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Semester 1: Year 2 as Student Enterprise Intern

Semester 1: Year 2 as Student Enterprise Intern

17 December, 2021

Facing into my second year of the enterprise internship was exciting as it meant finally being able to engage with students and fellow staff members in person as MTU took a blended approach to semester one.

While it was exciting to finally get into the classroom and get that live, in person engagement from the students it was also an adjustment having worked completely online last year.

This semester saw myself and my colleague Clionadh Fahy say goodbye to Dylan Hennessey. Dylan was the intern senior to us when we began last year. He was a huge help to us and a fountain of knowledge throughout our first year in the role. In place of Dylan, we have welcomed Rosha Courtney who is an International Business graduate and has taken part in some of our student engagement initiatives such as the ESB challenge and the Innovation challenge.

Business Model Canvas

The Business Model Canvas (BMC) was once again rolled out to over 950 first year MTU students, ranging across a wide variety of courses from music to electrical engineering. The BMC is a tool used by many entrepreneurs and business owners to strategically plan for a business’s current and future needs. Clionadh, Rosha and I made a presentation on the concept and then held an in-class or online workshop on how to put theory into practice. Following from the workshop students work together in their groups to come up with business ideas, choose one and complete their own BMC on that business idea. At the end of the semester these students will then pitch their final business model to the Rubicon Team and a winner will be chosen. There are two €500 prizes up for grabs - one for the group with the best BMC and another for the best BMC that addresses the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The final was held on December 10th and we were so delighted with the quality of the entries that the judges decided a 3rd prize was necessary!

Class Talks

The Enterprise Intern Team reached 592 students this semester, giving class talks about entrepreneurship and showing them a virtual tour of the Rubicon building. This outreach to students at any year or from any discipline is hugely important in showcasing to them the different supports available to them should they wish to pursue a business ideal.

WeRin

This semester I have also been delighted to work with one of the Hincks Centre's researchers Sarah Davis on the WeRin Project - Women Entrepreneurs in Regional Inclusive Entrepreneurial Ecosystems. I have a great interest in this project, firstly as a woman and secondly as a woman that has grown up around entrepreneurs, both male and female.

I attended the online Think Tank event with Sarah and project partners Momentum, which showcased speakers from different regions discussing the research project, followed by a brainstorming session. I found it hugely beneficial in giving me greater context to the question being researched and gave me further insight as to ways I could help Sarah to promote the WeRin project here in MTU.

The Hincks Centre held its own online Think Tank event in November and again, we had some fantastic speakers -  Vanessa Kiely O’Connor who spoke about women in agriculture, Claire Walsh from Enterprise Ireland and Dr Fiona Edwards Murphy from Apis Protect. These speakers were followed by two discussion groups:

  • Inclusivity for Early Stage Entrepreneurship (Entrepreneurship Education/Incubators/ Start-ups)
  • Making Business growth and finance more inclusive for women entrepreneurs

Competitions

Again, this year, as part of the MTU Enterprise & Innovation Month, the Hincks Centre for Entrepreneurship Excellence are delighted to be bringing back The APPrentice & SilverEship competitions.

 

The APPrentice Competition is to inspire students to set up new and interesting APP ideas. Each finalist will collaborate with poster design students to create a poster representing their APP idea which will be accompanied by a voice over pitch, recorded by the APP creator, and displayed at an online event during MTU’s Enterprise & Innovation Month. I also challenged myself to give the APPrentice logo a facelift and bring it more in line with the new MTU branding.

 

The SilverEship Competition: Back by popular demand,  the Hincks Centre is delighted to bring you the SilverEship Competition 2022. Now in its second year, this competition is for MTU staff and retired staff. With a growing older population brings great opportunities and challenges for society and the economy. rapidly growing silver economy is an untapped market for businesses. With this in mind, we are asking current and retired staff to:

  • Highlight a problem/issue related to older people (max 100 words).
  • Provide a business idea which could potentially solve this problem/issue (max 150 words).
  • Nominate a charity.

Prizes will be awarded for:

  • Best Idea
  • Best Chance of Commercialisation
  • Most Interesting Problem/Issue Identified

The prizes will then be donated to a charity of the winner’s choice.

 

It’s been a busy semester and although things are still uncertain for semester two, I am grateful I had the chance to gain as much experience on campus and in live classes as I could. I look forward to making the most of my final semester working with the brilliant teams across The Hincks Centre, The Rubicon and both MTU Cork and Kerry campuses.


 

Catriona Fenton is a marketing graduate from Munster Technological University.

She is currently undertaking a master’s in digital marketing strategy whilst working as an Enterprise Intern with the Hincks Centre for Entrepreneurship Excellence.

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