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Seoladh Oifigiúil an Ionaid um Thaighde ar Phian
Monday, 8 October 2007
Seoladh an tIonad um Thaighde ar Phian go foirmiúil in OÉ Gaillimh Dé Céadaoin, an 3 Deireadh Fómhair 2007. Is é atá mar aidhm ag an Ionad um Thaighde ar Phian ionad barr feabhais do thaighde idirdhisciplíneach a chruthú idir an Ollscoil agus comhghleacaithe sa tseirbhís sláinte agus é mar chuspóir cur leis an tuiscint eolaíoch atá ar phian. Is ar na heolaíochtaí bunúsacha agus an pobal a bheidh an obair seo bunaithe. Cuireann pian ainsealach, sheasmhach isteach ar na milliúin daoine ar fud na cruinne, pian a chuireann bac ar shláinte agus dea-bhraistint daoine agus téann níos mó daoine chun comhairle dochtúra a lorg de dheasca pianta ná airí ar bith eile. In Éirinn, cuireann pian ainsealach isteach ar bheagnach leathmhilliún duine go laethúil. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag an Uachtarán Ó Muircheartaigh ag seoladh oifigiúil an Ionaid, "Cinnteoidh an tIonad um Thaighde ar Phian go mbeidh próifíl náisiúnta ag pian mar ábhar taighde agus deis eile atá ann freisin do OÉ Gaillimh ról ceannaireachta a ghlacadh i dtaighde ar chúrsaí sláinte agus forbairtí beartais in Éirinn." Is é an tIonad um Thaighde ar Phian an chéad ionad atá dírithe ar thaighde ar phian in Éirinn agus beidh taighdeoirí ó réimsí éagsúla léinn ag obair ann agus iad roinnte i gcúig ghrúpa faoi leith: Taighde réamhchliniciúil Gnéithe síceolaíocha agus néarshíceolaíocha den phian Pian a chóireáil agus a bhainistiú An daonra agus gnéithe beartais den phian Taighde réamhchliniciúil ar phian agus cleachtas cliniciúil a chomhtháthú Seo a leanas a bhí le rá ag an Dr David Finn agus an Dr Brian McGuire, Comhstiúrthóirí an Ionaid, "Forbairt iontach tábhachtach é seo a chinntíonn go mbeidh ról ag Gaillimh sa taighde ar phian go náisiúnta agus go hidirnáisiúnta" I measc cuid de na himeachtaí a bheidh ar siúl le linn sheoladh an ionaid beidh beirt aoichainteoirí - saineolaithe idirnáisiúnta sa taighde ar phian - i mbun cainte ag an Ionad. Tabharfaidh an tOllamh Chris Main, síceolaí cliniciúil agus údar téacsleabhar ildisciplíneach maidir le pian a bhainistiú ó Ollscoil Keele, spreagaitheasc faoi Psychosocial barriers to effective pain management agus labhróidh an tOllamh Irene Tracey, saineolaí aitheanta ar néar-íomháú sa taighde ar phian, atá i gceannas ar an aonad fMRI in Ollscoil Oxford, faoi Advances in Pain Neuroimaging. I measc an lucht oibre, cruthaíonn pian in íochtar an droma níos mó míchumais ná ailse, galar croí, stróc agus SEIF in éindí. Tá post caillte ag duine amháin as gach seisear in Éirinn atá i bpian de dheasca na riochta atá orthu. Cosnaíonn íocaíochtaí sochair i ndáil le pian den chineál sin os cionn €1.2 milliún in aghaidh na seachtaine (Pain in Europe Study, 2003). CRÍOCH
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Scoil na Gaeilge Annual Conference at NUI Galway
Monday, 8 October 2007
Scoil na Gaeilge's annual conference will take place 12-13 October to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the foundation of St. Anthony's Franciscan College, Louvain. The conference will be opened on Friday afternoon (Oct 12) by Senator Ronan Mullen and will discuss the contribution the Louvain friars made to Irish literature, history and hagiography. There will be eleven lectures in all. The keynote speakers include Fearghus Ó Fearghail (Mater Dei) who will discuss the importance of the Irish translation of the New Testament (1602); Angharad Price (University of Bangor) whose topic is the literary productions of Welsh Catholic exiles on the continent; and Martin Stone (Leuven) who will assess the Louvain friars' contribution to the study of Scotistc philosophy on the continent. The other speakers include Pádraig A. Breatnach, Marie-Louise Coolahan, Charlie Dillon, Mícheál Mac Craith, Nollaig Ó Muraíle, Tadhg Ó Dúshlaine, Marie Ó Tuathaigh and Salvador Ryan. Marie Ó Tuathaigh's talk on the adventures of Mary Stuart O' Donnell, the daughter the Earl of Tyrconnell never saw, should be particularly interesting, involving as it does a potent cocktail of religion, politics and cross-dressing. The conference will close with a showing of Antaine Ó Donnaíle's highly acclaimed documentary, Na hIarlaí san Eoraip. To coincide with the conference The James Hardiman Library is mounting an exhibition of books and manuscripts associated with Louvain. Pride of place will go to Duanaire Finn and the Book of the O' Conor Don, two manuscripts which were commissioned for Sorley McDonnell, a captain in the Tyrone Regiment of the Spanish army under the command of his second cousin John O' Neill, a son of the great Hugh O' Neill. Scoil na Gaeilge's Professor Micheál Mac Craith said, "Duanaire Finn is the most important anthology of Ossianic ballads that we have, while the the Book of the O'Conor Don contains over three hundred and fifty poems, most of them relating to contemporary events. Captain Sorley was buried in the cloister of St. Anthony's College and the Duanaire came into the possession of the Franciscans. The fate of the other manuscript was unknown until it came into the possession of the great antiquarian, Charles O' Conor of Belanagare in the 18th century. This is the first time that Captain's Sorley's most treasured possessions will have been together in nearly 400 years, a major coup that Scoil na Gaeilge and NUI Galway are delighted to have brought about." ENDS
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Official Launch of the Centre for Pain Research
Monday, 8 October 2007
NUI Galway has formally launched the recently approved Centre for Pain Research (CPR). CPR aims to provide a centre of excellence for interdisciplinary research between the University and colleagues in the health service with the aim of advancing the scientific understanding of pain from the basic sciences to the population level. Chronic, persistent pain affects millions of people worldwide, significantly impairing health and well-being and is the most common symptom for which patients seek medical help. In Ireland, over half a million people suffer from chronic pain on a daily basis. President Ó Muircheartaigh in opening the Centre said, "The CPR will help ensure that the topic of pain has a national profile and will also provide another route by which NUI Galway plays a leadership role in health-related research and policy developments in Ireland." As Ireland's first dedicated centre for research into pain, the CPR incorporates researchers from a range of disciplines and is organised into the following five clusters: Pre-clinical research Psychological and neuropsychological aspects of pain Pain treatment and pain management Population and policy aspects of pain Integration of pre-clinical pain research and clinical practice Dr. David Finn and Dr Brian McGuire, Joint Directors of the Centre said, "This is a very exciting and important development which puts Galway very firmly on the national and international pain research map" To mark the launch, guest speakers included two internationally renowned experts in pain research. Professor Chris Main, a clinical psychologist and author of several authoritative multidisciplinary pain management textbooks from University of Keele, who gave a keynote address on Psychosocial barriers to effective pain management and Professor Irene Tracey, a recognised leader in the neuroimaging of pain who leads the fMRI unit at University of Oxford, who spoke on Advances in Pain Neuroimaging. In the working population, lower back pain is responsible for more disability than cancer, heart disease, stroke and AIDS combined. One in six people in Ireland suffering from pain has lost a job because of their condition and pain costs the Irish economy over € 1.2 million per week in disability benefit payments alone (Pain in Europe Study, 2003). ENDS
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John McGahern at NUI Galway book launch
Monday, 8 October 2007
A commemorative publication, entitled John McGahern at NUI Galway, celebrating the John McGahern Archive at NUI Galway and the long-standing relationship between the writer and the University, will be officially launched by Chairman of The American Ireland Fund, Dr Loretta Brennan Glucksman later today (Monday, 8 October). The 48-page hardback volume, compiled and edited by Liz McConnell, Dr John Kenny and Dr Riana O'Dwyer, with an Introduction by Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of NUI Galway, contains contributions from a range of University staff including Séamus O'Grady, Director of Adult & Continuing Education; Marie Reddan, Librarian; Fergus Fahey, Archivist; Keith Warnock, Vice-President For Physical Resources; Dr Riana O'Dwyer, Senior Lecturer, English Department; Dr John Kenny, English Department; Professor Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh, History Department. The volume is illustrated, with eight colour portraits of John McGahern by Brian Bourke RHA which were commissioned by NUI Galway Arts Office following the deposition of his literary archive in the James Hardiman Library in 2003. Speaking about this volume, Dr Ó Muircheartaigh said; "John McGahern enjoyed a close association with our University, over a period of almost 50 years. ,iJohn McGahern at NUI Galway provides a picture of that relationship, which culminated in the University s library becoming the repository for McGahern s literary papers. Through the Archive and through this book, we maintain an enduring link with the writer and the man. " John McGahern's association with the University began with a brief period of undergraduate studies; he later taught on Creative Writing and Irish Studies programmes, became an honorary doctor of the University in 1994 and Adjunct Professor of Irish Studies in 2001. Prior to his passing in 2006 the University's James Hardiman Library acquired John McGahern's archive, a complete collection of his papers and writings, providing an unparalleled view into a unique literary life. The editors, Dr. John Kenny, Liz McConnell and Dr Riana O'Dwyer, described the book as "a testament to the vibrant relationship between McGahern and NUI Galway, with contributions providing a personal insight into the nature of that relationship and the general nature of the literary life and work of this major Irish artist of language." John McGahern and his life's work was also commemorated by NUI Galway in partnership with Leitrim County at the inaugural International Seminar in County Leitrim in July of this year, which was a launch pad for a major International Summer School which will commence in summer 2008. Dr Brennan Glucksman is Chairman of the American Ireland Fund which in 1985 awarded John McGahern the American Ireland Fund Literary Award. She is also founder of Glucksman Ireland House, a centre for Irish Studies at New York University. Glucksman Ireland House hosted A Celebration of John McGahern to commemorate the first anniversary of McGahern s death in March 2007. ENDS
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Comhdháil bhliantúil Scoil na Gaeilge
Monday, 8 October 2007
Tionólfar comhdháil bhliantúil Scoil na Gaeilge, Comhdháil Litríocht 7 Cultur na Gaeilge 12-13 Deireadh Fómhair chun comóradh a dhéanamh ar Choláiste Proinsiasach San Antaine, Lobháin a bunaíodh 400 bliain ó shin. Osclóidh an Seanadóir Rónán Ó Maoláin an chomhdháil tráthnóna Dé hAoine agus déanfar plé i gcaitheamh an deireadh seachtaine ar an gcomaoin a chuir bráithre bochta Lobháin ar litríocht, stair agus naomhsheanchas na nGael. Beidh aon léacht déag ar fad ann. Ar na príomhchainteoirí beidh Fearghus Ó Fearghail (Mater Dei) ag trácht ar an tábhacht a bhaineann leis an leagan Gaeilge den Tiomna Nua (1602); labhróidh Angharad Price (Ollscoil Bangor) ar na saothair reiligiúnda i mBreatnais a d'fhoilsigh deoraithe Caitliceacha ar an Mór-Roinn; agus déanfaidh Martin Stone (Leuven) trácht ar an mbealach ar chuir Proinsiasaigh Lobháin fealsúnacht Scotus chun cinn san Eoraip. Ar na cainteoirí eile tá Pádraig A. Breatnach, Marie-Louise-Coolahan, Charlie Dillon, Mícheál Mac Craith, Nollaig Ó Muraíle, Tadhg Ó Dúshláine, Marie Ó Tuathaigh agus Salvador Ryan. Cuirfear spéis ar leith i léacht Marie O' Tuathaigh ar eachtraí Mary Stuart O' Donnell, iníon Iarla Thír Chonaill nach bhfaca a hathair riamh. Manglam pléascach den pholaitíocht, den chreideamh agus den trasghléasadh ab ea gníomhréim na mná neamhghnáiche seo. Chun clabhsúr a chur leis an gcomhdháil, léireoidh Antaine Ó Donnaíle Na hIarlaí san Eoraip, an tríú mír den tsraith iomráiteach fáisnéise a rinne sé do BBC, Thuaisceart Éireann. Mar chuid den chomhdháil beidh taispeántas leabhar agus lámhscríbhinní a bhaineann le Lobháin le feiceáil i Leabharlann Shéamuis Uí Argadáin. Tabharfar tús áite sa taispeántas do Duanaire Finn agus Leabhar Uí Chonchobhair Dhoinn, dhá lámhscríbhinn a choimisinigh Somhairle Mac Domhnaill, captaen i Reisimint Thír Eoin in arm na Spáinne, reisimint nuabhunaithe faoi cheannas a choil seisear, Seán Ó Néill, mac le hAodh Mór Ó Néill. Mar a dúirt an tOllamh Mícheál Mac Craith: "Is é Duanaire Finn an cnuasach is tábhachtaí ar fad de na laoithe Fiannaíochta a tháinig anuas chugainn, agus tá breis agus trí chéad go leith dán le fáil i Leabhar Uí Chonchobhair Dhoinn, a mbaineann an chuid is mó acu le himeachtaí comhaimseartha. Adhlacadh Somhairle Mac Domhnaill i gclabhstra na bProinsiasach i Lobháin agus tháinig Duanaire Finn i seilbh na mbráithre. Ní fios cad d'imigh ar an lámhscríbhinn eile nó gur éirigh leis an ársaitheoir cáiliúíl, Cathal Ó Chonchobhair Bhéal Átha na gCarr, teacht uirthi san 18ú haois. Tabharfar dhá sheoid seo an Chaptaein Somhairle le chéile sa taispeántas don chéad uair le beagnach 400 bliain, éacht a bhfuil Scoil na Gaeilge agus Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh thar a bheith mórálach as." CRÍOCH
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Ómós tugtha ag Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh don Dr Tony Ryan nach maireann
Thursday, 4 October 2007
Tá ómós tugtha ag Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, don fhiontraí, an Dr Tony Ryan, a cailleadh inné. Bhí sé 71 bliain d'aois. Bhí an Dr Ryan, ar bhronn OÉ Gaillimh Céim Dhochtúireachta Oinigh sa Dlí air sa bhliain 1987, ar dhuine de na fiontraithe ba mhó cáil in Éirinn. Ba é a bhunaigh Guinness Peat Aviation agus Ryanair. Bhunaigh an Ollscoil Institiúid Mháirtín Uí Riain sa bhliain 1992, an t-ionad um thaighde muireolaíochta in OÉ Gaillimh. Bunaíodh an Institiúid seo le cabhair ón Dr Tony Ryan a thug bronntanas don Ollscoil in onóir a athar, Martin Ryan (1902-1955). Fear fadbhreathnaitheach ba ea an Dr Ryan, agus is mór an tionchar a d'imir sé trí Institiúid Mháirtín Uí Riain a bhunú mar cheann de na mór-institiúidí um thaighde muireolaíochta ar domhan. Dúirt Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh: "Tá cáil ar fud an domhain mhóir ar Tony Ryan mar fhear gnó cumasach agus mar fhiontraí nuálach. Chomh maith leis sin, mairfidh sé inár gcuimhne mar dhaonchara eolach agus mar fhear a léirigh suim sna healaíona. Ábhar mórtais dó freisin ba ea gur Éireannach é. Tá gach duine anseo in OÉ Gaillimh a bhain leas as an bhfís a bhí aige agus an tacaíocht a thug sé d'Institiúid Mháirtín Uí Riain go mór faoi chomaoin aige. Is mian liom ar an ócáid bhrónach seo, comhbhrón a dhéanamh lena theaghlach agus lena chairde thar ceann gach duine anseo in OÉ Gaillimh." CRÍOCH
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NUI Galway President pays tribute to the late Dr Tony Ryan
Thursday, 4 October 2007
NUI Galway President, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh has paid tribute to the entrepreneur Dr Tony Ryan who died yesterday at the age of 71. Dr Ryan, who was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Laws by the University in 1987, was one of Ireland's foremost entrepreneurs as founder of Guinness Peat Aviation and Ryan Air. The Martin Ryan Institute, which is the home of marine science research at NUI Galway, was established by the University in 1992 and made possible by the support of Dr Tony Ryan who made a generous gift to the University in honour of his father, Martin Ryan (1902-1955). Dr Ryan's foresight has had far-reaching effects, particularly in establishing the MRI as one of the foremost marine research institutions in the world. The NUI Galway President said: "Tony Ryan s achievements as an astute businessman and innovative entrepreneur are world-renowned. He will also be remembered as an insightful philanthropist and an enlightened man of the arts, with a strong sense of pride in his Irishness. We in NUI Galway, who benefitted from his vision and his support of the Martin Ryan Marine Science Institute, are deeply indebted to him. On the sad occasion of his passing, I extend my deepest sympathies to his family and close friends on behalf of NUI Galway. ENDS
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Minister Martin announces €14.6m joint investment into academic R&D programme fo
Wednesday, 3 October 2007
Collaboration with world-leading pharmaceutical company will raise Ireland's international profile in new medical discoveries Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Micheál Martin TD today (Wednesday 3rd October 2007) announced that GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), with the support of IDA Ireland, is investing up to €14.6m in a collaboration with the Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience (TCIN) and NUI Galway, on a major Research & Development programme for the discovery of new therapies to treat Alzheimer's Disease. At present, drugs available on the market can only treat the symptoms rather than the causes of Alzheimer's Disease. Alzheimer's is a neurodegenerative disorder characterised by the gradual death of cells in the brain leading to brain malfunction, and is set to become one of the developed world's largest socioeconomic healthcare burdens over the coming decades. An estimated five million Europeans of 65 years or more are currently suffering from Alzheimer's and related dementias, costing European Governments an estimated €55 billion annually.1 It is estimated that at present 1 in 3 eighty year olds suffer from Alzheimer's Disease2; and it is expected that about 11 million Europeans will suffer from Alzheimer's and related dementias in the next 50 years.3, 4 The prevalence of the disease is greater among women than men, because women, on average, live longer than men. The research programme announced today seeks to understand the causes of these diseases, and to develop therapies to assist in ameliorating these serious medical and social conditions. Minister Martin said, "This high-level collaboration is yet another example of how Ireland is rapidly becoming a leading global location for drug discovery and translational medicine. The status, reputation and capabilities of the parties involved are well matched to the strategic objectives of this ambitious, indeed ground-breaking project. This programme represents unrivalled proof of confidence in the future of the biotechnology sector in Ireland." The Minister also commended the availability and level of technical expertise internationally and here in Ireland to undertake this project. "The work to be carried out through this collaborative programme is very sophisticated and complex in nature. The GSK scientists, academic researchers and clinical partners in this consortium in Ireland are all established and respected researchers, representing the finest minds available on an international platform. The resources and expertise of the local clinical management at GSK's existing R&D bases in Ireland will also be at the disposal of this programme, helping to cement the very highest levels of scientific confidence and competence in the project," the Minister continued. Dr Neil Upton, Head of Translational and Pharmacological Sciences said "GSK is strongly committed to developing new medicines for neurological diseases. We currently have numerous research programmes across all phases of Research and Development for Alzheimer s Disease, some of which aim to alleviate symptoms and others to slow or halt disease progression. To turn these early projects into effective medicines for AD, we have increasingly invested in translational research and state-of-the-art technologies in order to support dose-prediction, identify novel pharmacodynamic end-points and aid selection of appropriate patient populations for clinical studies. This collaboration represents a meeting of minds, where all three institutions strongly believe that hypothesis driven research and translating preclinical discovery research into clinical assessment and investigation at the earliest possible time point is in the best interests of patients who are waiting for much-needed treatments." GSK has a very strong heritage in Ireland, employing over 1,600 people in sites across Cork, Dublin and Waterford. GSK's manufacturing operation in Currabinny, Co. Cork, which employs more than 600 people, has invested significantly in R&D activity in recent years and will be closely involved in the project. This partnership is the second GSK/academic collaboration in Ireland, GSK having collaborated with the IDA and Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) in a joint investment worth up to €13.7 million last year with the Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre (APC) into R&D in gastrointestinal diseases. GSK has eleven Centres of Excellence for Drug Discovery (CEDD) worldwide. For this collaboration, TCD and NUIG will work jointly with GSK's UK based Neurology CEDD on the development of tools designed to make future clinical trials in Alzheimer's Disease more efficient, employing 22 highly qualified medical professionals, PhD students and Post-Doctoral Scientists. Prof. Nicholas Canny, Vice-President for Research at National University of Ireland, Galway said the university is delighted with the collaborative research programme with Trinity College and GlaxoSmithKline. "We hope that our studies into novel cognitive, electrophysiological and behavioural endpoints in patients with Alzheimer s disease together with the complementary investigations at our partner university Trinity College will lead to a better understanding of this devastating disease, ultimately leading to new approaches in disease treatment." Neuroscience is one of the major research strengths of Trinity College Dublin. The Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience is the only dedicated research centre in neuroscience on the island of Ireland. Trinity has strategically built its core competence in neuroscience over the past years through a funding base involving the Higher Education Authority, Science Foundation Ireland, the Health Research Board and international agencies via their support for outstanding quality science. TCD Provost, Dr John Hegarty said "With the support of IDA, this new venture with GSK cements Trinity College Dublin's position as a leading international reference site for neuroscience research. This model of strategic growth and partnership in areas of international research quality is at the heart of Trinity s research agenda". "As a university we are committed to world class excellence in research. This new collaborative research programme will enable leading academics and experts in neuroscience develop pioneering new therapies in the treatment of Alzheimer's Disease. As the only dedicated research institute in neuroscience in Ireland, it is fitting that TCIN should play such a central role in this project," concluded Dr John Hegarty.
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Public Lecture Hosted by Environmental Change Institute
Tuesday, 2 October 2007
Rocks, Rails and Ríomhaire: A Geo-Multimedia Tour of the Connemara Landscape on the Galway-Clifden Railway A Public lecture on Rocks, Rails and Ríomhaire: A Geo-Multimedia Tour of the Connemara Landscape on the Galway-Clifden Railway will be given by Ronán Hennessy, a PhD Student in the Department of Earth & Ocean Sciences & Environmental Change Institute at NUI Galway on Tuesday, 2 October at 8 pm. The seemingly untamed natural landscape of Connemara, and its potential as a tourism attraction, was a major factor in the routing of a railroad through the region in the closing years of nineteenth century. To celebrate the geological and railway heritage of Connemara, Mr. Hennessy has worked closely with the Galway Heritage Forum and with Galway County Council Heritage Officer Marie Mannion, to design a virtual field trip of the Connemara landscape. Using Google Earth as the virtual tour 'landscape', users can embark on a field trip following the now disused 49 mile long railway line, discovering the region's rich geological and geomorphologic heritage. 'Disembarking' at any of the eight stations along the route, users can investigate the local geology, visit the nearby mines and quarries, explore the famous glaciated Inagh and Maam valleys, and even take off from Alcock and Brown's landing site near Clifden – bound for Newfoundland, which coincidently shares a similar geological history with Connemara. Dr. Martin Feely, Senior Lecturer, Geofluids Research Group, Dept. of Earth and Ocean Sciences and Environmental Change Institute said, "Ronán s presentation will give a flavour of the revolution that is taking place in science with the transfer of real landscapes to the virtual space of pan, zoom, tilt and play. The lecture will appeal to people of all ages and interests as it combines archaeology, heritage, geology, local history and environmental technology." The lecture will take place in the Orbsen Building Seminar Room, Environmental Change Institute, NUI Galway. Tea, Coffee & Beverages will be available from 7:30p.m. Attendance is free and all are welcome. ENDS
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NUI Galway launches Aer Arann Sports Alumni Award
Monday, 1 October 2007
NUI Galway is pleased to welcome Aer Arann as sponsor of its newly launched Alumni Award for Sports Achievement and Leadership. The award will acknowledge alumni who have made an outstanding contribution in the area of local and national sports achievement, sports coaching, sports health, sports promotion and/or development. Since 2000 NUI Galway has been annually awarding graduates who as a result of their outstanding contribution to Irish and international life have, in a very special way, honoured their former alma mater. The Aer Arann Sports Award will join the University's seven other Alumni Awards which award excellence in commerce, healthcare, science, engineering, IT, the arts, law and public service. Announcing the new Award, Professor Gerard Hurley, Vice-President for Strategic Initiatives and External Affairs, NUI Galway, said: "This Sports Award reflects a very strong legacy of past and ongoing NUI Galway sporting accomplishment. We will have a very strong pool of candidates from which to choose our winners. The Award brings to a perfect complement our Awards programme - each reflects a discipline, faculty or walk of life in which NUI Galway students have gone on to excel at national and international level". Aer Arann Chairman, Mr Pádraig Ó Ceidigh was awarded the Alumni Award for Business and Commerce in 2002. Commenting on the sponsorship of the new Sports Award, he said, "Aer Arann is committed to strengthening the communities in which we do business, and we re proud to be part of this programme. The candidates for the NUI Galway Sports Alumni Award represent a passion for achievement, which is an inspiration to my colleagues in Aer Arann and to me personally." The Awards will be presented to the distinguished alumni at the University's annual Gala Banquet, which will take place in Galway's Radisson SAS Hotel on Saturday, 1 March, 2008. Previous NUI Galway Alumni Awards recipients include: Seán O'Rourke, RTÉ journalist; Irial Finan, President, Coca-Cola; and Michael D. Higgins T.D. -ends-
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