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Local Enterprise Office Limerick launches Student Enterprise Awards 2017 Programme

Attending the Student Enterprise Awards 2017 launch in the Southcourt Hotel were Garry Lowe, Whizzkids Training and student Enterprise Awards Co-ordinator, Laura Ryan, Head of Communications/Marketing with Limerick City and County Council, Cllr Stephen Keary, Mayor of Limerick City and County and Normal Purtill, Asst Business Advisor, LEO. Photograph Liam Burke Press 22

Local Enterprise Office Limerick launches Student Enterprise Awards 2017 Programme

Students from across Limerick city and county have been set a challenge to create their own mini business.

The challenge came at the launch of the Local Enterprise Office  Student Enterprise Awards 2017 Programme in the South Court Hotel, Raheen.


With over 500 students in attendance, the event proved a great success as they received advice from past winners of the event and from experts in the field of entrepreneurship and business.

Organised by the Limerick Local Enterprise Office, the event had a range of speakers including Cllr Stephen Keary, Mayor of the City and County of Limerick, Laura Ryan of, Chris Kelly previous winner of Limerick’s Best Young Entrepreneur and Colm O’Brien author of “Feeding Johnny – How to build a Business despite the Roadblocks.”

Mayor Stephen Keary officially opened the event and commended the students for getting involved: “The Student Enterprise Programme and Awards are a brilliant way of harnessing all your talents and ideas forging them into a new business.”

Student Enterprise Awards 2017

Attending the Student Enterprise Awards 2017 launch in the Southcourt Hotel on Tuesday were students and a teacher from Mungret Community College. Photograph Liam Burke Press 22

“They are a wonderful vehicle for promoting the importance of entrepreneurs to the local economy.”

Norma Purtill LEO Limerick Business Advisor, welcomed the large numbers and emphasised the importance of local entrepreneurs to the Irish economy and said LEO Limerick acknowledges the support of the Department of Business, Enterprise & Innovation and the European Union for their continuing support of the Student Enterprise Programme.

Garry Lowe of Whizzkids Training, who coordinates the competition and visits the schools to see how they are progressing, was next to the podium.  He advised the students on product development and how to turn their idea into a commercial reality.

“Today is all about getting students thinking about running their own business and I couldn’t be happier with the way it went.  The guest speakers really inspired and the reaction from the floor was great today,” Garry said.

“Already students were running some initial ideas by me and that was what we hoped to achieve.  They will have to work hard on these ideas over the next six months before they are judged, but the Local Enterprise Office and I will support them all the way,” he added.

The aim of the event was to provide as much practical advice to the students as possible and Laura Ryan of and Chris Kelly of Pinpoint Innovations gave some excellent advice on how to get the word out about your business through marketing and networking.

“Pablo Science & Engineering” from Ardscoil Rís, last year’s winners, also made an appearance and made presenting to a large crowd look easy.

They were extremely enthusiastic and encouraged the fellow students to make the most of the support provided for young entrepreneurs through the competition.

The whole event was finished out by entrepreneur Colm O’Brien, who successfully built up a business from scratch to 130 employees and his presentation was a seamless mix of practical tips and inspirational advice

Visit for more information about the student enterprise programme.

For further information please contact Garry Lowe at 086 9572409

For more stories on Student Enterprise Awards click here


Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.