Monday, 30 April 2007

The most famous Astro-photographer in the world, Professor David Malin of Anglo-Australian Observatory (AAO), and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Australia, is to deliver a unique lecture at the Centre for Astronomy, NUI Galway on Monday, 14th May at 7pm. The event, which is a unique opportunity to meet the David Malin, will have the theme David Malin - The Man Who Colours Stars: Talks on Capturing Ancient Light. Announcing the event the Director of the Centre for Astronomy at NUI Galway, Prof. Michael Redfern said: "This talk is a unique opportunity to meet one of the world's great astro-photographers. He was the person that made us all realise that the stars, galaxies and nebulae are not in black and white, but are in glorious colour. The wonderful images that we get nowadays, from Hubble, for example, owe everything to his pioneering work." Professor Malin said: "In this talk I will briefly review the history of astronomical imaging and the profound effect it has had on our knowledge of the universe. I will also discuss the art and science of colour photography in astronomy and how the vivid colours of clouds of gas and dust can be at the same time be real and yet invisible through the telescope. I will also describe ways in which the subtle colours of the brightest stars can be captured with simple photographic techniques." Photographs created by David Malin can be found in many popular astronomy books and magazines, and are displayed in museums and planetaria throughout the world. Previews of his work can be seen on www.davidmalin.com. This event is free and open to the public and as interest is expected to be high pre-booking is essential. Please email malintalk@gmail.com to book seats. The visit is part of a tour that starts in the Armagh Planetarium and will go on to Limerick University and to the Blackrock Planetarium & Science Centre, Cork. ENDS

Monday, 30 April 2007

The Department of Physics at NUI Galway is to offer a new full-time degree in Physics with Medical Physics. The four-year course, leading to an Honours BSc degree, starts in September 2007. There is currently a considerable demand for qualified medical physicists in Ireland and in response to this demand, the Department of Physics in conjunction with the Medical Physics Department at Galway University Hospitals, have introduced the new course. The programme will combine essential core physics modules, with medical physics, chemistry, mathematical science, biology and anatomy. Prof. Wil Van der Putten, Director of the Medical Physics & Bioengineering Centre, Galway University Hospital, welcomed the new course. "This is a new programme which merges a core programme in Physics with additional material in biology, anatomy, and various medical diagnostics and instrumentation. There is currently a considerable demand for qualified medical physicists in Ireland and the UK and this demand is expected to grow in the future." Graduates from the programme will be well qualified to proceed to professional medical physics training at Masters Degree level. There are also exciting career opportunities in the medical device and health care industry* and in the health and safety sector. Prof. Tom Glynn, Head of the Physics Department, NUI Galway, said: "Graduates of this course will receive an education in physics, instrumentation, and computational techniques - with a strong emphasis on the medical applications. They will acquire useful skills such as, problem solving, data handling, critical reasoning, and computing, all of which are essential elements in their careers. As well as pursuing a further career in medical physics, graduates will also have employment options in research, industry, teaching, energy and environment and in many other areas" Prof. Van der Putten added: "The degree will provide comprehensive training in Physics, as many graduates, without the basic Physics training, are currently seeking to build a career in Medical Physics but the lack of a fundamental grounding in Physics is preventing them from achieving accredited status." Graduates from this programme can seek employment in the wide range of careers open to regular physics graduates but will also have a strong foundation in medical physics and will be well qualified to proceed to professional medical physics training at Masters Degree level. The degree course is listed on the CAO website as GY316 and is open for entry in 2007 through the CAO process, using the change of mind option. There is a link to the course brochure on the CAO website. ENDS

Monday, 30 April 2007

The Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge, offered by Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway, has received recognition from the Department of Education and Science, as an acceptable entry requirement for primary teaching postgraduate courses in the training colleges. Students who possess the Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge will also be allowed entry to second year Irish on the BA in Scoil na Gaeilge, NUI Galway. This diploma gives the student an extra qualification whilst studying for his/her degree in another faculty or subjects. "This is an excellent opportunity for those who would like a degree in Irish or a postgraduate qualification in primary school teaching" according to Nuala Uí Aimhirgín, Director of Oifig na Gaeilge Labhartha, NUI Galway, Galway. She went on to say "To date, more than two thousand people have completed the Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge and it is in more demand now than ever before". The Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge is a two year part-time course. This year, applicants will be offered a choice of three levels in the Diploma, based on levels C1, B2 and A2 of the Common European Framework of Reference. Nuala Uí Aimhirgín said "We have been offering staff and students of NUI Galway and the general community this course to afford them the opportunity to improve their spoken and written ability in the Irish language. The course has been designed to give students good communication and written skills in the Irish language". Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge is a national institute of NUI Galway dedicated to pioneering third level education through the medium of Irish. As well as courses on campus, the institue has developed three external centres in the Gaeltacht; two of those are in Galway (Carna and An Cheathrú Rua) and the third is in Donegal (Gaoth Dobhair). Applications are currently being accepted for the course. For more information, contact Mary Ní Niadh, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway at 091 495248 or email mary.niniadh@oegaillimh.ie ENDS

Monday, 30 April 2007

Tá an Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge, á thairiscint ag Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh aitheanta ag an Roinn Oideachais agus Eolaíochta mar cháilíocht inghlactha iontrála don Iarchéim i mBunmhúinteoireacht sna Coláistí Oiliúna. Ag cur leis sin, tá cead isteach sa dara bliain Gaeilge de chuid an chúrsa BA, Scoil na Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh ag an mac léinn a bhfuil an Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge bainte amach acu. Tugann an dioplóma seo cáilíocht bhreise don mhac léinn Ollscoile fad is atá sé/sí ag déanamh na céime i ndámh nó in ábhair eile. "Is deis iontach é seo do dhaoine atá ag iarraidh céim sa Ghaeilge nó Iarchéim i mBunmhúinteoireacht a bhaint amach" a deir Nuala Uí Aimhirgín, Riarthóir Oifig na Gaeilge Labhartha, Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh. Dúirt sí freisin "Go dtí seo, tá an Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge bainte amach ag os cionn dhá mhíle duine agus tá éileamh níos mó anois ná riamh air". Cúrsaí dhá bhliain páirtaimseartha atá i gceist leis an Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge. I mbliana, beidh trí leibhéal dioplóma á thairiscint d'iarrthóirí, bunaithe ar leibhéal C1, B2 agus A2 de Fhráma Tagartha Coiteann an Chomhchreata Eorpaigh. Dúirt Nuala Uí Aimhirgín, "Táimid ag cur na gcúrsaí seo ar fáil do mhic léinn agus do bhaill foirne OÉ Gaillimh agus don phobal i gcoitinne le go mbeadh deis acu cur lena gcumas i labhairt agus scríobh na Gaeilge. Is é aidhm na gcúrsaí scileanna maithe cumarsáide agus scríofa sa Ghaeilge a thabhairt d'iarrthóirí". Is Institiúid Náisiúnta de chuid OÉ Gaillimh é Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge atá tiomanta do cheannródaíocht in oideachas tríú leibhéal a chur ar fáil trí Ghaeilge. I dteannta na gcúrsaí ar an gcampas, déanfaidh an institiúid forbairt ar thrí ionad sheachtracha sa Ghaeltacht; tá dhá ionad acu sin i nGaeltacht na Gaillimhe (Carna agus an Cheathrú Rua) agus ionad eile i nDún na nGall (Gaoth Dobhair). Táthar ag glacadh le hiarratais do na cúrsaí seo anois. Chun tuilleadh eolais a fháil, cuir glaoch ar Mary Ní Niadh, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh ag 091 495248 nó seol ríomhphost chuig mary.niniadh@oegaillimh.ie Críoch

Friday, 27 April 2007

A senior academic from the Madras Institute of Development Studies in India will deliver a public seminar addressing international development issues on Wednesday, 2 May at 5pm. Professor Ananta Kumar Giri's presentation will be called 'Reflections and Mobilisations: Development as Global Responsibility' and will take place in the Siobhán McKenna Theatre at NUI Galway. Professor Giri will draw on his theoretical knowledge and practical experience of international development. He has carried out fieldwork on global justice movements such as Attac in Europe which fights for the implementation of Tobin tax. Professor Giri has also extensively researched Habitat for Humanity, a project where people from materially affluent countries build houses with families in low-income countries. According to Professor Giri, "When we talk of development we are primarily wedded to the world of development interventions. In this world, international donor agencies play a determinant role, sometimes in "partnership" with states and local groups. However, there is unease with such an interventionist conceptualisation and realisation of development which leads its critics to label it as a new form of imperial domination". Professor Giri s recent work on global responsibility has seen him call for a greater merging of the disciplines of philosophy and anthropology. His interest in practical spirituality has also brought him face to face with the challenge of inter-religious dialogue or lack thereof, and he has been studying the recent upsurge of Hindu-Christian conflicts in India in a comparative global perspective. Dr. Iain Mac Labhrainn, Director of the Centre for Learning and Excellence at NUI Galway and leader of the University's Community Knowledge Initiative comments, "In NUI Galway, there has been a considerable amount of research work which focuses on aspects of civil society, social needs and community development. We are delighted to have Professor Giri here to share his research and knowledge in this area." The event is being jointly hosted by NUI Galway's Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI) and Development Education and Research Network (DERN). To reserve a place please contact Mary Bernard at 091 493823 or by e-mail mary.bernard@nuigalway.ie ENDS

Tuesday, 24 April 2007

Leitrim Co. Council, in partnership with National University of Ireland Galway, have announced that an International Seminar will be inaugurated in Co. Leitrim during 26 to 29 July, 2007, to commemorate the work and literary achievements of John McGahern. The Seminar will provide the launching pad for a major International Summer School on one of Ireland's best known and respected modern writers, which will commence in Leitrim during summer 2008. John McGahern, who spent his early years in South Leitrim and North Roscommon, lived most of his working life near Fenagh in Leitrim where he combined his literary commitments with an enduring love of farming and rural life. Since his death in March 2006, much has been written and remembered about his literary achievements. Most recently, he was posthumously honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award by his colleagues and peers at the Irish Books Awards, 2007. Speaking at the announcement, Sinéad Guckian, Cathaoirleach of Leitrim County Council, spoke of meeting him when Leitrim County Council commissioned a portrait of the writer in 2002: "John was a world class writer, witty and good humoured. I was fortunate to have met him and I know that he was held in the highest esteem by the members of our Council as well as by all the people of Leitrim. I am delighted with the plans to celebrate his work". Leitrim County Manager, Jackie Maguire welcomed the project and particularly the involvement of NUI Galway; "The aim of this project is to bring people closer to the work of John McGahern. The decision of NUI Galway to commit to this partnership with Leitrim County Council enables us to continue the dialogue between the place in which John McGahern lived and the university with which he shared his life's work." John McGahern had a long association with University College Galway, now National University of Ireland, Galway. For over thirty years he contributed to courses at the University, including, up to 2005, a major annual workshop at the University's International Summer School. He directed the National Writers' Workshop in Galway in 1979 and 1989. His extensive archive is now held at the James Hardiman Library of NUI Galway. Speaking at the announcement of the International Seminar, the President of NUI Galway, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, said "NUI Galway is very pleased to be associated with this important literary project in Co. Leitrim which recognises and honours one of Ireland's finest writers". Contributors to the International Seminar will include eminent writers, critics and academics as well as local writers. The keynote address - John McGahern: The Novel and the Story - will be delivered by Prof. Declan Kiberd, University College Dublin. Other speakers will include Dr. James White and Dr. Eamon Maher. The seminar will be coordinated by Dr. John Kenny, Department of English, NUI Galway. As well as appealing to all lovers of McGahern's own work, the International Seminar will be of interest to literary researchers and to book clubs, to readers of contemporary fiction and modern writing, and to all national and international students of Irish literature and culture. ENDS

Monday, 23 April 2007

A public lecture addressing the topic An Energy Policy for Ireland by Prof. John Simmie is to be given in the Roundstone Community Hall, County Galway, on Friday, 27 April at 7pm. Professor Simmie will try to square the demands of our economy and our commitments to the Kyoto Agreement. The lecture is organised as part of the Unfolding Ideas series in association with NUI Galway. Professor Simmie, a regular contributor to programmes such as the Last Word with Matt Cooper, the Six One News, Eamonn Dunphy and Pat Kenny Live, has also contributed to the print media on climate change, incineration and the Corrib gas line. He holds controversial views on global warming and climate change insofar as it applies to Ireland. Professor Simmie is Director Emeritus of the Combustion Chemistry Centre in NUI Galway, the only such research body in this country, and one of the very few of its type in the world. NUI Galway is also a centre of Bio-Energy Research. Unfolding Ideas is a Colloquium Series launched by NUI Galway to provide a forum for scholars, educators and artists to engage in a series of public talks, group discussion and workshops. The programme is organised by the Faculty of Arts and Galway University Foundation. ENDS

Monday, 23 April 2007

Researchers at the Centre for Astronomy, NUI Galway have made an important discovery regarding brown dwarfs which has revealed that these "failed stars" can possess powerful magnetic fields and emit lighthouse beams of radio waves thousands of times brighter than any detected from the Sun. The team of Gregg Hallinan, Stephen Bourke and Caoilfhionn Lane; scientists based at the Armagh Observatory; and US researchers in New Mexico and Arizona, has discovered that the brown dwarfs are behaving like pulsars, one of the most exotic types of object in our Universe. "Brown dwarfs tend to be seen as a bit boring – the cinders of the galaxy. Our research shows that these objects can be fascinating and dynamic systems, and may be the key to unlocking this long-standing mystery of how pulsars produce radio emissions," said Mr Hallinan who presented his findings at a recent meeting of the Royal Astronomical Society in Preston, UK. Since the discovery of pulsars 40 years ago, astronomers have been trying to understand how the rotating neutron stars produce their flashing radio signals. Although there have been many attempts to describe how they produce the extremely bright radio emissions, the vast magnetic field strengths of pulsars and the relativistic speeds involved make it extremely difficult to model. The researchers have found that brown dwarfs are now the second class of stellar object observed to produce this kind of powerful, amplified (coherent) radio signal at a persistent level. The emissions from the brown dwarfs appear to be very similar to those observed from pulsars, but the whole system is on a much slower and smaller scale, so it is much easier to decipher exactly what is going on. Importantly, the mechanisms for producing the radio emissions in brown dwarfs are well understood, as they are almost identical to the processes that produce radio emissions from planets. Dr Aaron Golden, lecturer at the Department of Information Technology, who supervised the group said: "The observations that yielded this discovery involved the use of some of the world s finest astronomical facilities, but it was sheer hard work and focussed, inspired analysis that have put astronomical research at NUI Galway on a global stage. "I think it is particularly important to stress that such world class research being lead by astronomers at NUI, Galway is a testament to the quality and ability of our postgraduate students on campus, and a vindication of the University s recent decision to approve the setting up of the Centre for Astronomy." Mr Hallinan added; "It looks like brown dwarfs are the missing step between the radio emissions we see generated at Jupiter and those we observe from pulsars". The group is now planning a large survey of all the known brown dwarfs in the solar neighbourhood to find out how many are radio sources and how many of those are pulsing. If a large fraction of brown dwarfs are found to pulse, it could prove a key method of detection for these elusive objects. ENDS

Monday, 23 April 2007

The inaugural recipient of a travel grant supported by the Louis & Nellie Sieg and Frank G. & Gertrude Dunlap Scholarship Fund, USA, to assist research in Medieval Studies has been announced by NUI Galway. Professor Nicholas Canny, Vice President for Research, NUI Galway, presented Rory Sherlock, a Ph.D student in Archaeology, with his award of €1,200 which will enable him to attend the annual International Congress on Medieval Studies at Western Michigan University, next month. Mr Sherlock will present his paper on 'Past and Present Approaches to the Study of Tower Houses in Ireland' at the Kalamazoo Congress, which attracts over 3,000 scholars worldwide with an interest in Medieval Studies. Mr Sherlock will be accompanied to the Kalamazoo Congress by Dr Kieran O'Conor, Department of Archaeology, NUI Galway, who will address a panel devoted to 'New Research on Castles in Britain and Ireland'; and Dr Kimberly A LoPrete, Department of History, NUI Galway, who will speak on a panel she organised on 'New Documentary Communities in the Twelfth Century'. The scholarship fund has been established with an endowment donated by a Michigan-based charitable organisation, the LoPrete Family Foundation, which supports educational activities in the Arts and Humanities among other ventures. Recipients of the award are selected annually by a panel of academics convened by the Director of the MA in Medieval Studies at NUI Galway, Professor Dáibhí Ó Cróinín. For further information on the scholarship, see http://www.nuigalway.ie/medievalstudies/ . Further details on this year's International Congress on Medieval Studies in Kalamazoo can be found at: http://www.wmich.edu/medieval/congress. ENDS

Thursday, 19 April 2007

Pictured at the launch of the NUI Galway Research Staff Association (GRSA) are from left: Dr. Barry Glynn, Chairman, GRSA; Mr Éamon Ó Cuív T.D., Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs and Professor Tim O Brien, Director of Regenerative Medical Institute, NUI Galway The newly formed Galway Research Staff Association (GRSA) at NUI Galway has been officially launched by Eamon Ó Cuív T.D., Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs at a ceremony on Thursday, 19 April 2007. With over 250 contract researchers currently working in the National University of Ireland Galway, the primary function of the GRSA is to promote the interests of contract research staff within the University and in so doing to create a working environment which encourages excellence in research and serves to attract and retain high quality researchers. Speaking at the launch, Professor Tim O'Brien, Director of the Regenerative Medical Institute (REMEDI) at the University said: "Structured research careers for PhD graduates will be crucial to the future economic success of the country. This has been recognised by the Advisory Council for Science Technology and Innovation who are currently drafting a report for Government on this issue. Successful implementation of a plan to address this issue will be necessary if we are to continue to attract the brightest and the best students to a career in research". GRSA chairman, Dr Barry Glynn, who is based at the National Diagnostics Centre, NUI Galway said: "The Association welcomes the increased investment in science required for building Ireland's knowledge economy. However recognition of the contribution made by the existing researcher base is lacking and the means to integrate them into the proposed structure remains unclear. "Contract researchers at NUI Galway contribute to the economic as well as educational success of the University. Despite their evident importance to the university problems facing researchers have not been properly addressed including: job security, career structure, pensions, and salary levels relative to qualifications." The specific aims of the GRSA are: To provide a collective voice for researchers within the University to articulate and promote their views and to liaise with University authorities. To improve the status of researchers on fixed contracts within the University, commensurate with their contribution, experience and responsibilities. To encourage greater recognition of the contribution of researchers through parity of esteem and reward. To provide a forum for research staff to meet, network and discuss issues of mutual concern and in so doing to build a cross-disciplinary University research community. According to the Association, state funding of research centres will fail to deliver results unless experienced research staff is in place, while training of the next generation of PhD students, essential for the Government's strategy for Science, Technology and Innovation, depends upon the direct involvement of these researchers. Further information is available at www.nuigalway.ie/research_staff_association/ or by emailing grsa@nuigalway.ie ENDS

Monday, 16 April 2007

The Faculty of Engineering at NUI Galway is to offer a new full-time, four-year degree programme in Project and Construction Management starting in September 2007. The honours BSc degree is being offered in response to the shortage of suitably qualified professionals across all sectors of the built environment following the enormous investment in physical infrastructure in recent years. The degree programme is listed on the CAO website as GY410 and an additional notice will shortly be sent by the CAO to all students who have applied through the CAO process. Potential applicants can then include the programme through the Change of Mind process until July 1 2007. Professor Padraic O'Donoghue, Dean of Engineering at NUI Galway said: "This programme represents an exciting new offering in the area of construction/project management. The programme represents a further expansion of NUI Galway's degree options in the area of the built environment which also include degrees in Civil Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Health and Safety and an MA in Planning. The new degree will equip students with a knowledge and understanding of project management, particularly in the construction sector, and enable them to embrace the challenges of modernisation, innovation and change in tomorrow's knowledge based economy." A key aspect of the programme is the broad-based multidisciplinary approach involving several faculties. In addition to the strong input from Civil and Industrial Engineering, there is also a significant input from the Faculty of Commerce along with Science and Law. This broad-based training will provide graduates with a unique set of marketable skills that will allow them to meet the challenges that they will face in an ever competitive industry. Prof. O'Donoghue added: "Deficiencies in the supply of graduates in the areas of project and construction management have been identified and the new programme will meet these demands. Thus, the course aims to prepare graduates to be capable of assuming technical, management, academic and research/development level positions in the construction industry." Further details and information can be sought from Prof. Padraic O'Donoghue or Dr. Kevin McNamara, Department of Engineering, NUI Galway at 091 492170/492291 or e-mail brid.flaherty@nuigalway.ie www.nuigalway.ie/civileng ENDS

Monday, 16 April 2007

The Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway, Professor William Schabas has been awarded the Certificate of Merit by the American Society of International Law. Prof Schabas was honoured for his book, 'The UN International Criminal Tribunals: the Former Yugoslavia, Rwanda and Sierra Leone' (Cambridge University Press, 2006), which was chosen from a list of 60 publications worldwide. The Society awards three certificates every year for what it judges to be the best books in the field of international law. The American Society of International Law is one of the leading learned societies in the field of international law. Prof. Schabas received the accolade at the Annual Meeting of the Society in Washington, D.C. from Society President, Professor José Alvarez. Certificate of Merit Awards were also presented to Professor James Hathaway, of the University of Michigan, and Professors Fionualla Ni Aoilain and Oren Gross, of the Transitional Justice Institute, University of Ulster. Meanwhile, Prof Schabas has addressed the Baker Peace Conference in Ohio, where he delivered a keynote speech on international criminal justice. The theme of this year's annual conference, organised by the Centre for Contemporary History, Ohio University, was the transatlantic relationship and issues facing the Atlantic Alliance, including the use of force, the role of international institutions, U.S.-British relations, war crimes and the international criminal court. "The paradox of the United States position is that it has always been at the top of the list of countries enthusiastic about international criminal justice, and this goes right back to Nuremberg in 1945," said Prof Schabas. "But of course in recent years, the United States has become rather hostile to the most important new initiative in this area, the International Criminal Court. Basically, the United States resents the fact that the Court is independent of the Security Council. This has been welcomed by most other countries, who see this as important to the Court s impartiality and integrity. But for the United States, it means it cannot control the Court, explained Professor Schabas. "United States opposition to the International Criminal Court is part of the larger phenomenon of a growing rift between the United States and Europe on many issues in the field of human rights. We disagree on so many things, from capital punishment, to basic entitlements to medical care and education, to the International Criminal Court." ENDS

Monday, 16 April 2007

Pictured during Dr Prusiner's visit to NUI Galway are from left: Professor Nicholas Canny, Vice President for Research, NUI Galway; Dr Stanley Prusiner and Professor Noel Lowndes, Head of the Department of Biochemistry, NUI Galway. Nobel Prizewinner Dr Stanley Prusiner was a recent guest of the Department of Biochemistry, NUI Galway where he delivered a lecture on 'Prions, Mad Cows and Dementing Diseases'. Dr Prusiner was awarded the 1997 Nobel Prize in Medicine for his ground breaking discovery of Prion proteins (acronym for proteinaceous infectious particles), and identification of prions as the key agents in dementia-causing neurodegenerative diseases such as Mad Cow disease and Scrapie in animals and the counterpart human diseases Cruetzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD) and Gerstmann-Straussler-Scheinker syndrome (GSS). Dr Prusiner's research also demonstrated that these diseases can be passed from one species to another. His findings have also been recognised as having implications in the identification of the cause of other neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease. Dr. Prusiner is currently the Director of the Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases and Professor of Neurobiology and Biochemistry at the University of California at San Francisco. Dr. Prusiner was the guest of the Department of Biochemistry and Biotechnology Society, the latter of which received Science Foundation Ireland funding for the event.

Thursday, 12 April 2007

NUI Galway's Keynote Seminar Series, organised by the Community Knowledge Initiative, (CKI) continues on Thursday, 19 April, 2007, when Dr Maurice Mullard, Reader in Social Policy at Hull University will deliver an address on 'Citizenship, Globalisation and the War on Terror'. Focusing on themes related to civic engagement and active citizenship, the series is being offered as a response to the impact that volunteering has in today's communities. Dr Mullard will argue that citizenship is not a static concept, but reflects changing hopes and aspirations. He believes expectations of citizenship are at present being shaped and defined by the dual processes of Globalisation and the War on Terror. During the seminar Dr Mullard will investigate two possible models of citizenship; the consumer citizen and the cosmopolitan citizen. The former lives in a world where consumption confirms identity and membership of community while the latter seeks to make real the nature of greater human connections in a globalised world. Dr Iain Mac Labhrainn, Director of the Centre for Learning and Excellence (CELT) at NUI Galway and head of CKI says; "The theme of citizenship is topical just now with the Taoiseach recently launching the Taskforce on Active Citizenship report. This seminar will allow us to take a step back and look at the formation of notions of citizenship and the influence played by world events". Tickets for the free event, which is hosted in partnership with the Department of Political Science & Sociology, are available from Mary Bernard at the Community Knowledge Initiative at mary.bernard@nuigalway.ie or on 091 493823. The seminar will be held in the Charles McMunn Theatre, Arts/Science Building from 1.00 to 2.00pm. Further information on the CKI Keynote Seminar Series is available at the CKI website at http://www.nuigalway.ie/cki ENDS

Wednesday, 4 April 2007

The award-winning film ONCE by Irish filmmaker John Carney is to be screened in Roundstone, County Galway, on Saturday, 14 April, as part of the Folding Landscapes series in association with NUI Galway. The low-budget musical tale of boy-meets-girl is Carney's third feature film and has already won the prestigious Audience Award at this year's Sundance Film Festival. Carney, who has in the past worked with some of the best known Irish actors including Cillian Murphy, Stephen Rea and Gerard McSorley, made the film in just 17 days on the streets of Dublin for a mere $150,000. Starring Frames front man Glen Hansard along with Markéta Irglová, Bill Hodnett, Danuse Ktrestova, and Marcella Plunkett, ONCE has become quite a phenomenon. Carney will attend the Roundstone screening and facilitate a question and answers session with the audience. "I really did think when we made this film that we had made a film that very few people would want to see or maybe only people who are interested in music would want to see, and it turns out to be something quite different," he says. Rod Stoneman, Director of the Huston School of Film and Digital Media, NUI Galway says: "John Carney s ONCE shows that imaginative micro budget film-making has the capacity to produce strong versions of Irish cinema. Like his earlier feature November Afternoon and his memorable television series Bachelor's Walk, his combination of a free-wheeling narrative and good music is exactly the style that can engage contemporary audiences. ONCE is a striking version of what he describes as an 'art-house musical' and it is likely to be as successful here as at the Sundance Film Festival." ONCE will be screened at 7.00pm at Roundstone Community Hall and is a free event open to the public. Unfolding Ideas is a Colloquium Series launched by NUI Galway to provide a forum for scholars, educators and artists to engage in a series of public talks, group discussion and workshops. The programme is organised by the Faculty of Arts and Galway University Foundation. ENDS

Tuesday, 3 April 2007

The Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC) announced today that it is embarking on a new collaboration with Met Éireann, the Irish National Meteorological Service. The project will be led by NUI Galway, the host organisation for ICHEC. As part of this collaboration, ICHEC will provide computational facilities and support to Met Éireann to enable it to run its operational high-resolution forecast models on ICHEC's flagship supercomputer, Walton, currently the 376th fastest computer in the world[1]. This move will allow Met Éireann to avail of state-of-the art computing technology, known as High-Performance Computing (HPC), to improve the quality of its forecast products. This collaboration will also provide a suitable framework for ICHEC to bring its considerable expertise in HPC to the climate modelling and weather prediction communities. ICHEC will indeed take an active part in the development of faster and more accurate simulation codes that are of interest to Met Éireann and other national weather forecast agencies. This involvement is expected to bring considerable benefits to the environmental science research community in Irish universities. Dr. J.-C. Desplat, ICHEC Director, stated: "This collaboration constitutes a clear endorsement of ICHEC's professionalism and its ability to deliver a mission-critical service." Met Éireann, in collaboration with UCD, has already greatly benefited from the use of ICHEC resources. Through the Community Climate Change Consortium for Ireland (C4I) project, it has carried out major computer simulations of the past and future Irish climate in support of the National Climate Change Strategy. This new scientific collaboration with ICHEC, and the substantial computer resources it provides, will enhance Met Éireann's operational forecasting and climate modelling activities. Mr Declan Murphy, Director of Met Éireann, stated: "Modern weather forecasting methods depend on the availability of High Performance Computing facilities. By teaming up with ICHEC, Met Éireann will be in a position to run more sophisticated weather and climate models than it could afford to do on its own, and this partnership represents an excellent example of efficient use of national resources". Met Éireann[2], the Irish National Meteorological Service, is attached to the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government. It is the leading provider of weather information and related services for Ireland. ICHEC is a project funded by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) with contributions from the Higher Education Authority (HEA) through the CosmoGrid project. ICHEC operates the National HPC service, a service offered to all researchers in Irish universities and research organisations. See http://www.ichec.ie [1] Source: Top 500 list at http://www.top500.org/ [2] See http://www.met.ie/ ENDS

Monday, 2 April 2007

Lisa Ní Fhlatharta, Áras na Gaeilge, Dr. Iognáid o Muircheartaigh, Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh agus Dáithí ó Madáin, Áras na Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh. Sheol Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh an Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh Scéim na hOllscoile ar an Aoine, Scéim a aontaíodh faoi Acht na dTeangacha Oifigiúla 2003. Is é príomhaidhm na chéad Scéime seo go gcuirfí le soláthar seirbhísí trí Ghaeilge san Ollscoil i réimsí acadúla agus riaracháin agus sna seirbhísí ginearálta. Seo mar a labhair an tUachtarán ag an seoladh "Mar Ollscoil atá suite ar thairseach na Gaeltachta tá sé mar sprioc againn campas eiseamláireach dátheangach a chruthú. Is scéim trí bliana atá i gceist agus roimh dheireadh na chéad Scéime seo (Deireadh Fómhair, 2008) beidh seirbhís trí mheán na Gaeilge á soláthar don phobal i dtrí cinn déag de shainréimsí oibre na hOllscoile." Mar chuid den seoladh, cuireadh tús le feachtas poiblíochta, feachtas póstaer agus bileog ina measc chun an pobal a chur ar an eolas faoi sheirbhísí dátheangacha atá agus a bheidh ar fáil do chustaiméirí de chuid na hOllscoile roimh chríoch na chéad Scéime. Lean an tUasal Ó Muircheartaigh "Tá sé tábhachtach go mbeadh a fhios ag comhluadar na hOllscoile agus ag an bpobal i gcoitinne faoi na seirbhísí dátheangacha seo, is é sin an fáth go mbeidh na póstaeir agus na bileoga eolais seo a scaipeadh, ní amháin ar fud na hOllscoile ach ar fud na Gaillimhe". Cuireadh in iúl ag an ócáid go bhfuil sé mar chuid lárnach d'fhís fhadthréimhseach OÉ Gaillimh go dtiocfadh forbairt agus borradh ar sheirbhísí trí mheán na Gaeilge. Mar fhocal scoir dúirt an tUachtarán "Tá sé ríthábhachtach go mbainfeadh muid úsáid as na seirbhísí seo agus mar atá ráite ar na bileoga eolais agus ar na póstaeir. Is libhse na Seirbhísí, Bainigí úsáid astu" Le aghaidh tuilleadh eolais déan teagmháil le: Dáithi Ó Madáin, Áras na Gaeilge ag 091-495449 nó rphost ag daithi.omadain@oegaillimh.ie nó Lisa Ní Fhlatharta, Áras na Gaeilge ag 091 495451 nó rphost ag lisa.nifhlatharta@oegaillimh.ie

Monday, 2 April 2007

2 Aibreán 2007: Tá postanna nua cruthaithe le déanaí i réimse an aistriúcháin, in Éirinn agus san Aontas Eorpach, nárbh fhéidir a líonadh mar nach bhfuil dóthain aistritheoirí cáilithe ann. Is féidir le mac léinn cáilíocht léinn atá ag teastáil le ceann de na postanna seo a fháil ach tabhairt faoi chúrsa iarchéime an Dioplóma Iarchéime / M.A. (Léann an Aistriúcháin) atá á reáchtáil ag Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh an bhliain acadúil seo chugainn. Is cúrsa lánaimseartha é seo a dhéantar thar bhliain amháin i gcás an Dioplóma Iarchéime, nó thar dhá bhliain i gcás an M.A agus a bheas ar siúl ar an gCeathrú Rua i gCo. na Gaillimhe. Tá an cúrsa seo feiliúnach do dhaoine a bhfuil cumas maith Gaeilge agus Béarla acu, idir labhairt agus scríobh agus do dhaoine ar spéis leo tabhairt faoi ghairm an aistriúcháin. Is réimse fáis é réimse an aistriúcháin Ghaeilge agus leanfaidh an fás sin de thoradh Acht na dTeangacha Oifigiúla, agus stádas nua na Gaeilge mar theanga oifigiúil oibre de chuid an Aontais Eorpaigh. Baineann an-fhéidearthacht leis an aistriúchán do dhaoine ar mhaith leo bheith féinfhostaithe, do dhaoine ar mhaith leo a slí bheatha a bhaint amach sa bhaile agus do dhaoine ar mhaith leo ioncam breise a shaothrú. Is jabanna iad seo a bhfuil tuarastal agus coinníollacha tarraingteacha fostaíochta ag gabháil leo. "Is céim chun cinn thábhachtach anois ó thaobh gairme de scileanna gairmiúla aistriúcháin a shealbhú agus cáilíocht aitheanta tríú leibhéal a bhaint amach. Tá ár gcúrsaí deartha le dul in oiriúint do riachtanais daoine éagsúla, m.sh. duine atá ag obair agus atá ag iarraidh staidéar páirtaimseartha a dhéanamh le cur ar a c(h)umas dul chun cinn a dhéanamh ó thaobh gairme de nó duine atá ag iarraidh staidéar lánaimseartha a dhéanamh le bheith in ann tabhairt faoi ghairm bheatha nua sa Bhruiséil", a dúirt Peadar Mac an Iomaire, Priomhfheidhmeannach, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh. Déanfar dianchleachtadh ar cheart agus ar chruinneas na Gaeilge ar an gcúrsa seo agus gheobhaidh na hiarratasóirí spléachadh ar ghnó an aistriúcháin chomh maith le cleachtadh a fháil ar na huirlisí agus na bogearraí is mó a bhíonn in úsáid ag aistritheoirí lae inniu. Déanfar cleachtadh freisin ar théacsanna éagsúla a aistriú, go háirithe ar na téacsanna is coitianta a bhíonn idir lámha ag aistritheoirí gairmiúla na Gaeilge. De bhrí go bhfuil borradh thar cuimse tagtha ar ghairm an aistriúcháin in Éirinn mar réimse léinn, gnó agus fostaíochta, tá éileamh nach beag ar aistritheoirí gairmiúla chun caighdeán ard aistriúcháin a chinntiú agus tá jabanna maithe ar thuarastal mór le fáil anois mar aistritheoirí gairmiúla in Éirinn agus san Eoraip. Mar sin tá tábhacht bhreise ag baint le cáilíocht aitheanta agus dea-scileanna aistriúcháin a bhaint amach. Táthar ag glacadh le hiarratais don chúrsa seo go dtí an 27 Aibreán 2007. Chun tuilleadh eolais a fháil, cuir glaoch ar Chassie Ní Chathasaigh, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh ag 091 869022 nó seol ríomhphost chuig aistriuchan@oegaillimh.ie Críoch

Monday, 2 April 2007

2 April 2007: NUI Galway's Career Connect Mentoring Programme, designed to provide students with an opportunity to meet, discuss career goals and network with professionals locally and worldwide, celebrated another successful year with the presentation of certificates to participants at a recent ceremony. Developed by the Careers Service, the programme puts students in touch with graduates of NUI Galway who are working in a career area of interest to the student. Over a period of time the graduate mentors the students, which involves providing the student with professional support in the form of advice, information and feedback. The mentor draws on their own professional experiences, to support and encourage the student or to offer different perspectives. Mary O'Riordan, Vice-President for Student Services and Human Resources presented participants with certificates at the recent ceremony. "In an era with excellent employment prospects for graduates there is a corresponding need for them to make good decisions and successful applications," she said. "This programme, which is now in its third year of operation, continues to be very successful and forms an essential element of the Careers Service portfolio of supports available to students to enable them to make good career decisions." Joan Lally, Mentoring Officer at the Careers Service explains the benefits of the programme to students. "There is a huge difference between college life and the realities of the workplace and at the Careers Service we are trying to bridge this gap with the Career Connect Mentoring Programme. By connecting with a professional, the student gains knowledge, insight and support to help them on their way. Also, the mentoring allows them the opportunity to get 'real life' exposure and so therefore can reconcile their perception of a career and the actual reality". Students who participated in the programme have said they found it very useful and worthwhile and have found the opportunity to gain 'real life' exposure to a career or organisation extremely valuable. Mentors have been happy to become involved with the university community at a personal level and impact positively in the lives of students. The programme has also given them the opportunity to develop and practice their coaching skills. The programme is open to all professionals as well as graduates of NUI Galway. For further information or to become a mentor, contact Joan Lally, Careers Service NUI Galway. Tel: 091 492053. ENDS

Monday, 2 April 2007

Jobs in demand for Highly Skilled Irish Translators The demand for Irish language translators with third-level qualifications has rapidly increased as a result of the Official Languages Act and the newly-acquired status of Irish as an official working language of the European Union. Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge at NUI Galway is offering a Masters degree (MA) in Translation Studies, which meets this rapidly growing demand for professional Irish translators at home and abroad. Applications for the two-year, full-time masters course, the highest accredited course in this discipline ever to be offered in the country, will be accepted until 27 April. The course is also available over one year as a Postgraduate Diploma. With the expansion of translation in Ireland as a field of education, business and employment, there is an onus on professional translators to ensure their work reaches a very high standard. Achieving a recognised qualification and acquiring sound translation skills is now, therefore, more important than ever. "Acquiring professional translation skills and achieving a recognised third-level qualification is becoming an important career move. Our translation courses are designed to suit people's needs, whether it's a worker who wants to study part-time to improve their career path or someone who wants to study full-time to embark on a new career in Brussels", commented Peadar Mac an Iomaire, CEO, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway. Throughout the course there will be an emphasis on accuracy in written Irish as a target language in translation. Participants will also get an insight into the translation business, as well as the software and electronic tools available to the Irish language translator. The course is designed to give practical experience of translating the types of texts most commonly translated into Irish. Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge is NUI Galway's national institute pioneering third-level education through the Irish language. In addition to translation courses, NUI Galway's Acadamh offers a growing range of courses through Irish including: Communications, TV & Radio Skills, Language Planning, Drama and IT. Applications are now being accepted for all courses. For more information, telephone Cassie Ní Chathasaigh, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway on 091 869 022 or e-mail aistriuchan@oegaillimh.ie Ends

Monday, 2 April 2007

John Bradley, Lower Dangan, Galway, runner-up in the Safety Category receiving his award from Joe Walsh, FCILT, International President of the Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport (CILT), sponsors of the awards. Maura Garvey, Ballinasloe, Co. Galway, runner-up in the Rail Category receiving her award from Joe Walsh, FCILT, International President of the Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport (CILT), sponsors of the awards The Faculty of Engineering at NUI Galway is celebrating with its students receiving Logistics & Transport 'Idea of the Year Award' awarded by The Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport (CILT). The awards were presented by Joe Walsh, CILT, International President of CILT at a special awards ceremony on Thursday, 29 March in Dublin. Six NUI Galway students (three Industrial Engineering students, two Management Engineering students and one International student) were winners in six categories of the competition which is open to both students and professionals. The awards are presented to the originator of an idea, which the judges consider to be the most innovative and which could make a significant contribution to some aspect of transport in Ireland. Professor Padraic O Donoghue, Dean of Engineering at NUI Galway said: "I am delighted to acknowledge the success of six NUI Galway students in receiving awards for their projects from CILT. This is a particularly high number of awards for one university and it is also noteworthy that three of the awards represented category winners. I wholeheartedly congratulate all of the students and their lecturers on these achievements." The annual awards, which include a range of categories, are based on innovative ideas submitted by students in the areas of: Logistics, Air, Safety & Environment, Sea, Rail and Road. Among the winners were David Byrne, Rochfortbridge, Co Westmeath, winner of the Safety Category; John Bradley, Galway, runner-up in the Safety Category; Maura Garvey, Ballinasloe, Co. Galway, runner-up in the Rail Category; Stephen McCarthy, Cloughjordan, Co. Tipperary, runner-up in the Road Category; Vicky Bryan, Ballina, Co. Mayo, winner in the Marine Category; and Kaitlin Walsh, a visiting student from New York, USA, winner in the Rail Category. Lecturer in Logistics at the Faculty of Engineering, NUI Galway, Ms Mary Dempsey, said: "The outstanding dedication and commitment the NUI Galway students make each year in transport innovation is reflected in their logistics projects, and is fortified by CILT recognition in the form of the Innovation Transport Awards. I am extremely proud of the Business Logistics students and of the possible spin-offs from these projects including, investigation by the technology transfer office into possible patent opportunities and requests for copies of the projects from Mr. Gay Byrne, Chairperson of the Road Safety Authority, Capt. Brian Sheridan, Galway Harbour Master and Bus Éireann". Mr. Chris McGlinn, CILT Eastern Section Ideas Awards coordinator commended the achievements of the students: "There were excellent entries received and it made for some difficult decisions by our adjudicators. It is rewarding to see the commitment and interest the NUI Galway students have shown again on this occasion". The Minister of Transport was represented at the ceremony by Mr. Andy Cullen, Assistant Secretary of the Department of Transport. Support for the Galway students was kindly received from PEM Europe, Galway Harbour, Irish Rail, Faculties of Engineering, Arts, the International Office and Commerce as well as from the Office of the Registrar at NUI Galway. - Ends –

Monday, 28 May 2007

Inniu in OÉ Gaillimh, sheol an Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, Uachtarán, OÉ Gaillimh an chéad MA sa Phleanáil Teanga san Eoraip. Is iad Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, coláiste lán-Ghaeilge de chuid OÉ Gaillimh atá ag tairiscint an chúrsa iarchéime sa réimse nuálach léinn seo. Beidh deis ag scoláirí tabhairt faoi chúrsa go lánaimseartha (bliain amháin) nó go páirtaimseartha (dhá bhliain) ó Mheán Fómhair 2007 ar aghaidh. "Is é seo an chéad chúrsa tríú leibhéal san ábhar acadúil seo atá á chur ar fáil in Éirinn nó fiú amháin san Eoraip," a deir Stiúrthóir an chúrsa, an Dr Conchúr Ó Giollagáin, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge. Ag cur leis sin deir sé, "is cúrsa spéisiúil dúshlánach an cúrsa seo a dhéanfaidh cúram do na riachtanais ghairmiúla, acadúla agus anailíseacha atá de dhíth le tabhairt faoin bpleanáil straitéiseach teanga ina réimsí éagsúla saoil. Tá an cúrsa seo dírithe ar mhic léinn a bhfuil céim bainte amach acu agus atá ag iarraidh oibriú i bpoist i réimsí na pleanála teanga, na forbartha pobail agus na n-eagraíochtaí stáit agus ar dhaoine atá cheana féin ag obair i réimse na pleanála teanga nó in earnáil ghaolmhar." Déanann an réimse léinn seo taighde agus iniúchadh ar na réimsí éagsúla a bhaineann leis na riachtanais straitéiseacha phleanála a theastaíonn ó phobal teanga chun a chinntiú go mbeidh an pobal sin inmharthana. Clúdóidh an cúrsa seo gach gné den phleanáil teanga, lena n-áirítear teoiricí teangeolaíochta agus socheolaíocht na teanga, an phleanáil teanga mar phróiseas, feidhmiú eagraíochta, forbairt pobail agus an dioscúrsa teanga. Cuirfidh an cúrsa seo le cumas anailíseach agus straitéiseach na n-iarrthóirí an phleanáil éifeachtach teanga a chur i bhfeidhm ar an réimse saoil/gairmiúil a bhaineann lena gcúram. "Is céim an-tábhachtach í seo. Tá suas le 90% de theangeacha an domhain i mbaol a mbáis roimh dheireadh an chéid seo", a deir Seosamh Mac Donnacha, Comhordaitheoir Acadúil, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge. Ag cur leis sin deir sé, "Ní féidir cosaint a thabhairt do chultúir faoi leith gan cosaint a thabhairt do na teangacha a bhaineann leo. Tá an MA nua curtha ar fáil chun an phleanáil teanga a fhorbairt ina réimsí gairmiúla, oiliúna agus acadúla agus chun cuidiú le scolairí iarchéime agus le daoine gairmiúla anailís a dhéanamh agus tuiscintí a fháil ar na riachtanais teanga a bhaineann leis an bpleanáil straitéiseach". Táthar ag glacadh le hiarratais don chúrsa seo go dtí an 22 Meitheamh 2007. Chun tuilleadh eolais a fháil, cuir glaoch ar Bhríd Seoige, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh ag 091 495302 nó seol ríomhphost chuig brid.seoige@oegaillimh.ie Críoch

Monday, 28 May 2007

Pictured during a recent lecture at NUI Galway is Professor David Malin, the most famous Astro-photographer in the world. Prof. Malin of Anglo-Australian Observatory (AAO), and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Australia delivered a free public lecture at the Centre for Astronomy at the University. His talk focused on the history of astronomical imaging and the profound effect it has had on knowledge of the universe, and the art and science of colour photography in astronomy and how the vivid colours of clouds of gas and dust can be at the same time be real and yet invisible through the telescope. Photographs created by David Malin can be found in many popular astronomy books and magazines, and are displayed in museums and planetaria throughout the world. Previews of his work can be seen on www.davidmalin.com.

Monday, 28 May 2007

Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of NUI Galway today launched an MA in Language Planning, the first MA of its kind in Europe. Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway's pioneering Irish Language college, which provides third-level education through the medium of Irish, developed this innovative and pioneering programme in the field of language planning. The MA programme is offered as a one-year full-time or a two-year part-time taught postgraduate degree course from September 2007. Dr. Conchúr Ó Giollagáin, Director of the Course, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge said "this is a very interesting and challenging course and primarily concentrates on the development of the professional, academic and analytical requirements for strategic language planning in various aspects of life. It has been designed to provide opportunities for professional and academic development for both recent graduates and for practitioners already working in a professional capacity in a language planning context or in a related sector." Dr O Giollagain added, "This is the first third level course in this discipline in Ireland or indeed in Europe and the Acadamh is the first institution in Europe to offer such a course". The MA programme researches and examines the various aspects of strategic language planning required by a language community to ensure their community is sustainable. The course will cover every aspect of language planning, including linguistic theories and sociolinguistics, language planning as a process, organisational function, community development and language discourse. The course will enable participants to use analyses and strategy to implement effective language planning in their own areas. "This is a very important step. Up to 90% of the world's languages could be extinct before the end of this century", according to Seosamh Mac Donnacha, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge's Academic Co-ordinator. "Specific cultures cannot be protected without protecting their own unique languages. The new MA is being provided to develop language planning in professional, training and academic areas and to help postgraduate students and professionals analyse and understand the language requirements of strategic planning". Applications for this course are being accepted until the 22 June, 2007. For more information contact Bríd Seoige, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway on 091 495302 or email brid.seoige@oegaillimh.ie Ends

Monday, 28 May 2007

Professor William Schabas, Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway and Professor Michael T. Kane, former Head of Physiology at NUI Galway have recently been elected to the Royal Irish Academy. The Royal Irish Academy is an all-Ireland, independent, academic body that promotes study and excellence in the sciences, humanities, and social sciences. Election to membership of the Academy is the highest academic honour in Ireland. Professor William Schabas is one of the world's authorities on the crime of genocide, the abolition of the death penalty and the international criminal justice institutions. He served as one of three international members of the Sierra Leone Truth and Reconciliation Commission and is an Officer of the Order of Canada, Canada's highest civilian honour. Prof. Schabas was recently awarded the Certificate of Merit by the American Society of International Law for his book, The UN International Criminal Tribunals: the Former Yugoslavia, Rwanda and Sierra Leone. "The study of international human rights law is a relatively new field," said Prof. Schabas. "Election to the Royal Irish Academy for work in the field, on such issues as the abolition of capital punishment and the prohibition of genocide, confirms its importance as an academic discipline." Professor Michael T. Kane is a leading academic in the field of reproductive science. Educated at UCD, and Cornell University, Prof. Kane taught at NUI Galway for over 30 years until his retirement in September 2006. Prof. Kane's research has concentrated on two main areas; investigation of factors affecting growth and development in pre-implantation mammalian embryos and mouse embryo stem cells; and the control of ovarian follicular growth. The significance of his work has become progressively more appreciated with the development world wide of in vitro fertilization. The Royal Irish Academy is the principal learned society in Ireland and currently has 385 Members from across the island, elected in recognition of their academic achievement. Those elected are entitled to use the designation MRIA (Member of the Royal Irish Academy) after their name. Other well-known members of the Academy include: NUI Chancellor Dr Garret FitzGerald; Nobel Laureate, Seamus Heaney; Mr Peter Sutherland; Former UN Human Rights Commissioner Mrs Mary Robinson, and President Mary McAleese. Mary Robinson, who is one of the few lawyers to be a member of the Academy, was one of the signatories on Prof Schabas' nomination papers. ENDS

Monday, 28 May 2007

The International Criminal Court and Minority Rights are the focus of two high-profile summer schools to be held at the Irish Centre for Human Rights (ICHR), NUI Galway in June. The International Criminal Court (ICC), which is arguably one of the most important international institutions formed since the establishment of the United Nations, is aimed at combating impunity for atrocities. A host of key international experts in criminal law, including Judge Sang-Hyun Song, a judge in the Appeals Division of the ICC, will address the International Criminal Court Summer School at the ICHR, Earls' Island from 11 to 16 June 2007. Other prominent speakers include Judge Kimberley Prost, Ad Litem Judge at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia; and Professor Michael Scharf, who served as counsel to the US government during the investigation into the 1988 Lockerbie terrorist attack on flight PAN AM 103. Professor William Schabas, Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights will also address the school. "This is the eighth year of the summer school on the International Criminal Court. It has established itself as one of the premier intensive courses on the subject offered anywhere in the world," said Prof. Schabas. Following on from the ICC event, the annual Minority Rights, Indigenous People and Human Rights Law Summer School will take place from 17 to 22 June 2007. Key speakers include Professor Patrick Thornberry, Professor of International Law at Keele University, UK, and member of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination; and Mr Michael Flaherty, University of Nottingham, who was the first Irish member of the UN Human Rights Committee. The course provides participants with an overview of the legal, political and philosophical issues associated with international human rights law and its relationship to minority rights and the rights of indigenous peoples. The School will also draw on speakers representing the most important international organizations working in this field including the UN Committees on Human Rights, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, the International Labour Organisation and the Organisation for Security & Co-operation in Europe. "If you want to understand how successful a human rights regime in any given country is, you could do worse than examine the extent to which minorities in that country are protected. This is as true in Sudan as in Ireland," said Professor Joshua Castellino, Transitional Justice Institute, University of Ulster, who founded the school during his time as lecturer at the Irish Centre for Human Rights. "This course has a strong reputation for being able to address the issues underlying the startling headlines of global affairs. A range of world class experts have been able to provide insights into the schisms in different societies that lead to conflict and the ensuing human misery associated with it. The great mix of nationalities, professions and perspectives of the speakers has always made this course a must-attend for those interested in global affairs and human rights." For further information and full programme details for both events see www.nuigalway.ie/human_rights/summer_schools.html and www.minority-rights.org ENDS

Monday, 21 May 2007

The Health Research Board (HRB) and the Health Service Executive (HSE) have announced that they will jointly fund the establishment of a Clinical Research Facility in Galway. The aim of the HRB/HSE Clinical Research Facility (CRF) is to provide the infrastructure – the physical space, facilities and the experts - needed to support patient-focused research studies. The investment by the HSE and the HRB will be of the order of €20m over five years. When fully operational, the Clinical Research Facility will employ a staff of 20. The research programme to be carried out at the facility will be through a partnership between NUI Galway researchers and clinician scientists from University Hospital Galway. The Minister for Health and Children, Mary Harney TD, who met recently with the lead researchers and funders, said that this investment is a major boost for clinical research and patient care in the West of Ireland. 'I have committed over €50m in capital funding through the Health Research Board over a five-year period to support key research programmes and infrastructure. This HRB/HSE Clinical Research Facility will provide a world-class environment for patient-focused research with real benefits for patients. It will enable clinicians, the health care industry and other key partners to test innovative therapies, technologies and products and increase the speed at which scientific discoveries and innovations can be translated into better patient care. It will also build on the major investment by this Government in basic research facilities at NUI Galway in recent years,' said Mary Harney. The new facility will concentrate on patient-focused research and will make a real contribution to postgraduate research and training of health professionals. Medical doctors and nurses will work with other scientists to improve our understanding of a variety of diseases and to develop new tests and treatments to help tackle these diseases. The Centre will provide patients with the latest advances in areas such as regenerative medicine, cancer, obstetrics and gynaecology, diabetes and inflammatory diseases. Importantly, support will also be provided for studies carried out in general practice settings through analysis of samples taken, provision of statistical support and co-ordination of studies. This will include research on the management of chronic diseases such as diabetes. 'Our guiding philosophy is to stimulate, engage and support health care professionals from diverse areas of expertise to undertake high quality research. The facility will be built as an annex to the existing University Hospital Galway and it is anticipated that it will be completed in 2009. The facility will contain specially designed rooms for gene and cell therapy. When it opens, it will complete the infrastructure present in Galway to allow clinical studies to be undertaken in areas such as heart, joint and spinal cord repair, ensuring an integrated bench to bedside approach,' said Professor Tim O'Brien, Consultant Endocrinologist at Galway University Hospital, Head of the Department of Medicine at NUI Galway and Director of the Regenerative Medicine Institute, a SFI-funded Centre for Science Engineering and Technology. 'The CRF will have a special focus on education of health care professionals in clinical research with plans to establish new programmes such as MSc in Clinical Research and Biostatistics and PhD programmes for clinicians', said Professor Larry Egan, Head of the Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics and a co-applicant on the proposal. 'The development of Clinical Research Facilities here in Ireland is an indication of international excellence in clinical research,' said Dr Ruth Barrington. 'This is one of the most significant developments in Irish health research during my term of office,' said Dr Ruth Barrington, Chief Executive. 'The HRB have a strong track record working in partnership with Universities and Hospitals to support high quality research. We are delighted to engage with the HSE to support this landmark development in Galway,' she concluded. Alan Moran, Hospitals Network Manager, HSE West, said; 'Putting the CRF in the heart of the Hospital will allow staff to contribute to shaping the latest advances in healthcare science, and to bring the benefits of those advances to patients as early as possible. The HSE is pleased to support the energy and imagination of the many individuals from the hospital and the university who conceived this project and who worked so effectively together to make it a reality'. The CRF will be jointly governed by NUI Galway and the HSE, an example of the close ties which exist between the University and health sector in Galway. It will also connect with the new HRB / Wellcome Trust CRF at St James's Hospital Dublin and emerging facilities at Dublin teaching hospitals through the establishment of the Irish Clinical Research Infrastructure Network (ICRIN). The HRB and HSE have also funded ICRIN to help ensure a greater number of patients can benefit from clinical research in the most cost effective manner. Ends

Monday, 21 May 2007

NUI Galway Industrial Engineering student Eoin Morrissey has presented a copy of a database system to Galway Fire and Rescue Service, which he developed to assist fire fighters record and monitor the maintenance of life-critical breathing apparatus equipment. While manual recording systems were already in place to monitor the maintenance of Breathing Apparatus at fire stations throughout Galway city and county, the new software database will identify in advance when sets and compressed air cylinders are due their annual maintenance, and when individual set parts are due to be replaced. Eoin, who completed his final year exams recently, developed the database as part of his final year project, which accounts for one fifth of his degree. The Clarinbridge student approached his final year project with helping people as his main objective. He is involved in numerous community voluntary activities, the most recent of which has taken him to West Africa, where along with 20 other NUI Galway students, he is currently helping families in Ghana to build their own homes, as part of a Habitat for Humanity/NUI Galway joint initiative. Presenting a copy of the software database to Senior Assistant Chief Fire Officer Paul Duffy of Galway Fire and Rescue Service, Eoin said it had been "hugely gratifying to know that this project will help protect fire fighters who provide such a valuable service to the community". Praising the technology employed by Eoin, Mr Duffy said "We are delighted with the standard of the project and we look forward to the benefits of implementing the database. This technology will make our existing system more efficient and allow the Fire Service to free up valuable resources for other projects". Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh paid tribute to Eoin, who he said was a shining example of the growing number of NUI Galway students who are engaging with the community through a culture of active citizenship positively promoted by the University's Community Knowledge Initiative. "NUI Galway is widely recognised as a student- centred University with an environment where students' interests are stimulated. I am delighted to acknowledge Eoin's contribution to the Fire and Rescue Service and his voluntary work in Ghana," said Dr Ó'Muircheartaigh. Meanwhile, Eoin hopes to pursue a career in the Fire Service following his graduation later this year, where a Degree in Engineering is currently a requirement for senior level positions. ENDS

Monday, 21 May 2007

D'fhógair an Bord Taighde Sláinte (HRB) agus Feidhmeannacht na Seirbhíse Sláinte (HSE) go maoineoidh siad bunú Áis Taighde Chliniciúil i nGaillimh. Is é atá mar aidhm le hÁis Taighde Chliniciúil (CRF) HRB/HSE an t-infreastruchtúr riachtanach - spás, áiseanna agus na saineolaithe - a chur ar fáil d fhonn tacú le hobair taighde atá dírithe ar othair. Infheisteoidh HSE agus HRB suim €20 milliún thar thréimhse cúig bliana. Beidh 20 comhalta foirne fostaithe san Áis Taighde Chliniciúil nuair a bheidh sí ag feidhmiú mar is ceart. Is éard a bheidh sa chlár taighde comhpháirtíocht idir taighdeoirí ó OÉ Gaillimh agus eolaithe cliniceora ó Ospidéal na hOllscoile, Gaillimh. Dúirt an tAire Sláinte agus Leanaí, Mary Harney TD, a chas leis na príomhthaighdeoirí agus an príomhdhream atá ag soláthar maoiniúcháin le déanaí, go gcuirfidh an infheistíocht seo go mór le taighde cliniciúil agus cúram othar in Iarthar na hÉireann. 'Tá os cionn €50 milliún curtha ar fáil agam i maoiniú caipitil tríd an mBord Taighde Sláinte le cúig bliana anuas ar mhaithe le tacú le príomhchláir taighde agus an t-infreastruchtúr taighde. Áis den scoth a bheidh in Áis Taighde Chliniciúil HRB/HSE do thaighde atá dírithe ar othair; taighde a rachaidh chun tairbhe othar. Cinnteoidh an áis seo go mbeidh ar chumas cliniceoirí agus príomhpháirtithe eile teiripí, teicneolaíocht agus táirgí nuálacha a thástáil agus luas a chur faoin méid ama a thógann sé fionnachtana agus nuálaíochtaí eolaíocha a úsáid ar mhaithe le cúram níos fearr a sholáthar d'othair. Lena chois sin, cuirfidh sé leis an infheistíocht mhór atá déanta ag an Rialtas seo in áiseanna bunúsacha taighde in OÉ Gaillimh le blianta beaga anuas,' dar le Mary Harney. Taighde atá dírithe ar othair a bheidh ar siúl san áis seo agus cabhróidh sé go mór le taighde iarchéime agus agus oiliúint gairmithe sláinte. Beidh dochtúirí agus altraí ag obair le heolaithe eile d fhonn cur leis an tuiscint atá againn ar ghalair éagsúla, mar aon le tástálacha agus cóir nua leighis a fhorbairt leis na galair seo a leigheas. Cinnteofar, trí bhunú an Ionaid seo, go mbeidh fáil ag othair ar an gcóir leighis is nuaí cosúil le leigheas athghiniúnach, chomh maith le cóir leighis i réimsí eile cosúil le hailse, cnáimhseachas agus gínéiceolaíocht, diaibéiteas agus galair athlastacha. Chomh tábhachtach céanna, tacófar le staidéar sa chleachtadh ginearálta trí shamplaí tógtha a anailísiú, tacaíocht staitistiúil a sholáthar agus staidéar a chomhordú. Ina measc seo, déanfar taighde ar bhainistiú galar ainsealach cosúil le diaibéiteas. 'Is é atá mar aidhm againn gairmithe sa chúram sláinte a spreagadh, deis a thabhairt dóibh a bheith páirteach mar aon le tacú le gairmithe ó réimsí éagsúla saineolais tabhairt faoi thaighde ar ardchaighdeán. Tógfar an áis in aice le hOspidéal na hOllscoile, Gaillimh agus meastar go mbeidh an foirgneamh tógtha in 2009. Beidh seomraí ar leith do ghéinteiripe agus teiripe gascheall san áis freisin. Deir an tOllamh Tim O Brien, Inchríneolaí Comhairleach in Ospidéal na hOllscoile, Gaillimh, Ceann an Leighis in OÉ Gaillimh agus Stiúrthóir Institiúid an Leighis Athghiniúnaigh - Ionad Eolaíochta, Innealtóireachta agus Teicneolaíochta arna mhaoiniú ag Fondúireacht Eolaíochta Éireann, go gcuirfidh an tIonad nua leis an infreastruchtúr i nGaillimh ionas gur féidir tabhairt faoi staidéar cliniciúil ar an gcroí, na hailt agus deisiú chorda an dromlaigh, mar aon le cur chuige comhtháite i leith chúram na n-othar. 'Leagfaidh an CRF béim faoi leith ar oideachas gairmithe cúraim shláinte sa taighde cliniciúil agus tá sé beartaithe tús a chur le cláir nua cosúil le M.Sc. i dTaighde Cliniciúil agus Bithstaidreamh agus cláir Ph.D. do chliniceoirí,' a deir an tOllamh Larry Egan, Ceann Roinn na Cógaseolaíochta agus Teiripice agus comhiarratasóir sa togra áirithe seo. Deir an Dr Ruth Barrington, 'go dtugann forbairt Áiseanna sa Taighde Cliniciúil in Éirinn léargas ar bharrfeabhas i dtaighde cliniciúil.' Chomh maith leis sin, deir an Dr Ruth Barrington, Príomhfheidhmeannach, 'go bhfuil sé seo ar cheann de na forbairtí is suntasaí i dtaighde sláinte in Éirinn le linn a téarma féin in oifig'. 'Tá HRB ag obair i gcomhpháirt le hOllscoileanna agus Ospidéil le fada an lá chun tacú le taighde ar ardchaighdeán. Ina theannta sin, dúirt sí gur 'cúis áthais dúinn a bheith ag obair leis an HSE chun tacú leis an bhforbairt mhór seo i nGaillimh.' Dúirt Alan Moran, Bainisteoir Líonra na nOspidéal, Feidhmeannacht na Seirbhíse Sláinte, Réigiún an Iarthair, 'Trí CRF a lonnú san Ospidéal go mbeidh cead ag comhaltaí foirne cur leis an dul chun cinn san eolaíocht cúraim shláinte, agus go mbainfidh na hothair tairbhe as an dul chun cinn seo chomh luath agus is féidir. Cúis áthais don HSE tacú le fuinneamh agus samhlaíocht na ndaoine atá ag obair san ospidéal agus san ollscoil; daoine a chur tús leis an tionscadal seo agus a d'oibrigh le chéile go héifeachtach chun é a chur i bhfeidhm'. Beidh OÉ Gaillimh agus HSE freagrach as CRF. Is dea-shampla é seo den dlúthnasc atá idir an Ollscoil agus an earnáil sláinte i nGaillimh. Cruthófar nasc leis an HRB nua / CRF Wellcome Trust ag Ospidéal San Séamas, Baile Átha Cliath agus áiseanna nua in ospidéil teagaisc i mBaile Átha Cliath trí Líonra Infreastruchtúir um Thaighde Cliniciúil na hÉireann (ICRIN) a bhunú. Tá maoiniú curtha ar fáil ag HRB agus HSE do ICRIN d'fhonn a chinntiú gur féidir le níos mó othar tairbhe a bhaint as taighde cliniciúil sa bhealach is costéifeachtaí agus is féidir. Críoch

Monday, 21 May 2007

A conference to celebrate Africa Day and International Peace-Keepers day, entitled Conference on Africa and Peacekeepers: Positive Impact? will take place at the National University of Ireland, Galway on Saturday, 26 May, 2007. Organised by the Irish Centre for Human Rights at the University in conjunction with Amnesty International, and supported by Irish Aid, Department of Foreign Affairs; the conference will address the impact of peace-keepers in general and Irish peace-keepers in particular in Africa. "With Ireland's tradition of United Nations peace-keeping, it's involvement in the mission in Liberia coming to an end and the world's attention focusing on the dire situation in Dafur this conference is timely," said Dr Ray Murphy, Senior Lecturer in Law at the Irish Centre for Human Rights. "This event offers a rare opportunity for practitioners, activists, non-governmental organisations, the African community in Ireland, governmental departments and the academic community to discuss policy in relation to Africa and peace-keeping in particular." A wide range of international experts will address the event including Dr Noel Kinsella, Speaker of the Canadian Senate, international human rights advocate and academic. Other key speakers include representatives from Trócaire, the Irish Defence Forces, the Department of Foreign Affairs, Irish Aid and the Liberian Refugee Community. The conference will also hear from a representative of the Kofi Annan Peacekeeping Centre, a research centre based in Ghana, West Africa that looks at the causes and subsequent management of conflict and the promotion of peace. A major focus of the event will be the Irish mission in Liberia and the current situation in Darfur. The Conference on Africa and Peace-keepers: Positive Impact conference takes place in the Fottrell Theatre, Arts Millennium Building, from 11.00am to 4.30pm. This free conference is open to the public and all are welcome to attend. For further information or to obtain full programme details log on to www.nuigalway.ie/human_rights/ or www.amnesty.ie ENDS