Erin’s ‘Genie’ conjures up an All Ireland Award

St. Mary's Secondary School Charleville student Erin Queally (centre), who won the Best Display Award at the National Final of the Schools Enterprise Programme at Croke Park last week, pictured with teachers Gerard O'Donovan and Ann Doherty (left), Joan Kelleher, Business Information Officer Local Enterprise Office Mallow, Colm Walsh, Local Enterprise Office Mallow, and P. J. McCarthy, President Charleville Chamber.

St. Mary’s Secondary School Charleville student Erin Queally (centre), who won the Best Display Award at the National Final of the Schools Enterprise Programme at Croke Park last week, pictured with teachers Gerard O’Donovan and Ann Doherty (left), Joan Kelleher, Business Information Officer Local Enterprise Office Mallow, Colm Walsh, Local Enterprise Office Mallow, and P. J. McCarthy, President Charleville Chamber.

St Mary’s Secondary School Charleville student Erin Quealey claimed an All Ireland award with her company ‘Genie’ at the All Ireland Enterprise Awards in Croke Park last week. 22,000 students competed in the student enterprise contest and against very strong competition Erin scooped a prestigious All Ireland award.

Erin makes pencil cases, cosmetic bags and handbags from recycled jeans and has spent a busy first year in St. Mary’s, setting up and running her successful business.

The concept behind ‘Genie’ for the younger market is very clever. Each pencil case comes with a ‘Genie Helper’ which grants the child three wishes, and this has proven very popular among her youngest cus-tomers. All Genie products come in a variety of colours and Erin can tailor the products to meet the customer’s specific requirements.

St Mary’s is no stranger to All Ireland glory. Last year they were named Junior All Ireland Champions with the company ‘Bring a Fairy Home,’ run by Mary O’Leary, Eva Fitzgibbon and Ciara Lichfield, making history for St Mary’s Secondary School and the Local Enterprise Office Cork North and West.

Now in its 14th year, the Student Enterprise Awards is the biggest enterprise competition for students in Ireland. The programme brings the world of business into the classroom, helping students to develop skills in enterprise and management. It has been a welcome com-plement to the business studies curriculum in schools right across the country, and participating schools, teachers and students receive significant support for the Local Enterprise Office network to help them bring their ideas to market readiness. We would encourage all schools to sign up and get their students involved.