Business News

Aspire Scholarship Programme launched

By Business & Finance
05 February 2014

For the fourth consecutive year, graduates from across Ireland are being given the opportunity to secure a scholarship to attend Ireland’s leading business school, beginning this September.

The UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School Aspire Scholarship Programme 2014 was launched today and is offering up to three MBA and nine MSc scholarships to graduates who may have thought a business masters was beyond their means. The closing date for entry is Friday, March 28th 2014.

The Aspire Scholarship Programme was established in 2010, after an anonymous benefactor of the School committed €500,000 to establish the programme. The donor provided the funds specifically for those who could not otherwise afford to study at UCD Smurfit School and as a contribution to the recovery of the Irish economy. Since 2010, more than 40 previous scholars have benefited from the donor’s generosity and many of these scholars are employed in leading companies such as Google, Citi, KPMG, Ulster Bank, PepsiCo, Microsoft, AIB, Accenture, Mitsubishi and PwC, among others.

Speaking at the launch of the scholarship programme today, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, dean, UCD Business, said: “One of the dchool’s primary purposes is to educate future business leaders who will have a profound impact on the economic environment. The Aspire Scholarship Programme enables graduate students with the talent, drive and initiative, but without the necessary financial means, to advance their career prospects by securing an MBA or MSc at Ireland’s leading Business School. We are encouraging all graduates to submit their applications today.”

The scholarship will pay for 50% of the successful candidates’ chosen course fees at UCD Smurfit School. Students will commence their studies in September 2014 and can choose to study any of the wide range of MBA and MSc courses on offer. A special selection committee has been established to decide who will be awarded the scholarships and will be chaired by Cormac McCarthy, chief financial officer, Paddy Power, and representatives from UCD Business.

Karen Kennedy, an Aspire Scholarship executive MBA graduate, added: “Since graduating, I have been working as new business director with Clúid Housing Association, a non-profit organisation that delivers high quality, affordable homes to people on the housing waiting list all over Ireland. The Aspire Scholarship Programme provided me with an opportunity that I would not have otherwise been able to afford and I have no doubt that the skills I learned in Smurfit have aided my progress in my chosen field. I have a lot to thank the donor for as without the Scholarship none of this would have been a possibility.”