A deepening of the understanding of port activity on the Shannon Estuary and its contribution to the economy was played out on Monday in Foynes as St. Patrick’s Comprehensive School, Shannon won the inaugural Shannon Foynes Port Company (SFPC) Transition Year Schools Competition.
Titled ‘The Importance of Ports in the Mid-West’, the competition was held to spread greater awareness amongst students in the estuary counties of Clare, Kerry and Limerick of the pivotal role that the estuary and ports play in the life of the region and their function in a modern economy.
Some 34 schools across the three counties took part in the competition, with five shortlisted for today’s final, held at the Flying Boat Museum in Foynes, at which they delivered enlightening ten minute presentations before a 300 strong attendance.
The finalists were Causeway Comprehensive, Co. Kerry; St. Patrick’ Comprehensive, Shannon; Scoil Mhuire agus Íde, Newcastle West, Co. Limerick; CBS Sexton Street, Limerick City and Salesian College, Pallaskenry, Co. Limerick. The judging panel comprised Helen Downes, CEO of Shannon Chamber; Captain Jim White, retired harbour master at SFPC; Frank Lynch retired company secretary at SFPC and Martin Morrissey, Commercial Manager, SFPC.
The winners were presented with their medals plus a €2,000 cheque for their school and an ipad for each team member, all sponsored by SFPC, by Minister of Education Jan O’Sullivan, who said that the competition will help generate greater awareness of the pivotal and largely underestimated role that SFPC and the estuary plays in people’s lives across the region.