Galway student entrepreneurs win stake in seed funding

A project which aims to help protect Ireland's bee population is among the projects by young Galway entrepreneurs selected to share in €10,000 in seed funding in a national competition held last week.

The announcement came after student teams from across Ireland battled it out in a virtual pitch event to win a stake in €10,000 of seed funding and a place on the Enactus and Citi Pathways to Progress programme.

A group of Enactus students from NUI Galway were among the winning projects. Their project, called ‘Buzz Box’, attempts to tackle the serious decline in the bee population around Ireland and spreads awareness about the impact of the decline through workshops in schools, businesses, social media, and videos.

Now in its fourth year, the Pathways to Progress initiative is a key element of the partnership between Citi Foundation and Enactus Ireland. The initiative calls on third-level students to develop an idea for a project that will empower young people between the ages of 16 and 24 who are from disadvantaged urban areas around Ireland.

The virtual event featured a live pitch and Q&A session form all competing teams. The winning project from NUI Galway was selected to progress through to the programme, where they will receive €1,000 in seed funding, intensive training focusing on project development from the Citi Innovation Lab and Enactus Ireland, and a designated mentor to aid the project’s development and offer guidance from the initial project phases through to project execution and delivery.

Ten project spots were available on the programme and the successful Galway applicants were selected by an esteemed panel of Citi judges – Joanna Petty, public affairs officer, Citi Ireland; Diarmuid Whyte, client asset and deposit protection officer for Citibank Europe Plc; Maeve Lawrence, vice president, corporate banking; and David Jones, director, issuer services product.

The Galway students who progressed through to the programme will present their final projects to a judging panel at a showcase event in April, with a further €4,000 seed funding available for the winner and €2,000 for the runner-up.


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