25 February 2021
By Tom Collins
Organisations involved in the MTU Innovation Challenge are Pepsi, Clearstream, Cully and Sully, The Irish Naval Service, and The Crann Centre.
Munster Technological University’s (MTU) Innovation and Enterprise month this March has evolved from CIT’s annual innovation week following the merger of CIT and IT Tralee which has created Ireland’s newest university. It also aligns with Kerry Month of Enterprise.
MTU’s Innovation and Enterprise Month gives a platform to over 30 events, including competitions, talks, seminars, and performances. Held online for staff and students from across 6 campuses, these events are very diverse and include an International Women’s Day event, the inaugural MTU Innovation of the Year Prize, a pilot programme aimed at bringing STEM education to primary school classrooms, building on the online learning capability that has been build up since the start of the current pandemic, as well as the final pitches to the organisations involved in the MTU Innovation Challenge: Pepsi, Clearstream, Cully and Sully, The Irish Naval Service, and The Crann Centre.
One of the highlights of the month will be the award ceremony for the highly competitive Prize for Innovation where prize money of €10,500 is awarded to those whose inventions and business ideas are judged most creative, novel, innovative, and likely to succeed in the marketplace.
Mechanical Engineering student, Michael Leahy was part of the overall winning ream at the 2020 event and he says “our experience with the Prize for Innovation was great! We are truly proud to have taken part, it’s a brilliant achievement which has helped several of our team in seeking employment and other opportunities.”
Shauna White explains her experience as a member of the KomfoRoo team that won Best Business Idea in the 2020 competition: “it was an experience that tested us in new ways, taking all of us out of our comfort zones to learn new skills as we developed our idea. KomfoRoo is a device designed to replicate kangaroo care for neonatal babies. The competition challenges you to consider all aspects of your idea from manufacturing to marketing and projected sales. The application process was intense as we knew very little about the business aspect but help and advice was always given when requested.”
The Prize for Innovation is sponsored by the Cork Local Enterprise Offices, who have supported this competition for almost 20 years.
MTU Innovation and Enterprise month will take place from March 1st to 31st and further information can be found on www.enterprise.cit.ie