NUI Galway engineering students take time out to lend a hand in their communitie

NUI Galway engineering students take time out to lend a hand in their communitie-image

Monday, 15 March 2004

A poster exhibition, illustrating the work of NUI Galway's third-year Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering students who have engaged in voluntary work, will open today (Monday), at 5.00 p.m., in the University Art Gallery. The posters are the product of an initiative, which encourages students to get involved in voluntary community-related activities. It is the first year of this project in which 50 students have participated. "Assignments that Inspire and Distinguish Engineers" (AIDE), is the title of the unique programme, which is the first of its kind in engineering in any university in Ireland. It is co-ordinated by Dr Abhay Pandit of the Department of Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering. The project is part of the academic programme for students and is supported by the University's Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI), which is co-ordinated by Jacinta Barrins. It is designed to encourage students to voluntarily commit some of their time and energy to the benefit of local communities and individuals outside the family. The AIDE project included a number of lecture modules in which guest speakers addressed the students on the principles of volunteering, corporate and social responsibility, and the relevance of volunteering to the engineering profession. Students were then asked to identify a need in their locality and volunteer thirty hours of assistance towards it. "At first the students were sceptical of the relevance of the initiative to their lives," says Dr. Pandit. "They felt their only responsibility was to pass their exams and get on with their careers. Very quickly, however, they discovered that volunteering brought a very important dimension to their lives and that making a contribution to society by way of volunteering was a most fulfilling experience. The students also realised that they didn't have to look very far in their own communities to identify areas where a helping hand was needed." "We are planting a seed here", continues Dr. Pandit. "University students are in some form privileged and need to be aware of the social needs of their communities. They need to reach out across race, class and gender and share their skills and their time with people in need. We hope that participating in AIDE will make a lasting impression on them and make them responsive to the needs of whatever community they are part of throughout their lives." Some students got involved in groups such as Lions Clubs, Alzheimers groups, Cancer Care West and local sport groups, while others assisted people recovering from serious illnesses by providing support or building assistive devices.

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€50M 'People & Place' Campaign for NUI Galway launched

€50M 'People & Place' Campaign for NUI Galway launched-image

Tuesday, 9 March 2004

Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of NUI, Galway today (Tuesday) launched a major fundraising initiative entitled the People & Place Campaign, to secure €50million in private support for the continued development of the University. At an event to launch the campaign, the President, gave details of 24 projects, which will require a total investment of €250million over five years. Commenting at the launch of the campaign, Dr Ó Muircheartaigh said "We have facilities in this University that are in urgent need of investment and we require €250million to deliver on this development plan. NUI Galway is committed to delivering one-fifth of this investment from its own fundraising programme. Fundraising is not intended as a replacement for public funding but to provide seed capital for new areas of research and teaching and to make an often vital contribution toward major buildings and facilities," he said. Dr Ó Muircheartaigh also spoke about the need to remind people about the important role of philanthropy as an agent for change. "We have a job to do in Ireland to educate this generation to the benefits of philanthropy. We still lag behind the United States and other European countries in terms of our overall giving. In terms of this campaign, we are encouraging people to consider the private gain that comes from education and are in turn, urging them to give something back." The €250million development plan for NUI Galway is based on extensive consultation with faculty members and feedback from corporate and community partners. It includes major new buildings for engineering, business and law, as well as new research centres and student facilities. "This ambitious capital development plan can only be realised with financial support from Government and other sources", said Ó Muircheartaigh. New academic programmes to be funded include fine arts, film, music and a radical new initiative to provide recognition for student voluntarism. One of the major aims is to develop the Irish language centres in Gweedore, Carraroe and Carna. The People & Place Campaign will be led by Galway University Foundation (GUF) and will constitute an ongoing high profile outreach to graduates, friends and supporters worldwide. John McNamara, Chairman of GUF, said that a great deal of work had gone into planning the campaign and he was confident a strong team and mechanisms were in place to achieve the €50million goal. He extended an invitation to all who share an affection for Galway and who believe in a strong and vibrant University in the West of Ireland, to become involved in as meaningful a way as possible. Pledges and commitments totalling €27million, raised in the pre-launch phase of the campaign, were announced. Mr Gerry Hanley, Chairperson of the Alumni Association, said that graduates would be delighted to see the University drive forward in this way, as much of the physical infrastructure is in need of upgrading and investment. He invited the more than 50,000 graduates worldwide to participate themselves as donors. Tony McDonnell, President of the Students Union said that he was proud that the students (nearly 14,000 in total) had given their backing by endorsing in a recent referendum the payment of a levy which would help provide a key element of the financing for the new sports and cultural facilities. Further information is available on www.nuigalway.ie/foundation ends

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NUI Galway conference to examine moral issues relating to advanced genetics and

NUI Galway conference to examine moral issues relating to advanced genetics and -image

Thursday, 4 March 2004

The Centre of Bioethical Research and Analysis (COBRA), Department of Philosophy, NUI Galway, in association with the Irish Council of Bioethics, will hold a Symposium on Genetics and Disability in the Siobhán McKenna Theatre, NUI Galway from the 10th-12th, March 2004. Internationally acclaimed experts in the fields of genetics and disability who will be speaking at the symposium include John Harris, Julian Savulescu, Janet Radcliffe-Richards, Tom Shakespeare and Jonathan Wolff. Each will give a public lecture. Lectures open to the public will be held at lunchtimes and early evenings throughout the symposium. It is hoped that there will be wide interest in the lectures, which will tackle important ethical questions to do with advances in genetic technologies and their relation to disability issues. "This is simply a world class event", commented COBRA s Director, Dr Richard Hull. "Many important ethical questions are raised given that advances in genetic technologies might affect how we respond to or treat impairment, both medically and as a society. They might even affect how we define disability to start with. We are delighted to have such an excellent line-up of speakers tackling this critical area of bioethical debate." Issues which will be addressed at the Conference include the following: How should society treat people with disabilities? How and to what effect should genetic technologies be employed in the future? Is there a moral obligation to eradicate disability where we can? Is it wrong to deliberately create a child with a disability where we could instead have created a different child without a disability? How should research on those with disabilities be properly conducted, if at all? Is it possible or desirable to define an acceptable range of human capability when considering the potential uses (or abuses) of genetic technology? Ends

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April 2004

New €16million Business School for NUI Galway

New €16million Business School for NUI Galway-image

Thursday, 29 April 2004

The President of NUI Galway, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, today (29th April 2004) announced plans to develop a new €16 million School of Business on campus at the University. An Taoiseach, Mr Bertie Ahern, TD was present to officially turn the sod for the 4000 square metre facility which is due for completion by September 2005. The development of a new business school at NUI Galway has been made possible through a combination of PRTLI, EU and private funding, led by a €4.5 million donation by Atlantic Philanthropies. Additional funding is anticipated through further donations and expansion of the overseas visiting student programme, with increased numbers of students from the US and Europe. This new facility will be part of the Faculty of Commerce, which has grown rapidly in recent years to 1600 undergraduate and postgraduate students and over 50 full time staff. The business school is an important development for the West of Ireland and will add much needed support to local industry to drive innovation and change in the entire BMW region. The school will provide world-class business education and the infrastructure necessary to accelerate the development of a knowledge-based economy in the West. The new Centre for Innovation & Structural Change (CISC), which will be located at the business school, is responsible for examining science, technology and innovation processes that are central to the development of this knowledge-based economy. Commenting on the development of the new business school, the President of NUI Galway, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh said: "This new business school is the key to realising the vision for world-class business education and research in the West of Ireland. Through its innovative approach to learning and research, the business school will enhance competitiveness in the West of Ireland. Infrastructure projects like these are necessary to transform the local economy into a knowledge-based economy which will accelerate development and growth in this region. Professor Roy Green, Dean of the Faculty of Commerce added, "The Faculty of Commerce at NUI Galway has long been recognised as one of the leading business faculties in the country, producing some of Ireland's leading business people and public administrators. We will work closely and collaborate with industry to provide programmes that will deliver the business leaders of the future, building on our well regarded Bachelor of Commerce, MBA, Masters in Technology Management and a range of other programmes. We also have an exciting programme of research that will consolidate NUI Galway's role as a centre of excellence in the understanding of innovation and the knowledge-based economy." The new business school facility will accommodate up to 500 postgraduate students, 120 undergraduate students in a new Business Information Systems degree and 100 researchers, significantly increasing current capacity. In collaboration with local industry, it is also expected that existing programmes will be expanded to suit specific industry requirements. Programmes under consideration include an MBA in Healthcare Management, a Masters in European Business and Policy and executive programmes through global university alliances. In a separate development at the University today, An Taoiseach also launched a new Webcasting service for communities throughout the West of Ireland and beyond. In line with the commitment of NUI Galway's strategic plan (2003-2008), the purpose of this service is to ensure that the University's programmes and events are available to individuals in geographically dispersed areas. The public element of the Webcasting Service is being developed as a strand of the Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI), which aims to promote greater civic engagement across the university and strengthen university-community links. NUI Galway is piloting the service with its CKI partner, IRD-Kiltimagh, Co. Mayo, now able to exploit their broadband connectivity to avail of guest lectures, specialist events and particular course materials from the University. "The rural community will greatly benefit from this initiative. People will now be able to avail of a number of relevant academic programmes without leaving their own locality. Clearly this will help to keep people in their native area, thereby sustaining the social and economic fabric of these communities with a consequent impact on employment and improvement of the quality of life," said Joe Kelly, Chief Executive of IRD Kiltimagh Ltd. "NUI Galway has a long tradition in community and regional development," said University President, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh. "We can now exploit the latest technology to deliver University programmes to remote areas and empower communities to equip themselves with the knowledge and expertise hitherto unavailable to them." While in NUI Galway, An Taoiseach was also briefed on plans for a new School of Engineering, which will consolidate the University's four engineering departments under one roof. The €53 million project is designed to provide the most modern facilities for teaching and research which will be a significant resource for the west region. The launch of web-casting facilities will be broadcast live on: http://www.nuigalway.ie/webcast Ends

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NUI Galway Bilingual Conference to examine the Art of Deception

NUI Galway Bilingual Conference to examine the Art of Deception-image

Wednesday, 7 April 2004

What do we gain from hoaxes? Why do writers, artists and film-makers often set out to trick us? What is the precise nature of the relationship between seduction, deception and art? These are the kind of questions that will be tackled by some fifty international speakers at a bilingual French-English conference to take place in NUI Galway on the 16 and 17 April 2004. Members of the public are invited to attend the two keynote lectures of the conference, organised by the Department of French of the University. Both lectures will take place in Lecture Theatre IT-125, Information Technology Building. On Friday (April 16 at 9.30 a.m.), Jean-François Jeandillou, France's leading expert on literary hoaxes, will present a keynote lecture, 'La Supercherie littéraire en images', on the way in which fake portraits — paintings, photographs, even statues — have served, in the past, as supposed proofs of the existence of imaginary authors. Jeandillou also claims to be in the process of translating the Songs of Ossian into Swahili and to have been awarded the prestigious title of Honorary President of the International Association of Trickery Studies. However, conference organisers are reluctant either to confirm or deny these impressive assertions. The second keynote lecture will be delivered on Saturday (April 17th at 1.30 p.m.), by Malcolm Bowie, internationally renowned for his numerous publications on, among others, Lacan, Proust and Mallarmé. Bowie was awarded the Truman Capote prize for Literary Criticism in 2001 for his book Proust among the Stars (Cambridge University Press, 2001). The title of Bowie's paper will be 'Mallarmé, Psychoanalysis and "Mystery in Literature"'. Further details of the conference are available on the French Department's web site at (http://www.nuigalway.ie/french/trickery). Ends

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How well is your business performing?

How well is your business performing?-image

Tuesday, 6 April 2004

eNable SME Workshop at NUI Galway A workshop designed to encourage and facilitate Irish businesses in the area of innovation, technology and eBusiness, will take place in NUI Galway, on Wednesday 19th May from 10.30 am until 4 pm. Hosted by the University's Centre for Innovation and Structural Change (CISC), the workshop, which is free of charge, will take place in the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science (NCBES) seminar room. A light lunch will be provided for participants. According to Ralf Burbach, CISC researcher, the purpose of the workshop is to present new technology solutions, purposely designed to advance SMEs to a full player in a virtual supply chain. "Interested representatives of SMEs and large enterprises alike are cordially invited to attend this workshop," he says. Presentations will be delivered under these headings: Human Resource Information Systems Audit Tools Stimulating Growth through Managed Innovation and Change - Online! A framework for e-business enablement. The demonstrations will allow participants to assess their own company's key business-to-business and human resource competences. This workshop is the culmination of a research project entitled "eNable SMEs", which comprises an internationally recognised team of researchers, all based at NUI Galway. This a non-commercial venture and has been funded by Enterprise Ireland with the specific objective of assisting Irish organisations. It includes the following components: Human Resource Information Systems led by the CISC; Cost effective internet-based solutions for project portfolio management, led by the Computer Integrated Manufacturing Research Unit (CIMRU); and Low cost digital virtual supply chain solutions, led by the Information Technology Department (ITD). If you would like to attend, please contact Ralf Burbach at the Centre for Innovation and Structural Change by phone (091 512 413), or by e-mail: cisc@nuigalway.ie Ends

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May 2004

Links between India and Ireland to be explored at NUI Galway conference on Colon

Links between India and Ireland to be explored at NUI Galway conference on Colon-image

Monday, 31 May 2004

Scholars from all over the world will attend the Fourth Galway Conference on Colonialism, which will be held at NUI Galway, from 2-5 June 2004. The theme of this year's conference is 'India and Ireland' and the distinguished visitors will include established and emerging scholars from India as well as some of the outstanding scholars in the world of cultural and colonial studies from Europe, Australia, the United Kingdom and North America. The conference is dedicated to the memory of the late Edward Said, whose provocative and pioneering work in the area of colonial and post-colonial studies continues to inform the work of scholars working in those areas. Edward Said had close connections with NUI Galway and was honoured by the University when he was conferred with an honorary Doctor of Literature in June 1999. According to Dr. Louis de Paor, Director of the Centre for Irish Studies which is hosting the conference, "This event will bring together the most exciting scholars in the field of culture and colonialism". Topics to be addressed during the four-day conference include the role that Irish soldiers, administrators and civil servants played in the building of the Raj; the relationship between Irish republicanism and Indian nationalism; Irish religious missionaries and the notion of a 'spiritual empire'; Indian pariahs and Irish 'tinkers'; borders and partitions; newspapers and national identities; and India and the Brehon Laws. Distinguished guest speakers will include Aijaz Ahmad from Jawaharlal Nehru University, Dipesh Chakrabarty from the University of Chicago, Luke Gibbons from the University of Notre Dame, and Joe Cleary from NUI Maynooth. Among the more intriguing titles in the conference programme are 'The "Pickled Earl": Richard Southwell Bourke, Earl of Mayo', 'Tea, Power, and the Colonial Body', 'Mother India/Mother Ireland', 'The Famine Queen Visits India', 'Shades of Difference: Towards an Analysis of the Resemblances Between the Orange and Saffron Orders in Northern Ireland and India', and 'Orientalism and Celticism Unplugged: The Suffering Indian Nun and the Drunken Irish Priest in Local Catholic Lore'. The conference proceedings will also include a reading by Cauvery Madhaven, author of Paddy Indian, at Galway Arts Centre, and the launch of a new book by Luke Gibbons entitled Gaelic Gothic, published by Arlen House for the Centre for Irish Studies. The conference programme is available at: www.nuigalway.ie/research/centre_irish_studies/india_ireland%20conf.htm Ends

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Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) to pioneer research into next gener

Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) to pioneer research into next gener-image

Monday, 24 May 2004

Semantic web to revolutionise the way we do business by reducing costs and increasing efficiencies The National University of Ireland, Galway today (May 24th 2004) announced details of a major research programme into a new generation of web technology. This world leading research programme will be undertaken at the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) already established within the University campus. The programme benefits from the close collaboration and substantial support of Hewlett-Packard Galway Limited (HPGL). NUI Galway has received a €12m grant from Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) as part of the government led programme to develop a knowledge-based economy. The investment will establish NUI Galway as an internationally recognised centre of excellence in the field of Semantic Web research. DERI will eventually involve over 70 full time researchers from both NUI Galway and Hewlett-Packard Galway Limited. HP is a technology solutions provider to consumers, businesses and institutions globally. The company s offerings span IT infrastructure, personal computing and access devices, global services and imaging and printing. At an event in NUI Galway to officially launch DERI, An Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Mary Harney TD, said, "This project brings together leading academic researchers with their counterparts in Hewlett Packard Galway in a globally competitive research cluster. I understand that in recommending funding for DERI, the site review panel of international experts stated that this activity has the potential to become the world's best in this field. This is one of the first SFI CSETs (Centres for Science, Engineering and Technology), which have been established by SFI to fund researchers who will build collaborative efforts that develop internationally competitive research programmes with researchers from industry. These awards, in linking academic researchers with industry partners, play a significant role in building Ireland's new knowledge-driven economy." The principle behind the Semantic Web research cluster is to afford easier and more accurate access to desired information for people than is possible with today's search engines and for computers to automatically process and integrate information available across the worldwide web. Related research presently being undertaken at DERI includes Semantic Web Services, Knowledge Management, Enterprise Application Integration and how the Semantic Web and related services can be applied to improve future eCommerce.* (See note to Editors). Commenting on this new generation of technology, Professor Dieter Fensel, Director of DERI said, "The development of the Semantic Web will be as revolutionary as the original development of the web itself. Although still in its infancy, research indicates that the Semantic Web will revolutionise the way we do business by delivering global cost savings and efficiencies. It is estimated that the time spent using web technology will be dramatically reduced within the next five years, resulting in significantly lower costs for users. It will also deliver greater choice and better pricing structures for consumers and business. "Our work at DERI will transform eCommerce over the web. When most people think of eCommerce, they think of B2C, in fact B2B accounts for a much larger proportion of revenue generated directly by eCommerce. Ultimately, consumers and businesses will be provided with a level of choice unimaginable years ago at much more competitive prices. For example, when making an inquiry into the purchase of a corporate business trip, the purchaser will not only get information on the best deal but also the best deal on all associated services such as car hire, accommodation, all at the touch of a button." The new technology will augment HTML based web language with languages such as XML, RDF, and OWL, which will involve tagging, eventually enabling purchasers to comparison shop across different websites. "This will eventually result in greater but more specific choice. It will enable consumers to get the best price and the best deal and will rank service offers according to the criteria a consumer has specified," says Fensel. Rory O'Connor, Managing Director of Hewlett-Packard Galway Limited, said, "We are now moving into a very exciting phase in the development of the Semantic Web, which is a vision for the future of the Internet. The collaboration of industry and academia provides an ideal platform for the development of this new technology. "The sharing of ideas and personnel will greatly enhance the potential of DERI as a world-class leader in the development of this web technology. This research is vital to the way we will manage the explosion of information on the internet and for Ireland to be pioneering research in this area is a significant development for the whole area of R&D in this country." DERI has also developed strong academic links with the Next Web Generation Group at the University of Innsbruck in Austria, through joint projects headed by Prof. Fensel. There are plans to foster an extensive researcher exchange programme with this Group. Further information available at www.deri.ie ends

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Research and the Knowledge-based Society: Measuring the Link

Research and the Knowledge-based Society: Measuring the Link-image

Thursday, 20 May 2004

Considerable national resources have been invested in research, particularly in science and technology, in recent years, over €2 billion for the period of the current National Development Plan: but how do we evaluate the impacts of that research, on the economy and on society more generally? An international one-day conference on Research and the Knowledge-based Society will examine this important issue at NUI Galway, on Monday, 24 May 2004. The Irish Council for Science, Technology and Innovation highlighted the need "to disseminate information on, and the results of, indicators and evaluation techniques through publications and conferences" in its Statement 'Measuring the Contribution of Research' (2002). This conference is an essential implementation of this key ICSTI recommendation. Ireland will critically depend on the application of research and innovation in industry for continuing future success and the economic stability and growth that will benefit society. Research is essential for a high quality education system. Good evaluation is critical in balanced policy making, helping to optimise the use of taxpayers money. Governments and citizens naturally wish to see realistic returns on the public funds invested in research. The research community can benefit greatly from focussed evaluation of their own work, and the opportunity continually to learn from good practice. To explore these issues, the Irish Council for Science, Technology and Innovation (ICSTI) and Forfás, in collaboration with the Centre for Innovation & Structural Change (NUI Galway), are bringing together policy makers, researchers, technologists, industrialists, fund managers and professional evaluators for this one-day European conference to: Engage the research community in debate about evaluation Inform the research community about international practice amongst evaluators and Increase the awareness of policy makers about research evaluation and indicators. Dr Edward M Walsh, Chairman of Irish Council for Science, Technology and Innovation, stated that "Global competition in the knowledge age is tougher than ever before. If Ireland is to build on its past success and prosper in the emerging knowledge age it must demonstrate a strong research competence. The recent major commitment of public funding to build such competence is a most important initiative and if Ireland is to fully benefit from the investment, appropriate systems that measure and evaluate the outcomes must be put in place". Speakers at the conference include the Chairperson of the Higher Education Authority (HEA), Dr Don Thornhill, and the Director General of Science Foundation Ireland, Dr Bill Harris as well as a range of top international research evaluation experts. Conference details at: http://www.forfas.ie/icsti/mayevent.html Ends

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NUI Galway leads the field with investments of more than €100 million in researc

NUI Galway leads the field with investments of more than €100 million in researc-image

Friday, 14 May 2004

The University outlines key achievements in the first year of its €250 million Strategic Plan (2003-2008) - Key Achievements 2003-2004 include: * A total of €68 million raised through PRTLI funding and €27million through CSETs to develop research programmes * SFI awards amounting to €11 million * Plans to develop €35 million Sports and Cultural Centre * Introduction of new structures to sustain Irish medium education * Alliance with IDP Australia to recruit international pool of students * Continued focus on access based initiatives including development of web based programmes Key Priorities 2004-2005: * Physical development and reorientation of Campus * Essential priority remains securing funding to develop a new €53m engineering facility * Completion of new €16 million business school and new Nursing, Health and Social Sciences Building by September 2005 * Development of innovative programmes to attract High Quality Irish and International Students One year on, following the launch by the National University of Ireland, Galway of its €250 million Strategic Plan (2003-2008), which outlined seven Strategic Priorities to form the strategic direction of the University and to tackle the challenges facing NUI Galway and the third level sector as a whole, The President of the University, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, today, (May 14th 2004) updated on progress following the implementation of the priorities set out for completion in the first year of the plan. The most significant development has been made in enhancing the University's strengths in the Research area. NUI Galway is one of only three universities to have had success in all three cycles of the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (PRTLI). A total sum of €68 million has been awarded to the University under this initiative. In addition, NUI Galway is the only university in Ireland to have been awarded two CSETs. The first of €12 million was awarded to establish the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) and the second of €15 million, to establish the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI). Funding of €11 million has also been awarded in all other Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) programmes. The second priority in the first year of the Plan has been to introduce a number of initiatives to improve student life. Part of this involves the development of the Physical Infrastructure on campus. Developments are well advanced to commence the construction of a €35 million Sports and Cultural Centre and architects have been appointed to draw up plans. The student body has agreed a levy that will contribute towards the Centre while €18 million has already been raised towards the project through private philanthropy. Plans are also underway to reorientate the campus and to develop a new entrance to the University. A new €16 million business school and new Nursing, Health and Social Sciences building are due for completion by September 2005. Commenting on the developments to date, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, The President of NUI Galway said, "This has been a year of development for NUI Galway in what has been a very challenging time for the University sector as a whole. We have witnessed a year in which we have had to broaden our thinking and develop new ways to forge ahead with the implementation of this Strategic Plan. Despite these challenges, we have made significant progress in proceeding with our aims and objectives of developing a University which has, at its core, the ability to attract high quality Irish and international students and is also one of the leaders in the research field both in Ireland and internationally, as evidenced by the quality of the research programmes underway here. This Strategic Plan (2003-2008) is a blueprint for change. This management team will continue to meet the strategic aims of this University by responding to this changing landscape within the third level education sector in Ireland. We will witness, not just a changing physical infrastructure within this campus over the next number of years, but we will also be adapting by developing new and innovative ways to respond to a competitive marketplace both for students and research. Significant challenges lie ahead. We will attempt to face these head on by delivering on each of the seven strategic priorities outlined in this plan. Delivery of these will result in a University that is on the national and international radar for its accomplishments in the Research field and in the development of a University that is student focussed and is producing a calibre of student that is amongst the best in Ireland. Our key priority for next year will be to secure funding to develop an engineering facility to enable us to accommodate a growing number of students and retain our status as one of the leading engineering faculties in the country." The third priority for the first year of the Strategic Plan has been to introduce new structures for the sustainable development of Irish medium education. To this end, Acadamh na hOllscolaiochta Gaeilge has been established to develop University courses through the medium of Irish, both on campus and at the University's three Gaeltacht centres. Appointments to senior positions including those of CEO, Academic Co-ordinator of an tAcadamh and Head of Management, have been made. Amongst other achievements in the year under review include the establishment of an international office to coordinate admission of overseas students. In addition, NUI Galway has engaged the services of IDP Australia to recruit students from Asia, Middle East and South America. With these initiatives underway, it is hoped to increase the number of international students to 5% in 2005. Student retention has also been enhanced through the development of programmes in study skills, learning skills and time management. Ends

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