Monday, 22 January 2007

NUI Galway's seventh Springtime Arts Festival Múscailt (meaning 'to awaken/inspire/celebrate) will officially open on Monday, 5 February at 1.00pm in the Aula Maxima. This year the festival has joined forces with the Celtic Fleadh Imboilg for a new and exciting programme that will see the campus come alive with concerts, theatre, dance, exhibitions, storytelling, film and live performances. Múscailt Fleadh Imboilg '07 will open the week-long programme with No Crows, a band with a global repertoire, including Traditional and Eastern Music. This year's festival, running until Friday, 9 February, celebrates the Celtic Fertility Festival meeting Chinese New Year. Everyone is welcome to attend a programme of mainly free events featuring a wealth of talent from global and local artists. The Fleadh Imboilg is the ancient Celtic celebration for the start of spring. Established by the NUI Galway History Society last year, this traditional festival of renewal and hope is focused on organising fun events while also raising money for charity. This year's programme includes a trip to Gairdín Bhríde in Connemara, which reflects ancient Irish Celtic spirituality, and Spraoi Bhríde, a fund-raising drive in Galway city. NUI Galway Arts Officer, Fionnuala Gallagher, says: "Múscailt Fleadh Imboilg 2007 is a culture fest, where East meets West and Old meets New, celebrating diverse art forms, often together. Traditional arts such as storytelling, circus and juggling meet experimental performance and visual arts. It aims to bring people together in an act of celebration. The brief is to change the spaces that we study and work in for one week, to do a Spring clean, excite all our senses and most of all, enjoy." Highlights of this year's festival include: No Crows, featuring former Waterboys' rock fiddler Steve Wickham, Anna Heuston on the cello/mandolin, Felip Carbonell, on flamenco/manouche guitar and Eddie Lee on double bass. The band will be joined by special guests including Salit, a Malaysian Martial art/dance act; Cry of the Celt, a rollicking Irish dance troupe and a performance by ensemble-in-residence, ConTempo, who have arranged a piece specially for the occasion. A production of South Pacific by the Galway University Musical Society. The society's annual production runs from 6 – 10 February 2007 in the Black Box Theatre. Further information and tickets are available at www.muscailt.nuigalway.ie or by contacting the info/ticket desk at 091-492852; email:socsbox@socs.nuigalway.ie. A commission of art pieces on 'Transparency and Body' will exhibit in various buildings across the campus. Site specific works by 14 students from the Burren College of Art, Múscailt Bóirne, will adorn glass corridors throughout the University and Martina Hynan's new work Liminal Being will be on display in Áras Moyola. Original theatre featuring in this year's programme includes the One Act Play Series competing for the Jerome Hynes Best Production Award. Other theatrical highlights include the premier of 'Living with Johnny Depp', by Toot and Coo, and Taxi Rank by Janēva Dance Company, which arrives fresh from a successful run at Project '06. Múscailt Fleadh Imboilg '07 presents the perfect opportunity to take part in the cultural life of NUI Galway. The festival is supported by Galway University Foundation, AIB and NUI Galway Arts Office. -ends- For more information check: www.nuigalway.ie/arts_office/ Tel. Arts Office: 091 512062

Monday, 22 January 2007

22 January 2007: Alan Kerins, organiser of the Alan Kerins African Projects, will speak at NUI Galway on 25 January at 1.00pm about his ongoing charity work, and the importance of volunteering to the community. Tickets for the free event, entitled 'A Little Goes a Long Way', will be available to the public, but must be booked in advance. Mr. Kerins will speak as part of a keynote seminar series hosted and sponsored by the Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI) at NUI Galway. Focusing on themes related to civic engagement and active citizenship, this keynote series is being offered as a response to the impact that volunteering has in today's communities. The African Project began after Alan's visit to the Cheshire Home for Physically Disabled Children, in Mongu, western Zambia in 2005. What he saw triggered a fundraising campaign that has raised over a quarter of a million Euro for AIDS Orphans, water schemes, food aid, school building, housing development, childcare and rehabilitation. Mr. Kerin's works as a physiotherapist and plays on the Galway County Hurling Team. He was the winner of the Irish People of The Year Award 2006 as well as winning the Rehab Galway Person of the Year 2006 for his work with the African Project. Lorraine McIlrath, Project Coordinator, Community Knowledge Initiative, NUI Galway said "We are delighted to have Alan participate in our Keynote Seminar Series as he represents a generation of young people who have a huge propensity for giving of their time and energy to benefit the community. We are witness to this here on campus where our students actively participate in service-learning programmes and join our ALIVE volunteering project." Dr. Garret FitzGerald was the first to speak as part of the Keynote Seminar Series in November 2006 and other speakers lined up for the coming months include Mary Davis, Chair of the Taskforce on Active Citizenship; Alan Rusbridger, Editor of the Guardian; Maurice Mullard, University of Hull, Reader in Social Policy; and Caroline Casey, The Aisling Foundation. The Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI) is a project at NUI Galway that promotes partnership with communities and endeavours to enhance social commitment within communities. Funded by philanthropic donations, the CKI hopes to reinvigorate the civic mission of higher education in Ireland, putting communities at the centre of debate. For tickets, please contact Mary Bernard at the Community Knowledge Initiative at mary.bernard@nuigalway.ie or on 091 493823. -ends – For further information contact Lorraine McIlrath, Project Coordinator, Community Knowledge Initiative, NUI Galway. Phone 091 495234

Tuesday, 16 January 2007

This year's BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition saw Leaving Cert student Paul Kelliher of the Intermediate College in Killorglin, Co. Kerry, receive top prize in an exciting national science essay competition organised by NUI Galway. Paul, who won a laptop, crystal trophy and €500 science bursary for his school, received his prizes from the Minister for Education and Science, Mary Hanafin T.D., on the Science Foundation Ireland booth at the festival. The competition, co-ordinated by the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at NUI Galway, and sponsored by Medtronic, is now in its second year. Over 250 essays were received from across the country on the theme of "The Quest for Immortality: Who wants to live forever?" Presenting the prizes for the second year in a row, Minister Hanafin described the competition as an initiative worth acknowledging and described writing about science as something that "enables us to spread our ideas all over the world." Professor Frank Barry, Scientific Director at REMEDI and competition judge, thanked all the students who participated in the competition, highlighting that "There are many attributes which are necessary to become a successful scientist. Two of those are the ability to ask big questions and also the ability to communicate clearly the results of these efforts and I think that we have a very talented pool of students that have excellent writing skills in the sciences." Professor Frank Barry also thanked Medtronic and SFI for their work in supporting science education. Paul's essay was selected from a top-ten shortlist by a high profile panel of judges including Leo Enright (Chair of the Discover Science & Engineering Steering Committee), Tom Kennedy (Editor of Science Spin Magazine), Professor Frank Barry (Scientific Director, REMEDI) and Cormac Sheridan (Freelance Science Journalist) who met at REMEDI in November 2006 to choose a winner. Commenting on Paul's essay, competition judge Cormac Sheridan said "Paul's essay crackles with ideas and are expressed with great verve. He is a writer with real intellectual energy and genuine potential." The runner up prize of a video iPOD, crystal trophy and €250 school science bursary went to transition year student Sarah Grace, of the Loreto Abbey Secondary School in Dalkey, Co. Dublin. Organised as part of a joint REMEDI and NCBES secondary school outreach programme called GRO (Galway Regional Outreach), the aim of this annual competition is to hear young people's views on contemporary scientific questions and to encourage students to consider studying science in third level. Last year's competition winner, Laura Bree, is now studying biomedical engineering at NUI Galway. REMEDI is a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) funded research institute at the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science (NCBES) located at NUI Galway. To read the winning essays or for additional information on REMEDI and NCBES outreach programmes, visit www.remedi.ie and www.ncbes.ie -ends-

Tuesday, 16 January 2007

16 Eanáir 2007: Díreofar aird ar raon cúrsaí iarchéime agus iardhochtúireachta OÉ Gaillimh ag Aonach Bliantúil Léinn do Chéimithe, aonach a reáchtálfar ar an gcampas in Áras na Mac Léinn ó 1.30i.n. go dtí 5.00i.n., Dé Luain, an 5 Feabhra. Deis iontach a bheidh san Aonach seo do mhic léinn a bhfuil bunchéimeanna bainte amach acu níos mó eolais a fháil ar chúrsaí iarchéime. Tá 400 clár á thairiscint ag an Ollscoil, mar aon le roghanna taighde lánaimseartha agus páirtaimseartha, do bhreis agus 3,000 mac léinn iarchéime. Táthar ag súil go bhfreastalóidh 2,500 duine ar an Aonach atá ag fáil tacaíochta ó Bhanc na hÉireann. Beidh os cionn 70 seastáin ó OÉ Gaillimh agus institiúidí eile ó thimpeall na tíre ag an Aonach le heolas a thabhairt agus comhairle a chur ar mhic léinn. Beidh cur i láthair agus seimineáir faoi roghanna taighde, maoiniú agus deiseanna gairme ar fáil freisin. Le blianta beaga anuas, tá tús áite tugtha ag an Rialtas d'oideachas iarchéime atá tiomanta don taighde, nó oideachas 'ceathrú leibhéal', ar mhaithe le freastal ar an éileamh atá ann d'fhostaithe ardoilte le tacú le fás geilleagrach. I bhfad ó shin, ghlac OÉ Gaillimh leis an dúshlán oideachas ceathrú leibhéal den scoth a chur ar fáil, agus tá na seanréimsí acadúla feabhsaithe againn chun Ionaid Taighde nuálaíocha agus cheannródaíocha a chruthú i réimsí éagsúla cosúil le hEolaíocht Innealtóireachta Bithmhíochaine, Cearta Daonna, Athrú Comhshaoil agus Léann na hÉireann. Seo a leanas a bhí le rá ag John Hannon, Comhairleoir Sinsearach Gairme, Seirbhís Gairme OÉ Gaillimh, "Cuireann staidéar iarchéime go mór le hionchais ghairme na mac léinn. In OÉ Gaillimh tá réimse leathan iarchéimeanna forbartha againn, lena n-áirítear cúrsaí Máistreachta múinte agus taighde agus cláir thaighde Dochtúireachta den scoth. Tagann mic léinn as gach cearn den domhan chuig OÉ Gaillimh gach aon bhliain chun iarchéim a dhéanamh, agus ag an am gcéanna tá an dea-cháil atá orainn ag dul ó neart go neart." I measc na gcúrsaí múinte iarchéime a cuireadh ar fáil as an nua tá: MeconSc agus MA i Múnlú Eacnamaíoch & Comhshaoil MEconSc in Airgeadas Idirnáisiúnta Máistreacht sa Mhargaíocht MA in Ardscileanna Teanga Anailís Fheidhmeach Iompraíochta Na Meáin Dhigiteacha Stair na Meánaoise Léirú agus Stiúradh Abhcóideacht agus Gníomhaíochas Pobail Drámaíocht Scileanna Raidió Léann an Aistriúcháin Modheolaíochtaí do Theagasc Teangacha Riachtanais Speisialta Oideachais Céim Mháistir Dlí (Dlí Poiblí) Altranas – lena n-áirítear Dioplómaí Iarchéime sa tSeaneolaíocht, Cúram Maolaitheach, Meabhairshláinte, Ortaipéidic, Sláinte Phoiblí, Oinceolaíocht Eolaíocht Bhithleighis Biteicneolaíocht Fisic Mhatamaiticiúil Bunaithe ar théama an 'cheathrú leibhéal', tá branda nua roghnaithe ag OÉ Gaillimh le déanaí dá deiseanna oideachais iarchéime, branda ar a dtugtar go4th™. Ar an láithreán gréasáin nua, www.go4th.ie tá léargas le fáil ar na deiseanna iarchéime atá san Ollscoil mar aon le réamheolaire ar líne. Chomh maith leis sin is féidir iarratais ar líne a dhéanamh tríd an láithreán gréasáin www.go4th.ie. Is féidir dul i dteagmháil leis an tSeirbhís Gairme ag (091) 493589 chun sonraí a fháil faoin Aonach Léinn. - críoch –

Monday, 15 January 2007

15 January 2007: NUI Galway's array of postgraduate and postdoctoral courses will be under the spotlight at the annual Graduate Studies Fair, which takes place on campus in Áras na Mac Léinn from 1.30pm to 5.00pm, on Monday, 5 February. It is the perfect opportunity for those with a primary degree to find out more about taking the next step in their education. The University offers 400 programmes, as well as full-time and part-time research options, to over 3,000 postgraduate students. Some 2,500 people are expected to attend the fair which is supported by Bank of Ireland. Over 70 stands from NUI Galway and other institutions throughout Ireland will provide attendees with information and advice. Presentations and seminars on research options, funding and career opportunities will also be offered. In recent years the government has prioritised postgraduate research-driven education, or 'fourth level' education, to meet the demand for highly skilled employees to support economic growth. NUI Galway has long-embraced the challenge to deliver world-class fourth level education and has built on traditional areas of academic strength to create innovative and cutting-edge Research Centres in areas as diverse as Biomedical Engineering Science, Human Rights, Environmental Change and Irish Studies. According to John Hannon, Senior Careers Adviser, NUI Galway Careers Service, "Studying at post-graduate level is of huge benefit to career prospects. At NUI Galway we have developed an extensive range of postgraduate degrees, including taught and research Master degree courses and excellent Doctoral research programmes. Students from all over the world travel to NUI Galway every year for their postgraduate studies as our reputation goes from strength to strength." Taught postgraduate programmes that have recently become available include: MEconSc and MA in Economic & Environmental Modelling MEconSc in International Finance Master of Marketing MA Advanced Language Skills Applied Behaviour Analysis Digital Media Medieval Studies Production and Direction Public Advocacy and Activism Drámaíocht Scileanna Raidió Léann and Aistriúcháin Modheolaíochta do Theagasc Teangacha Special Educational Needs Master of Laws (Public Law) Nursing – including Postgraduate Diplomas in Gerontology, Palliative Care, Mental Health, Orthopedics, Public Health, Oncology Biomedical Science Biotechnology Mathematical Physics Working with the 'fourth-level' theme, NUI Galway has recently re-branded its graduate education opportunities under the banner go4th™. The new website, www.go4th.ie showcases postgraduate opportunities at the University and provides an online prospectus as well as facilitating online applications. Contact the Careers Service at (091) 493589 for details of the Graduate Studies Fair. -ends-

Monday, 15 January 2007

15 January 2007: A new report published by the Environmental Change Institute at NUI Galway calls on European environmental researchers and policy makers to agree an integrated approach to tackling both air quality and climate change. Traditionally, air quality and climate change have been addressed separately. However, solutions to one problem - if carefully devised - can also be an efficient solution to the other, according to the authors of the report. Dr. Colin O'Dowd, Department of Experimental Physics and Environmental Change Institute at NUI Galway, who is editor of the report, says: "A critical motivation to have an integrated scientific and technical analysis of key air quality and climate change issues is to better support policy development. The aim is to optimise cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit of abatement and mitigation strategies, which have win-win scenarios for air quality and climate change. "Not all areas of air quality and climate change are closely linked, partly due to their different impacts over different time scales. However, there is significant opportunity to develop synergistic research work in key common areas. "With increasing economic activity, pollutant emissions impact more and more on air quality and climate change. For example, methane - a global greenhouse gas, is also a source of ozone which is a local pollutant. Therefore, reductions in methane emissions can lead to a reduction in ozone levels. Similar common issues exist with the impact of atmospheric aerosols (or Particulate Matter) on air quality and climate." The report is a strategic output document from the European (FP6) funded ACCENT (Atmospheric Composition Change – A European Network) Network of Excellence. It brings together the views of leading researchers and policy contributors in Europe and the US, and highlights the common research and policy issues relating to air quality and climate change for the future. In addition, the position statement and recommendations report outlines strategies for harmonising research in support of policy development for the future in terms of common issues between air quality and climate change. The target audience is national and European Policy makers such as the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government and Environment and departments in other EU member states, DG Environment and the European Environmental Agency as well as research funding bodies. The report is expected to have an important impact on and contribute to improved understanding of important environmental issues and support the development of solutions to such human induced environmental change. More information can be found on http://www.accent-network.org. -ends-

Monday, 8 January 2007

08 January 2007: A number of innovative awards designed to encourage entrepreneurial awareness among students have been presented in NUI Galway. The annual awards are presented to students who participate in the Introduction to Business Module that has been running at NUI Galway for the past 17 years. The module is designed to foster an awareness of businesses and how they operate. The overall objective is to introduce students to the fundamental concepts of Marketing, Management and Accountancy and to examine their application in Irish and international business situations. Students who participated in the module were required to develop a business plan for a start-up enterprise related to their primary area of study, which includes community development, biotechnology, microbiology, biomedical science, biochemistry and chemistry. The prizes are sponsored by Bank of Ireland, and are awarded to the best overall business plan for a start-up enterprise, 2nd and 3rd runner up, and "the most bankable business plan" as chosen by Bank or Ireland. Bank of Ireland, Most Bankable Business Plan – Advanced Ocular Clinic MSc. in Biomedical Science students Evan Brick, Martin Canavan, Aisling Donoghue and Norah O'Brien planned to establish a clinic specialising in corrective eye surgery. The Advanced Ocular Clinic (AOC) would use the innovative technology of intra-ocular lenses (IOLs) to restore good vision acuity to its prospective patients with a minimally invasive procedure carried out on an out-patient basis. 1st Place DOGene Laboratories Ltd. MSc. in Biotechnology students Sinead Darcy, Andrew Douglas, and Ann Smyth aimed to provide a DNA profiling service to the canine industry. Their company intended to initially target the pedigree dog market and the greyhound industry for DNA profiling and in the long term conduct genetic testing for hereditary diseases in dogs. 2nd Place SOUPlus+ SOUPlus+, backed by MSc. in Biomedical Science students Karly Burke, Joan Fitzgibbon, Elaine Gleeson and Louise Lilly identified a gap in the market for a fresh ready-to-serve soup that contained an added bonus of vitamins and dietary supplements to boost the immune system. They planned to base their business in Galway, source the vegetables for their product locally, and sell in farmers markets and independent grocery stores. 3rd Place Biogum Ltd. BSc. in Biotechnology students Julie Collins, Rebecca Finn, Hannah O'Keefe and James O'Malley planned to launch a symbiotic chewing gum. The sugar-free gum which would be fortified with vitamin C and calcium would be available in a range of flavours and combines the features of a regular chewing gum with added nutritional benefits. The Introduction to Business Module was developed to respond to an increasing demand for entrepreneurial awareness among students in various undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. Currently, the module facilitates over seventy students, in seven academic programmes. -ends-

Monday, 8 January 2007

08 January 2007: NUI Galway has been awarded over €2 million for bio-fuel research under a seven year programme from the prestigious Charles Parsons Research Funding Awards scheme, announced by the Minister for Communications, Marine and Natural Resources, Mr Noel Dempsey, T.D.. This injection of funding will enable the University to put highly skilled fourth level graduates to work at addressing some of the most pressing energy issues facing Ireland today. Following the award, the Microbial Bioenergy Group at the NUI Galway's Environmental Change Institute will recruit twenty new researchers at postgraduate and postdoctoral level. The team will aim to produce improved bio-fuels from organic wastes such as domestic sewage. It will also research highly novel microbial and bio-fuel cells, which produce electricity through the action of naturally occurring bacteria. These new technologies have the potential to accomplish both large-scale wastewater treatment and electricity generation, with sanitation and energy benefits for both developed and developing countries. The Microbial Bioenergy research group is jointly led by Dr. Vincent O'Flaherty and Dr. Dónal Leech, from the Departments of Microbiology and Chemistry, respectively. The project coordinator, Dr. O'Flaherty said, "The Charles Parsons Award will help NUI Galway to develop and deploy new energy technologies which are essential to deliver security of supply, sustainability and competitiveness to Ireland. There is a particular and urgent need for research into producing viable alternative energy sources to tackle Ireland's reliance on fossil fuels". The Charles Parsons Research Funding Awards scheme was named after Irishman Charles Parsons (1854-1931) who, in 1884, invented the steam turbine, which made affordable electricity readily available for the first time. The competition was open to institutes and groups from all thirty-two counties and applicants were evaluated by an international panel of experts, as part of the highly competitive process in which only seven awards were made nationally to cutting-edge research groups. -ends- Notes to editors: About Microbial Fuel Cells Microbial fuel cells (MFC) produce electricity through the action of naturally occurring bacteria that drive power production by breaking down organic substrates in, for example, wastewater and then transporting electrons from their cell surface to the anode, the negative electrode of a fuel cell. The electrons flow from the anode through a wire to a cathode, the positive electrode of a fuel cell, where they generate electrical potential and combine with oxygen to form water. An added benefit of the approach is that as the bacteria generate electricity, pollutants are also removed, cleaning the wastewater. The power outputs reported thus far from MFC are usually small, but this is expected to change in the coming years as research continues. In addition, MFCs can be used to produce hydrogen directly from organic wastes for use as an alternative vehicle fuel. The project team leader, Dr. Vincent O'Flaherty, noted that "there is real potential for MFCs to accomplish both wastewater treatment and electricity generation at large-scale in the future, with sanitation and energy benefits for both developed and developing countries".

Tuesday, 27 February 2007

NUI Galway is to host its largest Science and Technology Careers Fair on Wednesday, March 7th 2007, at Áras na Mac Léinn from 4.00pm to 6.30 pm. Students and graduates are invited to avail of valuable career opportunities with a host of national and international companies, which will be actively recruiting on the day. Among those exhibiting at the fair are: Allergan Pharmaceuticals, Aquafact International, Berkley Pharmaceutical, Boston Scientific, Environmental Change Institute, Intel, SAP SSC (Ireland) Ltd, Schwarz Pharma Ltd., Science Recruitment Ireland, Stiefel Laboratories (Irl) Ltd, The Western Regional Fisheries Board, O' Neill & Brennan Recruitment Specialists, PharmaChemical Ireland, Irish Medical Devices Association, Oracle Corporation, Health Service Executive, St. Michael's House, Medical Recruitment Specialists, The National Rehabilitation Hospital, Fás, IntertradeIreland (Fusion) & Valent (an IBM company). This year's fair is a unique opportunity for students and graduates to explore job opportunities in the Science, Technology & Health Science sectors. According to research conducted by the University's Careers Service, over 89% of 2005 science graduates were in employment or further study by 2006. The survey also found that the science fair proved to be a key link in matching many 2005 Science students with their employers. Angela Teahan, Careers Adviser at NUI Galway said, "In order to fully maximise use of the Science & Technology Fair, it is important to arrive well prepared for the event. Decide on the companies you wish to target in advance and crucially research the ones that are of interest to you. Be focused and know your objectives." This year the Careers Service is providing a C.V. seminar geared specifically for students and graduates of the Science and Technology sector. The seminar is given by Human Resources professionals and it is an ideal forum to find out what an employer looks for in an application or Curriculum Vitae. Ms Teahen also advises: "Be ready to network with employers and endeavour to make a positive and lasting impression! Employers are looking for a wide range of skills as well as a strong academic background hence the importance of presenting the employer with an impressive CV." Other exhibitors to attend the fair include The Institute of Geologists and The Geological Survey of Ireland. - ENDS - Further information: Angela Teahan, Careers Service, NUI Galway Tel: 091 492133 www.nuigalway.ie/careers/events.html

Tuesday, 27 February 2007

The Huston School for Film and Digital Media, NUI Galway is to hold a public workshop to help local campaigners become even more successful in their public advocacy endeavours. The free workshop is being hosted in conjunction with the London based campaigners' charity, the Sheila McKechnie Foundation on Saturday, 10 March at Earl's Island from 10.00am to 3.00pm. The workshop will feature political, media and campaign experts, who will give direct feedback on how to influence TDs, get the most from the media and adopt the most suitable tactics to achieve an outcome. Rod Stoneman, Director of the Huston School of Film & Digital Media says: "Since we introduced the new Masters Degree in Public Advocacy and Activism last year, we have seen first hand how involved Galway is in the public advocacy arena. "The workshop we have developed with the Sheila McKechnie Foundation will provide intensive training for those who may not be available to take a Masters programme but would like to improve and hone their skills. I also think this is a great networking opportunity and will further strengthen the solidarity of campaigners in Galway." Claire McMaster, Chief Executive of the Sheila McKechnie Foundation says: "Great campaigns have enabled us to close the gap between the powerful and the powerless, to fight injustice at a local, national and global level. We are delighted to work in partnership with the Huston School of Film and Digital Media and admire their creative and innovative approach." If you are currently involved in or wish to become involved in public advocacy, the Galway Campaign Skills Workshop will help you create effective, successful campaigns. Spaces are limited to a maximum of 25 people and will be allocated on a first come, first served. For more information and to register, email Emily Buchanan at the Sheila McKechnie Foundation, emily.buchanan@sheilamckechnie.org.uk or call 0044.207.7707822 -ENDS- Notes to the Editor The Huston School of Film & Digital Media The Huston School of Film & Digital Media offers a unique suite of courses with a single starting point – the centrality of cultural creativity. Well recognised as a education authority on production, direction and screenwriting, the school pioneers both creative and academic courses alike. Last year the school introduced a new Masters Degree in Public Advocacy and Activism. This programme is designed specifically for those working, or intending to work, in international or local advocacy; including community organization, development, labour, rights, health, and environment. The development of this innovative new masters degree was prompted by the realisation that while there are many Management, Communications, and Public Relations courses, none offers a focus on the issues and skills central to the role of those working in organisations which seek to shift attitudes and understandings in order to initiate change. For more information, please visit www.filmschool.ie , telephone +353 (0)91 512 469 | or email info@filmschool.ie The Sheila McKechnie Foundation The Sheila McKechnie Foundation is a new charity, established in 2005. The Foundation exists to equip campaigners with the skills they need to make a greater impact. It was formed in memory of Scottish Campaigner Sheila McKechnie, the former head of Shelter and Consumers' Association, who died in January 2004. More information about the Foundation's work can be found at www.sheilamckechnie.org.uk. The Foundation is currently being incubated in the London-based offices of Which? (formerly the Consumers' Association). The Chief Executive Claire McMaster has a long history of high profile campaigning from the Anti-Apartheid Movement, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and the Commission for Racial Equality. Patrons include Rt Hon Gordon Brown MP, Alan Grant, Lord Howe of Aberavon, Baroness Morgan of Drefelin and Jon Snow. For more information of the Foundation please email emily.buchanan@sheilamckechnie.org.uk

Tuesday, 27 February 2007

Site works have commenced at NUI Galway, on a €21 million, 6,500sqm Sports Centre Complex. When completed the new sport and recreation complex will include a 25m, 6-lane swimming pool, gym, weights room, handball and squash courts, climbing wall, sports hall with three basketball courts, an aerobics/dance studio and multi-purpose activity spaces. Commenting on the new development, President of NUI Galway Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh said: "Sports and recreation play a major role in improving the quality of campus life, and as such we are committed to providing top-class sports facilities. The University's Sports Complex, will serve a broad range of competitive and recreational sport and active leisure pursuits for the University and the region." The Sports Centre Complex is part of a major €400 million "Campus of the Future" programme project, announced by NUI Galway last December. The capital investment programme project will see almost 20 large infrastructural projects undertaken on the 260-acre campus, continuing the dramatic re-orientation of the campus to face the River Corrib. Galway-based building works firm Glenman Corporation have commenced work on the Sports Centre and are currently on-schedule to complete this landmark project in April 2008. Project managers KSNPM lead the internationally renowned architectural firm Faulkner Brown Ltd, in partnership with Holohan Architects on this project. -ENDS- Further information: Jacqueline Hogge, Press Office, NUI Galway Tel: 00353 91 493361 Email: jacqueline.hogge@nuigalway.ie

Monday, 26 February 2007

The Law Faculty at NUI Galway is pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Gerard Quinn to two prestigious committees in recognition of his work on international disability law. Professor Quinn, who is a member of the Irish Human Rights Commission, has been made the 'focal point' for the work of National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) on disability. NHRIs are composed of human rights commissions or similar bodies from around the world and are co-ordinated by an International Coordinating Committee based in the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva. In his new capacity, Professor Quinn has already convened a major conference of human rights commissions from four continents at Harvard Law School to discuss how commissions can step up their collaboration in ensuring proper implementation of the new UN disability treaty around the world. Professor Quinn was also recently appointed to the prestigious Advisory Council of the London-based NGO Interights which specialises in mounting test cases around the world on discrimination issues. He joins former President Mary Robinson, Lord Anthony Lester QC, Dean Harold Koh (Yale) and Professor Philip Alston (NYU) among others on the incoming Council. Professor Quinn said: "This is an honour for me but also for the Faculty of Law at NUI Galway. For some time now we have been developing and encouraging socially useful research as well as orienting students toward public interest law. I intend to use these new openings to advance my own interests in disability law and social justice but also to mentor younger colleagues to open up more public interest outlets in their careers". -ENDS-

Monday, 26 February 2007

Global warming and the world's depleting fossil fuels reserves are the focus of a public lecture to be given by Professor Philip Walton at NUI Galway on Wednesday, 28 February 2007. The lecture, 'The Nuclear Power Debate – Fact and Fiction,' which is free and open to the general public, will address the ongoing public concerns over global warming and the continuing debate over nuclear energy. "Two major problems are facing the world; global warming and the peaking and subsequent decline of oil and gas reserves," said Prof. Walton, Emeritus Professor of Applied Physics at NUI Galway. "In Ireland we have the additional problem that 90% of our energy comes from imported fossil fuels whose supply is not secure and which are rapidly increasing in price. We can help the situation with strict conservation measures and by using renewables but these alone will not suffice. "Nuclear power, with no greenhouse gas emissions and with very good and secure reserves, should be seriously considered as it can help solve these problems." Hosted by the University's Physics Society, 'The Nuclear Power Debate – Fact and Fiction' takes place in lecture theatre IT250 in the IT building at 7.00pm. -ENDS-

Monday, 26 February 2007

Beidh dráma nua Crosántacht leis an scríbhneoir iomráiteach Biddy Jenkinson á léiriú ag an gcúrsa Ard-Dioplóma sa Drámaíocht, faoi stiúir Dharach Mhic Con Iomaire, i Seanscoil Sailearna, Dé Sathairn agus Dé Domhnaigh, 10 - 11 Márta 2007, ag a 8.00 i.n. Is ócáid ar leith é léiriú an dráma seo mar gurb é seo léiriú cinn chúrsa an Ard-Dioplóma sa Drámaíocht, cúrsa nua atá á reáchtáil ag Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge i gcomhar le Scoil na Gaeilge, Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh. "Tugann an dráma deis do na mic léinn na scileanna a d'fhoghlaim siad i rith an chúrsa a tharraingt le chéile agus tugann sé deis dóibh freisin oibriú in éineacht le léiritheoir proifisiúnta agus scríbhneoir iomráiteach. Tá gach duine idir chliar agus chriú ag obair go dian chun an dráma a chur ar an stáitse" a deir stiúrthóir an chúrsa, Nora Nic Con Ultaigh. Dráma dúthshlánach, fisiciúil agus dána é Crosántacht a dhéanann cur síos ar a thárlaíonn do Ghráinne, Iníon Chormaic Mhic Airt, nuair a shocraíonn sí filleadh ar Theamhair, den chéad uair le cúig bliana déag, tar éis di éalú le Diarmuid Ó Duibhne. Níl Crosáin Charna róshásta nuair a thuigeann siad go bhfuil Ailbhe, leasdeirfiúr Ghráinne, ag pósadh ag breacadh an lae agus gan scéala faighte acu faoi bhainis ar bith – ainneoin iad ag troid i gcoinne na nAllmhúrach atá tagtha i dtír i Ros An Mhíl agus atá ag bánú Conamara leis an Dragan Tine atá acu. Tá sé in am acu Crosáin Dhuibhlinne a chur ina gceart… Ochtar aisteoirí, iliomad carachtair, diabhlaíocht, dánacht, damhsa agus drúis, corrdhuine bocht - ag Crosántacht! Beidh luach €10.00 an ceann ar na ticéid agus is féidir ticéid a chur in áirithe nó breis eolais a fháil faoin dráma ach glaoch ar Nóirín in oifig Sheanscoil Sailearna ar 091 593017. -Críoch– Tuilleadh eolais: Bríd Seoige, Acadamh na hOllscolaiochta, OÉ Gaillimh 091-495302 nó 087-1266353

Monday, 19 February 2007

19 February 2007: Following on from its huge inaugural success last year, NUI Galway is to hold its second Buy a Book Day on Thursday 1st March, 2007 from 10.30am to 6.00pm in the Aula Maxima. It is hoped that as well as attending the sale, the public will donate material to the event, which is sure to offer the most avid reader an exciting and diverse range of books. Last year's event raised almost €6,000, half of which was donated to international, national and local charities through the University's United Charities Group (UCG). Formed in 2004, UCG consolidates the fundraising efforts of the three University based charitable committees: the Third World Appeal Committee, the IFUT Charitable Committee and Medicus Mundi. The remainder was used to purchase items of interest for Special Collections at the James Hardiman Library. NUI Galway Librarian, and co-ordinator of the Buy-a-Book event, Marie Reddan said: "Last year's event was very worth while – raising money for both Special Collections in the Library and for a variety of charities. It was a great example of cross-campus collaboration – supported enthusiastically by staff and students alike. Most importantly, it was an event for the university and the citizens of Galway who were so very generous in their support of the day. Hopefully, this year's sale will be bigger and better and it will become an annual feature on the University's calendar." The event is one of the more novel ideas to emanate from the University's Staff Suggestion Scheme - Úrsmaointe – and has received generous support from local businesses. Books remaining at the end of the day will go to local charity shops. -ENDS-

Monday, 19 February 2007

19 February 2007: An exhibition of posters by Engineering students at NUI Galway have proved that the priorities of a student extend beyond a healthy social life and passing exams. As part of an Engineering in Society module offered to third-year Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering students, participants developed devices for the physically impaired, a road safety initiative on roundabouts and provided engineering workshops for children with learning disabilities. The poster exhibition entitled "Engineering in Society and Community Outreach", describing the projects takes place this week in the Arts Millennium Building. The Engineering in Society module is an intrinsic part of the academic programme taken by students in the third-year Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering programme. It is designed to encourage students to commit some of their time and energy to the benefit of local communities. Professor Abhay Pandit, Department of Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering and co-ordinator of the initiative says: "This is a wonderful opportunity for the students to put something back into their communities. 'Service Learning,' where students use their skills to see how they can be of use to the community is commonplace in most American universities but is a relatively new concept in Ireland. In our programme, students identify a need in their locality and provide a service, with the input from the local community, towards assisting with that need. The program is designed to foster a partnership for the next generation of citizens to engage in social partnerships, specifically in the skill set they know best; i.e. Engineering." The module is supported by the University's Centre for Excellence in Learning and Training (CELT). Lorraine McIlrath, Academic Staff Developer at CELT, describes the projects as "a massive achievement and a great inspiration to staff and students locally and nationally". In one of the projects a simple boiled egg top remover, 'The Egg Chopper Off'r' was designed for people with limited or no use of one arm, such as those suffering from arthritis, stroke victims or amputees. "We researched the idea and designed a prototype which was a success but needs continued development in order to make it more user-friendly and accessible to those who need it." said Kiel McCool, who designed the device along with Aoife Heneghan. In another project, a group of four students facilitated engineering workshops with students at the Galway Association's St Joseph training centre. The Engineering students introduced methods of engineering drawing and spatial awareness through the workshops which proved intellectually stimulating to those involved. "We chose to focus our project on helping students with intellectual disabilities," said Lorna Ryan. "We showed them how to visualise a 3-D object from different views and represent this in a technical drawing." The poster exhibition is open to the public from Friday 23rd February to Friday 2nd March 2007. -Ends-

Monday, 12 February 2007

Marie Reddan, Librarian, NUI Galway; Professor Jim Browne, Registrar, NUI Galway and Jane O Leary, Music for Galway 12 February 2007: To mark the 25th anniversary of Music for Galway, the archive was recently presented to the James Hardiman Library at NUI Galway. The Archive was accepted by the Registrar and Deputy President, Professor Jim Browne at a reception in the Aula Maxima attended by friends of the University and Music for Galway, and enjoyed a musical interlude from Galway's Quartet in Residence, ConTempo. The archive is a rich mix of programmes, posters, reviews, press cuttings, photographs, correspondence and minute books. It is a major addition to the Library's existing archival collections, of An Taibhdhearc, Druid, Galway Arts Festival and Macnas, which highlight the artistic and cultural life of Galway over the years. Accepting the archive on behalf of NUI Galway, Prof. Jim Browne said: "The University is delighted to accept this very special collection, given the long association between Music for Galway and the University. The development of Music for Galway is such a concrete example of active citizenship. The archive will be a resource for scholars and citizens alike, and will undoubtedly provide a rich research resource for those engaged in charting Galway's cultural and social history over the last 25 years". Music for Galway began 25 years ago with a concert by the Ulster Orchestra, intended to raise funds for a Steinway grand piano for Galway. The piano moved into the Aula Maxima, NUI Galway in 1981 and since then hundreds of concert performances have been organised by Music for Galway with performers from all over the world. Five years ago Music for Galway initiated the Ensemble in Residence project, which brought ConTempo Quartet to Galway. Special moments over the past quarter century have included Yehudi Menuhin's visit, Nigel Kennedy's early performances in Galway, performances of the complete cycle of Beethoven Piano Sonatas by Robert Taub, the Hallé Orchestra's appearance in Seapoint, and many more. -Ends – For further information contact: Marie Redden, Librarian, James Hardiman Library at 091-492540 or by email: marie.reddan@nuigalway.ie

Monday, 12 February 2007

12 February 2007: A key member of the team that brought the Special Olympics to Ireland, Ms Mary Davis, will address the issue of citizenship during a seminar at NUI Galway on Thursday, 22nd February at 1.00pm in the Siobhan McKenna Theatre. Ms Davis' talk 'Perspectives on Active Citizenship in Ireland Today' is part of a Keynote Seminar Series, organised by the University's Community Knowledge Initiative. Focusing on themes related to civic engagement and active citizenship, the series is being offered as a response to the impact that volunteering has in today's communities. Ms Davis has played a pivotal role in terms of raising awareness, and creating a supportive sporting environment for those with diverse abilities. She has been recognised nationally for enhancing a culture of volunteerism in modern Irish society through the hosting of the Special Olympics World Games in Ireland in 2003. Recently appointed Chair of the Taskforce on Active Citizenship by the Taoiseach, which seeks to address the perceived decline in levels of social capital in Ireland, Ms Davis' address will offer personal and professional reflections on citizenship, her role in the culmination of the Special Olympics event and her vision for the future of engaged and active citizens in modern Irish society through the work of the Taskforce. Lorraine McIlrath, Project Coordinator, Community Knowledge Initiative, NUI Galway said "Insights from the Chair of the Taskforce on Active Citizenships of the levels of social capital in modern Irish society is essential to the work that NUI Galway is enabling to embed as part of the Community Knowledge Initiative, our work and its future will be advanced I'm sure through perspective offers by this address" Tickets for the free event, which is hosted in partnership with the President's Office and the Arts Faculty, are available from Mary Bernard at the Community Knowledge Initiative at mary.bernard@nuigalway.ie or on 091 493823. The Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI) is a project at NUI Galway that promotes partnership with communities and endeavours to enhance social commitment within communities. Funded by philanthropic donations, the CKI hopes to reinvigorate the civic mission of higher education in Ireland, putting communities at the centre of debate. -ends – For further information contact Lorraine McIlrath, Project Coordinator, Community Knowledge Initiative, NUI Galway. Phone 091 495234

Friday, 9 February 2007

09 February 2007: Scholars from all over the world will attend the Annual Conference of Sports History Ireland which will be held in connection with the Centre for Irish Studies, NUI Galway on the 16 – 17 February, 2007. This is the third annual conference of Sports History Ireland, a society dedicated towards the development of the study of the history of sport amongst amateur and professional historians. Dr. Iognáid o Muircheartaigh, President, NUI Galway, said: "This year's conference has secured what appears to be the most impressive list of speakers to date, including established and emerging scholars in the world of sports history from Ireland, France, the United Kingdom and Australia". One particularly controversial feature of this year's conference will be Liam O'Callaghan's paper 'Reflecting on the brave and the faithful: the invention of tradition in Munster rugby', which will expose the myth surrounding the Munster Rugby phenomenon. Another innovative feature of this year's conference is Sean Crosson's investigation into representations of Gaelic Games in narrative cinema. A special feature of this presentation will be the screening of the Oscar nominated Paramount Pictures short on hurling, Three Kisses (Justin Herman, 1955). Among the other titles in the conference programme are: The 'Lion of Lahinch: an IRA man at the Walker Cup' Les Bleus multicolores: Contesting identities and French Football Batting on a sticky wicket: George Frith Barry and the growth of chess in Victorian Ireland Gaelic games versus "Cromwell s game": the GAA and association football in Derry City, 1884-1934 How to become an Irish sporting hero: lessons from Dan Donnelly. Dr. Paul Rouse, Chair of Sports History Ireland, remarked that "the ambition of the society is to use the conference to further promote the study of sports history both in the universities and in local communities." He also mentioned "the society would welcome secondary school students to the conference, especially with sport now a part of the history curriculum". Topics to be addressed during the two-day conference include Sinn Fein's attempt to stop hunting in 1919; Ireland's last rugby international in Belfast; Representations of Gaelic Games in narrative cinema; The journalistic career of Michael Cusack; The sporting pursuits of women in the nineteenth century Ireland; and the relationship between sport and the Irish Anti-Apartheid movement, 1964-74. Distinguished guest speakers will include Dr. Phil Dine from the National University of Ireland, Galway; Professor Conal Hooper, Director, Centre for Sport Studies, UCD; Professor Mike Cronin, Boston College; Dr. Dilwyn Porter and Professor Richard Holt from the International Centre for Sport History and Culture, De Montfort University, Leicester. The conference will be officially launched by Dr. Iognáid G. Ó Muircheartaigh, President, National University of Ireland, Galway, in the Moore Institute, NUI Galway on 16 February and the full conference programme is available on the Centre for Irish Studies website at: www.nuigalway.ie/cis - Ends - For further information, please contact David Doyle, Conference Co-Ordinator, Centre for Irish Studies, NUI Galway. Phone: 091-492051 mobile: 0868798479 or email: sportshistoryireland@gmail.com Notes to Editor: The Sports History Ireland society was formed in 2005 under the direction of Dr. Paul Rouse (University College Dublin) and Dr. William Murphy (Mater Dei) in an attempt to promote the highest levels of scholarship in Irish sports history in a way that is inclusive to general public. This has been the hallmark of the society's endeavours so far, something that the society prides itself on. The first two conferences were held in University College Dublin and the National University of Ireland, Maynooth, respectively. Both conferences were complete sell-outs and drew much media attention, as a result of the line-up of national and international speakers. Speakers: Professor Conal Hooper, Director, Centre for Sport Studies, UCD School of Public Health and Population Science. Dr. John Newell, Lecturer in Statistics, Department of Mathematics, NUI Galway, Consultant Statistician, Sports Performance Units, Newcastle United F.C. and Celtic F.C. Dr. Phil Dine, Lecturer, Department of French, NUI Galway. Sport and Identity in France: Practices, Locations, Representations. (An ongoing project funded by the Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences) Dr. Jim Shanahan, Trinity College Dublin Paper: Sean Burke, the Lion of Lahinch : an IRA man at the Walker Cup This paper will focus on a little-known event in Irish sporting history, the story of Sean Burke s experience at the 1932 Walker Cup at Brookline, Mass., USA. Burke (1899-1974) was Ireland s finest amateur golfer in the 1930s and 40s, winning the Irish Open Amateur championship in 1947, eight Irish Close titles, eleven South of Irelands, and six West of Ireland championships. He was only selected for one Walker Cup team, however, and this paper examines why. Burke was the first player from the Free State to be selected for the Walker Cup, but he was also the first working man to feature on the team, and his golfing career sheds light on the exclusive nature of amateur golf in both Ireland and Britain in the early decades of the twentieth century. Concentrating on Burke s own account of his experiences at the Walker Cup as told to his friends and family, it reveals how his past as an IRA volunteer came to light, and how he was ostracised by the Royal and Ancient GC and his fellow team mates, despite being the best performer in practice. Even today, he is not mentioned in Gordon Simmond s officially-sanctioned history of the Walker Cup. I will argue that Burke s experience provides valuable perspectives on the organisation of golf in Ireland and Britain, and on attitudes to British-Irish relations in the decade after the War of Independence. Liam O Callaghan, PhD Candidate, Leeds Metropolitan University. Paper: Reflecting on the brave and the faithful: the invention of tradition in Munster rugby

Monday, 5 February 2007

Monday 5 February 2007: A troupe of sixth-class pupils from across Galway city will entertain family and friends in a story-telling evening at the Aula Maxima, NUI Galway on Thursday 8 February as part of the University's Access Office programme. The children from Scoil Bhríde, Shantalla; Holy Trinity Girls School; and St Michael's Boys School Mervue have been developing their story telling skills through workshops led by storytellers Clare Murphy and Rab Fulton, as part of the 'Uni For You' initiative. The Access Office's three-year structured programme of activities aims to positively promote third level education to children and their communities. Story-telling is an excellent educational tool, which develops the child's capacity for active listening, in a world filled with stimuli that reduces the attention span this is an excellent starting point for self-development. The memory, imagination, creativity, liner and abstract thought and self-expression of the child is enhanced through the process of creating and telling their own story. Speaking ahead of the story telling evening, Vice President of Strategic and External Affairs at NUI Galway, Professor Ger Hurley said: "Story-telling enhances confidence and communication skills and is part of the Irish seanchaí tradition that we want to encourage in the next generation." Parents, siblings, teachers and NUI Galway staff will enjoy the children's debut story telling performance, where a selection of stories ranging from the frightening to the funny, will be relayed. Clare Murphy, story-teller, says: "By retelling old tales and inventing their own, children engage their imagination and find confidence in their own innate storytelling abilities. Story-telling is the intrinsic glue that encourages us to learn to listen, to respect and to understand those around us in our community." The Access programme has wide-ranging activities and has been developed in close partnership with the link schools, Scoil Bhríde, Shantalla, Holy Trinity Girls School, and St Michael's Boys School Mervue. -ENDS-

Monday, 5 February 2007

5 Feabhra: Mar chuid de chur i bhfeidhm Scéim Teanga na hOllscoile a aontaíodh mar chuid d'Acht na dTeangacha Oifigiúla 2003, cuirfear seirbhís iomlán trí mheán na Gaeilge ar fáil do chustaiméirí a ghlaonn ar Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh. Beidh custaiméirí in ann teacht ar an tseirbhís nua ón 1 Feabhra 2007 ar aghaidh. Is í príomh aidhm na Scéime ná go gcuirfí le soláthar seirbhísí trí Ghaeilge san Ollscoil i réimse na hacadúlachta, an riaracháin agus na seirbhíse ginearálta. Nuair a aontaíodh an Scéim le hOifig an Choimisinéara Teanga, earcaíodh beirt Fheidhmeannach Teanga go speisialta chun an Scéim a chur i bhfeidhm. Chas na Feidhmeannaigh Theanga mar Aonad Iniúchta le comhaltaí foirne i gceithre spriocroinn go dáta, comhaltaí foirne an mhalartáin ina measc. Tá an t-athrú do chóras an mhalartáin mar chuid de thoradh an phróisis seo. Seo mar a labhair Uachtarán na hOllscoile, An Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh "Ní bheidh le déanamh ag an gcustaiméir ach an tseirbhís a éileamh trí chnaipe a bhrú. Mura mbeidh an córas uathoibríoch in ann cuidiú leis an gcustaiméir, beidh an custaiméir in ann labhairt le hoibreoir malartán a bhfuil Gaeilge líofa aige/aici." Lean an tUasal Ó Muircheartaigh "Tá dualgas faoi leith orainn in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh freastal a dhéanamh ar phobal na Gaeltachta agus ar phobal na Gaeilge i gcoitianta. Tá teanga na Gaeilge lárnach d'fhís fhadtréimhseach na hOllscoile agus táimid an bhuíoch de lucht bainistíochta, teicneoirí agus oibreoirí de chuid an mhalartáin as ucht an tseirbhís iontach seo a chur ar fáil. Mar gheall gurb é an malartán an chéad phointe teagmhála leis an bpobal, tá sé seo thar a bheith tábhachtach. " Mar fhocal scoir dúirt an tUachtarán " Ní dhéanfar aon athrú ar an gcóras a fhreastalóinn ar chustaiméirí a roghnaíonn seirbhís trí mheán an Bhéarla. Ní bheidh le déanamh ag an gcustaiméir a bhfuil seirbhís trí mheán na Gaeilge uaidh/ uaithi ach uimhir a ceathair a bhrú ag tús chlár an mhalartáin. Cuireadh a leithéid de sheirbhís dhátheangach ar fáil le linn saoire na Nollag agus fuarthas aischothú thar a bheith dearfach ó chustaiméirí an mhalartáin. Tá súil againn go gcuideoidh soláthar na seirbhíse nua seo lenár gcustaiméirí uile. Beidh feabhas ag teacht ar sheirbhísí i gcoitianta trí Ghaeilge san Ollscoil mar chuid de chur i bhfeidhm na Scéime agus déarfainn le pobal na Gaeilge is libhse na seirbhísí seo , éilígí iad." Le aghaidh tuilleadh eolais déan teagmháil le: Dáithi Ó Madáin, Áras na Gaeilge ag 091-495449 nó rphost ag daithi.omadain@oegaillimh.ie nó Lisa Ní Fhlatharta, Áras na Gaeilge ag 091 495451 nó rphost ag lisa.nifhlatharta@oegaillimh.ie - CRÍOCH -

Monday, 5 February 2007

5 February 2007: Technologies to help elderly people lead more independent lives are to be developed through research conducted by the Irish Centre for Social Gerentology (ICSG) at NUI Galway, which has been awarded a €1.5 million grant from the Intel Corporation, with the support of the IDA. The ICSG research will inform the design, application and usability of new technologies to enhance the quality of life and independence of older people as part of the newly launched Technology and Research for Independent Living (TRIL). TRIL is a virtual centre, established as part of Intel's European Health Research and Innovation Capactiy. The project involves cross-collaboration among NUI Galway, UCD and Trinity College. An ethnographic gerotechnology research team at the Centre will focus on the content and meaning of older people's lives, their need for new technologies and their experiences with that technology as part of a secure but independent home environment. The team will also examine older peoples' experiences of disability which will provide guidance and feedback to those designing and producing new technologies in relation to falls, cognitive function and social connectedness. Welcoming the funding, Prof. Eamon O'Shea, Director of the ICSG said: "The TRIL initiative is an important development in the ongoing study of age and ageing at NUI Galway. The ethnographic research at ICSG will ensure that older people are at the heart of clinical and technological decision-making with respect to new technologies." The ICSG team will unite the various engineering and design strands of TRIL through enhanced multidisciplinary information systems that link conceptualisation to application, with a personalised focus on the experiences of older people in their own homes. The funding will allow the ICSG to expand its interests in technology and ageing, which along with the economics of ageing and rural ageing, represent the primary research themes of the Centre. It also builds on the existing expertise of the staff of the ICSG, helping to establish the group as an international centre of excellence in the realm of social ageing. In addition, the funding demonstrates the growing interest of the private sector in the area and the increasingly multidisciplinary approach taken in ageing research endeavours. Further information on the work of the Irish Centre for Social Gerontology can be found at www.icsg.ie -ENDS

Monday, 5 February 2007

5 Feabhra 2007: Bhí searmanas speisialta ar siúl in onóir do na 57 mac léinn a fuair Scoláireacht Iontrála san Ollscoil. Is aitheantas é seo ar an ardchaighdeán acadúil i measc rang 2006/07. Bhí an tUachtarán féin, an Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, i láthair ag an searmanas in Áras na Mac Léinn, Dé Sathairn, an 3 Feabhra 2007. Bronnadh seic €1,525 ar na mic léinn chomh maith le scrolla a dearadh go speisialta chun an t-éacht a rinne siad sa scrúdú deiridh scoile a cheiliúradh. Is ó gach cearn den tír na buaiteoirí agus déanann siad ionadaíocht ar 18 gcontae, ó Aontroim go Corcaigh agus ó Dhún na nGall go Port Láirge. Is de bhunadh na Gaillimhe 23 scoláire. Bronnadh na scoláireachtaí ar scoláirí ó 43 scoil ar leithligh, rud a léiríonn go bhfuil tallann acadúil den scoth le fáil i réimse leathan scoileanna, idir scoileanna beaga agus móra, ar fud na tíre. Dúirt Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh: "Tá an-áthas orainn anseo in OÉ Gaillimh aitheantas a thabhairt do thallann acadúil na 57 mac léinn iontach seo ó cheann ceann na tíre. Tá ríméad orm fáilte a chur rompu ar an gcampas seo agus tá moladh ag dul dóibh as an Ollscoil seo a roghnú le staidéar a dhéanamh inti. Táimid ag súil go mór lena dtallann acadúil a chothú agus tacú leo ina gcuid staidéir". Gheobhaidh gach iontrálaí nua a bhainfidh 560 pointe amach (590 i Leigheas agus Eolaíochtaí Sláinte) na scoláireachtaí seo. D'éirigh le beirt mhac léinn déag as na Dámha seo – na Dána, Tráchtáil, Innealtóireacht, agus Leigheas & Eolaíochtaí Sláinte uasmhéid na bpointí a fháil (600 pointe) (chomh maith le seisear eile a fuair an uasmhéid sna scrúduithe A-level). Fuair triúr mac léinn déag 590 pointe. -CRÍOCH-

Saturday, 3 February 2007

3rd February 2007: Academic excellence among the entering class of 2006/7 at NUI Galway has been recognised with a special ceremony to honour the 57 recipients of Entrance Scholarships at the University. The students, from throughout the country, were honoured by the President, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, at the ceremony at Áras na Mac Léinn, on Saturday 3rd February 2007. The students were each presented with a cheque for €1,525 and a specially designed scroll to mark their achievement in their school-leaving examination. The wide geographical spread of the winners is notable. The winners are drawn from 18 counties, from Antrim to Cork and Donegal to Waterford, including 23 scholars from County Galway. The scholarships have been awarded to students from 43 individual schools, highlighting the fact that top academic talent is to be found in a wide range of schools, large and small, throughout the country. The President of NUI Galway, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, said: "We in NUI Galway are delighted to recognise the academic talent of these 57 outstanding students from all over Ireland. I am delighted to welcome them to our campus and commend them for choosing to undertake their studies at this University. We look forward to nurturing their academic talent and supporting them throughout their years of study". The scholarships are guaranteed to all new entrants who reach 560 points (590 in Medicine and Health Sciences). Twelve students of programmes in Arts, Commerce, Engineering, and Medicine & Health Sciences achieved the maximum 600 points (in addition to six others with a maximum A-level result), while 13 students attained 590 points. -ENDS-

Monday, 26 March 2007

Monday, 26 March, 2007: Ninety-seven primary school children who have taken introductory Italian language classes taught by NUI Galway students will receive certificates at a special 'Italian Day' at the University on Thursday, 29 March, 2007. The eight-week Italian course was delivered in schools throughout Galway city and county by a group of 20 students as part of a pilot 'service-learning' programme under the umbrella of the University's Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI). A range of service-learning modules are available across faculties at the University and aim to enhance partnership with the wider community by allowing students practical learning opportunities of benefit to the community. The primary schools involved in the programme were Scoil Bhríde Shantalla, Belmont NS Tuam, Scoil Chroí Íosa Newcastle, St. Nicholas NS Claddagh and Galway Educate Together NS Newcastle. None of the children had any previous knowledge of Italian and for most it was their first experience learning a continental European language, so the aim was on language teaching through fun and games. 'Italian Day' will feature Italian food and culture across the campus and the event aims to further enhance the link between the University and the community while at the same time valuing the achievements of the children. Dr. Anne O'Connor of the Italian Department at NUI Galway, who coordinated the project, commented on the success of the new service-learning programme, "This is an innovative way of providing exposure to language in primary schools at no extra cost to the school involved with benefits for all parties. The University students benefit by getting involved in community and gaining practical teaching experience. Primary school children benefit from increased exposure to modern languages so that when they progress to second level, they will not be daunted by the prospect of learning a new language. The primary schools also benefit from the University's support in developing and maintaining a foreign language curriculum." The service-learning programme will become an accredited course option for those students pursuing Italian Studies as part of their degree for the academic year 2007-2008. In the future, it is hoped to introduce this project to other language departments in NUI Galway which would involve recruiting more schools and expanding the languages available. ENDS

Monday, 26 March 2007

Nurses from across the globe are to share their experiences of clinical care and research at an international conference, organised by the Department of Nursing and Midwifery, Áras Moyola, NUI Galway on Monday, 2nd April 2007. The Building and Promoting Excellence in Practice conference will focus on three main themes; practice innovation, educational innovation and care of older people and will feature over 70 presentations from international speakers including Professor Anne Marie Rafferty, Dr Kim Manley and Mr Christy Kennelly, who will all deliver key note addresses. Professor Kathy Murphy, Head of the Department of Nursing and Midwifery Studies at NUI Galway says: "This is the first international nursing conference at NUI Galway and we're delighted to have so many internationally renowned speakers. This conference provides an exciting and excellent forum for practitioners and researchers to meet and debate best practice issues." Professor Rafferty, Dean of the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery, King's College London will open the conference. A qualified nurse with a background in social science, clinical research and history, Prof. Rafferty has had a longstanding fascination with nursing knowledge, its origins, status and leadership within the profession. She is the author of the internationally acclaimed book, The Politics of Nursing Knowledge, published in 1996. "I'm really pleased to be speaking at this international conference because it focuses on really important practice issues including care of older people. I am passionate about good care and the foundations on which it's built. This conference will challenge us all to think about responsibility for improving care," says Prof. Rafferty. Dr Kim Manley, Head of RCN Practice Development, has an international reputation for the development of effective workplace cultures in healthcare. Such cultures put the patient at the centre, are clinically effective, continually modernizing and operate on shared governance principles. Core components of her work include helping healthcare organizations and clinical teams to develop, implement and evaluate practice development strategies. In 2000, Dr Manley was awarded the CBE for quality patient services arising from her work on operationalising the consultant nurse role over a decade. The conference, which will provide a forum for debate around issues concerning the promotion of excellence in practice, will be closed by renowned author and broadcaster Mr Christy Kennelly who has a particular interest in palliative care and will focus on ways of building and promoting excellence in practice. ENDS

Monday, 26 March 2007

Mr. Dermot O Connell, Ulster Bank, Eyre Square, Galway; Professor Ger Hurley, Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and External Affairs, NUI Galway; Imelda Byrne, Access Officer, NUI Galway and Seán Óg Ó hAilpín, All-Ireland winning hurler with Cork Senior Hurling Team Monday, 26 March, 2007: Over 100 pupils from primary schools across Galway will be honoured by All-Ireland winning hurler Seán Óg Ó hAilpín at a special ceremony on Wednesday, March 28, 2007 for their participation in NUI Galway's 'Uni For You 2007' programme. The children will receive medals and certificates from the Cork star in recognition of their involvement in the three-year programme which promotes education, school attendance and personal development through sporting, cultural and academic activities on the University campus. 'Uni for You' is developed and delivered by NUI Galway's Access Office in partnership with Scoil Bhríde, Shantalla; Holy Trinity Girls School and St Michael's Boys School Mervue. Now in its seventh year, the programme is a homework and sport club which is run on campus in conjunction with Áras na Mac Léinn. The children are helped by undergraduate volunteers two hours a week in completing their homework and playing sports. Capoeria, the Brazilian dance craze was a big hit with the children along with the old reliables, rounders, uni-hockey, soccer and basketball. Professor Ger Hurley, Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and External Affairs will host the ceremony in the O'Flaherty Theatre at 7.00pm, where the winners of the 'Write a Book Review' Competition will be announced. The contest was organised as part of 'Uni For You 2007' to actively encourage reading and reflection among the school children. "NUI Galway sees the involvement of the ten, eleven and twelve year old participants in this project, together with their parents and teachers, as a positive action which, we hope, will focus their attention on future educational achievements and progression into higher education,' said Prof. Hurley. Explaining the significance of the programme for those involved, Imelda Byrne, NUI Galway's Access Officer said; "This collaborative programme between NUI Galway and three city primary schools aims to help students develop personally, encourage them in their studies and help them and their families and the wider community overcome any perceived barriers to University as an unwelcoming place." Easter and Summer camps facilitated by university staff volunteers have introduced the children to topics in science, engineering, languages and humanities subjects, which enable the children to get a feel for their subject choices in secondary school and encourage them to participate more actively in their own learning. New initiatives in 'Uni for You 2007' included a story telling course and performance where the children told stories they had created themselves in seanchaí style. The programmes' success includes the participation of parents with their children in the study skill and homework support workshops run by the Access Office. ENDS

Monday, 26 March 2007

HSE West and NUI Galway are this week bringing together a host of experts in environmental health for the country's first ever international conference on reducing environmental risks and protecting public health. The collaborative HSE West/NUI Galway three-day conference aims to highlight new thinking, new science and new horizons in protecting our shared environment and the health of current and future generations. There will be a particular emphasis on the role of research in informing health policy and in evaluating health intervention programmes. Speakers at the 'New Horizons in Environmental Health' conference include RTE ECO Eye presenter Duncan Stewart; Professor of Environmental Health Sciences, Katharine Hammond, University of California, Berkeley; Dr. Diarmuid O'Donovan, Director of Public Health, HSE West and Dr. Martina Prendergast, Development Manager, Environmental Change Institute (ECI), NUI Galway. Over 100 Environmental Health Officers (EHOs) from Ireland and the UK have already registered for the conference, which opens on Wednesday, 28 March, in the Environmental Change Institute, NUI Galway and continues in the Galway Bay Hotel, Salthill on Thursday and Friday 29 & 30 March. Maurice Mulcahy, Principal Environmental Health Officer, HSE West, and the driving force behind the conference, says the potential benefits to public health of empowering EHOs to participate in research initiatives that assess exposures and risks associated with environmental factors, cannot be ignored. "This conference will give us a rich insight into the issues concerning international experts in the environmental health field and will provide a stepping point for new initiatives that will have a real impact on reducing the varied risks that we encounter in our daily lives," says Mr Mulcahy. A prominent theme of the conference will be the role of environmental research in informing health policy and in evaluating health intervention strategies. Dr Martina Prendergast, Development Manager of the ECI, and one of the principal organisers of the conference, says she hopes the conference will emphasise the importance of developing a research culture within the environmental health field. "The role of our environment and the way people's health is influenced by the quality of that environment is something on which we should all place great significance. We can only tackle global threats such as climate change, new and emerging diseases, loss of biodiversity and security of energy supply by developing a fundamental understanding of key processes which are causing our environment to change," she says. It is hoped that the conference will help towards bridging the gap between academic research and the development of relevant research policy in the area of environmental health, through the successful collaboration and cooperation between the academic community, environmental health practitioners and policy makers. Ends Further Information: Mary Garvin, Communications Department, HSE West; Tel: 091 – 775750; Mob: 087 – 9310000 Email: mary.garvin@mailn.hse.ie

Tuesday, 20 March 2007

Issues raised by the collection and storage of umbilical cord stem cells for future use, will be discussed at a free public talk organised by the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), NUI Galway, Wednesday, 28 March at the Menlo Park Hotel at 7.30pm. Stem cell research is one of the most promising areas in medical research and there is early scientific evidence that stem cell therapy could provide treatments for a range of currently incurable diseases. One of the sources of adult stem cells is umbilical cord blood, and the current clinical use of cord blood stem cells is restricted to diseases of the blood and immune system, which are relatively rare. The likelihood that a child will require his or her own stem cells is extremely small (one in several thousand) and this has led some clinicians to advise that mothers should be discouraged from banking the cord blood. However others argue that it is likely that cord blood will become a valuable resource as further clinical use of stem cells develops. "Stem cell technology offers many opportunities for future therapy, but there are obstacles yet to be overcome" according to Prof. Frank Barry, REMEDI Scientific Director, and leading stem cell scientist. "This makes the area of cord blood banking somewhat complex as it is difficult to predict whether these cord blood stem cells will be of significant clinical importance in the future. However it is likely that cord blood stem cells will be an invaluable resource, as they are plentiful and more easily obtained than any other source of adult stem cells, and do not raise any ethical issues associated with embryonic stem cells." Professor Barry will outline the scientific evidence both for and against cord blood collection, as one of the speakers at the public talk. Other speakers will include: Catherina McCauley, a parent who had to overcome resistance in Ireland to be allowed to collect and store her child's cord blood in an Irish hospital; Dr. Deirdre Madden, a Senior Lecturer in Law at UCC who will discuss the legal issues in relation to cord blood banking; and, Prof. John Morrison, Head of Dept of Obstetrics & Gynaecology at NUI Galway and Clinical Director of the Women's and Children's Directorate at UCHG, will focus on the obstetric and labour ward aspects of umbilical cord stem cell collection. Ends

Tuesday, 20 March 2007

Tuesday 20th March 2007: A unique agreement that will enable the physical performance of young footballers to be analysed to improve training methods has been signed by the Faculty of Medicine at NUI Galway and Salthill Devon Football Club. Medical and Informatics students at the University are involved in the Clinical Science Institute (CSI) Galway Human Performance Registry project which is being supported by the Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI) at NUI Galway. The medical students will retrieve, store and analyse the information and the informatics students, in conjunction with students at Hanze University, Groningen, in the Netherlands, will construct a website that can give insight into the current physical fitness of the footballers. The students will also research how to improve physical performance based on the data collected on the younger footballers. Qualified supervisors who have a sports science background will use tools such as the Interval Shuttle Run Test, the Shuttle Sprint and Dribble Test and the Vertical Jump and muscle force test to assess sports specific human performance/physical fitness. These tests have been used in Dutch premier league soccer and hockey and a spin off is expected to be developed for Gaelic football, hurling and rugby. Dr Thomas Kropmans, Department of Medical Informatics and Medical Education at NUI Galway said the Registry could be developed further to analyse secondary school children for obesity and would link up with other medical research such as that being conducted into diabetes and cardio-pulmonary rehabilitation. "The outcome of these tests will be used to improve current training methods for teams and/or individuals. The assessment will take place 2 -3 times per season over a two year period," he said. Lorraine McIlrath, Academic Staff Developer, Service Learning, at CKI praised the project for its mutual benefit to the students and sportspeople involved. "The CSI Galway Human Performance Registry is a win-win project for both the University and the community. First year medical students win by retrieving, storing and analyzing biological variation of human data, while the contributing sports clubs win by improving current training methods," she said. ENDS