News & Announcements

July 9, 2008
Craig Dobbin Memorial Scholarship Announced

Patrick O'Callaghan, President & CEO of East Coast Catering Limited wishes to acknowledge the announcement of a new scholarship recognizing the legacy of the late Craig Dobbin. 

Reprinted below is the full text of a News Release issued today by the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador.

New Scholarship Recognizes Legacy of Local Entrepreneur

In collaboration with the family of the late Craig Dobbin, the Provincial Government is supporting a new scholarship for business students that strengthens linkages with Ireland and recognizes the legacy of the prominent businessman.

The $283,000 Craig Dobbin Memorial Scholarship for Master of Business Studies at the Waterford Institute and Memorial University was made possible through gifts from family members of Mr. Dobbin, Ireland Business Partnerships (IBP), and the Department of Education. Recipients will receive $12,500 for study in either Newfoundland and Labrador or Ireland.

"Craig Dobbin personified the entrepreneurial spirit of so many Newfoundlanders and Labradorians," said the Honourable Danny Williams, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador. "He encouraged others to believe in themselves and strive for more. This scholarship recognizes that spirit and allows students to achieve their potential and, maybe launch their own enterprise creating new opportunities for the province."

The South East Region of Ireland, and in particular Waterford, is the ancestral home of many Newfoundlanders and Labradorians, including the Dobbin family. Recognizing this historical connection, both governments have established agencies – Ireland Newfoundland Partnership and Ireland Business Partnerships to support, enable and facilitate cooperation between the province and country.

"The scholarship is a milestone in a series of ongoing initiatives that strengthen the business, academic, and cultural ties between Newfoundland and Ireland," said the Honourable Trevor Taylor, Minister of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development and Chair of the Ireland Business Partnerships. "Over time this scholarship will stimulate collaboration among business students and foster mutually-beneficial business opportunities."

In the first year, the scholarship will be awarded to a recent graduate of Memorial University’s Faculty of Business or Sir Wilfred Grenfell College to attend the Waterford Institute. The following year, the scholarship will go to an undergraduate student at the Waterford Institute to attend Memorial University. It will then rotate on an annual basis between Newfoundland and Labrador and Ireland.

"The creation of the memorial scholarship opens up a wonderful opportunity for students from our province and from Ireland to not only further their education, but to do so while exploring and learning about our respective cultures, lifestyles, business and economic environments," said the Honourable Joan Burke, Minister of Education. "We are very pleased to support an initiative that endorses the values of lifelong learning and provides the necessary financial support to allow students to continue their education."

Local businessman Patrick O'Callaghan, a business associate and long-time close personal friend of the late Mr. Dobbin, initiated the endowment with a personal contribution and then worked with the Provincial Government, Memorial University, and members of the Dobbin family to secure funding for the scholarship.

"Craig quietly funded numerous students at college in many parts of the world," said Mr. O'Callaghan. "That is why I felt a scholarship would be a suitable way to remember him. The Waterford Institute was chosen because Waterford was the birthplace of his great grandparents. Waterford also awarded him the Freedom of the City for serving as Honourary Irish Consul and hosting many city officials and business people from the area. I believe this scholarship captures Craig's enterprising spirit. I know he would be pleased that we have created another lasting connection between Ireland and Newfoundland and Labrador."

Funding for this initiative has been provided through the Ireland Business Partnerships ($30,000), Department of Education ($70,000), Ireland-based Ireland Newfoundland Partnership ($30,000) and Mr. Dobbin's family and friends ($153,000).

Ireland Business Partnerships assists companies and organizations identify and develop economic, cultural, and educational opportunities with Ireland. The IBP also promotes strategic business alliances through marketing agreements, joint ventures and technology transfer opportunities, and develops linkages between the public and private sectors in Newfoundland and Labrador and Ireland.

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