Dragons beware – we are about to witness the 'entrepreneur generation'
ARE Leaving Cert students ahead of the curve, or is it the 'Dragons' Den' factor? Among the notable trends in CAO applications this year is the 4pc rise in applications for business/administration courses.
This comes against an overall slip in applications generally and some spectacular falls in once-popular degrees.
Demand for business courses has been in the doldrums since the crash in 2008 and school-leavers and other CAO applicants looked elsewhere for some certainty about what would lead to a job.
Not unexpectedly, there has been strong growth in areas such as science, computing and agriculture, because that is where Government and employers say the jobs are, or will be.
But job prospects or not, such careers don't suit everyone. As the economy struggles to recover, public-sector cuts have reduced the appeal of jobs such as teaching, for many.
So, what else for an ambitious school-leaver who wants the necessary skills and an element of control in his or her future?
Is it possible that they are catching the E, for entrepreneur, bug, and decide that if they want a job, they are going to have the necessary acumen to create it themselves?
Gavin Duffy and the rest of the Dragons may need to watch their backs, but it will be a good day for Ireland if it is about to give birth to the E-generation.