18/06/2013

Belfast Students Graduate From Business Programme

A number of students from Belfast have graduated from an entrepreneurial business programme funded by Belfast City Council.

Now in its fourth year, 21 students participated in the Belfast Enterprise Academy (BEA).

The programme is for degree students living in Belfast and studying at Queen’s University, the University of Ulster and Belfast Metropolitan College.

It enables students to meet successful entrepreneurs and receive one-to-one mentoring, as well as help with developing a business plan.

One of the degree students was local musician, Gary Todd, who said: "I know how difficult it is for young bands getting bookings and setting up tours so I'm starting a company that will manage all that without taking a massive chunk out of the band's profits."
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Stuart Cannell, another BEA participant, who works as a fine art artist, added: "When I saw an opportunity to take part in the programme, I took it as I knew the Belfast Enterprise Academy would equip me with the knowledge for combining my passion with the business principles. It is this combination that will allow me to make a living for what I love doing."

Since the Belfast Enterprise Academy was launched four years ago, it has seen 18 new businesses established and the creation of 31 jobs, according to Belfast City Council.

Councillor Deirdre Hargey, Chair of Belfast City Council’s Development Committee, said: "The Belfast Enterprise Academy is a stimulating and exciting programme that encourages students to consider self-employment and to develop business ideas. The programme also emphasises the importance of entrepreneurship as a driver for our local economy. We believe that by developing these talented young people, we will form a strong base for our future entrepreneurs and economy. I wish them now every success for a bright business future."

(IT/CD)

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