Local firm's expansion plans unveiled at awards ceremony

September 12th, 2016 10:05 PM

By Southern Star Team

Carin McCana, on behalf of further education staff, makes a presentation to outgoing principal Stephen Gilbert.

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West Cork Distillers is on target to expand further with a new plant in Skibbereen in the near future.

WEST Cork Distillers is on target to expand further with a new plant in Skibbereen in the near future.

John O’Connell, founding member of the firm, which employs 38 full-time staff, made the announcement when he was invited as guest speaker at an awards ceremony in Rossa College in the town last week.

The Further Education Awards ceremony was a night of celebration for over 100 graduates who had their hard work and dedication formally recognised. Awards were presented in courses in healthcare, childcare, horticulture, art, advanced art and business.  

John O’Connell said his company was on target in its expansion plans for another plant in Skibbereen ‘in the near future’. John advised graduates not to limit themselves to the extent of their qualifications, as the progressive workforce of West Cork Distilleries is made up of individuals from a huge variety of unrelated backgrounds, with a common passion – to make the business succeed.

College of Commerce principal Helen Ryan congratulated graduates and emphasised it was also an occasion of pride for the families and friends of award recipients, who provided support and encouragement to them. 

She emphasised the practical nature of the awards which give students an excellent understanding of the field of work that they are entering.  As a new era dawns for Rossa College, Helen spoke of her desire to develop the West Cork campus of the College of Commerce.

There are plans to provide an even broader range of qualifications that will enhance the community and local economy, she said. ‘Proof of this is the new Hospitality Studies course being offered for the first time this year,’ she added.

A special presentation was made on behalf of the staff to Stephen Gilbert, principal of Rossa College, who is taking up a new appointment as principal of Davis College in Mallow.  

He was commended for raising the profile of the college in West Cork and making it a progressive institution. Stephen thanked all the staff and students for their co-operation and support over the years. 

The College of Commerce West Cork campus, located in Rossa College, is again offering a range of courses this coming year. 

Further information is available from the College on 028 21644 or at 

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