Big Success For Tipperary Business At National Student Enterprise Final

Students from The Christian Brothers Secondary School in Thurles were awarded top honours by winning the Senior category award at the Student Enterprise Programme National Finals in Croke Park this week, organised by the Local Enterprise Office Network (LEOs) for secondary schools, innovative product with their magnetic hose holder aimed specifically at parlour hoses for dairy farmers.


The Handy Hose by student entrepreneurs Jack O’Mara and Daniel Ruddy from CBS Thurles fits to the hose to enable it to attach easily to the any metal surface within the milking parlour.

Big Success For Tipperary Business At National Student Enterprise Final

The product has also received the backing of Farmer of the Year 2019, David Russell, who has use the product in his milking parlours along with local farmers including Chairperson of the Centenary Cooperative , Jim Russell.


J&D Engineering makes the attachment themselves and had sold over 200, before the Covid-19 pandemic and are now continuing to sell the product online. The students were awarded €2,000 prize money along with an additional €1,000 for their school. An official prize ceremony is planned in September 2020. Huge credit to the student’s teacher Fergus O’ Brien and Student Enterprise Coordinator for Tipperary, Sue Anne O’ Donnell who guided the students from September 2019 and has worked successfully in this capacity for thirteen years of the county and national competition.

Big Success For Tipperary Business At National Student Enterprise Final

The students and teachers from across the country tuned in online to the event hosted by RTE’s Rick O’Shea and who was joined during the ceremony by Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation – Heather Humphreys, Chairman of the National Network of Local Enterprise Offices, Oisín Geoghegan and Student Entrepreneur Programme Ambassador, Josh Van Der Flier.


This year there was a record number of 85 student enterprises competing at the National Final 2020. The initiative is funded by the Government of Ireland through Enterprise Ireland and delivered by the 31 Local Enterprise Offices in local authorities throughout the country, close to 26,000 students from almost 500 secondary schools across the country took part.


The National Final students competed across three categories, Junior, Intermediate and Senior and judging was carried out though use of video conferencing. Each student enterprise was challenged with creating, setting up and running their own business and to demonstrate actual sales of a service or product. The judging panel included business owners and representatives from enterprise agencies and associated bodies.


This year’s Programme also saw two new pilot competitions across the Junior, Intermediate and Senior categories. The first, the “My Entrepreneurial Journey” pilot was run in the Junior and Intermediate cycle and open to any students involved in wider competition. It required them to map out the life of a successful entrepreneur and the journey of hard work, passion and dedication required to achieve business goals.


In the Senior category there was a new “Go Green: Be Sustainable Creative Business Competition”. In this new pilot competition students could promote innovative business ideas via a video pitch, without having to produce a product or service and was open to all senior students taking part in the wider competition.


Chair of the Enterprise Education Committee with the Local Enterprise Offices, Michael Nevin said; “As a programme we are lucky in that much of the work that students were doing in relation to their Student Enterprises was done well before this pandemic broke out. So, there is no reduction in the quality of entries, if anything we have had a bigger final this year and some outstanding entries. Looking through the Finalists you can see that students are more conscientious than ever when it comes to solving problems they see in everyday life, affecting the environment and the people around them. It’s encouraging to see the focus that the next generation are putting on making the world a better place and irrespective of who wins, we will see some great student businesses coming from this.”


Since 2003, over 200,000 students have taken part in the Student Enterprise Programme

Full details of all this year’s 85 national finalists are available on the Student Enterprise Programme website at


Special acknowledgement and congratulations to the other Tipperary representatives at this year’ final who were:

Junior Category, the students representing Tipperary were: Lucy Kenny, Emily Spillane and Aoibheann Collum with their business LEA Sports from Patrician Presentation, Fethard.

In the Intermediate Category, Hazel Brennan, Anniemaie Walsh, Molly O’ Brien and Ada Hennessy with their business Hanger Helpers, Presentation Secondary School, Clonmel and

Nermine Lounis of Coláiste Dún Íascaigh, Cahir who entered the “My Entrepreneurial Journey” category, while in the “Most Creative Business Idea” section, Igor Malecki of Coláiste Mhuire, Co – Ed, Thurles represented his school.

Comments are closed.