February 2011

NUI Galway Students' Union Launches Student Enterprise Awards

NUI Galway Students' Union Launches Student Enterprise Awards-image

Monday, 28 February 2011

The Student Enterprise Awards, a competition to encourage enterprise and innovation among students, has been launched at NUI Galway. The NUI Galway Students' Union initiative invites students across campus to put forward proposals for a project or business, with a prize of €15,000 for the overall winner. The competition embraces both the innovative and creative abilities of students to formulate a concept, with finalists being offered a chance to turn their idea into reality. The overall winner will not only receive €15,000 direct investment to launch their project, but also invaluable expert guidance and mentoring. Two runner-up prizes are also on offer with financial investment of €2,000. Peter Mannion, NUI Galway Students' Union President said: "We are acutely aware of the hardship being faced by students and their families in these difficult economic times. The Student Enterprise Awards provide an excellent opportunity for young people in particular to apply their skills and talents. By providing the initial financial boost and expert guidance, the Awards have the potential to launch several initiatives that could create much needed employment and investment." The Student Enterprise Awards aim to unlock the potential of NUI Galway students by providing financial support and expertise for students who wish to start a project in the areas of Business, Arts and Social Entrepreneurship. Damien Cosgrove, NUI Galway Students' Union Commercial Services CEO said: "Students' Union Commercial Services is delighted to be involved in this important competition. The University is full of innovative ideas, energetic people and a strong spirit of enterprise. Our company has always been hugely impressed with the culture of entrepreneurship amongst the NUI Galway students. Now, more than ever, students need to be encouraged and supported to turn this spirit of enterprise into real jobs." The Student Enterprise Awards are generously supported by NUI Galway Students' Union Commercial Services Ltd., NUI Galway and the NUI Galway Technology Transfer Office. According to Neil Ferguson, Acting Director of the Technology Transfer Office: "This competition plays an important part in creating a culture of entrepreneurship within our University and is leveraging the huge capacity of our students from across all colleges. We have an excellent history and reputation for start ups and innovation on campus and it is hoped that this competition will add to this by successfully launching new powerful ideas and innovative start-ups which will benefit the Irish economy". The closing date for submissions is Friday, 8 April and applications are available from http://www.suenterpriseawards.com/. -Ends-

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Nuclear Power for Ireland to be Discussed at NUI Galway

Nuclear Power for Ireland to be Discussed at NUI Galway-image

Monday, 28 February 2011

Philip Walton, Emeritus Professor of Physics at NUI Galway, and nationally-renowned nuclear energy expert, will lead a free public talk at the University on Wednesday, 9 March. 'Nuclear Power for Ireland: Facts and Fiction' will discuss all aspects of nuclear power as it relates to Ireland. Historically the Irish Government's policy has been firmly opposed to nuclear energy on the grounds of the risks it poses, yet some argue that nuclear energy is one of the cleanest, safest and economic forms of energy available to mankind today. Professor Walton will be joined by Professor Ian McAulay and Mr Denis Duff to explain why they believe Ireland should adopt nuclear energy as an important part of our energy mix. All three are members of the Better Environment with Nuclear Energy (BENE) group. According to Professor Walton, nuclear power has been employed successfully over the past 50 years by many countries yet Ireland continues to reject it. He says, "We cannot afford to continue to reject this power source out-of-hand, while we continue to rely on fossil fuel imports for most of our electricity production. This is simply untenable." He continues: "Wind energy will not be able to supply even 40 per cent of our electricity without major changes to our electricity system, and even then it is not certain if this can be achieved. What we can consider are modern safe reactors which would fit with little or no need for modifications to the National Grid. It would be possible to have a number of these plants providing jobs and safe, clean environments in a number of areas of Ireland. We would then have reliable energy, independent of dwindling fossil fuel supplies with their world price fluctuations. For the sake of homes and businesses in the future, the least we can do is to understand the fact from fiction in this whole debate." The event takes place at 6.30 pm on Wednesday, 9 March, in the Colm O'hEocha Theatre, Arts Millennium Building. To book a place at the event, contact Adam Beatty, Physics Society, NUI Galway, on 087 9055911 or physicsnuig@gmail.com -Ends-

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NUI Galway Soccer Club reaches the Collingwood Cup Final

NUI Galway Soccer Club reaches the Collingwood Cup Final-image

Thursday, 24 February 2011

NUI Galway Soccer Club have reached the Collingwood 2011 Cup Final. The club had a convincing win over Limerick (6 – 1) on Tuesday and a tough victory over Jordanstown yesterday (2-1). NUI Galway will take on UCC who knocked holders UCD out in the semi final, later today. The game will be played in Trinity s College Park pitch at 2.30. NUI Galway have won the Collingwood Cup six times: 1955, 1968, 1970, 1971, 1995 and 1999. The Cup has been played for annually since 1914 apart from 1915 to1919 during World War One and on one other occasion in 1933/34. The tournament, played over four days, is an all island competition involving 13 Universities and this year's favourities and last year's winners UCD were the first winners in 1914 overcoming Queen's University, Belfast.

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New Book by NUI Galway Professor Examines How Evolution Works

New Book by NUI Galway Professor Examines How Evolution Works-image

Thursday, 24 February 2011

A new book by an NUI Galway Professor of Zoology examines how evolution works by changing the course of embryonic and post-embryonic development. In Evolution: A Developmental Approach Professor Wallace Arthur asks questions like what separates humans from chimpanzees? Is it the genetics of our populations, or our different structures and behavioural capabilities? The book tackles key themes such as developmental repatterning, adaptation and coadaptation, the origins of evolutionary novelties, and evolutionary changes in the complexity of organisms. Together these themes explain how evolution works by changing the course of embryonic and post-embryonic development, providing a title influenced by the new approach of evolutionary developmental biology, 'evo-devo'. A key difference between Evolution: A Developmental Approach and other evolution textbooks is the integration of basic population-based evolutionary concepts with comparative developmental genetics. Organised on conceptual lines, with the themed chapters and case study examples, the book enables students to see the common principles underlying the evolution of different developmental pathways. Professor Arthur says, "There are many evolution texts 'out there', but there are none that cover the ground in the same way as this one. This book adopts a very specific approach to the evolution of animals and plants – an approach in which the central theme is how evolution works by altering the course of egg-to-adult development. This is a book about how evo-devo can be integrated with other approaches to evolutionary biology, giving us a more complete view of evolution than has ever been available before." Evolution: A Developmental Approach was launched yesterday at NUI Galway by NUI Galway President Dr James J. Browne. -Ends-

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NUI Galway's Engineering for Communities family day

NUI Galway's Engineering for Communities family day-image

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

NUI Galway's Ryan Institute hosted Engineering for Communities family day in the Galway City Museum on Saturday, 19 February as part of National Engineers Week. Hundreds of visitors explored the various activities, each dedicated to engineering solutions for different community needs. Highlights included the Eco-House Design Challenge, a K'Nex Bridge Building Contest, Lego Mindstorms Robot Trials, Electronic Circuitry and Wastewater Treatment Demonstrations: great preparation for the next generation of young engineers

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NUI Galway Centre of Astronomy Holds Second in Series of Public Talk

NUI Galway Centre of Astronomy Holds Second in Series of Public Talk-image

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Pulsars which are some of the most extreme and enigmatic objects in the known Universe, will be the subject of the second NUI Galway's Centre of Astronomy public talks. Dr John McDonald, Post-Doctoral Researcher with the Centre for Astronomy, will discuss pulsars (neutron stars) on Wednesday, 2 March, at 7.30pm in the Larmor lecture theatre, NUI Galway. First observed serendipitously in the late 1960s by an Irish postgraduate student working in Cambridge, these objects have been intensely studied for more than 40 years, and yet much about these objects remains shrouded in mystery. The progeny of type II supernovae (the death of massive stars), neutron stars possess the mass of our entire Sun contained in an area the size of Galway, with immense electromagnetic and gravitational fields, spinning up to 650 times a second. Dr McDonald will explain the origins of these stars, starting right from the birth of normal stars, through their violent death, to their stunning rebirth. He will also discuss work being done by the Centre for Astronomy to expand our understanding of these fascinating stars. Speaking about the upcoming talk, Dr Andy Shearer, Director of the Centre of Astronomy at NUI Galway, said: "The Centre for Astronomy has been a world leader in optical pulsar studies for the past twenty years. In this time we have identified two of five known optical pulsars. Dr McDonald's talk will put this work in context show casing ground breaking research at NUI Galway." The talk is open to the public and might be of particular interest to transition year students and students thinking of doing science at University. More details about the series of talks can be found at http://astro.nuigalway.ie/outreach. -ends-

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NUI Galway Babel Public Lecture Series

NUI Galway Babel Public Lecture Series-image

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

The first Babel Public Lecture Series entitled 'Exploring the Book' will come to a close with a lecture by Dr Kate Quinn on Tuesday, 1 March, at 6.30pm at Galway City Library. The Babel Public Lecture Series consists of six lectures and is an initiative of the School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures, NUI Galway. The Babel Public Lecture Series began in November 2010 with the first lecture presented by Dr Nollaig Ó Muraíle, Scoil na Gaeilge at NUI Galway, entitled 'Three Great Connacht Manuscripts from circa AD 1400: the Books of Ballymote, Lecan and Uí Mhaine'. Professor Hans-Walter Schmidt-Hannisa, German, NUI Galway provided the second lecture with a discussion on strolling through the 'Library of Babel: A short history of imaginary books'. Dr Mark Stansbury's lecture, entitled 'What is a Book', explored the development of book making from earliest times to hypertext and featured exhibits of papyrus and wax tablets for the audience to examine. Professor Paolo Bartoloni provided the fourth lecture, 'Joyce's Italian Book of Choice: Svevo's Zeno's Conscience'. The fifth lecture, 'Protestants, Pedants and Presses or What do you need for a Successful Book Trade?', was presented by Dr Catherine Emerson and centred on 16th century Lyon. The final lecture in the Series is titled 'Criminal Passions: The Perennial Appeal of Death and Detection' and will be delivered by Dr Kate Quinn, Spanish, NUI Galway. The lecture is open to members of the pubic and entrance is free. According to Dr Lillis Ó Laoire, Head of the School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures, "Dr Kate Quinn's enticingly 'noir' title manages to mention two of the great themes, passion and death, and promises to bring the first series to an appropriately intriguing completion. Her talk will deal with crime fiction and inform us about why it is we are so drawn by books in this genre." There will be a reception before this final lecture from 6.00pm to 6.30pm. The series will be formally closed by Dr Edward Herring, Dean of the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies, NUI Galway. Further information is available from Suzanne Gilsenan at suzanne.gilsenan@nuigalway.ie or 091 494037. -Ends-

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Concert by Grammy Winning Vocalist Headlines Medicine and the Art Programme

Concert by Grammy Winning Vocalist Headlines Medicine and the Art Programme-image

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

A rare and unusual concert will take place on Wednesday, 2 March at 6pm in the Aula Maxima, NUI Galway as part of the module Medicine and the Arts featuring vocalist Susan Mc Keown (New York) and her band, Ryan Mc Giver on guitar; Eamon O Leary on bouzouki and banjo and Jason Sypher on bass. The concert is based on Grammy-winner Mc Keown's twelfth album Singing in the Dark, where she draws on lyrics from poets of the last thousand years who have written through the lens of depression, mania and addiction. This is a work of many moods, exploring creativity, suffering, and the pursuit of happiness. The album was inspired by the book Touched with Fire: (Manic Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament), by psychiatrist and author Kay Jamison, who contributed an introductory essay to the album. Medicine and the Arts, now in its second year, is a unique and innovative development within the undergraduate Medical curriculum where students engage in a semester-long programme of structured exploration of the Arts across the broad areas of performance, the visual arts and literature. Susan's concert is the flagship event of this year s module and illustrates the commitment of the Medical School to bringing excellent and original work of artistic integrity, promoting the personal development of medical students as future practitioners of medicine and as healing doctors. The group project aspect of Medicine and the Arts - the hospital library, takes the form of a practical engagement with literature, the provision of a mobile library service to patients at University Hospital Galway. Last year Medicine and the Arts medical students carried out all of the research and development of the project and this year the students officially begin the process of engaging with the patients in St Anthony's ward providing books and reading to the patients. The central aim of the hospital library project is to address and relieve the sensory deprivation of patients in hospital wards and restore a greater sense of dignity and an opportunity to use literature to alleviate boredom and promote healing. The medical students also benefit in a meaningful way as they engage in the provision of a voluntary community service Tickets for Susan Mc Keown's concert are €10 and can be purchased at the door. You may also reserve seats with Therese Dixon, Clinical Science Institute at 091 494475/494671 or 524268. All are welcome. -Ends-

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Second Annual NUI Galway Theatre Week Commences

Second Annual NUI Galway Theatre Week Commences-image

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Theatrical forces merge on campus this week for NUI Galway's Theatre Week. Now in its second year, the event showcases through theatre, literature and film, the many talents of NUI Galway students, societies and alumni. Theatre Week began last night (Monday, 21 February) with the Alumni Theatre and Literature Night. Writers and performers who originated from NUI Galway returned to tread the boards of the new Cube Theatre in Áras na Mac Léinn. The evening included writers such as Mary Mullen, Alan McMonagle, Ann Irwin, Rab Fulton and theatre groups involved are Fergoli, Mephisto, Colours Theatre, Side-Show Production as well as Fionnuala Gallagher and many more. The week will include the Jerome Hynes One Act Play Series, Alumni Theatre and Literature Night, the Nothing Specific Society Cardboard Battle, a joint BACon Soc and Dramsoc production of Fight Club, a Monologue Double Bill and workshops from make-up artists and Shakespeare experts. Throughout the week there will also be a series of Shakespeare film adaptations shown and these screenings are free to attend. The six winning Jerome Hynes One Act Plays run from Tuesday to Thursday encompassing life changing themes including death, love, sleep and a naked president. The plays include Sleep Skips my Heart by Sarah Griffin, The Key to Hell by Niamh Dennis, Remember December by David Kilgannon, A Presidential Crisis or People Drowning Everywhere by Michael Shiels and Death of a Movie Starby Thomas Dooley. The Nothing Specific Society will host their second annual battle in cardboard armour on the President's Lawn. This year they have made it an intervarsity event with battlers from all over Ireland attending. Cardboard Armour workshops will take place right throughout the week in preparation for the battle on Thursday at 12 noon. Digging Art by Thomas Dooley and A Pale Moon Rose by Neil Flynn are theatre week's chosen monologues. Digging Art won the Monologue Competition during Múscailt and A Pale Moon Rose, performed by Jerry Fitzgerald has been in various theatres around Cork and Kerry, this is its Galway premier. For more information on the week's events check out www.socs.nuigalway.ieor contact the socsbox on 091 492852. -Ends-

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Meteor Expert to Speak at NUI Galway

Meteor Expert to Speak at NUI Galway-image

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

On Friday, 4 March, Dr Mathew Parkes, Natural History Museum Dublin, will present a public talk entitled Meteorites and Famous Irish Falls at NUI Galway. Hosted by the NUI Galway Centre of Astronomy and the Galway Astronomy Club, this free event will take place at 8pm in the Dillon Theatre, NUI Galway, accompanied by a display of meteorites from the Irish collection of the Natural History Museum. Meteorites are natural objects from outer space that survived their impact on Earth and can be very large or very small. When they enter the Earth's atmosphere, impact pressure causes them to heat up forming a fireball or meteor. Meteorites recovered after being observed as they transited the atmosphere or impacted the Earth are called falls. At the event, members of the public will also get a rare chance to examine recently purchased rock fragments from Mars or the Moon, and others that have landed on Irish soil including the two which smashed through the roof of an RUC barracks in Northern Ireland in 1969, one that fell in Carlow in 1999 and the famous Limerick Meteorite of 1815. Professor Markus Woerner of the Galway Astronomy Club said: "Co-operation between professional and amateur astronomers in Galway and Ireland provides the general public with exciting 'hands-on' experience of the most recent research at the forefront of international research in Astronomy and Geophysics. Dr Parkes' lecture will prove it to everyone. Those in doubt will still be able to touch the objects made of material from which our Solar System is made." Dr Parkes is responsible for the Earth Science collections at the Natural History Museum. He is a contributor to the Geological Survey of Ireland and founder member of the Mining Heritage Trust of Ireland. Dr Parkes has a long interest in exploring old mine sites as well as rocks originating in the Solar System. Speaking about the upcoming lecture, Dr Andrew Shearer, Director of the Centre of Astronomy at NUI Galway, said: "The Centre for Astronomy is delighted to host this public lecture. Meteorites give us a unique insight into the type of material which made up the early solar system. From this we can understand how our planet evolved and importantly they can give clues as to how planets around other stars can evolve." For more information contact Professor Markus Woerner at markus.worner@nuigalway.ie or 091 553353, or Dr Andy Shearer at andy.shearer@nuigalway.ie or 091 493114. -Ends-

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