Daneil Gallagher, a student at the North West Regional College was presented with a ‘Future Student of Business Awards’ by Junior Minister Alastair Ross MLA.
Daniel, who has devised a smart app to turn off electronic appliances when their user falls asleep, walked away with the overall award and £1,350 in prize money.
Conscious of both the potential energy savings, and the reduced risks of devices overheating if left on for longer periods, Daniel plans to use his award to work with app builders to develop his project and integrate it within sports watches and devices that already monitor their owners’ heart rates.
Presenting the prize to the overall winner Minister Ross said: “These awards are an excellent opportunity for further education students to gain recognition for their business skills and their future potential for business success.
“Entrepreneurship is of vital importance to the economy and it is only right that it is recognised and rewarded.
“I am delighted to see this collaboration between the Federation of Small Businesses and our local Further Education Colleges, both of whom are pivotal to the development of a strong and vibrant economy.
“Encouraging an entrepreneurial approach to their work, and building students’ confidence to pursue self-employment as a viable alternative to seeking a job elsewhere, is crucial if we are to increase the number of businesses created here in Northern Ireland.”
Gerry Campbell, Colleges Northern Ireland Chief Executive, said: “I was delighted with the standard of applications this year which is testament to the dedication, hard work and professionalism of the lecturers across our six regional Further Education colleges.”