Emily McDonnell and Ciara Healy from Seedy Feedy Bird Feeds at Athlone Community College and Lucy Champ and Aoife Bolger from ‘Wreaths by Occasion’ at Moate Community School.

Athlone and Moate student entrepreneurs qualify for national final

Teenage entrepreneurs from Moate Community School, Athlone Community College, and Loreto College in Mullingar have been chosen to represent Westmeath at the national finals of the Student Enterprise Programme in May.

The county finals of the competition took place on Wednesday via the Facebook page of the Westmeath Local Enterprise Office.

Around 1,100 young people from eleven Westmeath schools took part in the programme, which encourages students to create, design and market their own business.

In the Junior Category, the students representing Westmeath at the national final are Lucy Champ and Aoife Bolger from 'Wreaths by Occasion' at Moate Community School.

Lucy Champ and Aoife Bolger from ‘Wreaths by Occasion’ at Moate Community School.

In the Intermediate Category, Emily McDonnell and Ciara Healy from 'Seedy Feedy Bird Feeds' at Athlone Community College will be representing the county at the final.

In the Senior Category of the competition Westmeath will be represented on May 14 by Emily Flynn and Emily Shaw from 'Sustainable Stationery' at Loreto College, Mullingar.

The judges at the final included successful Westmeath entrepreneurs Enda Geoghegan of Lift Hire Ireland and David Quirke of Wholesome Kitchen Ireland, along with Catherine Darby, Business Advisor in the Local Enterprise Office Westmeath.

Emily McDonnell and Ciara Healy from Seedy Feedy Bird Feeds at Athlone Community College.

"Our national finalists are excellent ambassadors for the programme and we wish them the very best of luck on Friday, May 14. We'll all be logging on to support them," said Catherine Darby of Local Enterprise Office Westmeath.

"In what has been a particularly challenging year for students, the programme has offered them an outlet outside of the usual school demands.

"What our students are learning from the programme is that with the right supports and encouragement, they can take an idea from the classroom and develop it into a real-life business. The skills they learn along the way, such as business planning, market research, selling and team-work, will help them become more entrepreneurial throughout their future careers."

In the wider Athlone area, the Marist College, Our Lady's Bower, Athlone Community College and Moate Community School each took part in the competition.

The full list of the winning enterprises is as follows:

Junior Category Results

Junior Category Winner

‘Wreaths by Occasion’ by Aoife Bolger & Lucy Champ from Moate Community School

Junior Category Runner Up

‘Creative Plaques’ by Darragh Madden, Lauren White & Sears Henson from Moate Community School

Intermediate Category Results

Intermediate Category Winner

‘Seedy Feedy Bird feeders’ by Ciara Healy & Emily McDonnell from Athlone Community College

Intermediate Category Runner Up

‘Waxy Wraps’ by Sarah McCormack, Keelan Robbins & Emily Winters from Moate Community School

Senior Category Results

Senior Category Winner

‘Sustainable Stationery’ by Emily Flynn and Emily Shaw from Loreto College, Mullingar

Senior Category Runner Up

‘C & E Developments’ by Ellen Geoghan and Colin Burke from St. Joseph’s Secondary School, Rochfortbridge

Most Innovative and Enterprising School Award

Loreto College, Mullingar