Dublin City Council has chosen two TU Dublin teams as winners of a programme designed to match third level students and their skills, with local and social enterprises.
ENFUSE (Inspiring and Fusing - Enterprises and students), which is led by Dublin City Council and the Local Enterprise Office, matches local enterprises and social enterprises with masters’ students who, as part of a module, work in teams to directly apply their learning in a real-life scenario.
Before the event, the initial 39 teams were shortlisted to seven teams who pitched their plan to the judges to be in with a chance to win specialist mentoring and training supports from LEO Dublin City and prizes from Dublin Place Brand.
Speaking at the ENFUSE Finals, Greg Swift, Head of Enterprise and Economic Development, said: ‘ENFUSE connects enterprises with students, which greatly benefits both parties. Local enterprises benefit from bespoke research and a plan while students benefit from industry experience and an opportunity to directly apply their learning to support a local enterprise.'
MSc in Strategic Management students - Carl Byrne, Daryl Connolly, Claire Doherty, Dylan Finlay and Daniela Tapia - came first in the competition with My Tea Workshop. They were mentored by lecturer Dr Lucia Walsh. In third place were MSc in Business and Entrepreneurship students - Caoimhe O’Sullivan, Max Ricardo Filho, Mitzi Jacinta Sandoval and Mariyyah Alatni - with Twigs. They were mentored by Jennifer McDonnell.
Also making the final from TU Dublin were MSc Digital Marketing students Maeve Colleran, Aaron Hearns, Karla Maria Vega Lizarraga, Maria Jimena Pesce, Conor Martin with their client PlayAct and mentored by Dr Roisin Vize and the MSc Strategic Management (part-time) students Aidan Kelly Murphy, Michelle Kenny, Andrea O'Connell with their client Tir and mentored by Dr Lucia Walsh.
Diana Riquel and her enterprise My Tea Workshop was supported by TU Dublin students Carl Byrne, Daryl Connolly, Claire Doherty, Dylan Finlay and Daniela Tapia. Highlighting the students’ contribution to her enterprise, Diana explained: ‘The team helped me to open my mind and see my business from a different perspective, asking questions that challenged me every step of the way. Their hard work and precise and thorough research have produced a very practical marketing plan that has facilitated my solopreneur daily workload.’
Highlighting the importance of students being able to apply their learning to real-life scenarios, Dr Lucia Walsh, TU Dublin lecturer of the ENFUSE 2021 - 1st Place Student Team, stated: ‘Engaging in ENFUSE means that the students can apply their learning in a meaningful and impactful way as they work with real clients. It's a win-win for everyone. All teams have put in a huge amount of work into this and have built new skills and strong relationships with their clients over the last few months. It's very rewarding to see how their innovative thinking translates into strategies that are then actioned by the clients’.
More information about the ENFUSE programme is available from the Dublin City Council website.