Fifty students are preparing to head off to export markets as part of the Graduates for International Growth Programme (G4IG), an Enterprise Ireland initiative in partnership with UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School.
The programme was set up to promote export-led sales growth for Enterprise Ireland client companies while at the same time advancing graduates’ international business skills.
The G4IG graduates are working across a range of industries, including life sciences, clean tech, pharma, food and software, while also attending classes delivered by UCD Smurfit School.
After their 12-month overseas placement in countries including Japan, Brazil, China and the US, the students will be awarded a post-graduate diploma in international growth, with the option of progressing to a Masters on their return.
“This unique programme equips tomorrow’s business leaders to deal with new business challenges in an action-learning environment where they are helping to drive the presence of Irish products and services around the world,” said Damien McLoughlin, professor of marketing and director of executive education at UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School at an event today marking the start of the programme.
“These young people have a demanding road ahead as they aim to open doors for their sponsor companies.”
John McGarr, department manager, Company Mentors and Advisors, Enterprise Ireland, noted that Irish companies achieved a record €1.95bn in new export sales last year, and all the indications are that the upward graph is continuing in 2011.
“This G4IG programme was developed with that in mind so that graduates would be sent to market to support the current and long-term export development strategies of their host companies, while gaining tremendous international business experience themselves.”
Photo: Elizabeth Conlon, a G4IG graduate who is setting off to Edinburgh on her 12-month overseas placement with her parent company Vision Consulting; John McGarr, department manager, Company Mentors and Advisors, Enterprise Ireland; and Damien McLoughlin, professor of marketing and director of Executive Education at UCD Smurfit School