Students Visit Innovation Factory

28 April 2017

The Innovation Factory (IF) at the Forthriver Business Park on the Springfield Road was delighted to welcome Liberal Arts Business Studies final-year students from St Mary’s University College earlier in the year as part of their “real life” academic project.

The students listened to pitches from four IF customers with a view towards assisting them to address a challenge that could help them develop their business in the future. This presented an opportunity for the students to learn about the realities of running a business and to offer a contribution that may have the potential to make a real difference to the business’ future development.

The four IF customers who stepped into the “firing line” and pitched to the students were Andrew from Frog Media, Sarah from Resolve Planning and Development, Michael from RoyleMac 10 and Martin from TIME Associates.

Martin from TIME Associates pitching on the importance of the intangible benefits of training and development

Shane Smith, Community Engagement Officer with IF, commented:

“We were delighted to welcome the students to IF, and we see partnerships like this as mutually beneficial. This was reflected in how quickly our customers were to sign up and get involved. The students get an opportunity to hear about real business issues experienced by small businesses while the owners get the benefit of fresh eyes to give new perspectives on how to develop further. Maybe in the future one of the students in the room will be back at IF as a customer and owner of an innovative and growing business.”

Andrew from Frog Media seeking inspiration on how to use digital solutions to open new markets in other parts of the world

Rita Day, Lecturer in Business Studies commented:

“We are extremely grateful to the IF for hosting the event and for their hospitality. The presentations from the IF customers were professional, motivational and informative. I firmly believe that opportunities like this to contextualise theory will give our Liberal Arts students the confidence and skills to become the innovative business leaders of the future.”

Michael from RoyleMac10 explaining the importance of differentiation in the marketplace

Sarah from Resolve Planning and Development seeking guidance on identifying and developing relationships to increase the customer base

Having heard the pitches, the students took time to reflect on the information presented and returned to the IF on 25 April where they presented their findings, solutions and recommendations to the business start-ups.

L-R: Nicole McCabe, Maria Collins, Cliodhna Connolly, Victoria Kennedy, Danielle Rooney, Emily Patterson, Aidan Churchill, Ciaran Manson, Paul O'Hagan, Caomhan Slane, Ben Teague and Rita Day.

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