I write in relation to the Mentor Sessions you organised for the Students on Tuesday & Wednesday.
While visiting the computer rooms and workshops last evening, I spoke with the students preparing ( frenetically ) for the interviews Today.
It seems a good number of those students I met did indeed take up your offer of a mentoring session.
The students were very obviously and genuinely fulsome in their praise of the mentoring session initiative and the mentors.
Unanimously they all said how useful the sessions had been to their preparations.
I do not know who your mentors were, but they have done a great job – the students came away with some super ideas on how to improve their product pitch and perhaps even more importantly even more greatly enthused and driven to develop their products.
To inspire students to this level of enthusiasm is a great challenge and a great achievement.
Carole / Stephen – I would like to express my gratitude and to you for developing the mentor initiative.
If possible, please convey my and more importantly the students’ gratitude to the mentors – their contribution to the students’ development is hugely positive.
A super and inspirational initiative.
John Russell of Russell and Co. kindly delivered a financial workshop for the promoters of early stage ventures and a number of people that were exploring commercial propositions in Blackstone LaunchPad at UCC during 2017. Having sat in on part of the session I can attest to the fact that the workshop was extremely practical and beneficial in nature as it dealt with the practicalities of business and the challenges and obstacles that early stage promoters face on a daily basis. John’s professional yet relaxing style ensured that the participants engaged throughout the workshop thus ensuring that it was interactive and stimulating in nature. John invited audience participation throughout and this meant that the participants felt comfortable talking about their respective ideas. I look forward to inviting John to speak at future Blackstone LaunchPad at UCC events and would have no hesitation in recommending him as a speaker and adviser to business start-ups and entrepreneurs of all ages.
I attended John’s Finance Workshop “On Your Marks, Get Set, Grow” in early 2017.
Although I’ve been in business for many years I learned a lot from him.
I really loved John’s simple approach John, his very clear answers to specific questions, and above all his focus on simple and up-to-date Financial tools and procedures as a support to your core business.
John is an experienced business mentor and is registered on the panel for the Local Enterprise Office, Cork City in the business start-up sector. As a mentor he advises early stage businesses of all sizes on the most important aspects of running a start-up and the various pitfalls to avoid.
John has also acted as a judge in the national finals of our student enterprise programme.
John was definitely an enthusiastic character, for us as a podcast we found we were trying to sell our idea every day to people over the summer, quite often a hard sell! John from the word go loved the idea and didn’t question it one bit, his enthusiasm at the time was refreshing and extremely important for us confidence wise. He gave us valuable advice on what type of company to start up as eg. Partnership vs Ltd Company and the pros and cons of both.
John then went out of his way to connect us with Neal Horgan, who’s a solicitor and has also ran podcasts on Red FM in the past. We had a great chat with Neal and gained some valuable information from this connection. We’re very grateful for this and wish John all the best with his upcoming book launch.
John was great! Very positive and encouraging. We got along very well and he really helped me get a grasp of the costs involved with getting an electronic product to launch.
Although I was disheartened by the information of the extreme investment involved it was an eye opener and made me more eager to get an investor at the investor pitch.
We were in contact for a few months after Student Inc. as I felt very comfortable approaching him for advice. Lovely guy.
You were fantastic. The students all gave positive feedback and said you were very reliable. They found you were able to give specific advice to each student with regards their company. Each student came out energetic and enthusiastic about their next steps in starting a business.
John is a member of our judging panel, both locally with the Cork Schools Enterprise Programme, and nationally for the National Student Enterprise Awards. John is a valued member of the judging panel and has a great rapport with our student participants. John has a great insight into all aspects of running a successful business and has a great ability to communicate this to our students in a clear and easy to understand way