Enterprise Ireland opens Student Entrepreneur Awards competition for entries

Enterprise Ireland opens Student Entrepreneur Awards competition for entries

Field of Vision’s founders: David Deneher, Chief Operating Officer; Omar Salem, Chief Executive, and Tim Farrelly, Chief Technology Officer Picture: Paul Sharp

ENTERPRISE Ireland is inviting students from third-level institutions nationwide with an innovative business idea with real commercial potential to apply to this year’s Student Entrepreneur Awards.

This year celebrates the 41st year of the Student Entrepreneur Awards which are co-sponsored by Cruickshank, Grant Thornton and the Local Enterprise Offices, and are part of a drive aimed at encouraging students from all academic disciplines to start their own business as a career option.

Ten finalists will be selected to compete for several awards such as the Cruickshank High Achieving Merit Award, the Grant Thornton High Achieving Merit Award and the Local Enterprise Office ICT Award.

The overall winner will share in a €35,000 prize fund and receive mentoring from Enterprise Ireland to develop the commercial viability of their concept.

The other award winners will also receive expert advice and mentoring support from Enterprise Ireland and the programme sponsors to help them turn their ideas into a commercial reality.

Trinity College Dublin students Tim Farrelly and David Deneher along with Omar Salem, a student at Queen’s University Belfast of Field of Vision won Enterprise Ireland’s 2021 Student Entrepreneur of the Year Award for their haptic technology which enables visually impaired football fans to feel the action for themselves, without relying solely on a commentator’s interpretation.

Other 2021 award winners included UCC student Marion Cantillon of Pit-Seal for her biofilm which eliminates the need for farmers to use plastic or tyres to seal pits and reduces methane emissions, and socially responsible clothing brand Pure Clothing created by Dublin City University student Peter Timlin and University of Limerick student Richard Grimes.

Richard Murphy, Manager LEO Support, Policy and Co-ordination Unit, Enterprise Ireland said: “Each year, the Student Entrepreneur Awards receive more than 1,000 submissions from third-level students in colleges and universities all over Ireland and we are always impressed by the high-quality and ingenuity of the entries.

“Over the past four decades, the awards have provided an important platform for young, aspiring entrepreneurs from across the country to showcase their innovative business ideas.

“The competition acts as a springboard for tomorrow’s business leaders, and previous winners and finalists have gone on to achieve success both nationally and internationally.

“I would encourage anyone with an idea that they believe has commercial potential to enter this year’s Awards and take that first step to business success.”

David Deneher of Field of Vision, winners of the 2021 Enterprise Ireland Student Entrepreneur of the Year, said: “Participating in the Enterprise Ireland Student Entrepreneur Awards was an invaluable learning experience in our journey as a company.

“Winning the overall award provided us with the necessary confidence, exposure and funding to bring Field of Vision to the next level and Enterprise Ireland has provided continuous support since the Awards.”

The closing date for Student Entrepreneur Award entries is Friday, March 11, 2022.

The award winners will be announced at a ceremony which will be held on Friday, June 10, 2022.

Entries to the Student Entrepreneur Awards 2022 can be made via www.studententrepreneurawards.com

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