USI summit draws in over 800 students

An 800-strong crowd of students assembled in Dublin Castle last Thursday for the third annual Union of Students’ Ireland (USI) Student Summit promoting entrepreneurship, innovation and recruitment.

The summit gathered industry success stories, hosted 40 startups and held 16 workshops for attendees. Speakers included Feilim Mac An Iomaire, PR & Media Relations Manager of Paddy Power; Humans of Dublin, The American Embassy and keynote speaker, Ann O’Dea, CEO and co-founder of Silicon Republic.

“The key thing in any business is that you have a superb idea and then the really key thing next is the execution of the idea the only way to execute is by working really really hard and just being your absolute best self and surrounding yourself with really really good people who trust you and respect you because those people will work and follow you and help you reach your goal,” O’Dea advised.

In addition to booths from startups, workshops and talks the Student Summit also featured a pitching competition where two students pitched their startups to a panel of experts to compete for a €1500 prize from Enterprise Ireland. The winning startup was a coffee delivery service, Espressio.

USI President Kevin Donoghue praised student entrepreneurs at the summit, “When everyone else has a problem they see an opportunity, a chance to fix it or to provide a certain service that just isn’t there.”

Talks at the summit ranged from Women in Business to How To Start a Business and Why Paying Your Staff is Important. The crowd were from all different college faculties, not strictly studying business courses. Students had the opportunity to seek the advice of the professionals in attendance and their were also some recruitment opportunities.

Partners of the summit included Enterprise Ireland, Bank of Ireland, Jobbio and thejournal.ie.
Katie O’Neill

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