy’s Click ‘n Light - a TY mini-company project from Ardscoil na Trionoide, in Athy, were named Kildare Mini company of the Year 2013.
The students’ product is a car torch magnet that allows a motorist to fix to their car at night without having to manually hold a torch. It is selling well locally and would hopefully be available online shortly, according to student Grace Forkin. Fiona Sunderland, CEO of Click ‘n Light is looking forward to representing Kildare at the National final in Croke Park on April 17 where they will compete against 34 other entries for a great prize of a trip to Rome .
The runner up award went to Kildare Town Community School with their entry Cill Dara Pens, which produces beautiful handcrafted wooden pens.
The Student Enterprise Awards programme is run by the Kildare County Enterprise Board for Transition Year students. They are encouraged to set up and run their own mini companies and during the programme they receive training and the support of a business mentor .
Elaine McNamara, who co-ordinated the programme on behalf of Kildare CEB said: “It was a very close competition this year. The standard was extremely high across the board and I am sure a lot of students were disappointed”.
Allan Shine, of North Kildare Chamber of Commerce, speaking on behalf of the judges commented: “Students have gained invaluable experience from this programme . It will be interesting to see how many of them will go forward to set up their own businesses in the future”.
Five other prizes were awarded on the day:
Best Display Stand went to Williams Words, St Wolstans, Celbridge.
Best Business report went to Play it by Ear, Newbridge College.
Best Presentation went to Lumberjacks, Ardscoil Rathangan.
Most innovative product went to Knicks and Knacks, Scoil Mhuire, Clane.
Highly commended went to Band a Boot, Ardscoil na Trionoide, Athy.