Monday, 28 November 2016

Four NUI Galway experts have featured on the list of the world’s most Highly Cited Researchers. The list is a citation analysis identifying scientists – as determined by their fellow researchers – whose research has had significant global impact within their respective fields of study. NUI Galway’s Professor Henry Curran, Professor Colin O’Dowd, Professor Donal O’Regan, and Dr Ronan Sulpice, have featured on the list. They rank among the world’s top 3,000 scientific minds by Clarivate Analytics, formerly the Intellectual Property & Science business of Thomson Reuters. Professor Henry Curran is Director of the Combustion Chemistry Centre at NUI Galway’s School of Chemistry and of the Energy Research Centre in the Ryan Institute. His research interest lies in the study of the chemistry of how fuels burn in combustors in order to increase efficiency and reduce emissions for a cleaner world. Professor Colin O’Dowd is Director of the Centre for Climate and Air Pollution Studies at the Ryan Institute, NUI Galway, and a Professor in the School of Physics, NUI Galway. Through his pioneering work in the field of atmospheric physics, Colin has become internationally renowned as one of the leading scientists in the field of climate change. Professor Donal O’Regan is a Personal Professor of Mathematics at NUI Galway’s School of Mathematics, Statistics and Applied Mathematics and an internationally recognised expert in the field of Nonlinear Analysis, Differential Equations, and Fixed Point Theory. He has written over 1,000 peer-reviewed mathematical articles, making him one of the most prolific authors in the history of mathematics in the world. Dr Ronan Sulpice is Lecturer in the School of Natural Sciences and Visiting Professor at the University of Vicosa in Brazil. His research explores the relationship between plant metabolism and growth, and how they vary in response to environment changes. More than 3,000 researchers, in 21 fields of the sciences and social sciences, were selected based on the number of highly cited papers they produced over an 11-year period from January 2004 to December 2014. “We are proud that our colleagues have earned global respect among the academic and scientific community for their excellent and transformative research. NUI Galway’s strong international reputation for research and innovation is reinforced with the inclusion of four of our faculty among the world’s most Highly Cited Researchers,” said Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway. The Highly Cited Researchers data from Clarivate Analytics form a key component of the Academic Ranking of World Universities, one of the longest established and most influential annual surveys of top universities globally (http://www.shanghairanking.com/index.html). NUI Galway’s teaching and research has already been significantly recognised this year through its consistent rise in international rankings. The University is placed in the Top 250 of both the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings 2016/2017 and the QS World University Rankings 2016/17. -ends-

Friday, 28 October 2016

 International conference is opening event of ROSEnet, a four-year innovative collaboration between researchers and policy stakeholders across Europe Social exclusion of older people is a direct barrier to Europe’s social and economic development. That was the message from an international conference on ‘Old-Age Social Exclusion’ hosted today by the Irish Centre for Social Gerontology, at the Institute for Lifecourse and Society in NUI Galway. With consequences for individuals, families, and welfare and care systems in Europe, old-age exclusion involves multifaceted forms of disadvantage. It can, as a result impact on economic, social relations, services, civic rights and community areas of life. Presenting new research from different European and international locations, speakers at the conference identified key mechanisms of exclusion across these different life domains. Panel discussion members from European policy stakeholder organisations highlighted critical challenges and opportunities for social and public policy arising from social exclusion patterns and demographic ageing across Europe. The international conference was the opening event of a four-year innovative collaboration between researchers and policy stakeholders across Europe, entitled Reducing Old-Age Exclusion in Europe: Collaborations in Research and Policy, or ROSEnet. “Old-age exclusion undermines EU goals on Healthy and Active Ageing. But more than this, and because there will be an additional 17 million older people by 2020, it may mean that the European Commission’s target of reducing the number of people in exclusion by 20 million, by 2020, is unachievable”, said Dr Kieran Walsh, Acting Director of the Irish Centre for Social Gerontology, and Chair of ROSEnet.        “Currently, existing policy in this area can lack relevance for older people’s lives and is often not prioritised politically. It also rarely recognises how ageing and social exclusion patterns intersect to produce significant consequences for states and societies.” ROSEnet is funded by the European COST Association and aims to overcome critical knowledge gaps and fragmentation in research and policy to tackle social exclusion amongst older people in Europe and beyond.ROSEnet involves over 100 researchers and policy stakeholders from across 37 countries. Marking the first cross-national initiative of its kind, ROSEnet will produce shared cross-sector understandings of disadvantage in later life in order to direct the development of new policy and practice interventions for reducing exclusion in diverse European ageing societies. “It is only by sharing existing research knowledge and developing new collaborative partnerships between researchers and policy makers, that we can really begin to think about the best way to combat exclusion for older people, nationally and internationally”, added Dr Kieran Walsh. Over its four-year duration, ROSEnet will host a series of research and policy events across Europe and produce a series of related outputs and publications, including position papers, policy briefing notes and academic publications. The conference involved European and international researchers and key European-level policy stakeholders. It presented critical debate and analysis of state-of-the-art research and knowledge and explored new directions in policy development on exclusion in later life. Speakers focused on social, economic, service, civic rights, and community/spatial forms of exclusion, and in doing so will provide insight into the intersection of demographic ageing, recognised as a significant European issue, and social exclusion, a Europe 2020 priority. -ends-

Thursday, 27 October 2016

NUI Galway is delighted to be the host venue for the official celebrations for TG4 as it marks the official opening of the Irish language national television station 20 years ago on 31 October 1996. The celebration will see a transformation of the iconic Quadrangle to a major broadcast pavilion for a live TV show TG4XX Beo which will be aired at 9.30pm on Oíche Shamhna. NUI Galway is proud to have played its part in the development of TG4 and creative industries across the region though the work of the University’s centres in the Gaeltacht. Through its wide-ranging academic activities over many years in centres from Donegal to Connemara, the University has facilitated broad civic participation in an inclusive Irish language identity. Graduates and staff of NUI Galway have played significant roles on- and off-screen in the development and identity of Teilifís na Gaeilge (TnaG) since 1996 and TG4 since 1999. There at the beginning were Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir (now an NUI Galway lecturer); and graduate and NUI Galway Alumni Award winner, Gráinne Seoige, whose journey to the screen began in her student UCG days. Among the station’s news anchors, Siún Nic Gearailt, Eimear Ní Chonaola and Áine Lally all graduated from the University along with journalists Ailbhe Ó Monacháin, Caoimhe Ní Choncoille, and Joe Mag Raollaigh to name but a few well-known TG4 names. Academic programmes such as An tArd-Dioplóma sa Chumarsáid Fheidhmeach provided an important talent stream in the initial years of the channel and production programmes such as An Dioplóma i Scileanna Físe (offered first in Gaoth Dobhair and subsequently in locations across the country) were key contributors to sectoral capacity building for TG4 and the audio-visual sector nationally. Academic projects such as NUI Galway’s conference TG4@10 in October 2006 have examined the impact of TG4 on the language and media community. Speaking ahead of the live events planned for Halloween on the NUI Galway campus, President of the University, Dr Jim Browne said: “We are delighted to welcome TG4 to the very heart of the University this weekend. The Quadrangle at NUI Galway is a very fitting location for the celebrations to mark 20 years of Ireland’s national language television station. In many ways, the Quad is a living metaphor of the nation’s journey and an atmospheric and symbolic location. It is the foundation site of a pioneering intellectual endeavour and for over 170 years our University has demonstrated a history of engagement with the region, nation and wider world. This celebration allows us to join with TG4 in celebrating the cultural diversity and richness of our heritage, in a dynamic and modern context.  We look forward to an evening of celebrating the very best of our national identity.” Tune in to TG4 when the event will broadcast live on Monday, 31 October at 9.30pm. -Ends- TG4 ag Ceiliúradh 20 Bliain ar an bhfód in OÉ Gaillimh Cúis áthais do OÉ Gaillimh go mbeidh TG4 ag ceiliúradh scór bliain ó láinseáladh an stáisiún teilifíse Gaeilge go hoifigiúil scór bliain ó shin, an 31 Deireadh Fómhair 1996. Beidh an Chearnóg ina hardán mór craoltóireachta don seó beo teilifíse TG4XX Beo a chraolfar ag 9.30pm Oíche Shamhna. Cúis bróid do OÉ Gaillimh an pháirt a bhí aici ag forbairt TG4 agus na dtionscal cruthaitheach sa réigiún trí obair na n-ionad Ollscoile sa Ghaeltacht. Tá comhpháirteachas poiblí den scoth éascaithe ag an Ollscoil i bhféiniúlacht Ghaeilge trí ghníomhaíochtaí acadúla éagsúla le blianta fada anuas in ionaid Ghaeltachta ó Dhún na nGall go Conamara. Is iomaí ról tábhachtach a bhí ag céimithe agus ag comhaltaí foirne OÉ Gaillimh ar an scáileán agus ar chúl an cheamara ó thaobh forbairt agus féiniúlacht Theilifís na Gaeilge (TnaG) ó 1996 agus TG4 ó 1999. Ar an gcéad chraoladh bhí Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir (atá anois ina léachtóir in OÉ Gaillimh); agus céimí agus buaiteoir Ghradam Alumni OÉ Gaillimh, Gráinne Seoige, a fuair taithí ar an scáileán agus í ina mac léinn i gColáiste na hOllscoile, Gaillimh. Is céimithe de chuid na hOllscoile iad na láithreoirí nuachta, Siún Nic Gearailt, Eimear Ní Chonaola agus Áine Lally mar aon leis na hiriseoirí Ailbhe Ó Monacháin, Caoimhe Ní Choncoille, agus Joe Mag Raollaigh i measc cuid de na pearsa is mó le rá i TG4. Chuir cláir acadúla cosúil leis an Ard-Dioplóma sa Chumarsáid Fheidhmeach daoine ar fáil sna chéad bhlianta den stáisiún agus chuidigh cláir léiriúcháin cosúil leis an Dioplóma i Scileanna Físe (a cuireadh ar fáil i nGaoth Dobhair ar dtús agus in ionaid eile ar fud na tíre ina dhiaidh sin) le daoine a chur ar fáil do TG4 agus don earnáil chlosamhairc ar fud na tíre. Scrúdaigh tograí acadúla cosúil le comhdháil OÉ Gaillimh TG4@10 i nDeireadh Fómhair 2006 tionchar TG4 ar an bpobal Gaeilge agus ar na meáin. Ag labhairt dó roimh na hócáidí beo atá beartaithe d'Oíche Shamhna ar champas OÉ Gaillimh, dúirt an Dr Jim Browne, Uachtarán na hOllscoile: “Tá ríméad orainn fáilte a chur roimh TG4 chuig croí an champais an deireadh seachtaine seo. Is maith a fheileann Cearnóg OÉ Gaillimh don cheiliúradh ar scór bliain ó bunaíodh an stáisiún teilifíse Gaeilge. Siombail í an Chearnóg d'aistear na tíre agus is ionad uathúil í a bhfuil an-atmaisféar inti. Is ar an láthair seo a cuireadh bonn faoi iarracht mheabhrach cheannródaíoch agus le 170 bliain anuas tá ceangal dlúth ag an Ollscoil seo leis an réigiún, leis an tír agus leis an saol mór. Táimid ag ceiliúradh i gcomhar le TG4 an éagsúlacht agus an saibhreas cultúrtha a bhaineann lenár n-oidhreacht i gcomhthéacs dinimiciúil agus nua-aimseartha. Táimid ag súil go mór le ceiliúradh ar ár bhféiniúlacht náisiúnta.” Bígí ag faire ar TG4 nuair a chraolfar an ócáid beo Dé Luain, an 31 Deireadh Fómhair ag 9.30pm. -Críoch-

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

As part of NUI Galway’s 1916 commemoration programme, ‘A Nation Rising’, the University will host a public conference entitled ‘Before 1916: Robert Lynd and Visions of Ireland to Come’. Organised by NUI Galway’s Gender ARC Research Network and the Moore Institute, the event will take place on Friday, 4 November in the Hardiman Research Building. Through a programme of lively guest lectures, music and dramatic performances, the conference will explore alternative visions of Ireland before the 1916 Rising, as expressed by five “Voices of the New Ireland” selected by the writer and critic Robert Lynd in his 1919 book Ireland a Nation. The five very well-known voices at the time chosen by Lynd were: Easter Rising leader Patrick Pearse; historian Alice Stopford Green; writer and artist George Russell (AE); essayist, constitutionalist nationalist, and women's rights advocate Tom Kettle; and sculptor and poet Dora Sigerson. Conference organiser, Professor Niamh Reilly of NUI Galway’s School of Political Science and Sociology explains the idea behind the conference: “Many are familiar with the role of Patrick Pearse and the vision of Ireland he strove to achieve, but most are less aware that in the years before 1916, Pearse’s vision was one among many nationalist visions that competed for Ireland’s hearts and minds at the time. This conference uses Robert Lynd's writings to recall and learn from some of the lively debates and passionate champions of Ireland's independence before the Rising.”     Keynote speakers includes: historian and political analyst Dr Margaret O’Callaghan of Queens University Belfast, who will talk about ‘Alice Green, Roger Casement and the politics of Irish history before the Rising’; and Professor Bryan Fanning from UCD whose talk is titled, ‘Patrick Pearse’s Ghost Frequencies’. Professor Fanning’s new book, Irish Adventures in Nation-Building, will also be launched at the conference along with the Lynd Exhibit: Writings In The Library, organised by Mary Clancy, researcher and curator and Marie Boran, Special Collections Librarian. Music from the time period will also feature and will be performed by musicians Garry O’Briain, Jack Talty, Caitleen Courtney and singer Alice Hegarty, coordinated by Mary McPartlan, Director of NUI Galway’s Arts in Action Programme. There will be dramatic readings of the writings of Robert Lynd and his “five voices” by students of the Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance, coordinated by Dr Miriam Haughton. The afternoon will conclude with a lively roundtable discussion chaired by Margaret O’Callaghan on the legacy and significance of Lynd and his “five voices” with contributions from NUI Galway’s: Dr Anne Byrne on George Russell (AE); Mary Clancy on Alice Stopford Green; Dr Miriam Haughton on Patrick Pearse; Dr Muireann O’Cinneide on Dora Sigerson; and Professor Niamh Reilly on Tom Kettle. The conference is free and open to the public but places are limited. To reserve a place at the conference contact Gillian Browne gillian.browne@nuigalway.ie or 091 492297. Registration will begin at 9am with the programme commencing at 9.30am. For more information see: www.nuigalway.ie/globalwomensstudies/gender-arc/. -Ends-

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

NUI Galway’s oldest living alumna, Anne Byrne, née Gannon, is being honoured by her alma mater on Thursday, 3 November at 6pm with a public interview about her time spent at the University, her life in America and her music. Not only is Anne celebrating 80 years since her graduation in 1936, but she has also been recognised as the first private individual to make tape recordings of Irish traditional music in Ireland. Her collection, which she first began in 1954, is now a unique archival treasure and one which she has donated to the Irish State where it is being digitised and preserved by the Irish Traditional Music Archive in Dublin. During the celebrations pieces from the archive will be played in a fully restored format and one of Ireland’s most respected and loved musicians, Máirtín O’Connor, will also perform some of Anne’s favourite tracks live on the night. Aisling Nolan, Alumni Relations Officer at NUI Galway, said: “Anne is not only remarkable for her position as our oldest alumna; but her wonderful life story and achievements are such that warrants celebration. Anne’s many vivid memories of her time at NUI Galway in the 1930’s will be fascinating for the wider alumni community. It has been a pleasure getting to know Anne over the past few years and we are delighted she is able to join us back in her alma mater for such a special occasion.” Dr Méabh Ní Fhuartháin, Acting Co-Director of NUI Galway’s Centre for Irish Studies, will conduct the interview. Dr Ní Fhuartháin said: “Anne’s importance to Irish traditional music collection in the mid-twentieth century is only now being given due credit and it is a real honour to be part of the celebration of that cultural contribution. We will get to hear Anne tell her story, and also get to listen to some of the archive recordings of the music she collected. Her experience as the daughter of an emigrant to Ireland and as an emigrant herself, raises fascinating questions about received notions of the Irish emigrant experience.” The event will take place with a pre-interview reception in Áras na Mac Léinn, NUI Galway, followed by the public interview and music in The Cube. The event, which will be co-hosted by the University’s Alumni Relations and the Centre for Irish Studies, is free and open to all alumni and friends of NUI Galway as well as the wider Galway community. RSVP to Aisling on 091 494310 or by email at aisling.nolan@nuigalway.ie. -Ends-

Friday, 21 October 2016

Three NUI Galway researchers have been awarded significant funding in an announcement made by Science Foundation Ireland this week.  Working in the fields of colon cancer, intervertebral disc repair and tissue engineering, the individuals were selected as “the next leaders of research in Ireland, shaping the research community both here in Ireland and internationally”. Minister of State for Training, Skills and Innovation, John Halligan TD, announced a total of €22.3 million in research funding for 40 major research projects in Ireland.  The funding is distributed through Science Foundation Ireland’s Starting Investigator Research Grant (SIRG) and Career Development Award (CDA) Programmes. Dr Aideen Ryan, a Senior Research Fellow in Immunology at NUI Galway’s Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), was awarded a SIRG of €518,821 for her work on colon cancer. Her project, RESTRAIN, involves investigating tumour stromal interactions in metastatic colon cancer for the identification of novel immuno-therapeutic targets. Dr Laura Russo, a member of the CÚRAM Centre for Research in Medical Devices at NUI Galway, was awarded a SIRG of €518,749 for her research on tissue engineering for degenerative intervertebral disc disease. Her project will look at glyco-functionalised hydrogel to stimulate the repair of the damaged disc. Dr Dimitrios Zeugolis, Director of the Regenerative, Modular and Developmental Engineering Laboratory (REMODEL) and Principal Investigator of the CÚRAM Centre for Research in Medical Devices at NUI Galway, was awarded a CDA of €493,759 for his work on tissue engineering. His project, Tissue Engineered Nanoassemblies of Advanced Biomimicry of Living Equivalents (TENABLE), will develop living tissue substitutes using iPSCs based on the principles of in vitro organogenesis. NUI Galway’s Vice-President for Research, Professor Lokesh Joshi, welcomed the awards: “These awards recognise the excellent young research talent at NUI Galway and how our researchers are advancing scientific frontiers which will ultimately benefit patients. We are focused on developing the next generation of researchers which is critical to the long-term sustainability of delivering research impact.” Announcing the awards, Minister of State for Training, Skills and Innovation, John Halligan TD said; “This investment in the SFI SIRG and CDA Programmes allows researchers to advance their research investigations and continue developing their careers. These researchers will be the next leaders of research in Ireland, shaping the research community both here in Ireland and internationally. The nine industrial collaborations linked with these awards provides industry with access to the emerging research expertise found throughout Ireland. Collaborations at these early career stages will help establish relationships which will advance Ireland’s economy, society and reputation for research excellence now and in the future.”   Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government of Ireland welcomed the announcement saying: “Science Foundation Ireland places a heavy emphasis on supporting researchers at every stage of their careers. The SIRG and CDA awards help early and mid-career researchers develop essential skills and track records necessary to become the next generation of research leaders in Ireland.  I have high expectations for these projects and look forward to these teams contributing to the advancement of Ireland’s international reputation in areas such as energy, materials, technology, and health.” -ends-

Friday, 21 October 2016

Professor Jean Christophe (JC) Desplat receives the title of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques (Knight of the Order of Academic Palms). One of France’s highest honours has been bestowed on an Irish-based technology expert. Professor Jean Christophe (JC) Desplat, Director of the Irish Centre for High End Computing (ICHEC), which is hosted by NUI Galway, has received the title of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques (Knight of the Order of Academic Palms). The Ordre des Palmes Académiques is a prize given by the French government to honour distinguished figures in culture and education. Originally started by Napoleon, the award assumed its current form in 1955, and at a ceremony this week at Résidence de France in Dublin, ICHEC’s Professor Desplat joined the distinguished list of recipients. ICHEC is Ireland’s national centre for high-performance computing, with world-class expertise in the exploitation of next generation compute platforms. The Center operates the national High-Performance Computing service for academia and through industrial R&D collaboration helps bring the benefits of high-performance computing to business and industry. ICHEC is partly funded by the Irish State through the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation and the Department of Education & Skills. It is hosted by NUI Galway, with offices in Dublin and Galway. Professor Desplat has been an integral part of ICHEC since 2005, becoming Director in 2012. His expertise has proven crucial in establishing ICHEC as one of the leading technology centres in Europe. Speaking on receipt of this honour, Professor Desplat said: “I am honoured to be awarded this prestigious distinction by the French government. This award means a lot to me personally but it also rightly recognises the outstanding team of people I work with at the Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC) where our goal is to make Ireland a world leader in high-performance computing. I look forward to growing ICHEC nationally and internationally and developing further collaborations and partnerships in Europe.” Professor Desplat is joining a high calibre of individuals through receipt of this award, joining the same ranks as esteemed politicians, scientists, historians, artists, musicians, and even royalty. -ends-

Thursday, 20 October 2016

 Were James Macpherson’s famous translations of the ancient Scottish bard Ossian less Homer from the Greek Classics and more like Oisín from Irish mythology? Multi-disciplinary research from the National University of Ireland Galway, Coventry University and University of Oxford explored the mathematical properties of contested poems. The social networks behind one of the most famous literary controversies of all time have been uncovered using modern complexity science. Since James Macpherson published what he claimed were translations of ancient Scottish Gaelic poetry by a third-century bard named Ossian, scholars have questioned the authenticity of the works and whether they were misappropriated from Irish mythology or, as heralded at the time, authored by a Scottish equivalent to Homer. Now, in a joint study by British and Irish universities and published today (Thursday, 20 October) in the journal Advances in Complex Systems, researchers have revealed the structures of the social networks underlying the Ossianic corpus and their remarkable similarities to Irish mythology. The researchers mapped the characters at the heart of the works and the relationships between them to compare the social networks found in the Scottish epics with classical Greek literature and Irish mythology. The study revealed that the networks in the Scottish poems bore little resemblance to epics by Homer, but strongly resembled those in mythological stories from Ireland. The Ossianic poems are considered to be some of the most important literary works ever to have emerged from Britain or Ireland, given their influence over the Romantic period in literature and the arts. Figures from Brahms to Wordsworth reacted enthusiastically; Napoleon took a copy on his military campaigns and US President Thomas Jefferson believed that Ossian was the greatest poet that had ever existed. The poems launched the romantic portrayal of the Scottish Highlands which persists, in many forms, to the present day and inspired Romantic nationalism all across Europe. Macpherson and collaborators compared Ossian to Greek Classics in order to add authority to the Scottish epic. Although its characters had resonances in Irish mythology, they tried to distance the work from Irish sources. Macpherson also sought to invert the ancient relationship between Ireland and Scotland, reversing the direction of migration of populations and folklore. This provoked outrage by Irish scholars and triggered one of the most famous literary controversies of all time. Revisionist scholarship and a recent 250th anniversary sparked revival of interest in Ossian and launched rehabilitation for Macpherson. The new research found that the mathematical properties of the Ossianic networks are very different to those of Homer, but very similar to ancient Irish tales, specifically Fenian Cycle of Irish mythology, which features Fionn mac Cumhaill and his son Oisín. The interdisciplinary research connects opposite ends of the academic spectrum. “By working together, it shows how science can open up new avenues of research in the humanities,” claims Professor Ralph Kenna, a statistical physicist based at Coventry University. “The opposite also applies,” he says, “as social structures discovered in Ossian inspire new questions in mathematics.” Dr Justin Tonra, a digital humanities expert from the National University of Ireland, Galway adds: “From a humanities point of view, while it cannot fully resolve the debate about Ossian, this scientific analysis does reveal an insightful statistical picture: close similarity to the Irish texts which Macpherson explicitly rejected, and distance from the Greek sources which he sought to emulate.” The paper will be published online this week at the journal website. It is also available for free from https://arxiv.org/abs/1610.00142 . -ends-

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

A new Digital Archive collection is to be launched by NUI Galway James Hardiman Library on Tuesday, 25 October at 5pm in the Hardiman Research Building. This new online resource contains digitised items from the archive of Brendan Duddy, the Derry businessman who maintained a secret channel of communication between the British government and the IRA Army Council for twenty years. Brendan Duddy was a key figure in the 1975 ceasefire negotiations, the 1981 Republican Hunger Strikes - the 35th anniversary of whose conclusion occurred earlier this month, and ceasefire talks between 1990 and 1994 and was the subject of Peter Taylor’s BBC documentary ‘The Secret Peacemaker’. The archive was deposited in NUI Galway in 2009, and contains over 700 documents that cover these three critical periods during the Troubles. It includes coded diaries documenting contact, as well as messages exchanged, between the British government and the Provisional Republican leadership. The archive gives a rare insight into the dynamics and the role of secret negotiation in conflict resolution. Also included are several hours of filmed interviews between Brendan Duddy and Dr Niall Ó Dochartaigh of NUI Galway’s School of Political Science and Sociology, in which these key historical events are discussed. In the context of the recent Brexit vote, there are interesting references to the status of the border and the implications for Northern Ireland of any change in political arrangements. Professor Lionel Pilkington of NUI Galway’s School of Humanities, said: “Brendan Duddy’s fascinating papers draw attention to that largely unacknowledged war that, from the late 1960s, dominated Irish political conscience for three decades. For the researcher, this is an invaluable archive of materials, and it testifies also to Duddy’s own extraordinary courage and integrity.”    NUI Galway Librarian John Cox said: “Making a significant proportion of this important archive available online will enable new insights into some of the major episodes in the Troubles.” The archive has been used by local and international scholars of conflict studies, alongside some of NUI Galway’s other archival collections such as the papers of Ruairí Ó Brádaigh and Professor Kevin Boyle. This new Digital Archive makes a substantial amount of that material available online to researchers throughout the world and can be viewed on the NUI Galway Digital Collections platform at https://digital.library.nuigalway.ie/, along with some of the University’s other digital archives such as The Abbey Theatre Early Minute Books, the Michael Cusack Collection and the Balfour Album of 19th century photographs of Galway. A public interview titled “Can you keep a secret? Family life with a secret peacemaker” between Dr Niall Ó Dochartaigh and some of Brendan Duddy’s family members will precede the launch. Professor Lionel Pilkington will launch the Digital Archive, followed by a demonstration of the resource by Digital Archivist, Aisling Keane. The event is free, but registration is essential. Please visit http://tinyurl.com/zwj2pfc  to register. -Ends-

Monday, 17 October 2016

Students interested in studying at NUI Galway are invited to an information evening in Tralee on Thursday, 20 October. Students interested in undergraduate or postgraduate courses are welcome to attend. Parents, guardians and guidance counsellors are also particularly welcome to the event which runs from 7 to 9pm in the Brandon Hotel, Tralee, Co. Kerry. The evening will begin with short talks about NUI Galway and the undergraduate courses it offers. Afterwards, current students and NUI Galway staff will be on hand to answer any individual questions in relation to courses and practical issues like accommodation, fees and scholarships, and the wide range of support services available to our students. The ever-increasing popularity of NUI Galway is in-part due to a suite of innovative programmes, developed in response to the changing needs of the employment market. Unique programmes include a suite of Arts degree programmes including Drama, Creative Writing and Human Rights, an Energy Systems Engineering degree, a Maths and Education degree aimed at training Maths teachers, a Marine Science degree and Podiatric Medicine, a programme unique in Ireland. Visitors to the information evening will also get information on NUI Galway’s newest degree programmes, a Bachelor of Commerce (Global Experience), Bachelor in Children’s Studies and the BSc (Applied Social Sciences). Sarah Geraghty, Student Recruitment and Outreach Manager at NUI Galway, said: “NUI Galway has a great deal to offer. Our own students tell us our lecturers are inspirational and challenge them to achieve their full potential. The student experience in Galway is second to none, and we want to bring a taste of that to County Kerry, while also providing all the practical information on accommodation, fees, scholarships and courses. With so many courses on offer, this event in Tralee is a perfect opportunity for prospective students to meet current students and lecturers to see what degree might be the right fit for them.” To find out more about the information evening in Tralee, contact NUI Galway's Schools Liaison Officer, Caroline Duggan on 086 997 1570 or caroline.duggan@niuigalway.ie -Ends-

Friday, 14 October 2016

Major national conference at NUI Galway with leading Irish and international speakers is centrepiece of The Centenary Conversations – a three day programme of talks, debates, exhibitions and performances Leading speakers from Ireland and around the globe will gather in Galway from the 10th to the 12th of November to participate in The Centenary Conversations, a major initiative of the Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme. Details of the three-day Conference and Fringe programme were announced today (Friday 14th October) by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny, TD., Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs Heather Humphreys TD and Minister for Education and Skills Richard Bruton TD. The centrepiece of the event is a major national conference, which is free to the public, titled ‘1916-2016 The Promise and Challenge of National Sovereignty’.  Hosted by NUI Galway and featuring a host of internationally-renowned academics, historians and special guests, the conference will explore and debate some of the most important issues and challenges facing us today.  The conference will be opened by An Taoiseach  and participants will include Minister Humphreys, Professor Roy Foster (University of Oxford), Professor Philip Pettit (Princeton University), Professor Louise Richardson (University of Oxford), Professor Clair Wills (Princeton University) and Professor Brendan O'Leary (University of Pennsylvania), as well as academics from across the entire third level sector in Ireland. Speaking at the announcement of The Centenary Conversations, Galway An Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD said: “One of our greatest national talents is storytelling, which we do through literature, drama, poetry and other art forms.  Most of all we do it through conversations, in large groups and small.  This year we are re-living the experience of 1916 through historical analysis but also through the power of the arts in storytelling.  The National Conference in Galway will facilitate the exchange of views and opinions about the past, and how our understanding of the past can help us shape the future.  The wide-ranging events around the conference will extend and enlarge the conversation, bring in new audiences and perspectives – and will make this a great event not just for Galway but for the entire country.” Minister Heather Humphreys said: “2016 has been an extraordinary year for Ireland and for Irish people. As we come to the end of our year of reflection and remembrance, it is time for us to look to the future and explore ways in which we can build on the positive experience of our centenary year. Public participation and engagement, not just in the events of the Centenary Programme, but also in the discussions around our complex history, have been a hallmark of our approach to this year. Therefore, I am particularly pleased that admission to the National Conference is free and I would encourage everyone to attend, participate and enjoy this unique and exciting event.” Minster for Education and Skills Richard Bruton TD said: “The participation and engagement by thousands of students, teachers and academics, in every education institution in the country, played a huge part in the success of this year's Centenary Programme.  Creating opportunities and access for everyone to discover, learn and debate our shared history and what it means to be Irish today speaks to the value and importance of education in all our lives." In addition to the National Conference, a specially curated Fringe programme of talks, exhibitions, performances and special events will take place in NUI Galway and in venues across the city.  Highlights of the fringe programme include: Ceann Comhairle, Hector Ó hEochagáin will convene a special sitting of the 2116 Parliament, where ten guest speakers will deliver a five minute motion to the Assembly, after which questions may be taken from the floor. Look beyond the headlines and seek out the complicated and sometimes inconvenient truth in The Experts Bite Back, where experts fact-checks claims by politicians and the media on recent controversial issues and in a mission to get to the truth of the matter. Award-winning 16 x 16 Next Generation artist Sian Ní Mhuirí presents 16 and Rising, the story of a secret revolutionary organisation of women and men who gather in a basement to plan an insurrection that will transform the city, and challenge the survival of the 32nd Dáil. Host of the popular Hedge School series, Tommy Graham comes to Galway with the History Ireland Hedge School: All Changed, Changed Utterly … from 1916 to Brexit. A discussion with a difference, and considerable good humour! Details of The Centenary Conversations, Galway and the full 1916 – 2016 The Promise and Challenge of National Sovereignty Conference Programme as well as registration details are available now at www.ireland.ie Admission to the National Conference is free but registration is essential. ENDS Gach bóthar ag déanamh ar Ghaillimh do mhórócáid Chomórtha Céad Bliain   Comhdháil náisiúnta ollmhór in OÉ Gaillimh le cainteoirí Éireannacha agus idirnáisiúnta mór le rá mar phríomhimeacht Chomhráití an Chéid - clár trí lá de chainteanna, díospóireachtaí, taispeántais agus taibhithe   Beidh cainteoirí mór le rá as Éirinn agus áiteanna ar fud an domhain ag teacht le chéile i nGaillimh idir an 10 agus an 12 Samhain chun páirt a ghlacadh i gComhráití an Chéid, mórthionscnamh de chuid Éire 2016: Clár Comórtha Céad Bliain. Rinne an Taoiseach, Enda Kenny T.D, an tAire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta, Gnóthaí Réigiúnacha, Tuaithe agus Gaeltachta, Heather Humphreys TD, agus an tAire Oideachais agus Scileanna, Richard Bruton TD sonraí chlár na Comhdhála trí lá agus na Féile imeallaí a fhógairt inniu (Dé hAoine, an 14 Deireadh Fómhair).  Is é príomhócáid na himeachta mórchomhdháil náisiúnta, atá saor in aisce don phobal, dar teideal ‘1916-2016: Dóchas agus Dúshlán na Ceannasachta Náisiúnta’.  Mar chuid den chomhdháil, a bheidh á hóstáil ag OÉ Gaillimh agus ina mbeidh slua d’acadóirí, staraithe agus aíonna speisialta a bhfuil cáil idirnáisiúnta orthu ag glacadh páirte, déanfar cuid de na ceisteanna agus na dúshláin is tábhachtaí atá romhainn inniu a chíoradh agus a phlé.  Osclóidh an Taoiseach an chomhdháil agus i measc na rannpháirtithe beidh an tAire Humphreys, an tOllamh Roy Foster (Ollscoil Oxford), an tOllamh Philip Pettit (Ollscoil Princeton), an tOllamh Louise Richardson (Ollscoil Oxford), an tOllamh Clair Wills (Ollscoil Princeton) agus an tOllamh Brendan O’Leary (Ollsoil Pennsylvania), chomh maith le hacadóirí as ar fud na hearnála tríú leibhéal in Éirinn. Ag labhairt dó ag fógairt Chomhráití an Chéid, Gaillimh dúirt an Taoiseach Enda Kenny an méid seo: “ Is í an scéalaíocht ceann dár mbuanna náisiúnta is mó, agus baineann muid úsáid as litríocht, dráma, filíocht agus foirmeacha ealaíne eile leis na scéalta a insint.  Den chuid is mó, áfach, is trí chomhráití a dhéanann muid é sin, i ngrúpaí beaga nó sluaite móra.  I mbliana táimid ag déanamh iarracht taithí a fháil ar an saol i 1916 trí anailís stairiúil ach freisin trí chumhacht na scéalaíochta.  Leis an gComhdháil Náisiúnta i nGaillimh éascófar malairt tuairimí agus dearcthaí maidir leis an am a chuaigh thart agus conas is féidir lenár dtuisint ar an am sin cuidiú linn an todhchaí a mhúnlú.  Déanfaidh na himeachtaí fairsinge thart ar an gcomhdháil an comhrá a leathnú, agus meallfar lucht éisteachta agus meonta nua - agus cruthófar imeacht den scoth ní hamháin do Ghaillimh ach don tír iomlán.” Dúirt an tAire Heather Humphreys: “Ba bhliain iontach í 2016 d’Éirinn agus do mhuintir na hÉireann. Agus muid ag druidim le deireadh na bliana seo de mhachnamh agus de chuimhneamh, tá sé in am dúinn súil a chaitheamh chun cinn agus bealaí a fhiosrú ina bhféadfaidh muid tógáil ar an eispéireas dearfach a bhí againn i mbliain chomórtha an chéid. Ba shaintréith dár gcur chuige i leith na bliana seo rannpháirtíocht an phobail, ní hamháin in imeachtaí an Chláir Chomórtha ach freisin sa phlé a bhí againn faoinár stair chasta. Mar sin de, tá áthas orm ach go háirithe go bhfuil cead isteach chuig an gComhdháil Náisiúnta saor in aisce agus mholfainn do gach duine freastal air, páirt a ghlacadh ann agus sult a bhaint as an imeacht uathúil spreagúil seo. Bhi an méid seo le rá ag an Aire Oideachais agus Scileanna, Richard Bruton TD: “Bhí páirt mhór ag rannpháirtíocht na mílte mac léinn, múinteoirí agus acadóirí, i ngach institiúid sa tír, sa rath a bhí ar an gClár Comórtha céad bliain i mbliana.  Trí dheiseanna agus rochtain a chur ar fáil do chách lenár stair chomhroinnte agus an chiall atá le hÉireannachas sa lá atá inniu ann a fhiosrú, a fhoghlaim agus a phlé, léirítear luach agus tábhacht an oideachais inár saol.” Chomh maith leis an gComhdháil Náisiúnta, beidh clár Imeallach, a coimeádadh go speisialta, de chainteanna, taispeántais, taibhithe agus imeachtaí speisialta ar siúl in OÉ Gaillimh agus in ionaid eile ar fud na cathrach. Ar bhuaicphointí an chláir imeallaigh: Déanfaidh an Ceann Comhairle, Hector Ó hEochagáin, suí speisialta de Pharlaimint 2116 a thionól, ina gcuirfidh deichniúr aoichainteoirí tairiscint chúig nóiméad i láthair an Tionóil agus ina dhiaidh sin glacfar le ceisteanna ón lucht éisteachta. Féach ar an méid atá taobh thiar de na ceannlínte agus téigh ar thóir na fírinne casta, a bhíonn searbh go minic, le The Experts Bite Back, ina ndéanfaidh saineolaithe an méid atá maíte ag polaiteoirí agus na meáin i dtaca le ceisteanna conspóideacha le déanaí a sheiceáil ó thaobh fíricí de d’fhonn teacht ar fhírinne an scéil. Cuireann Sian Ní Mhuirí, ealaíontóir ar ar bronnadh an gradam 16 x 16 Next Generation, 16 and Rising i láthair, scéal faoi eagraíocht réabhlóideach rúnda de mhná agus fir a thagann le chéile in íoslach chun éirí amach a phleanáil a athróidh an chathair go hiomlán agus a chuirfidh dúshlán faoi shaol an 32ú Dáil. Tagann Tommy Graham, óstach na sraithe Hedge School, a bhfuil an-tóir uirthi, go Gaillimh le Scoil Scairte History Ireland: All Changed, Changed Utterly … from 1916 to Brexit. Plé as an ngnáth le go leor grinn! Tá sonraí Chomhráití an Chéid, Gaillimh agus Clár iomlán na Comhdhála 1916 – 2016 Dóchas agus Dúshlán na Ceannasachta Náisiúnta, chomh maith le sonraí clárúcháin, ar fáil anois ag www.ireland.ie Tá cead isteach chuig an gComhdháil Náisiúnta saor in aisce ach ní mór clárú lena haghaidh.   CRÍOCH  

Monday, 17 October 2016

Neograft, a Boston based medical technology company has teamed up with CÚRAM, the Science Foundation Ireland Centre for Research in Medical Devices, to develop a novel manufacturing method for coronary bypass devices. Based at NUI Galway, CÚRAM has over 250 researchers engaged in current projects, both in collaboration with industry and on blue-sky research. Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) is a type of surgery that improves blood flow to the heart and is used to treat people who have severe coronary heart disease (CHD). This type of surgery, which typically uses veins to create bypass grafts for the heart, is currently the best option for most patients with CHD. Outcomes can however be compromised by the mechanical and biological limitations of veins typically used to create the bypass grafts. Dr Eoin O’Cearbhaill, CÚRAM Investigator based at the School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering at University College Dublin, whose Medical Devices Design Group will work with the company, explains that despite their widespread use, vein grafts continue to fail at high rates. “Many of these grafts can become obstructed in the first year and the failure rate can be up to 50% within five to ten years,” he says. Neograft Technologies, Inc. has developed a product called Angioshield™, which offers a new option for treatment of coronary artery disease and promises to improve vein performance and longevity in CABG outcomes. “Our Angioshield technology creates a support layer around the vein using a proprietary polymer network to improve both the strength and uniformity of the vein graft,” explains Jon McGrath, from Neograft’s CEO. “The device supports the vein without deforming its natural shape and allows nutrients and new cells to migrate into and through the support layer. Over time, new, stronger tissue develops around and within the scaffold, while the polymer that it’s made from weakens, allowing the new tissue to be exposed to its normal environment, which favours the development of stronger, more functional tissues.” Dr O’Cearbhaill’s research team will work with Neograft Technologies, Inc. and seek to use advanced manufacturing methods to develop a next-generation product. CÚRAM’s goal is to develop affordable solutions for patients suffering from chronic illnesses like CHD,” says NUI Galway’s Professor Abhay Pandit, Scientific Director of CÚRAM. “This project is another example of how we are partnering with industry to do this, using world class research expertise to allow our industry partners to expand and develop their product ranges to provide the ultimate benefit to the patient” he says. CÚRAM brings together strands of biomedical science which have come of age over the last decade including glycoscience, biomaterials science, regenerative medicine and tissue engineering, drug delivery and medical device design. CÚRAM has six academic partners including UCD, Trinity College Dublin, University of Limerick, University College Cork, The Royal College of Surgeons Ireland and NUI Galway. ENDS

Friday, 14 October 2016

Harnessing the knowledge of the Irish agriculture sector can significantly contribute to ending hunger and poverty for millions of people in the Developing World. Joe McHugh T.D, Minister of State for the Disapora and Overseas Development Aid launches the Irish Forum for International Agricultural Development (IFIAD)   Such is the belief of the founders of an innovative new consortium that has brought the Irish agriculture and research sectors together with some of the country’s leading development charities, in a bid to leverage Irish know-how to increase agriculture productivity and combat hunger in the Developing World.         Founding members of the new Irish Forum for International Agricultural Development (IFIAD) are the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Irish Aid, Teagasc, Agri-Science departments at NUI Galway, UCC and UCD, along with leading international development charities Gorta-Self Help Africa, Vita, Concern Worldwide, Trocaire and Misean Cara, private companies such as Sustainable Food Systems Ireland and Greenfield International and leading farmer associations ICMSA, ICSA, IFA and Macra na Feirme. Dr Una Murray, Nua Consulting (left) and Dr Peter McKeown, Coordinator of MScCCAFS program at NUI Galway (right) at IFIAD Launch The successful trialing in Eritrea, one of Africa’s poorest countries, of a potato variety shipped from Ireland offered a tangible example of what the new forum could achieve, the official launch of IFIAD heard, at the RDS in Dublin yesterday. Consortium members, including Teagasc, the Irish Potato Industry, Gorta-Self Help Africa and Vita had introduced the Electra variety, and provided their Eritrean counterparts with technical support and assistance. Early results showed that potato yields had tripled for Eritrean farmers as a result. Last year, Eritrea became the seventh member of the Irish Potato Forum. Representatives from national and international agriculture, agri-business and development aid sectors attended the launch, which was addressed by Minister Joe McHugh TD, and by guest speakers including Dr Ousmane Badiane, Africa Director for the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and Paul Winters, Director of the Rome-based International Fund for Agricultural Development of the United Nations (IFAD). Derrie Dillon, Agriculture and Rural Affairs Manager, Macra na Feirme (left) and Kevin Kilcline, Coordinator of MScAgriBiosciences program at NUI Galway (right) at IFIAD Launch At the launch, Minister Joe McHugh TD said: “Bringing together Irish agricultural and development expertise in this way is a great opportunity for all of us. IFIAD will help us to collectively strengthen our partnerships and continue our work to eradicate hunger and poverty.” The Forum’s Chair, Dr Lance O’Brien, Head of Strategy and International Relations at Teagasc said: “this new initiative will create a platform to allow the knowledge, expertise and commitment of the Irish farming sector to be harnessed to deliver a more focused impact on addressing the challenge of food security in developing countries.”   Professor Charles Spillane, from the Plant & AgriBiosciences Research Centre at NUI Galway said that “IFIAD is a much needed and timely initiative that has the potential to bring a more coordinated, coherent and impact-oriented approach to Irish agricultural policies, programmes, research and training focused on reducing poverty in developing countries” NUI Galway MScCCAFS students attending IFIAD launch; Kekae Kelebogile (South Africa); Rachael Murphy (Ireland); Lorna Born (South Africa) and Sarina Motsuki (South Africa) (from left to right).   Chief Executive of Gorta-Self Help Africa Ray Jordan said that upwards of 70% of people in the Developing World directly relied on farming for their survival. If even a fraction of the learning and successes of Irish agriculture would be transposed to Africa and other poorer regions, it would lift many millions of people out of extreme poverty.” Visit: www.ifiad.org for more information.

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Edel Browne, a third year biotechnology student at NUI Galway and founder of Free Feet Medical, has been selected to pitch at the Blackstone LaunchPad Showcase at the Forbes 30 Under 30 Conference. The conference will run from 16-19 October in Boston. Chosen after a competitive process across the Blackstone LaunchPad global network, 19-year-old Edel secured her place in the top six. Edel’s company Free Feet Medical is developing a device which helps people with Parkinson’s disease overcome gait freezing, a symptom affecting over 70% of those diagnosed with the disease. As student entrepreneur-in-residence with Blackstone LaunchPad at NUI Galway, Edel from Athenry, Co. Galway, is excited at the opportunities this international exposure will bring. Winning teams will be announced by Jon Gray, Blackstone’s Global Head of Real Estate, and Randall Lane, Editor of Forbes. This achievement has come on the back of a very productive few months for Free Feet Medical with the launch of a crowdfunding campaign on FundIt that has already raised €9,000 and the announcement that Free Feet was selected as a finalist for Women Mean Business Awards, Best Newcomer. To donate to Free Feet Medical please visit http://fundit.ie/project/freefeetmedical. Blackstone LaunchPad at NUI Galway is well represented at Forbes 30 Under 30 with a second team, Crono Labs, also attending the conference. Crono Labs has developed a revolutionary case to conveniently carry your computer monitor and reduce cable clutter. The venture is run by NUI Galway students Ruairi McNicholas and Oliver Burke, both from Headford, Co. Galway, and is still in the prototype phase. Executive Director of Blackstone LaunchPad NUI Galway, Mary Carty said: “I am thrilled for Edel. Her hard work and passion is inspiring. It’s a fantastic opportunity to drive her business forward. The exposure and opportunities this event will bring to Free Feet Medical is incredible. Having two teams, Free Feet Medical and Crono Labs attend Forbes 30 Under 30 is a fantastic achievement for NUI Galway. It’s testament to the creativity and ambition of our students and the supports available to them on campus. Seeing our start-ups recognised on a global stage, bodes very well for the future of the next generation of entrepreneurs in Ireland.” Since February, Blackstone LaunchPad at NUI Galway has supported over 2,000 students. The ethos is to support and empower each student by creating supports specific to individual needs and personal development; to help them to shape their pathway and celebrate their own unique talents and strengths. -Ends-

Thursday, 13 October 2016

NUI Galway last night celebrated the success of a select group of first-year students with a special ceremony, in recognition of the high points they achieved in the recent Leaving Certificate Examination. As part of the University's annual Excellence Scholarships, 60 students received €1,500 each. Each year the Excellence Scholarships are given to new entrants at NUI Galway who reached a minimum of 560 points in their Leaving Certificate examination, except in Medicine. For Medical students, 10 Scholarships were awarded certificates, based on the combined results in the Leaving Certificate and the new Admissions Test (H-PAT Ireland). The Excellence Scholarships are designed to recognise and reward Leaving Cert success for the highest-achieving students, and encourage their ongoing commitment to academic excellence during their time at NUI Galway. The awards may be held with any other scholarships or grants, including the University's Postgraduate Scholarships, Mature Student Scholarships, Sports Scholarship Scheme and schemes specific to individual colleges for those who excel in their University exams. Speaking at the Awards presentation, NUI Galway President Dr Jim Browne, said: “I am delighted to present the scholarships to these outstanding individuals in recognition of their academic talent. NUI Galway constantly strives to support and promote academic excellence across all disciplines. The purpose of these Awards is to encourage each student to develop his/her academic potential to the fullest, by setting a realistic threshold of excellence and rewarding every student who attains that level. It is also a chance to give due credit to their parents and teachers for their important contribution to such success.” This year Excellence Scholarships were awarded to students from 43 individual schools throughout Ireland. The winners represented 13 counties including Clare, Cork, Dublin, Galway, Kerry, Kildare, Limerick, Mayo, Offaly, Roscommon, Sligo, Tipperary, and Westmeath. -Ends- Ceiliúradh in OÉ Gaillimh ar Scothmhic Léinn a rinne Éacht san Ardteistiméireacht  Rinneadh ceiliúradh in OÉ Gaillimh le gairid ar ghrúpa ar leith mac léinn chéad bhliana ag searmanas speisialta, mar aitheantas ar na pointí arda a ghnóthaigh siad i Scrúdú na hArdteistiméireachta. Mar chuid de shearmanas bliantúil na hOllscoile le Scoláireachtaí Sármhaitheasa a bhronnadh, bronnadh scoláireachtaí ar fiú €1,500 iad ar 60 mac léinn. Bronntar na Scoláireachtaí Sármhaitheasa gach bliain ar mhic léinn atá díreach tosaithe ag freastal ar OÉ Gaillimh agus a fuair 560 pointe, ar a laghad, i Scrúdú na hArdteistiméireachta, seachas mic léinn Leighis. Sa Leigheas, bronnadh deich Scoláireacht bunaithe ar thorthaí na hArdteistiméireachta agus na Tástála Iontrála nua (H-PAT Ireland) araon. Tá na Scoláireachtaí Sármhaitheasa ann chun luach saothair a thabhairt do na daltaí is fearr a n-éiríonn leo san Ardteistiméireacht, agus chun a dtiomantas leanúnach i sárchaighdeán acadúil a spreagadh le linn a dtréimhse in OÉ Gaillimh. D’fhéadfaí go mbeadh scoláireachtaí nó deontais eile ag an té a fhaigheann na scoláireachtaí seo, Scoláireachtaí Iarchéime na hOllscoile, Scoláireachtaí do Mhic Léinn Lánfhásta, Scéim Scoláireachtaí Spóirt na hOllscoile agus scéimeanna a bhaineann go sonrach le coláistí agus iad siúd a n-éiríonn thar barr leo sna scrúduithe Ollscoile san áireamh. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr Jim Browne, agus é ag labhairt ag an searmanas: “Is cúis áthais dom na scoláireachtaí seo a bhronnadh ar na daoine den scoth seo mar aitheantas ar a gcumas acadúil. Déanann OÉ Gaillimh iarracht i gcónaí tacú le sárchaighdeán acadúil i ngach uile dhisciplín agus é a spreagadh. Tá na Gradaim seo ann le gach mac léinn a spreagadh le lántairbhe a bhaint as a gcumas mar mhic léinn, trí thairseach réalaíoch sárchaighdeáin a leagan amach agus luach saothair a thabhairt do gach mac léinn a bhaineann an leibhéal sin amach. Deis atá ann freisin le haitheantas a thabhairt don tsárobair atá déanta ag a dtuismitheoirí agus ag a múinteoirí.” I mbliana bronnadh na Scoláireachtaí Sármhaitheasa ar scoláirí ó 43 scoil ar fud na hÉireann. Tá scoláireachtaí le bronnadh ar mhic léinn as na contaetha seo a leanas – an Clár, Corcaigh, Baile Átha Cliath, Gaillimh, Ciarraí, Cill Dara, Luimneach, Maigh Eo, Uíbh Fhailí, Ros Comáin, Sligeach, Tiobraid Árann agus an Iarmhí. -Críoch-

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

- Call Open for Online Public Vote - NUI Galway has been shortlisted for two major national awards in the Engineers Ireland Excellence Awards. The recently completed Mayo Medical Academy Building is shortlisted in the ‘Heritage & Conservation Award’ while the Clinical and Translational Research Facility has been shortlisted for the prestigious award of ‘Engineering Project of the Year’, which will be decided by public vote. NUI Galway’s HRB Clinical Research and Lambe Institute for Translational Research Facility by Barrett Mahony Consulting Engineers, is based on the grounds of University Hospital Galway. The co-location of these two facilities in one building means basic laboratory research conducted in the translational research facility can be evaluated in clinical trials in the clinical research facility and ultimately benefit patients faster. Some examples of the types of studies undertaken in the two facilities include: Predicting risk of breast cancer Stem cell trials Clinical trials in blood cancer patients How implantable medical devices can provide new solutions for patients To vote for NUI Galway’s Clinical and Translational Research Facility in the ‘Public Choice’ category you can visit http://bit.ly/votenuigalway Under the ‘Public Choice Award’ section tick the NUI Galway HRB Clinical Research & Lambe Institute for Translational Research Facility, and click ‘vote’. Opened in 2015 by An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, NUI Galway’s HRB Clinical Research and Lambe Institute for Translational Research Facility is a world-class clinical research facility. At the opening An Taoiseach remarked that the facility “represents the point where research and healthcare meet – where “bench” meets “bedside”. The advances made by researchers and clinicians in this facility will undoubtedly lead to better frontline health outcomes and will ultimately improve patients’ lives.” The proximity of the University to University Hospital Galway enables direct patient access and collaborative trial input from the hospital Oncology/Haematology Clinical Trials Unit. The Clinical Research Facility will ensure that patients in the West and North West of Ireland have access to a number of new cancer therapies that would otherwise not have been available to them. This shortlisting adds to the accolades of the many new buildings across the NUI Galway campus including the new Engineering Building which won the accolade of ‘Best Public Choice’ Award in 2012. -ENDS-

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Pat Lam to be conferred with honorary doctorate during conferring week Pat Lam, head coach of Connacht Rugby, and former rugby international is to be recognised at NUI Galway with an honorary degree for his achievements which have significantly enriched both Connacht and the wider community. The ceremony on 17 October, will form part of NUI Galway’s Autumn Conferring Ceremonies at which over 2,500 students will graduate between 13-19 October. Pat Lam joins sporting luminaries including the late Christy O’Connor Snr and Jr, and Mick Loftus, in being recognised with an honorary degree by the University. Pat Lam is a New Zealand born rugby union coach who in May 2016, led Connacht Rugby to their first championship win and first trophy in 131 years by winning the Guinness PRO12. Of Samoan descent, he was previously an international player representing New Zealand and Samoa as well as playing in the English Premiership. In advance of the conferring ceremonies, Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway, said: “On behalf of NUI Galway, I congratulate all our graduands and extend a warm welcome to their parents, families and friends. We are delighted to acknowledge their outstanding achievements and wish them continued success in the future.” President Browne added: “Earlier this year, NUI Galway offered its heartiest congratulations to Pat Lam, his heroic players and committed backroom team on their massive win in the Rugby PRO12 Final. We are delighted to now formally recognise the contribution of Pat Lam with an honorary doctorate as members and former members of his squad and from the Rugby Academy also graduate. Their performance over the past season made the University, the province - and indeed the nation - proud and has set hearts racing across Connacht. NUI Galway is fortunate to be associated with many outstanding honorary graduates throughout its history and we are very pleased to be in a position to recognise this major sporting achievement.” Five players from Connacht Rugby to graduate along with their coach on Monday, include, Jack Dinneen (BComm), Conor Finn (BA), Eoghan Masterson (BA), Saba Meunargia (BA), and Danny Qualter (BA). Degrees, Higher Diplomas and Masters will be awarded to students graduating over the five days from the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences; College of Engineering and Informatics; College of Business, Public Policy and Law; College of Science; and the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies. The annual Centre for Adult Learning and Professional Development ceremonies will take place on Saturday, 15 October, where awards will be conferred on over 800 students who completed their certificate, diploma and degree courses at many locations across the country. -Ends- Onóracha do Chóitseálaí Rugbaí Chonnacht in OÉ Gaillimh  Dochtúireacht Oinigh le bronnadh ar Pat Lam i rith bhronnadh na gcéimeanna Tá céim oinigh le bronnadh ag OÉ Gaillimh ar Pat Lam, príomhchóitseálaí Rugbaí Chonnacht, agus iarimreoir rugbaí idirnáisiúnta as an méid atá déanta aige do rugbaí Chonnacht agus don phobal i gcoitinne. Beidh an searmanas ar siúl an 17 Deireadh Fómhair mar chuid de Shearmanais Bhronnadh Céimeanna an Fhómhair in OÉ Gaillimh áit a bhfaighidh os cionn 2,500 mac léinn a gcuid cáilíochtaí ón 13-19 Deireadh Fómhair.  Ní hé Pat Lam an chéad laoch spóirt a fuair céim oinigh ón Ollscoil mar gur bronnadh céimeanna oinigh roimhe seo ar Christy O’Connor Sinsear agus Sóisear, agus ar Mick Loftus.  Rugadh Pat Lam sa Nua-Shéalainn agus is cóitseálaí rugbaí é a bhí i gceannas ar Rugbaí Chonnacht nuair a ghnóthaigh siad a gcéad chraobh i mí Bealtaine 2016 agus a gcéad chorn le 131 bliain nuair a ghnóthaigh siad an Guinness PRO12. Is de bhunadh Shamó é, agus bhí sé ina imreoir idirnáisiúnta don Nua-Shéalainn agus Samó agus d'imir sé i bPríomhroinn Shasana. Ag labhairt dó roimh na searmanais bhronnta, dúirt an Dr Jim Browne, Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh: “Thar ceann OÉ Gaillimh, déanaim comhghairdeas lenár gcéimithe ar fad agus tá fearadh na fáilte roimh a dtuismitheoirí, a dteaghlaigh agus a gcairde. Tá ríméad orainn aitheantas a thabhairt dá gcuid éachtaí agus guímid gach rath orthu san am atá le teacht.” Dúirt an tUachtarán Browne chomh maith: “Níos túisce i mbliana, bhí OÉ Gaillimh ag tréaslú le Pat Lam, agus a chuid imreoirí iontacha agus an fhoireann sa chúlra as a mbua i gCraobh Rugbaí an PRO12. Is cúis áthais dúinn aitheantas foirmiúil a thabhairt d'éachtaí Pat Lam anois le céim oinigh, go mór mór agus imreoirí dá fhoireann ag fáil a gcuid céimeanna chomh maith.  De bharr a gcuid buanna an séasúr seo caite tá an Ollscoil, an cúige - agus fiú an tír ar fad - bródúil as Connacht agus tá ardú misnigh tugtha dúinn ar fad i gConnachta. Tá an t-ádh le OÉ Gaillimh céimithe oinigh den scoth a bheith aici in imeacht na mblianta agus is mór an onóir dúinn a bheith in ann aitheantas a thabhairt don éacht spóirt seo.” Is iad an cúigear ó Rugbaí Chonnacht atá ag fáil a gcuid céimeanna in éineacht leis an gcóitseálaí Dé Luain, Jack Dinneen (BComm), Conor Finn (BA), Eoghan Masterson (BA), Saba Meunargia (BA), agus Danny Qualter (BA). Bronnfar Céimeanna, Ard-Dioplómaí, Máistreachtaí agus PhDanna le linn na gcúig lá ar mhic léinn ó Choláiste an Leighis, an Altranais agus na nEolaíochtaí Sláinte; ó Choláiste na hInnealtóireachta agus na hIonformaitice; ó Choláiste an Ghnó, an Bheartais Phoiblí agus an Dlí; ó Choláiste na hEolaíochta; agus ó Choláiste na nDán, na nEolaíochtaí Sóisialta agus an Léinn Cheiltigh. Beidh searmanais bhliantúla an Ionaid Foghlama agus Forbartha Gairmiúla d'Aosaigh ar siúl Dé Sathairn, an 15 Deireadh Fómhair, áit a mbronnfar dámhachtainí ar níos mó ná 800 mac léinn a chríochnaigh a gcúrsaí teastais, dioplóma agus céime in ionaid éagsúla ar fud na tíre. -Críoch-

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Playwright Thomas Kilroy launched a new book on Maud Gonne, The Adulterous Muse, at the Moore Institute, NUI Galway on Monday, 10 October. Written by Adrian Frazier, Professor Emeritus at NUI Galway, the book focuses on Maud Gonne, and her relationships with Lucien Millevoye and WB Yeats. Professor Adrian Fraizer uses the vast resources of newly digitised French newspapers and journals to track the celebrated Gonne and her beloved Lucien Millevoye through the sensational turmoil of the Third Republic in France and into the violent push for a Republic in Ireland. This biography pursues the story of what attracted Maud Gonne to a man like Lucien Millevoye, and what imprint the attachment left upon her. Once jilted by Millevoye, Maud Gonne marched into a truly ill-starred marriage to Major John MacBride. The horrible truth of their mismatch is examined through the evidence entered by both parties in the divorce proceedings. Maud Gonne was the beautiful and charismatic inspiration of Yeats’s love poetry, a leading activist in the Irish republican movement and the founder of Inghinidhe na hÉireann (Daughters of Ireland). The shifting levels of awareness, desire, and mutual complicity in self-deception on the part of WB Yeats and his muse are traced with subtlety. Ultimately, the effect of the group biography as a whole is to make Yeats’s early love poems, so long in the public eye, more visible than they have ever been. -ends-

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Experiencing anger/emotional upset or heavy physical exertion linked with a doubling of heart attack risk. Being angry or emotionally upset while engaging in heavy physical exertion linked with a tripling of heart attack risk. The findings do not negate the benefits of appropriate, regular physical activity in preventing heart attacks. Study, largest of its kind, analysed data from 12,461 patients with an average age 58. Being angry or emotionally upset or engaging in heavy physical exertion may trigger a heart attack, according to new research published in the American Heart Association’s journal Circulation. In a large international study, researchers found an association (more than twice the risk) between anger or emotional upset and the onset of heart attack symptoms within one hour. The same was true for heavy physical exertion during the hour before their first heart attack. However, the association was stronger (more than triple the risk) in those patients who recalled being angry or emotionally upset while also engaging in heavy physical exertion. “Previous studies have explored these heart attack triggers; however, they had fewer participants or were completed in one country, and data was limited from many parts of the world,” said Dr Andrew Smyth, study lead author and a researcher at the HRB Clinical Research Facility at NUI Galway and the Population Health Research Institute at McMaster University, Canada. “This is the first study to represent so many regions of the world, including the majority of the world’s major ethnic groups.” Researchers analysed data from 12,461 patients (average age 58) participating in INTERHEART, a study consisting of patients with first-ever heart attacks across 52 countries. Participants completed a questionnaire about whether they experienced any of the triggers in the one hour before their heart attack. They were also asked if they had experienced any of the triggers in the same one hour period on the day before their heart attack. Authors said that these triggers appeared to independently increase a person’s heart attack risk beyond that posed by other risk factors, including age, smoking, obesity, high blood pressure and other health problems linked to heart attack.  “This large, nearly worldwide study provides more evidence of the crucial link between mind and body,” said Barry J. Jacobs, Psy.D., an American Heart Association volunteer and director of behavioral sciences at the Crozer-Keystone Family Medicine Residency Program in Springfield, Pennsylvania. “Excess anger, under the wrong conditions, can cause a life-threatening heart attack. All of us should practice mental wellness and avoid losing our temper to extremes.” Dr Andrew Smyth said that extreme emotional and physical triggers are thought to have similar effects on the body. “Both can raise blood pressure and heart rate, changing the flow of blood through blood vessels and reducing blood supply to the heart” he said. “This is particularly important in blood vessels already narrowed by plaque, which could block the flow of blood leading to a heart attack.” “Regular physical activity has many health benefits, including the prevention of heart disease, so we want that to continue,” he said. “However, we would recommend that a person who is angry or upset who wants to exercise to relieve some of this stress, not go well beyond their normal routine to extremes of activity.” One limitation of the study was that participants had to recall their triggers. After a heart attack, a person may be more inclined to say they experienced a trigger than they otherwise would be. In addition, participants were not given any descriptions of being angry or emotionally upset or of heavy physical exertion. Self-defined, these triggers appear to have the same effect across countries and ethnicities. “People who are at risk of a heart attack would do best to avoid extreme emotional situations,” Jacobs said. “One way many cope with the emotional ups and downs of a health condition is through peer support, talking with others who are facing similar challenges can be very helpful in better managing your own emotions.” -ends- 

Monday, 10 October 2016

The Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC) will hold an international conference on Quality Outcomes in Youth Mentoring on Thursday, 13 October, in NUI Galway. The event takes place in conjunction with the Global Youth Mentoring Network. Featuring international speakers as well as academics and practitioners from Ireland, the conference will highlight how using trained volunteer adult mentors to support young people can have positive outcomes for young people dealing with challenges and transitions in their lives. Mentoring is used by organisations such as the ISPCC and Foróige in Ireland, to support young people with a range of needs. While mentoring, as a means of providing social support for young people is well-established, the factors that contribute to high quality outcomes for young people are less clear. This conference will explore research and evidence based practice in relation to Youth Mentoring with a focus on real life examples of what works in practice.  The factors that contribute to high quality mentoring programmes and some of the challenges of measuring outcomes in everyday contexts will be examined along with guidelines for practice improvement. Speakers on the day will include Professor Pat Dolan, UNESCO Chair in Children, Civic and Youth Engagement from NUI Galway, Grainia Long from the ISPCC and Séan Campbell, CEO of Foróige. Tess Noonan, Assistant Director for Quality and Risk for the ISPCC, stated: “This conference will be particularly helpful for anyone who is interested in providing social support for young people. The topics which will be covered will vary from building resilience in young people to why youth mentoring matters, from some of the most influential people working with young people. It promises to be an informative day and since it is free to attend, we would encourage anyone with an interest to join us.” Dr Bernadine Brady, Lecturer and Senior Researcher at UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre, NUI Galway stated: “We are delighted to be hosting this conference, and contributing to the academic study of youth mentoring. Supporting youth organisations to measure and evaluate programmes such as mentoring and to understand why certain practices are effective is key to ensuring that young people get access to the best possible services. We look forward to a really interesting day, and encourage anyone working with young people or considering using a mentoring model to attend.” This event is free to attend, registration is via Eventbrite at https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/quality-outcomes-in-youth-mentoring-tickets-26464909256.   ENDS

Monday, 10 October 2016

UNESCO Bioethics Ireland established at NUI Galway As part of a series of international events marking ‘World Bioethics Day’ on 19 October 2016 a one-day symposium is taking place at NUI Galway. The event is being organised by UNESCO Bioethics Ireland, which has been established with approval by the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics, the international network of academics engaged with the issue. Dr Oliver Feeney, of NUI Galway’s Centre of Bioethical Research and Analysis (COBRA), is heading up the newly formed UNESCO Bioethics Ireland. “In keeping with the objectives of the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics, the core aims of the Irish unit will be to promote bioethics education and research on key bioethical issues in the Irish context. Bioethics is a field of multidisciplinary study concerned with the ethical, legal and social implications of biological and medical interventions, research in the human sciences, new biotechnologies, and healthcare practices.  Such bioethical issues can include new reproductive technologies (e.g. IVF, surrogacy), new directions in genetics and stem-cell research and end of life issues (e.g. assisted suicide) as well as issues related to fair resource allocation in healthcare.” The planned events worldwide on ‘World Bioethics Day’ are to mark the adoption of the Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights by the 33rd Session of the General Conference of UNESCO on the 19 October 2005. The Irish symposium will look at themes including: The role of the National Advisory Committee on Bioethics: current challenges in the Irish context. Bioethics in Northern Ireland: possible implications of Brexit on research and regulation on the island of Ireland. Training needs for research ethics committees. Ethical governance in healthcare. The Cultural Context of Developing Science Policy; Embryonic Stem Cell Research in Ireland. The Assisted Dying debate and the Marie Fleming case. Genetics and society: ethics, justice and changing beliefs. On human enhancement. The event will be opened by Professor Pat Dolan (UNESCO Chair in Children, Youth and Civic Engagement, NUI Galway) and speakers will include: Professor David Smith (RCSI), Dr Tom Walker (Queens University Belfast), Dr Heike Felzmann (NUI Galway), Dr Louise Campbell (NUI Galway and Clinical Ethics Ireland), Dr Gemma Moore (HSE), Annie McKeown O’Donovan (NUI Galway), Dr John Danaher (NUI Galway) and Dr Oliver Feeney (NUI Galway). Through this and other events, UNESCO Bioethics Ireland seeks to foster a sustained, positive engagement between academia, medical and scientific research professions and the wider public and to raise awareness and knowledge throughout Irish society on key bioethical debates. The symposium will take place in Seminar Room 203 (the original Moore Institute seminar room located near the Geography department), NUI Galway from 10am to 4.15pm and will be open to all. The full programme is available here https://unescobioethicsireland.eu/one-day-symposium-on-irish-bioethics-world-bioethics-day/ Registration for the symposium is free, but numbers are limited, so those interested in attending should go to unescobioethicsireland.eu or contact Oliver.Feeney@nuigalway.ie The event is supported by NUI Galway’s Centre of Bioethical Research and Analysis, Department of Philosophy and Moore Institute. -ends- 

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

         First university in Europe to offer unique degree Minister for Children and Youth Affairs has launched the new BA in Children’s Studies at NUI Galway, the first university in Europe to offer such a unique undergraduate degree. The programme, which is innovative in the field of children research, builds on the research and expertise of the programme team, leading the development and growth of the area of children’s study. The new BA degree in Children's Studies is a unique programme, which puts the child at the centre of the investigation. Taking an inter-disciplinary approach, the programme investigates the life of children in Ireland and beyond, in the past and present, from the development of the child to the rights of the child in a changing Ireland. Speaking at the launch, Dr Katherine Zappone, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, TD, said: “For more than a decade, NUI Galway has established its position as leading in the field of child and adolescent’s research and education, with excellent international reputation, and this new programme adds another layer to the wonderful work that is already being undertaken here.” This four-year programme, will train a generation of experts in children that will contribute to the labour market knowledge and skills in working with, or on behalf of, children. These graduates will be well prepared to integrate in the labour market and to assist in implementing the strategies that are currently in place and that are being developed. Course Director, Dr Michal Molcho, said: “This programme was developed on the shared understanding that this area is important. We all believe in the importance of understanding children, listening to their voices, and bettering their lives. With this in the core of our teaching, our graduates will value the uniqueness of each child and acknowledge the significance of listening to each child’s voice, be culturally aware, and enhance the care of children from all walks of lives, ethnicity, and abilities.” Further course information will be available at the NUI Galway Open Days this Friday 7th and Saturday 8th October, see www.nuigalway.ie/opendays. ENDS

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

 Event juxtaposes the 100th anniversary of 1916 with the 20th anniversary of the closing of the last Magdalene Laundry. As part of the 1916: Home: 2016 project, NUI Galway’s Moore Institute will host the first of two national conferences from 7-8 October. 1916: Home: 2016 is a unique project that juxtaposes the centenary year of Easter Rising with the 20th anniversary of the closing of the Republic of Ireland’s last Magdalene Laundry, through two academic conferences and an international programme of artistic events. Taking the Proclamation’s claim to ‘cherish all children of the nation equally’ as its starting point, 1916: Home: 2016 draws attention to the collision of these two anniversaries in order to interrogate the homes we have made, the homes we hid and the homes that we are yet to imagine and build for 2016 and beyond. Keynotes speakers include Professor Mike Cronin, Boston College; Professor Marianne Hirsch, Columbia University; Professor Kathleen Gough, University of Vermont; and Professor Cahal McLaughlin, Queen’s University Belfast. Confirmed performers at the event in Galway include Irish playwright, poet, novelist and artist, Patricia Burke Brogan, and ‘Speaking of I.M.E.L.D.A.’, the direct action feminist performance group that challenges the ongoing problem of Ireland making England the legal destination for abortion. Catherine Connolly, TD for Galway West, will chair a question and answer session after the ‘Speaking of I.M.E.L.D.A.’ performance. These conferences will interrogate the tension between the ideals of citizenship and inclusion underpinning the Proclamation of the Irish Republic and the events of Easter Rising. The Magdalene Laundries, Mother and Baby Homes and orphanages, were part of a larger church and state-run network also including industrial and reformatory schools, which academic research and recent state inquiries have demonstrated intensified their operation post-independence. 1916: Home: 2016 draws attention to this intensification and asks participants and audience members to interrogate what ‘home’ means now and for the future of the Irish nation? Dr Miriam Haughton, Lecturer at NUI Galway’s Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance, and joint organiser of the event, said: “We will not only interrogate these ideas but consider the internationally located artistic projects that have been devised and staged in response to our initial call.” 1916: Home: 2016 is designed to give a platform to the unknown heroes and the everyday battles that reflect the social experience in Ireland from the early twentieth century. Dr Haughton explains: “We hope to facilitate space for reflection on key institutions within Irish society post-independence which contributed to the cultivation of Ireland’s highly institutionalised population, while considering the contexts of poverty, class, and gender politics that drove the formation of these histories. We hope to interrogate ‘Irishness’ in its many shades of grey, celebrating citizens that were sidelined to the shadows of national dialogue and consciousness.” The second conference in the project will take place in UCD 27-28 October. More information and the conference schedule is available at https://1916home2016.wordpress.com/ or follow on Twitter at @1916_Home_2016. -Ends-

Monday, 3 October 2016

Over fifty relatives of the three hundred or so Galway prisoners deported in the aftermath of the 1916 Rebellion travelled to Frongoch in North Wales recently to lay a memorial stone at the site of the internment.  The trip was organised by the Friends and Relatives of Galway 1916 and the delegation was accompanied by Cathaoirleach Contae na Gaillimhe, Michael Connelly, Councillor Gabe Cronnelly and Dr Conor McNamara, Moore Institute, NUI Galway. The group had a deeply personal connection with the Rebellion and included the children, grand children and other descendants of the Galway Volunteers who, led by Liam Mellows, rose in Galway in 1916. A reception for the group was hosted by Chris Ruane, Member of Parliament for the Vale of Clwyd from 1997 to 2015, and grandson of Thomas Ruane, Captain of the Claregalway Volunteers in 1916. Local Member of the Welsh assembly, Ann Jones, accompanied by the retired speaker of the Welsh assembly, Lord Elis-Thomas, welcomed the group and spoke of the importance of remembrance and community. Following a reception and dinner in the town of Balla, the group were hosted on the site of the internment camp. A number of speakers paid moving tribute to their relatives, with poems and ballads recited and family reminiscences recalled. Chairman of Galway County Council, Michael Connelly, gave an emotional tribute to those who made the long journey to the remote valley and thanked all who played such an important part in ensuring the prisoners were not forgotten. Dr Conor McNamara, 1916 Scholar in Residence at the Moore Institute, NUI Galway, delivered a lecture entitled, ‘Forgetting and Remembering 1916 in Galway’, focusing on the revival of interest in the period thanks to the endeavours of local communities, facilitated by Galway County Council. “Dr McNamara said: “The ceremonies concluded with the unveiling of a commemorative plaque, laid on behalf of the people of Galway, in memory of those interned. The plaque pays tribute to the Galway prisoners in both Welsh and Irish. As the rain swept through the valley, events ended, appropriately, with further songs of tribute echoing across the site.” Dr McNamara explained that NUI Galway is endeavouring to launch an innovative digital humanities project focused on bringing the personal archives and oral history of the revolution to an international audience.  -ends-

Monday, 3 October 2016

NUI Galway will host a symposium on contemporary Spanish society entitled ‘Spain Today: A Guide for the Perplexed’. The symposium will take place on Thursday, 6 October at 5.30pm in the Aula Maxima. Guest speakers include William Chislett, Associate Analyst at the Elcano Royal Institute, Madrid, who will deliver a talk entitled ‘Where is Spain Going?’; and Guy Hedgecoe, The Irish Times correspondent in Madrid, who will discuss ‘Remodelling Spain – The Spain of the last five years’. The two experts on modern Spain will discuss the politics, economics and current situation of Spain, in a context where the country has been without a government since December 2015. Like Ireland, Spain is currently bouncing back from a deep economic crisis, although there continues to be high unemployment and an uncertain political situation. Both speakers will also review recent history and current developments in Spain, and will offer fresh insights into situations on the ground in this fascinating country which is the world’s tenth largest economy and one of the key players in the European Union. Professor Bill Richardson, Head of Spanish at NUI Galway, said: “This symposium responds to the fascination many Irish people have with Spain, Spanish culture and the Spanish language, and offers an opportunity for people to get an excellent quick insight into what Spain is like as a modern, dynamic society and economy.” The symposium will be followed by the launch of the recently-published book Contemporary Spain, Fourth Edition written by Christopher Ross of Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, and two lecturers from NUI Galway’s Discipline of Spanish at NUI Galway, Professor Bill Richardson and Begoña Sangrador-Vegas. The symposium is sponsored by the Spanish Embassy in Dublin and is open to the public. -ends-

Friday, 30 September 2016

#ShareASmile Building upon the success of last year’s Mental Health Week, NUI Galway’s Psych Society has been working with a large number of societies, local businesses and NUI Galway’s Societies Office to create an even more eventful and inclusive Mental Health week running from 3-7 October on campus. According to Soraya Matthews the Auditor of Psych Soc: “We were overwhelmed with the response to last year’s events and are looking forward to an even more positive, inclusive and eventful Mental Health Week, making the campus a friendly place to be.” This year Psych Soc are incorporating the initiative ‘What are the #LittleThings that we can each do for each other on a personal level as well as what societies can do to increase happiness’. The hashtag and campaign that will support initiative will be #ShareASmile According to the Psych Soc, "It is simple, but effective. Smiling at someone can boost their confidence, change their outlook of their day and encourage a conversation.” The message will be brought to students by placing #ShareASmile stickers on tea/coffee cups. Customers who receive these cups will be given their beverage for free from participating campus restaurants, giving them a boost for their day ahead and hopefully making it a happier one. The Psychological Society will also be distributing goodie bags containing treats and information about support services, which will include #ShareASmile & #SmileYouGotAGoodieBag stickers and creating a #LittleThings video to find out from students what the their #LittleThings are and what helps them to #ShareASmile. For further details on NUI Galway’s Mental Health Week see the website www.nuigstudents.ie, check out NUI Galway Psychological Society Facebook or call the Socs Box on 091 492852.  -ends- 

Friday, 30 September 2016

Minister Katherine Zappone to launch reports at NUI Galway today. Voices of children and youth, older people and people with disabilities central to the research. Revealing insights into six neighbourhoods in Dublin, Limerick and Galway are published today by NUI Galway.  With huge community participation, the research is the result of a three-year programme of work, the 3-Cities Project, by the Institute for Lifecourse and Society at NUI Galway. Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone T.D. will formally launch the research later today at the University. While the research included city-wide data-collection, the primary focus centred on six very different kinds of communities across the three cities. These included: the Liberties and East Wall (Dublin); Doughiska and Claddagh (Galway); and Garryowen and South Circular Road (Limerick). Dr Kieran Walsh of the Institute for Lifecourse and Society at NUI Galway, said: “In the first study of its kind, our research looked at shared challenges and opportunities with respect to participation for three groups. We wanted to hear the voice of children and youth, older people and people with disabilities. They were central to the research process and we have learned so much from their experiences of living in these areas and how things like services and sense of community effect their day to day lives.” The research focused on these groups as, while they possess a diverse set of abilities and backgrounds, they can in some cases be susceptible to limitations in choice and mobility. “This is why local neighbourhoods are so important for such residents. Children, older people, and those living with disabilities spend so much time within the neighbourhood. One recurring theme is that as life goes on, people may have to regularly leave where they live to access services, whether that’s disability services or sports activities for older teenagers.” “We met some really engaging people who pointed out the good and bad of where they live. Neighbourhood change, major life events, local service adequacy, feelings of belonging and social cohesion. These all influence the capacity of the three groups to participate in a full and meaningful way”, continued Dr Walsh. The reports found that structural forms of disadvantage, as a result of political prioritisation, gentrification and development processes, and macro-economic shifts, can intensify the potential for poor participation in different areas of life. This included social relations, economic roles, cultural activities and civic participation.  The 3-Cities Project points to the need for future interventions and polices around development of voice-led multi-stakeholder partnerships, fostering collective ownership, integrative collision spaces, and neighbourhood asset planning for enablement across the life course. Suggested solutions are prominent in the reports. With regard to the development of ‘integrative collision spaces’ or spaces where people could meet and interact, Dr Walsh said: “We heard about the importance of the annual fair in Garryowen. We had the suggestion of a pop-up café in Lidl in the Liberties, or ‘retrofitting’ somewhere like Merlin Woods in Doughiska to offer social spaces for people. What is very clear is the enabling power of local neighbourhoods for potentially marginalised groups, and that participants in this research really emphasised how these settings can facilitate participation and, potentially, serve as a very important mechanism for societal integration.” Full copies of the reports are available at http://www.nuigalway.ie/ilas/project-lifecourse/thethreecitiesproject/outputs/ -ends- 

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

It is with great pride that NUI Galway will this week celebrate the success of colleagues and Paralympic athletes Dr Eoghan Clifford and Dr Pat O’Leary at a special homecoming event on Wednesday, 28 September. The University will also celebrate former Students' Union Manager, Rena McCarron Rooney, who reached the quarter final in table tennis, alumna Deirdre Mongan (shot put) and Galway native, Eric O'Flaherty, (soccer). The Homecoming, to be attended by Chef de Mission, Paralympic Ireland, Denis Twomey, will take place at the plaza by NUI Galway Library at 4.30pm with Ollie Turner from Galway Bay FM. Dr Clifford took home one gold and one bronze medal in Cycling (in the Men’s C3 Time Trial and C3 3000m Individual Pursuit), while Dr O’Leary put in an immense performance to make the KL3 Canoe Final and finish sixth in the world.  ENDS

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

More than 90 recruiting companies from a wide range of sectors will bring a potential 4,500 graduate jobs to the NUI Galway Graduate Jobs Fair in the Bailey Allen Hall, on Tuesday, 4 October from 12.30-4pm.  This annual event showcases graduate employment opportunities for students and graduates from all disciplines, with a diverse number of fields such as accountancy, IT, law, science, retail, civil and public sectors, consultancy and many others represented. Visitors to the event are invited to spend the afternoon networking with leading graduate recruiters. Major local employers such as Medtronic, SAP, Enterprise Ireland and Smyths will attend, in addition to international companies including Abbott, SITA Inc., Workday and Accenture. Emma Goode, Employment Officer with NUI Galway’s Career Development Centre, said: “This year’s Graduate Jobs Fair is our biggest one yet with national and international employers looking to recruit the brightest and best NUI Galway graduates across all academic disciplines. This is an ideal opportunity to find out who the key NUI Galway employers are, what types of jobs are available, and what kind of skills employers are looking for.” Emma also has some advice for those attending the Fair: “Don’t forget your main objective on the day is to secure your first graduate job. Many graduate employers now recruit graduates from all academic disciplines so don’t be misled by an organisation’s name – they may have the perfect graduate opportunity for you. Prepare for the fair. Research the companies you are interested in and the type of opportunities they have available. Introduce yourself and be prepared to give your career pitch. Be confident, positive, enthusiastic and dress appropriately. Arrive with a ‘can do’ attitude and be prepared to network!” Details on participating exhibitors is available from www.nuigalway.ie/careers.  -ends-   

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

The Cell EXPLORERS science outreach programme is delighted to announce its “Fantastic DNA” national roadshow 2016. Started in the NUI Galway School of Natural Sciences four years ago, the roadshow will once again visit primary schools to bring hands on experiments to pupils in Ireland. The visits will take place this term, including during Science Week in November, allowing up to 2,000 children to experiment like real scientists in their own classrooms. Interested schools should visit www.cellexplorers.com to book a visit. This year’s visits will be delivered by five Cell EXPLORERS teams based in higher education institutions. The Cell EXPLORERS national network has recently expanded with the launch of two new partner teams in the Institute of Technology Tralee and Dundalk Institute of Technology, in addition to the existing teams in Athlone Institute of Technology, the University of Limerick and NUI Galway. Funded by a two year Science Foundation Ireland Discover award, the five teams will send students and staff to visit primary schools in their localities to share in the excitement of science. Last year, 64 scientists from the teams based in NUI Galway, University of Limerick and Athlone Institute of Technology visited 24 schools throughout the country and taught 1,285 children about cells and DNA using hands-on activities and experiments. Half of the children visited had never met a scientist before and the pupils’ feedback was unanimously positive. They enjoyed meeting and talking to the scientists, as well as getting to do fun science in their classrooms.  “You are the best at teaching science and thank you for taking time to teach us more” said one 5th class pupil in County Galway. “I learned that scientists don’t just study, they explore new things and can get many jobs” commented another sixth class pupil from County Clare. Teachers hosting the “Fantastic DNA” visit pointed out that it had a marked impact on the pupils and brought a lot of excitement about science to their classrooms. One teacher from County Roscommon said: “It was a really enjoyable and memorable day. The children talk about it nearly every day since.” Teachers also highlighted as major positives the hands-on nature of the session and the small demonstrator to pupil ratio, both core aspects of how Cell EXPLORERS operates. Dr Ruth Freeman, Director of Strategy and Communications, Science Foundation Ireland commented: “Cell EXPLORERS is piloting a unique way of directly involving Ireland’s colleges in engaging young people in science. The programme, which is being rolled out nationally, allows scientists to foster a love of science in the children of their local community. This directly supports Science Foundation Ireland’s goal to have the most scientifically engaged and informed public, will increase the pipeline of students opting to study STEM subjects, and at the same time contributes to training the next generation of Irish science communicators and educators.” This year, the new Dundalk IT and IT Tralee teams are eager to get started and to contribute to the national roadshow. Dr Geraldine Twamley Stein, lecturer in the school of Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), and coordinator of the IT Tralee Cell EXPLORERS team with Dr Antoinette O’Grady, said: "It is important for IT Tralee to take part in Cell EXPLORERS as this is community outreach at its best. It mobilizes STEM by going ‘face to face’ with primary school children and bringing science education into the young-learner environment. It raises the profile of our college by IT Tralee engaging in meaningful involvement with the community.” Dr Suzanne Linnane, senior lecturer in the department of applied Science at Dundalk IT, is the new Dundalk IT team coordinator. "I am already very involved in community science outreach on the topic of my own research, in particular with the ‘All about Water’ programme. I am interested by the format of the Cell EXPLORERS visits and how they contribute to build the skills and confidence of our students at Dundalk IT, which could lead some to reconsider their career goals, as well as bringing them into the heart of our community." Schools can request a “Fantastic DNA” visit by contacting the team closest to their location via email using the following addresses: Athlone IT: cellexplorersait@gmail.com, Dundalk IT: cellexplorersdkit@gmail.com, IT Tralee: cellexplorersittralee@gmail.com , UL: cellexplorersul@gmail.com, NUI Galway: cellexplorers@nuigalway.ie. You can find out more about the Fantastic DNA Roadshow and Cell EXPLORERS team activities on the programme’s website www.cellexplorers.com, or by following Cell EXPLORERS on Facebook or Twitter (@cellexplorers). Cell EXPLORERS activities, and the expansion of the programme to other institutions, is funded by a two year award from Science Foundation Ireland, NUI Galway and by the NUI Galway Foundation. -ends-