Budding entrepreneurs have been benefiting from an enterprise-training programme at GMIT Castlebar which has been helping local business projects get off the ground and generate future employment potential.
The programme at the Innovation in Business Centre (IiBC ) in the college is run in association with Mayo South West Development Company and Mayo North East Partnership under the Rural Development Programme 2007 - 2013.
A four-month part-time programme that includes practical learning through workshop delivery, hands-on experience, and one-to-one mentoring for participants, the professional in-house training on offer has recently helped eight entrepreneurs develop their small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs ). Businesses covered to date include innovative food technologies, bespoke furniture design, silk scarves, fascinators, organic make-up products, sports website, services for the tourism industry, and seafood products.
The IiBC provides a professional, modern, environment for early-stage entrepreneurs and businesses and in addition to business accommodation, provides opportunities to engage with other businesses at similar stages of development as well as ongoing support and advice.
Centre manager at IiBC, Maria Staunton, added that the need for job creation is recognised in today’s environment and recent course participants are expected to provide employment opportunities in the near future.
The criteria for eligibility of projects are set down by the EU and the Department of Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs. Anyone interested in participating in future programmes can contact South West Mayo Development Company on 098-41950 or Mayo North East Leader Partnership 094-9256745 or GMIT on 091-742826/087-9618355(m ) [email protected]