MCs – Jaz & Laura from Spin

We are delighted to welcome Jaz and Laura as our hosts for the event, the perfect duo to ask the questions on every teenagers mind.


Laura Bracken is a Radio Presenter with over 7 years experience in the media industry. She’s one-half of the IMRO Radio Award winning Zoo Crew, alongside her co-host Jaz Keane. The pair have been broadcasting and having the craic together since October 2018. The Zoo Crew airs on SPIN1038 & SPIN Southwest weeknights from 7-10pm.  In addition to Radio Broadcasting, Laura is also a Voiceover Artist for both Radio & TV. 


Jaz Keane is a radio presenter & club DJ from Dublin. He has been working On Air with SPIN for the last 3 years and currently hosts the biggest evening radio show in the country - the Zoo Crew, along with Laura Bracken. When he's not On Air he's (usually) found providing the music in various nightclubs around the country. He holds residencies in Dublin nightclubs Everleigh Garden & The Academy, and is a resident DJ with the world's biggest bingo rave, Bingo Loco. With nightclubs being closed due to the pandemic, Jaz has started a successful series of Instagram Lives called DJ's Digest, where he chats to Ireland's biggest DJ's about the life of a DJ and how it has changed. 

Harry McCann

Harry McCann isn’t your typical college student. At just twenty-two-years-old, the Irish award-winning entrepreneur and journalist has established himself in the business and political world as not only a thought-leader but a powerful voice for youth across the globe.

Just months after his fifteenth birthday, Harry started his first business (Kid Tech) to teach children how to code. This early success earned him the title of, "Ireland's answer to Bill Gates" and as a result, Kid Tech gained the attention and support of industry leaders such as Blackberry, and celebrities such as Stephen Fry.

In 2015, Harry went combine his passion for STEM and his experience in the technology industry to establish the first Digital Youth Council in the world. Over the course of six years, the youth council worked with the Irish Government and European Commission to help to give young people a voice in STEM and Education.

As a journalist, Harry has established himself as one of the most recognisable youth voices in the Irish media. He is a regular contributor to several national television and radio shows and an op-ed columnist with a number of publications.

At present, Harry is studying Digital Humanities and IT at University College Cork where he was awarded a Quercus scholarship for his work in entrepreneurship and innovation in 2017. Alongside his studies, Harry is also leading a talented young team at Trendster Media in an effort to revolutionise the digital media industry.

Barry Winkless

CSO Cpl & Head of the Future of Work Institute

‘You are the Designers of the Future’

As we transition to a new post Covid world, you might well hold the keys to creating a better future for us all including yourself! In a way you are the Designers of the Future. In his talk Barry will show you how to think like a designer, how it can impact your life for the and how it will open you up to new ideas, experiences and opportunities- regardless of what you are into.

Barry is a thought leader in strategic design, innovation and engagement with a particular focus on how society is changing and what that means to the world of work. Over the past 23 years he has worked globally with some of the world’s most respected organisations. He is a frequent author and speaker at numerous client and external events.

Barry heads up the Future of Work Institute (part of Cpl & Outsourcing Inc- a global Talent organisation), a multidisciplinary team working globally to question, explore and design future work solutions with organisations. So he isn’t just a speaker but is actively pushing the frontiers of the future of work every day in the real world.

Steve Duggan

Vice President of Terawe

Steven Duggan is the Vice President of Terawe, a technology solutions company focused on new and emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and Cognitive Services.

A member of the Governing Board of the UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education [IITE], where he represents the global IT Industry, he recently authored UNESCO’s policy brief for governments of the 193 member states on the use of AI in Education, ‘Change at the Speed of Learning’.

A former English teacher, Steven has worked in education for over 30 years, including several years as Microsoft’s Director of Worldwide Education Strategy.

A regular speaker at international education events, he has a passionate interest in literacy and the needs of disadvantaged communities and has delivered a TEDx talk on the subject, as well as writing and presenting the documentary feature ‘The First Mile’, which won the Gold Award at the Deauville International Film Festival.

Mike Beary

Country Manager, AWS Ireland, and Director of HR, AWS Europe, Middle East & Africa

Mike Beary serves as the Country Manager for Amazon Web Services (AWS) Ireland and head of Human Resources for AWS across Europe, Middle East and Africa. As country manager, he guides investment decision making for the company in Ireland, most recently announcing an additional 1,000 highly skilled jobs which will bring employee numbers for Amazon over 5,000 by 2022.

Mike regularly represents AWS with external stakeholders including government leaders, policy makers and media and plays a leadership role in AWS community engagement, including supporting initiatives around sustainability, local workforce development, and girls in tech.

In 2017, after 25 years in the US, Mike transferred from Seattle back home to Dublin to help drive the growth of AWS in Ireland. Dublin was the first location outside of the US where AWS launched an Infrastructure Region and is now one of their largest engineering locations globally with over 2,500 staff.

Originally from Co. Meath, Mike moved to the US to attend graduate school. He spent several years as a social worker before transitioning to human resources roles in Pittsburgh, Washington DC and Los Angeles. Mike holds a Bachelor of Social Science from University College Dublin, and Master of Social Work from University of Pittsburgh. He and his husband split their time between Dublin, Seattle and the Central Coast of CA.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the world’s most comprehensive and broadly adopted cloud platform. Millions of customers - including the fastest-growing startups, largest enterprises, and leading government agencies - are using AWS to lower costs, become more agile, and innovate faster. Cloud computing allows organisations to access technology services, such as computing power, storage, and databases as needed, instead of owning and maintaining their own physical data centers and servers. For over a decade, AWS has invested in developing data centres and services in Ireland.

Caroline Healy

Director of Employee & Labour Relations, Medtronic

Caroline Healy is the Director of Employee & Labour relations at Medtronic for manufacturing sites across six countries in Europe, providing employee & labour relations support to 7500+ employees. 

Based largely in the medical technology, services and distribution arena, Caroline has extensive experience in Operations, Quality, Human Resources and Employee & Labour Relations and is committed to lifelong learning. Caroline has attained a Science degree, a Diploma in Psychology of Counselling, an MBA and is a qualified internal coach at Medtronic.

Caroline is the Galway hub lead for the Medtronic Women’s Network and is  a Director on the board for COPE Galway – a non-profit organisation in Galway providing essential support and services for families and individuals who are homeless, women and children experiencing domestic abuse and old in the community.

Nora Twomey

Partner & Creative Director Cartoon Saloon

ACADEMY AWARD® & GOLDEN GLOBE Nominated Director. In a career spanning over two decades, Nora has worked in a number of capacities on Cartoon Saloon's creative output.

From the early years, directing award winning short films, she went on to co-direct Tomm Moore’s The Secret of Kells while also guiding the development processes on a number of series including Puffin Rock and Dorg Van Dango.

Nora was Head of Story on feature Song of the Sea. She directed The Breadwinner, which was nominated for an ACADEMY AWARD® & GOLDEN GLOBE and won several international awards including multiple Annies and the Audience & Jury Awards at Annecy.

Nora is currently directing My Father’s Dragon feature film for Netflix, a story about young Elmer Elevator and his adventures, based on the beloved children's book by Ruth Stiles Gannett.

Fiona Edwards Murphy

CEO ApisProtect

Dr Fiona Edwards Murphy, CEO and Co-Founder of ApisProtect is among the most widely published authors on Internet of Things and honey bees.

ApisProtect brings groundbreaking technology to commercial beekeeping. Using IoT (Internet of Things) technologies, we remotely extract data from hives. Through the use of AI (Artificial Intelligence), this data is converted into meaningful insight about operations, enabling beekeepers to deploy their labor and resources to maximum effect, creating an extra $100 of value per hive annually.

Dr Fiona Edwards Murphy was included on the 2021 Forbes Europe's 30 Under 30 list in the Manufacturing and Industry Category – “Creating the products, methods and materials of tomorrow”.

ApisProtect was recently listed as one of the European Start Ups to Watch in 2021 and also listed on the top 50 Irish Start Ups to watch in 2021 by Thinkbusiness.

Dr Fiona Edwards Murphy completed her PhD with the School of Engineering, and the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences at University College Cork in the area of Internet of Things applications for honey bee health. Fiona is a graduate of the Bachelor of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (BE) Honours at UCC.

Dr Fiona Edwards Murphy has won many awards including the Rising Star Award at the Dublin Tech Summit, Women in Technology Awards, October 2019 and the Women Mean Business Sodexo Newcomer of the Year Award 2018.

Now monitoring the health of over twenty million honey bees in hives across Europe and North America, ApisProtect brings the power of advanced sensors and machine learning technology int o the hive to deliver a 24/7 early warning system so beekeepers can give at-risk hives immediate attention and improve bee health.

Courtney McGrath

At first glance, Cavan’s Courtney McGrath is just your typical Trinity College Dublin student. Young, bubbly, trendy, and with a change in hairstyle and colour nearly every week. But her lack of a Cavan accent is a clue to the challenge that she and hundreds of other young Irish students have to overcome on the road to education – Courtney is profoundly deaf and can only hear through her bilateral cochlear implants.

As TCD Students Union  Officer for Student’s with Disabilities 2019/20, she provides viewers with a unique insight into how she and her fellow students have ‘invisible disabilities’ and the opportunities and challenges that remain for students with disabilities.

Lorraine Tansey

Lorraine Tansey is the Student Volunteer Coordinator of the Community Knowledge Initiative at the Institute for Lifecourse and Society. Lorraine has a Masters in Education from the University of British Columbia, Canada, with a specialty in the Internationalisation of Higher Education. Lorraine earned her BA in Legal Science and Sociological & Political Studies, and LLB from NUI Galway. As the coordinator of NUI Galway's student volunteering programme, ALIVE, Lorraine has developed a number of resources to support student volunteers.  ( Further information available here : https://www.iua.ie/press-releases/media-release-26-03-21-campus-engage-congratulates-lorraine-tansey-on-her-appointment-to-the-national-volunteering-strategy-implementation-group/

Alpha Ike

Maynooth University student Alpha Ike is originally from Nigeria but moved to Ireland when he was 8. At the age of 11 Alpha entered the care system. He says he is lucky, as he still lives with the family he was placed with at that time. At the age of 13 he developed a love of Gaelic Football and after settling in Cavan, became a first team player for Monaghan Cavan FC under-19s.

Now in his 3rd of a computer software course in MU, Alpha is a hugely popular and charming student on campus with a keen interest in GAA and Mental Health. As part of his university placement he begins working on computer support for Aer Lingus in February 2020… just as life for everyone is about to change…

Laura McGennis

My name is Laura and I’m from Celbridge in Kildare. In my free time I enjoy listening to music, playing PlayStation, cycling, and walking my two dogs in the woods near my house. When I was 17 I moved to Galway to study but the course wasn’t quite right for me, I stayed in Galway because I loved it there, working various jobs for a few years before moving back home last year. I knew I wanted to return to education so I applied to the apprenticeship programme as the idea of combining my studies with my work really appealed to me. I’ve also always been interested in science, especially biology as I love animals and nature.

I started my apprenticeship with Helsinn Birex Pharmaceuticals last September and study part-time at TU Dublin at the Tallaght campus. So far it has been a great experience, I’m constantly learning new skills between work and college and never get bored as there is a mix of learning on the job and in the classroom, I get great support from my mentor and seniors at work as well as from my lecturers and classmates in college. I would highly recommend the apprenticeship programme to anyone who is considering a career in science or who is interested in practical, on-the-job learning rather than full-time academics.

Vice Admiral Mark Mellett DSM, PhD

Chief of Defence of the Irish Defence Forces

Admiral Mark Mellett has over 39 years’ service as an officer in the Irish Defence Forces. He is the first naval officer in the history of the Irish State to serve as Chief of Defence, having previously served as Deputy Chief of Defence and Chief of Navy. He commenced his military career as an army reservist, before being selected for a naval cadetship in the Permanent Defence Forces.

For over two decades he has been a change leader, contributing to ongoing transformation and positioning the Irish forces in a post-modern setting.

Admiral Mellett has extensive experience at home and abroad, including in Afghanistan and Lebanon, in combined and joint operational missions. As a specialist Naval Diving Officer and Commander of three seagoing commands, Admiral Mellett participated in and led numerous counter terrorism and counter narcotic operations, often in very challenging sea conditions. He was the second Naval Officer in the history of the Irish State to be awarded “The Distinguished Service Medal (DSM)” by the Irish Government for his leadership of a complex maritime narcotics interdiction operation.

Admiral Mellett is a champion of internal and external organisational diversity. He led the introduction of a Diversity and Inclusion Strategy in the Defence Forces (the first of its kind in the Irish Public Service), which focussed on gender, culture, creed, age and sexual orientation.

Holder of a Doctorate in Political Science and a Masters in Government and Public Policy, Admiral Mellett has a keen interest in research with a focus on European security, innovation, diversity and values-based leadership

A former Naval Diving Officer, he continues to maintain a high level of fitness and is a daily runner. He is married to Liz for 31 years and has two boys and two girls, with ages ranging from 15 to 28.

Andy Cope

The Art of Brilliance

When the world’s doing its worst, it’s even more important that we know how to be at our best. Dr Andy Cope will share some of the findings from his happiness research. He promises simple and do-able principles that will make a huge difference at school and home. Whisper it quietly, but he says it might even change your life!

Dr Andy Cope is a qualified teacher, best-selling author, happiness expert and recovering academic.

His Loughborough University thesis was 12 years in the making and the reward for grinding out his PhD is that he gets to call himself a ‘Doctor of Happiness’.

The good doctor is lucky enough to work with some very large businesses, including DHL, Kelloggs, Hewlett Packard, Astra Zeneca, Lego, L’Oreal, Nationwide and UEFA. Recently, he has tailored his workshops to meet the needs of children and teachers.

Andy’s books are frequently on the best-sellers list. ‘The Happiness Revolution’ is due out in June and he’s currently working on a writing project with Bear Grylls.