Cowen tells students not to be worrying about the economy
SECONDARY school students brought out the best in the Taoiseach yesterday when he gave a rare glimpse of his straight-talking paternal side as he reassured them on the economy.
Brian Cowen urged students at a science and technology workshop in Tullamore, Co Offaly, not to worry about the downturn.
He acknowledged how hard it must be for young people who grew up in the Celtic Tiger but said: "I think it is important for you as young people to know that we will come through this recession." Despite a "real tsunami in the banking system", Mr Cowen told the young people not to worry.
"We are going to come through this and we are a resilient people."
He reminded the students that eight of the world's top 10 information technology and life sciences companies had bases in Ireland.
Mr Cowen encouraged his young audience to seek out their own interests in life. "Everyone has their own niche, their own role in life," he said.
While for some, college offered the best opportunity, it doesn't necessarily suit everyone and a trade might be a more suitable career for others, he commented.
Whatever the choice, "if you pursue excellence no matter what it is, even in politics, you might get to the top," remarked Mr Cowen.
Rapidly advancing technology has changed the planet, he said. "We are living in a time of great change. There has been more change in this world in the last 30 years than there has been in the past 300 years."
As he left, he was approached by plucky student Aine Donnelly. For her efforts, the Galway native secured the Taoiseach's sponsorship of a national transition year competition.