Natalie Walsh

My name is Natalie Walsh and I am the Executive Director of LaunchPad. I am worked across the areas of innovation, entrepreneurship and education for over 10 years. I provide leadership and strategic planning to the LaunchPad programme in addition to designing and delivering content across all our programmes. In addition to running programmes for students across the NUI Galway and St Angelas campuses, we are also a partner of EIT Health and we run many programmes with EIT Health such as summer schools, women in entrepreneurship programmes and entrepreneurship labs for students, which normally take place across Europe. For me, nurturing and supporting our students to develop their skills and competences is a huge part of our programme and its many successes.

Neil Ferguson

My name is Neil and I’m LaunchPad’s Programme Manager with responsibility for the day to day running of LaunchPad. I have over 15 years’ broad based experience developing and leading the business development and technology commercialization of early stage ideas. Through the use of Design Thinking and Lean Canvas methodologies, I provide workshops and 1:2:1 coaching to help validate your idea and to identify the next steps in realising its potential. For me, developing the talent of our student community is the underlying aim of everything we do.

Christopher McBrearty

My name is Christopher and I have a passion for mentoring, having coordinated the student connect mentor programme for two years, and acting as a mentor/mentor leader for the two years prior to that. I awarded with a LEAP leadership accreditation and in 2019 I was named Enterprise Ireland Student Entrepreneur of the Year. I holds a M.Sc in Biomedical Science and am working in healthcare innovation. My interests are in medical devices and biotechnology.

Sarah O’Connor

My name is Sarah O’Connor, I’m 23 and from County Clare. I’m currently completing an MSc in Digital Marketing. Last semester one of my modules was entitled Innovation and Entrepreneurship and this sparked my interest in the area. When I saw the opportunity to apply for an internship with the Launchpad here in NUI Galway I jumped at the chance! I’m looking forward to learning more about the great innovation and entrepreneurship activities that take place here in NUI Galway as well as educating other students about the great opportunities that the Launchpad offers. As a Digital Marketing student, I believe I can apply the skills I am learning to help make other students more aware of the fantastic events and talks that the Launchpad has to offer as well as planning my own events from the organization, to marketing to running the event. My past experience working in a Digital Marketing agency as well as the knowledge I am learning during my master’s degree will stand to me in the Launchpad. I’m looking forward to further developing these skills as well as my communication and organizational skills.

Saket Kumar

My name is Saket Kumar, I am from India and I am currently pursuing MSc in Business Analytics from the J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics. I have an overall experience of 2.5 years as Software developer in Wipro Technologies, India. I got in touch with Launchpad last semester when I attended the Mhealth challenge which was a 6 weeks bootcamp followed with a pitch in the final week. My team went on to win the Challenge after which I attended several events and guest talks at Launchpad. I also organized an event “Explorathon 2019” with Launchpad in collaboration with the Business Analytics Society in semester 1. Launchpad is a place where I can walk in with an idea and get proper advice and directions from experts and I can work to bring them alive. I believe the Internship at Launchpad will help me to enhance my skills and wisdom working in a diverse team. I wish to market all the events related to Launchpad and make students aware about them. I also plan to get more participation for all the events as a proud Ambassador of Launchpad.

Emily Wallace

My name is Emily Wallace and I am a 3rd year medical student with a passion for innovation and entrepreneurship. I have a particular interest in the MedTech industry and working with patients in the hospital inspires me to come up with solutions to improve their quality of life and general health. Last semester, my team and I won first place in Launchpad’s mHealth competition, run in conjunction with eitHealth. As a result, I got the fantastic opportunity to represent NUI Galway in the joint e-Lab event held in Lodz Medical school in Poland. I am looking forward to further developing my entrepreneurial skills and encouraging other NUI Galway students to do so over the coming months with Launchpad.

Rajath Melvarege Ramaswamy

My name is Rajath and I’m from India. I’m currently a post graduate student in Business Analytics from the J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics. I have relevant experience in working as an associate consultant in Capgemini, India. I'm a Business Analyst who is passionately creative, believes in not just meeting the expectations but exceeding them. I'm a passionate blog writer who thrives not to be redundant as there’s a lot of information out there for free, so I've got to figure out what makes my information different. I'm a photography enthusiastic who tend to seize a beautiful moment forever as I see through the lens. I look forward to being involved in various exciting activities that Launchpad has lined up for this semester to help invoke entrepreneurship and startup idea skills within students. Aligning with the vision of Launchpad- I would like to help ideas succeed.

Gillian Murphy

My name is Gillian and I am a 4th year PhD candidate at the Centre for Research in Medical Devices (CÚRAM), NUI Galway, with over 4 years’ experience in the pharmaceutical industry (R&D). I have a keen interest in product development and innovation in the Medtech sector. My PhD research, in collaboration with Mylan, is on the development of an advanced drug delivery system for Type II Diabetes. I have a passion for the translation of emerging science and technology into the clinic; and was accepted for the ‘Medicine by Design’ international workshop at the MaRS innovation hub at the University of Toronto in July ‘19. This workshop focused on the translation and commercialization of regenerative medicines, and I was awarded a prize for her VC pitch. I also enjoy communicating my research through education and public engagement (EPE) activities and engaging with primary/secondary schools to promote STEM careers. I am excited to bring my ideas and experience to the team as an intern at Launchpad this semester.

Susan Carey

My name is Susan and I’m a final year commerce student majoring in marketing. I’m the auditor of the Entrepreneurship Society here in NUI Galway and our ethos aligns with the Launchpad so I was eager to seize the opportunity of becoming an intern for the Launchpad. Last year, I was the Director of Marketing for the EntreSoc. We organise talks given by successful entrepreneurs as well as host charity events. I hope to develop my marketing skills further throughout this internship and organise meaningful events for students across campus as well as raise awareness about everything that the Launchpad has to offer. I’m looking forward to learning more about entrepreneurship from our mentors and seeing if it is the right path for me.

Fiachra Finegan.

I really enjoy the challenges presented by engineering, and find it rewarding working in teams of like-minded people. Engineering gives you a fantastic grasp on how to identify and solve problems. I joined the NUIG Launchpad program so that I could gain experience in entrepreneurship and how to commercialise products and bring them to the market, which I find very interesting. The Launchpad offers a way of learning about entrepreneurship and innovation in a relaxed, fun environment where you can get great advice from the team working here. My hope is that I can encourage more students to sign up for the program, events, and competitions to generate more interest around the work that the launchpad does and what you can learn also.

Sophia Graham

My name is Sophia Graham. I am a third-year student studying Chemistry and French in NUIG. I am the auditor of NUIG's Physic Society which sparked my interest in entrepreneurship through all the events we organise each year, such as the Annual Science Ball. The Launchpad internship is a great opportunity for me to grow and develop my skill-sets. I have a passion for innovation and I am looking forward to see what I can do for Launchpad