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UCD Smurfit School 2018 Aspire Scholarship Programme now open for applications

  • Date: Tue, Feb 27, 2018

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On Tuesday 27th February 2018 UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School launched the ninth year of its Aspire Scholarship Programme which provides graduates across the country with the opportunity to secure funding towards tuition at Ireland’s leading business school. This year will see 50% funding made available for up to nine MSc scholarships and up to three MBA scholarships for the 2018/19 academic year. These scholarships are for applicants who have the ambition to undertake a business masters, but who may not have the financial means to do so. Applications for the programme can be made online at before Friday, 11th May 2018.

The Aspire Scholarship Programme was launched in 2010 following a donation of €500,000 from an anonymous benefactor. To date 90 graduates have benefitted from the programme since its introduction, with many of these alumni having either secured roles in leading companies such as Accenture, EY, Citi, PepsiCo, AIB, Ulster Bank, Avolon, Microsoft, Intel and Google or have applied their learnings in start-up businesses of their own.

Professor Anthony Brabazon, Dean, UCD College of Business said at the launch of the 2018 Aspire Scholarship Programme: “The Aspire Scholarship Programme is a hugely important initiative at UCD Smurfit School.  The foresight of our generous donors in establishing this scholarship fund has already ensured 90 Aspire graduates have completed the programme and are now contributing to business and society with the benefits of a UCD Smurfit School masters. I would encourage those interested in undertaking a UCD Smurfit School MSc or MBA programme commencing in the 2018/19 academic year, but who may need support in funding tuition, to apply before the deadline in May”.

Ciarán Reilly, EMBA 2016, Aspire Alumni President and Pricing Analyst at Avolon said: “I was very motivated to undertake an MBA at a top international Business School as I felt that it would open up a range of exciting new career prospects for me. The Aspire Scholarship Programme not only allowed me to undertake the Smurfit MBA by providing me with some financial assistance but also presented a series of unexpected opportunities beyond the MBA itself. In addition to helping me change my career direction, Aspire has introduced me to a unique and diverse alumni network of individuals who are willing to support and help each other in advancing their careers and other business ventures. I am very grateful to have been awarded the scholarship and would recommend that aspiring MSc and MBA candidates consider applying for this year’s programme”.

Aoife Kiernan, Smurfit School Student of the Year and Aspire Alumna MSc International Business 2017 said: “Securing the Aspire scholarship provided me with the opportunity to study subject matter that I have a real passion for and wanted to develop a career in. In undertaking the MSc in International Business it allowed me to broaden my understanding of International Business with world class lecturers and through engaging with fellow course participants and students of leading international business schools that UCD Smurfit School is partnered with. This collaborative approach also allowed me to work in multi-cultural teams, which has really prepared me for today’s increasingly diverse workplace”.

Mark Bannon, Aspire Alumnus Master of Accounting 2011 and Entrepreneur and Founder/CEO of VT said: “In being awarded the Aspire scholarship it not only provided me with the financial resources to undertake the Master of Accounting programme but it inspired me to achieve my full potential. While I may have graduated several years ago the benefits are enduring, not only in the learnings from the course but in the relationships and friendships I have and continue to develop from the Aspire alumni network. It’s a truly special and unique programme and I would highly recommend it to others”.

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