New Bright Spark awards for best young business minds in Connacht

Pat McDonagh, managing director of Supermac’s, and iRadio head of news and sport, Grainne McMahon, light up as they start the search for some of the brightest business minds in Connacht. The Supermac’s Bright Spark Awards 2010 are looking for original business ideas from secondary school transition year, fourth year, and Leaving Cert students. For details log on to www.Supermacs.ie  Photo: Martina Regan.

Pat McDonagh, managing director of Supermac’s, and iRadio head of news and sport, Grainne McMahon, light up as they start the search for some of the brightest business minds in Connacht. The Supermac’s Bright Spark Awards 2010 are looking for original business ideas from secondary school transition year, fourth year, and Leaving Cert students. For details log on to www.Supermacs.ie Photo: Martina Regan.

Secondary school students are being given a chance to shine with the launch of the first Supermac’s Bright Spark Awards which is seeking to identify the best business minds in Connacht. The entrepreneurial competition is a bid to find some of the best budding business minds and ideas in local schools and the competition is open to all senior cycle students including transition year, fourth year, and Leaving Certificate students.

Entrants will need to provide an overview of a new business idea from a student or group of students. The headings under which students are required to work for the competition are especially relevant to the current LCVP curriculum. Students do not need to have put their idea into practice already.

As part of the competition each entry will be judged individually within its own county, with three winners requested to attend the Supermac’s Bright Spark Awards Event in March, where an overall winner will be decided. Members of the main judging panel include Supermac’s managing director Pat McDonagh and iRadio head of news and sport, Gráinne McMahon.

“We decided to set up the Supermac’s Bright Spark Awards to help young people realise there are many opportunities out there,” said Supermac’s managing director Pat McDonagh. “A good idea with a proper plan, hard work, and support can bring a person a long way. We want to encourage young people to see that they can push ahead themselves and create employment for themselves once they have good vision and a solid work ethic. They are the foundation of the country and we need to support them as much as we possibly can.”

Mr McDonagh said they were looking forward to seeing ideas from young people. “I’ve already seen a few coming through and it’s refreshing to see the great ideas young people have along with new ways of thinking about business,” he added.

The overall winner in Connacht will win €1,000 with cash prizes also available for second and third place winners. Prizes for winners from each county range from €250 for first prize winners and cash prizes for second and third place. There are also prizes of gift vouchers for teachers of each competition winner on both a county and Connacht level.

Entry forms are available to download from www.Supermacs.ie Students can enter individually or as a group. Closing date for entry is Friday October 22 with closing date for receipt of Supermac’s Bright Spark Awards Business Plan entries on Tuesday February 1, 2011.

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