Students from South West College (SWC) were awarded for their promising business projects at this year’s Future Student of Business Awards, which is organised jointly by the Federation of Small Business and Colleges Northern Ireland at Titanic Belfast.
SWC students Shane-Paul Devlin (Strabane), Katie McLaughlin (Enniskillen) and Jolene Samuel (Dungannon) were each presented with a cheque for £350 for their respective projects entitled ‘Devlin Martial Arts’, ‘Katie May Millinery’ and ‘Sugar and Spice - outdoor kids’ functions.’
Speaking to the audience of winners from across the 6 regional FE colleges and invited guests, the Employment and Learning Minister, Dr Stephen Farry said:
“These awards are an excellent opportunity for further education students to gain recognition for their business skills and their future potential for business success. Northern Ireland needs young entrepreneurs in order to drive our economy forward. Entrepreneurship is a highly sought after skill which demonstrates determination, a passion to succeed, overcoming barriers to progress and having the desire and vision to be on the cutting edge.
“I congratulate Colleges NI and the Federation of Small Businesses on this initiative which helps to highlight the value we place on these dynamic individuals.”
Gerry Campbell, Colleges NI Chief Executive, said:
“I was delighted with the standard of applications this year which is a testament to the dedication, hard work and professionalism of the lecturers across our six regional FE colleges. The awards are testament to the excellent work in the sector in terms of fostering the spirit of enterprise and giving learners the skills they need to become the successful entrepreneurs of tomorrow.
“We had a strong judging panel with representatives from Colleges NI, FSB and an external representative who himself is a successful young entrepreneur who previously studied at one of our FE colleges.”
Federation of Small Businesses, Northern Ireland Regional Chairman, John Friel also said ‘Anyone who has won an Award this year - must take credit - because the competition was so high. Mr Friel added ‘If the calibre of the entrants is anything to go by the Northern Ireland economy will reap the rewards in the long term.’