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Backing innovation for the next generation

Tuesday 11 July 2023

Catalyst's Generation Innovation programme delivers a promising future

As part of its ongoing partnership with Catalyst, FinTrU has recently been involved with an ongoing, innovative programme which embraces and encourages entrepreneurship.

A non-profit organisation with innovation centres in Belfast and the North West, Catalyst provides entrepreneurship opportunities through a range of programmes. In late June, for the second successive year, FinTrU took part in Generation Innovation, a future-focused work experience programme which gives 17-18-year-olds the opportunity to learn, develop and set themselves up to become the innovators and entrepreneurs of tomorrow. A promising indicator of the future of innovation, this year saw over 650 young people take part across Belfast, Derry/Londonderry and Dungannon.

Over the five-day programme, budding entrepreneurs worked in teams to develop solutions to real-life company challenges set by businesses across a wide section of industries. They then presented a pitch back to the company on their proposed ideas. FinTrU representatives were on hand to guide and advise its group of students throughout the process as they shaped their proposals.

A member of the eight-strong team of representatives, FinTrU Senior Associate Kealan Devlin said: “It was a hugely rewarding experience getting to work with this group of young people and watching how their ideas and confidence grew. What struck me was how enthusiastic they all were and how keen they were to learn.”

The group of students proved themselves to be tech savvy with a high level of interest in the technology side of FinTrU’s business, working on a suggested app as one of their proposals.

FinTrU Senior Engineering Manager Shauna Trainor, who led the team, said: “The group we worked with not only took away valuable insight into how a business works but really embraced the value of teamwork. By the end of the programme every participant felt empowered to get involved and offer a valuable contribution.

"With an annual Placement programme and ongoing graduate opportunities at FinTrU, we might just be seeing some of these faces again in the near future.”

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