LISBURN woman Majella Barkley, is celebrating this week after graduating from InterTradelreland's innovation programme FUSION and achieving a postgraduate diploma in Management Practice from the prestigious UCD Michael Smurfit Business School in Dublin.
Through the FUSION programme, Majella undertook an innovative project for Belfast-based, Toward Consulting, which provides training and coaching for organisations in the public, private and charitable sectors. She partnered with the world-class psychology department from Trinity University in Dublin to develop a unique online psychometric tool for the consultancy firm which will allow it to offer an additional service to its clients — providing testing for large corporations and public sector bodies to help them discover how they can improve leadership skills to avert potential crises.
As part of the InterTradelreland programme, Majella's experience was underpinned by a postgraduate qualification. This unique combination of academic, practical and professional learning is designed to provide the graduate with a broader understanding of business and management, improving their all-round business acumen.
Recognising the substantial business and economic contribution graduates can make to the economy, InterTradelreland has funded and supported more than 400 graduate projects since 2003. Liam Nellis, Chief Executive, InterTradelreland explained: "InterTradelreland is committed to bringing together graduates, companies and academics from different parts of Ireland and Northern Ireland to offer quality employment which is of vital importance in these challenging times.
"Graduates have a lot to offer our ambitious SMEs. They are bright, well educated, enthusiastic and lceen to learn - exactly the type of people we need working across the island now more so than ever. They can help apply the latest thinking from academia and their ideas and skills can make a huge difference to business performance.
"The fact that 85% oft those who have successfully completed our graduate programmes to date have been offered employment with their host companies, and others have moved on to secure roles elsewhere, is a testament to the contribution they can make to SMEs and the wider economy.
"With a substantial increase in the rate of emigration of our young people due to the current economic climate, it is so important that graduate placements such as FUSION and Acumen exist as they can provide an alternative opportunity to local young people who can use their skills to assist in national economic recovery"
At the graduation ceremony in UCD Memorial Hall in Dublin which Majella attended, InterTradelreland also announced that there were still jobs available this year for graduates from across the island, through InterTradelrelands FUSION and ACUMEN programmes. These Innovation and Trade programmes match graduates with SMEs to help them to grow by expanding into new export markets or developing innovative products or services.
Liam Nellis added: "This is actually an exciting time for graduates
to be starting out in their career as companies are getting back to
basics. Our graduates are learning how to manage a business effectively
in smart ways that they will be able to take with them for when times
"We would urge any graduate with skills in sales and marketing, Technology, science, and engineering to apply for the current placements on offer by visiting our new graduate website."
For more information on InterTradelreland's graduate programmes, contact 3083 4100 or visit https://www.footinthedoor.info