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Research seminar to discuss the issue of diversity among Ireland’s teachers

Research seminar to discuss the issue of diversity among Ireland’s teachers-image

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Education experts will gather in the School of Education, NUI Galway on Friday to discuss the issue of diversity among Ireland’s teachers. While many schools now have student populations from many backgrounds and cultures, the teaching population remains predominantly female, and from the majority ethnic and upper socio-economic backgrounds. Initial findings from an NUI Galway research project on ‘Diversity in Initial Teacher Education’ (DITE) in Ireland will be presented at a seminar on Friday. The seminar, which is supported by the University’s Moore Institute, will feature two presentations. The Cultural Diversification of the Teaching Profession: How Effective is it? Professor Ninetta Santoro, Strathclyde University, Glasgow, Scotland. Diversity in Initial Teacher Education (DITE) in Ireland: A Rationale and Initial Analysis. Dr Elaine Keane, Dr Manuela Heinz, and Dr Conor Foley, School of Education, NUI Galway. Dr Elaine Keane is the recipient of an Irish Research Council Research Project Grant for the DITE project, and, along with Dr Heinz, is heading up the DITE research project in the School of Education at NUI Galway. According to Dr Keane: “While research and policy documents emphasise the necessity of diversifying the teaching population, we are lacking data adequately describing our national context in relation to diversity in initial teacher education. The gathering of comprehensive data on those applying to enter, and entering, initial teacher education is crucial in informing future directions in policy and research on teacher diversity in Ireland.” For more information visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/education/research/dite/dite.html -ends-

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NUI Galway Awards Business Certificate to 300 Junior Certificate Students

NUI Galway Awards Business Certificate to 300 Junior Certificate Students -image

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Students from across Connacht who received an A in Junior Certificate Honours Business Studies, were presented with Certificates of Achievement from the College of Business, Public Policy and Law, NUI Galway recently. The presentations, in association with the Business Studies Teachers Association of Ireland (BSTAI), were made at a special ceremony at the University which included teachers and parents. This is the fifth year NUI Galway has presented these awards and 300 students received recognition for their achievement at the ceremony. The certificates were awarded to students from over 55 individual schools throughout the counties of Galway, Leitrim, Mayo, Roscommon and Sligo. Dr Kieran Conboy, Dean of the College of Business Public Policy and Law, NUI Galway, who presented the certificates to each individual winner, said “NUI Galway believes these awards are important to recognise the achievements of our potential future business leaders. I congratulate all the students on their success and also the work of teachers in helping students achieve their potential. I’m sure I will have the pleasure of meeting many of these students again in NUI Galway in the future on one of our business or commerce programmes.”  Jennie Harrington, President, BSTAI said “The BSTAI are delighted to continue its partnership with NUI Galway in hosting this ceremony which celebrates and recognises academic excellence in Business Studies at a young age.  I’m confident many of today’s award recipients will build successful careers in the business world.” -Ends-

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NUI Galway centre-stage in €245 million investment announcement by Minister Bruton and Minister English

NUI Galway centre-stage in €245 million investment announcement  by Minister Bruton and Minister English-image

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

• NUI Galway to lead new national medical device research centre • NUI Galway to play key role in 3 of 5 new centres • €155 million of new Exchequer funds for 5 world-class Research Centres • €90 million co-investment by over 165 industry partners in new Centres A new world-class medical device research centre is to be established at NUI Galway as part of a €245 million Government investment in science and technology. In addition, NUI Galway is to play a key role in two other research centres announced today in Dublin by Richard Bruton, T.D. Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, and Damien English, T.D. Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation. An announcement of a total of five new SFI Research Centres today is a major investment by the Government in scientific research which is closely aligned to industry and enterprise needs, job opportunities and societal goals. A total of €155 million of Irish exchequer funding will be invested in the new world class research centres of scale. The new funding will be delivered through Science Foundation Ireland’s (SFI) Research Centres Programme coupled with over €90 million in cash and in-kind contributions from industry partners. The funding will be provided over the next six years with a mid-term review. CÚRAM - The Centre for Research in Medical Devices This major new national research centre will be based at NUI Galway. The prime objective for CÚRAM will be to radically improve health outcomes for patients by developing innovative implantable medical devices to treat major unmet medical needs. NUI Galway’s Professor Abhay Pandit, who is currently Director of the Network of Excellence for Functional Biomaterials (NFB), will be the Director of CÚRAM. Three high-profile Co-Directors will bring a depth and breadth of expertise to the new research centre: Professor Lokesh Joshi, Vice-President of Research and Stokes Professor of Glycosciences and Director of AGRC at NUI Galway; Professor Tim O’Brien, Director of the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) and Professor of Medicine at NUI Galway; and Professor David Brayden, Professor of Drug Delivery at UCD. CÚRAM will design and create implantable ‘smart’ medical devices. Implants will be designed and manufactured to respond to the body’s environment and to deliver therapeutic agents, such as drugs, exactly where needed. Cutting-edge science will develop devices using the very latest research from biomaterials, stem cells and drug delivery. Devices will be developed with strong clinical collaborations and with industry partners and hospital groups to enable rapid translation to the clinic. CÚRAM’s outputs will benefit in particular patients with chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and musculoskeletal diseases. As the global population ages, with one in 3 people expected to be over 65 by 2050, the financial burden for healthcare is expected to rocket. CÚRAM will position Ireland as the driver in developing medical device technologies which will provide affordable transformative solutions for chronic diseases to meet this challenge. Crucially, CÚRAM will also sustain and permanently strengthen Ireland’s standing as a major global hub for medical device sector research and development. CÚRAM brings together researchers from NUI Galway, UCD, DCU, UL, UCC and RCSI. The centre will include almost 40 industry partners and support product development and the creation of new spin-out companies. Partners will include indigenous Irish companies and multi-nationals such as Arch Therapeutics Inc, Aerogen, Medtronic Vascular Galway Ltd. iCrag - Centre for Research in Applied Geosciences NUI Galway also forms part of the new Irish Centre for Research in Applied Geosciences (iCRAG). This centre is focused on unlocking Ireland’s natural resources and providing solutions to resource security problems by securing supplies of energy, minerals and safe water. Part of this work will involve “de-risking” investment by exploration companies in Ireland by providing better descriptions and models of the geology to improve our understanding of the key processes influencing their formation. Additionally iCRAG will develop innovative techniques for predicting the location and nature of resources and link them to improved methods for optimising the production of resources throughout Ireland. iCRAG initial research is built around key sectors in the geosciences, notably Raw materials, Marine Geoscience, Groundwater and Hydrocarbons. Emphasis is also placed on increasing the public understanding of geoscience in Ireland and its role in the economy. NUI Galway researchers from the discipline of Earth and Ocean Sciences in the School of Natural Sciences will contribute to all aspects of iCRAG research. NUI Galway’s Professor of Earth and Ocean Sciences, Peter Croot, is a co-PI in iCRAG and will lead research in Marine Geosciences in cooperation with colleagues from UCC, Maynooth, TCD, DIAS and the iCRAG host institute, UCD. Lero Software Research Centre NUI Galway is also a key part of the Lero Software Research Centre. Software is everywhere and key Irish industry sectors such as manufacturing, medical devices, financial services, cloud computing, analytics, and smart cities depend on it. LERO’s research mission is to replicate the success of traditional software engineering in the context of large-scale, pervasive, physically-integrated, highly interconnected, evolving, and continuously-available systems, in which the boundary between design-time and runtime is disappearing. NUI Galway’s Dr Kieran Conboy, Dean of the College of Business, Public Policy & Law at NUI Galway will lead a group of 14 new research staff to work on software project management and innovation. According to Dr Conboy, while the software industry is particularly strong in Ireland, accounting for €12bn in exports, there are significant challenges to overcome to ensure this sector can play a leading role in Ireland’s recovery. Together with industry the group at NUI Galway will develop, implement and evaluate world-leading software development and management practices in two core areas: • Evolving software: The ways in which software is created and managed are constantly changing. The Lero team at NUI Galway will lead research on contemporary methods for evolving software such as lean and agile approaches, project and portfolio management, decision making and lean analytics. • Open software: The development and management of software crosses teams, organisations and sectors. The team will lead research in open innovation, software ecosystems, crowdsourcing, cloud technologies and design thinking. Geophysics and particularly seismic data are typically very large and growing in size, driven by many factors including higher-resolution sensors, cheaper storage and global acquisition programmes. However much of the software used on a daily basis by engineers and scientists in the field was conceived and built before the era of “Big Data”. The Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC), a technology centre at NUI Galway, and its industry partners will develop new methods to modernise our approach to handle large datasets in the oil and gas sector. Speaking about today’s announcement in Dublin, Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway, said: “This is a wonderful endorsement of NUI Galway’s consistent approach to supporting selected priority areas of research, particularly in the area of biomedical science. CÚRAM will draw on the very significant pool of talented biomedical researchers on our campus, led by Professors Abhay Pandit, Tim O’Brien, Lokesh Joshi and their teams. CÚRAM holds enormous potential for the Irish economy and the Centre will work with industry partners to support innovation and development in the medical device sector – where Galway and Ireland already have a significant profile as an international hub for ‘medtech’. I am certain too that NUI Galway will make important contributions to the work of both iCrag Centre for Research in Applied Geosciences and Lero Software Centre, through the leadership of Professor Peter Croot and Dr Kieran Conboy. I congratulate my colleagues on securing this very significant research investment, as a result of which I look forward to the emergence of further dynamic and productive partnerships between NUI Galway researchers and industrial partners in the areas of biomedical science, geosciences and software engineering.” Speaking about the selection of the five world-class centres, Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of SFI and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government of Ireland, said, “These five new SFI Research Centres were selected following a highly competitive and rigorous international peer review process which screened for scientific excellence and assessed potential economic and societal impact. These five SFI Research Centres complement the seven we announced last year – which are already having a major positive impact: making important scientific advances, initiating and enhancing enterprise, training people with appropriate skills, winning EU projects and enhancing Ireland’s international reputation. These SFI Research Centres combine scientific research with deep and significant enterprise engagement, excellence and impact. We are confident that they will make a significant contribution to Ireland’s economy, employment and reputation.” Speaking at the announcement, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, said: “A key part of the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs is to build on the major achievements in scientific research we have built up over the past decade and turn more good ideas into good jobs. Today’s announcement will lead to the establishment in Ireland of world-class centres of research excellence and scale which will be game-changers for Irish scientific research.” “The €245 million investment announced today, and the five new, large-scale, world-class research centres it will support, are aimed at achieving a step-change in the reputation and performance of Ireland’s research system. This builds on the announcement of seven similar centres last year. With twelve world-class SFI Research Centres, Ireland is now well placed to take the lead developing cutting-edge research and new technologies, ultimately delivering more commercial ideas and jobs.” The new centres will link scientists and engineers in partnerships across academia and industry to address crucial research questions, and foster the development of new and existing Irish-based technology companies. The aim is also to attract industry that could make an important contribution to Ireland and its economy, and expand educational and career opportunities in Ireland in science and engineering. -ENDS-

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Autumn Conferrings at NUI Galway

Autumn Conferrings at NUI Galway-image

Friday, 17 October 2014

Three Honorary Masters Degrees will also be presented Almost 3,000 students will graduate from NUI Galway during the Autumn Conferring Ceremonies which take place from 18-24 October. The University will also confer three Honorary Masters Degrees during the ceremonies on Carl Hession, Charlie Byrne and Patricia Burke Brogan. Carl Hession - Masters of Music honoris causa: For over 30 years, Carl has been involved with music in Galway, primarily in Coláiste Iognáid where he teaches. In addition to his teaching, his association with and contribution to the school’s annual show and other events as composer and musical director is also highly regarded. Carl has designed and taught the Music Methodology on NUI Galway’s Professional Diploma in Education programme. In recent years as Musical Director for the University’s Medical Orchestra, he has helped rekindle and support the development of students’ musical talents, and to promote music engagement amongst students within the School of Medicine. Carl’s composition ‘Rhythm of the Dance’ and his most recent involvements with the Moscow Ballet are testament to his dedication and talent as a composer. Charlie Byrne - Masters of Arts honoris causa: Founder and owner of Charlie Byrne’s Bookshop which opened in 1988 as a market stall, the shop has grown successfully over the years and is now recognised as one of Ireland’s most successful bookshops. The business has become a cultural venue in Galway City, hosting book launches, readings, signings, poetry slams, musical evenings, art exhibitions and book clubs, and in 2013 he was awarded the Irish Times Bookshop of the Year award. A native of Longford, Charlie graduated from NUI Galway with a Bachelor of Arts in 1981. Patricia Burke Brogan - Masters of Arts honoris causa: Born in Co. Clare and now living in Galway City, Patricia is an internationally renowned poet, playwright and painter. Her paintings and graphics have been exhibited widely, both nationally and internationally, and has won many awards for her plays, poems, graphics and short stories. Her stage play Eclipsed, first produced in 1992, was presented with a Fringe First at the Edinburgh Theatre Festival that year and has since been produced all over the world and been translated into many languages, including Japanese for a recent production in Tokyo. Her memoir was published earlier this year. In advance of the conferring ceremonies, Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway, said: “NUI Galway is fortunate to be associated with many outstanding honorary graduates throughout its history. This week we are proud to honour Carl Hession, Charlie Byrne and Patricia Burke Brogan. Each of these individuals has made an outstanding and distinctive contribution to the diverse fields of music, education, literature and the arts. NUI Galway is very pleased to be in a position to recognise their exceptional talents and achievements.” The annual Autumn Conferring Ceremonies will begin with the Centre for Adult Learning and Professional Development ceremonies, where awards will be conferred on almost 950 students who completed their certificate, diploma and degree courses at many locations across the country. -ENDS- Bronnadh an Fhómhair in OÉ Gaillimh Bronnfar Trí Chéim Mháistreachta Oinigh chomh maith Bainfidh beagnach 3,000 mac léinn céim amach in OÉ Gaillimh sna Searmanais Bhronnta Céime a bheidh ar bun idir an 18-24 Deireadh Fómhair. Bronnfaidh an Ollscoil Céim Mháistreachta Oinigh ar an triúr seo a leanas: Carl Hession, Charlie Byrne agus Patricia Burke Brogan. Carl Hession - Céim Mháistreachta sa Cheol honoris causa: Le breis is 30 bliain, tá baint ag Carl le ceol i nGaillimh, go príomha i gColáiste Iognáid áit ina bhfuil sé ina mhúinteoir. Le cois na múinteoireachta, tá ardmheas ar a chuid oibre mar chumadóir agus mar stiúrthóir ceoil ar sheó bliantúil na scoile agus ar imeachtaí eile. Is é Carl a dhear agus a mhúin an Mhodheolaíocht Cheoil ar an Dioplóma Gairmiúil san Oideachas in OÉ Gaillimh. Le blianta beaga anuas agus é ina Stiúrthóir Ceoil le Ceolfhoireann Leighis na hOllscoile, chuidigh sé chun buanna ceoil na mac léinn a athmhúscailt agus a chothú, agus chun rannpháirtíocht cheoil a chur chun cinn i measc na mac léinn i Scoil an Leighis. Is teist iad ceapadóireacht Carl ar ‘Rhythm of the Dance’ agus an obair is déanaí a bhí idir lámha aige le Ballet Mhoscó ar a dhíograis agus a bhua mar chumadóir. Charlie Byrne - Céim Mháistreachta sna Dána honoris causa: Is é Charlie bunaitheoir agus úinéir Charlie Byrne’s Bookshop a d'oscail in 1988 mar stalla margaidh. Tá fás agus forbairt tagtha ar an siopa thar na blianta agus tá sé aitheanta anois ar cheann de na siopaí leabhar is rathúla in Éirinn. Ionad cultúrtha atá sa ghnó anois i gCathair na Gaillimhe, agus bíonn leabhair á seoladh, á léamh, agus á síniú ann, mar aon le hócáidí filíochta, oícheanta ceoil, taispeántais ealaíne agus clubanna leabhar agus bronnadh gradam an Irish Times do Shiopa Leabhar na Bliana ar an siopa sa bhliain 2013. Is as Longford ó dhúchas é Charlie, agus bhronn OÉ Gaillimh Céim sna Dána air sa bhliain 1981. Patricia Burke Brogan - Máistreacht sna Dána honoris causa: Rugadh Patricia i gCo. an Chláir agus tá sí anois ag cur fúithi i gCathair na Gaillimhe agus is file, drámadóir agus péintéir í a bhfuil cáil idirnáisiúnta uirthi. Bhí péinteálacha agus grafaicí léi ar taispeáint go forleathan, go náisiúnta agus go hidirnáisiúnta, agus is iomaí duais atá bainte amach aici as a cuid drámaí, dánta, grafaicí agus gearrscéalta. Cuireadh a dráma Eclipsed ar stáitse den chéad uair sa bhliain 1992, agus bronnadh duais Fringe First air ag Féile Amharclannaíochta Dhún Éideann agus ó shin i leith tá sé curtha ar stáitse ar fud an domhain agus tá sé aistrithe go teangacha eile lena n-áirítear an tSeapáinis do léiriú a rinneadh le gairid air i Tóiceo. Foilsíodh a cuimhní cinn níos luaithe i mbliana. Ag labhairt dó roimh na searmanais bhronnta, dúirt an Dr Jim Browne, Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh: “Tá an t-ádh ar OÉ Gaillimh a bheith bainteach leis an oiread sin céimithe oinigh den scoth ó bunaíodh an Ollscoil. An tseachtain seo, táimid bródúil céim oinigh a bhronnadh ar Carl Hession, ar Charlie Byrne agus ar Patricia Burke Brogan. Tá a c(h)ion féin déanta ag gach céimí oinigh daoibh seo i réimsí éagsúla an cheoil, an oideachais, na litríochta agus na ndán. Is cúis áthais dúinn anseo in OÉ Gaillimh an deis a bheith againn aitheantas a thabhairt don tallann agus don tsárobair atá déanta ag na daoine seo.” Cuirfear tús le Searmanais bhliantúla Bhronnadh Céimeanna an Fhómhair leis na searmanais an Ionaid Foghlama agus Forbartha Gairmiúla d’Aosaigh, áit a mbronnfar dámhachtainí ar bheagnach 950 mac léinn a chríochnaigh a gcúrsaí teastais, dioplóma agus céime in ionaid éagsúla ar fud na tíre. -CRÍOCH-

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NUI Galway Professor Conferred as Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences

NUI Galway Professor Conferred as Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences-image

Thursday, 16 October 2014

NUI Galway Professor of Human Resource Management and Employment Relations, Professor Tony Dundon, has been has conferred with the award of Fellow by the Academy of Social Sciences. Professor Dundon is one of 34 leading social scientists to receive the award. The recipients have a wide range of expertise in the social sciences, including town planning, education, geography, social work, law, sociology, economics and psychology. These Fellows have made a substantial contribution to wider social science in a variety of contexts, including in higher education, government, funding councils, charitable foundations and think tanks. Professor Dundon is recognised as a key figure in the development of employment relations studies, in particular on employee voice, worker rights and regulatory systems of industrial relations. The Academy of Social Sciences is the National Academy of Academics, Learned Societies and Practitioners in the Social Sciences. It has around 1,000 individual Fellows, who are distinguished scholars and practitioners from academia and the public and private sectors. They are awarded Fellowship status after peer group review of the standing and impact of their work and evaluation of their contribution to wider social science. Fellows are entitled to use the post-nominal letters 'FAcSS'. For more information visit http://acss.org.uk/news/4-leading-social-scientists-conferred-fellows/.   -Ends-

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Law Lecturer Appointed by Government to Working Group on Asylum

Law Lecturer Appointed by Government to Working Group on Asylum-image

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Dr Ciara Smyth, Director of the Doctoral Programme in the School of Law, NUI Galway, has been appointed to the government’s Working Group on Asylum.  The Working Group, which is convened by the Minister for Justice and Equality and the Minister of State at the Department of Justice and Equality, and chaired by retired High Court judge, Mr Justice Bryan McMahon, is to recommend to Government what improvements should be made to the State’s existing direct provision and protection processes for asylum seekers in the short and longer term.  The establishment of the Working Group comes in response to mounting criticism of delays in the Irish asylum procedure and the conditions in which asylum seekers are required to live while they await the outcome of their asylum applications.  Other members of the Working Group include: Sue Conlan, Chief Executive of the Irish Refugee Council and Sophie Magennis, Head of UNHCR in Ireland.  Dr Ciara Smyth has been working in the asylum field for over fifteen years, both as a practitioner and as an academic.  She teaches Immigration Law, International Human Rights and International Law in the School of Law, NUI Galway, and Refugee Law in the Irish Centre for Human Rights.  She has been involved in training of staff in the asylum institutions, has conducted master-classes for barristers, solicitors and asylum decision-makers on various aspects of refugee law, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Irish Refugee Council.  She has just published a monograph with Routledge on  European Asylum Law and the Rights of the Child. Last year Ciara was presented with a prestigious Max van der Stoel Human Rights Award in Tilburg for her PhD thesis on ‘The Common European Asylum System and the Rights of the Child: An Exploration of Meaning and Compliance’, which she completed at Leiden University. Welcoming the announcement of Dr Smyth’s appointment to the new Working Group, the Head of the School of Law at NUI Galway, Professor Donncha O’Connell, said: “This is a well-deserved recognition of Ciara Smyth’s standing as a leading Irish and European scholar on asylum and related matters. I have no doubt that she will make an invaluable contribution to the Working Group which will be chaired by Judge McMahon who was, previously, a part-time Professor in the School of Law at NUI Galway.” -Ends-

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NUI Galway Exhibition on German Artist Caspar Walter Rauh

NUI Galway Exhibition on German Artist Caspar Walter Rauh-image

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

NUI Galway’s discipline of German will launch a new art exhibition presenting engravings by Caspar Walter Rauh on Wednesday, 22 October at 5pm in Art Gallery in the Quadrangle. Rauh (1912-1983) was a German graphic artist, illustrator and painter working in the tradition of Fantastic Realism and Surrealism. Despite the huge initial success of his drawings and engravings after World War II, inspired by traumatic experiences as a soldier in Russia, public interest in his works declined as Germany turned its back on the war. He became an outsider who was ignored by mainstream art. It is only in recent years that Rauh’s work has been rediscovered with its Bosch-like testimony to the cruelties of the war. For the first time in Ireland, this exhibition displays some of his finest engravings, mostly created after 1960 – technically brilliant phantasmagories reminiscent of earlier traumas but increasingly revealing the artist’s whimsical sense of humour and his inclination towards the idyllic and bizarre. Dream-like images, oscillating between barbaric violence and fairy-tale fantasies, reflect the complexity of a highly original artist. The exhibition has been curated by NUI Galway’s Professor Hans-Walter Schmidt-Hannisa and Michael Shields, and is sponsored by the German Embassy and the Arts Office, NUI Galway. All are welcome to attend the launch, followed by a reception in the presence of the German cultural attaché, Peter Adams. The exhibition will be open Tuesday to Saturday from 1-4.30pm until Saturday, 8 November. -Ends-

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NUI Galway Students are Building Ireland’s Most Energy-Efficient Car

NUI Galway Students are Building Ireland’s Most Energy-Efficient Car-image

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Engineering students from NUI Galway are designing and building ‘the Geec’ (Galway energy-efficient car), Ireland’s most fuel efficient car, efficient enough to drive from Galway to Dublin on less than €1 worth of electricity. In May 2015, the team will compete with 200 other teams at Shell Eco-marathon Europe as the first team ever to represent Ireland in the event. At Shell Eco-marathon a future generation of engineers and scientists aged 16-25 from around 25 countries compete in cars they design and build. Success is measured on who can drive the furthest on the equivalent of 1 kWh of electricity or 1 litre of fuel, thanks to their creative designs and technical know-how. Shell Eco-marathon aims to involve citizens globally in challenges related to energy and mobility, while inspiring them to consider innovative solutions. In May 2015 in Rotterdam, the Geec from NUI Galway will race in the prototype electric category. The car combines electric drive with a streamlined composite body and ultra-low resistance tyres. The team consists of students across the Mechanical, Electrical and Electronic and Energy Systems Engineering disciplines with full backing from the University’s College of Engineering and Informatics. The team is currently testing and tuning the car and is seeking to build relationships with partners and sponsors who can help to develop this project for the 2015 Eco-marathon and beyond. Professor Gerry Lyons, Dean of NUI Galway’s College of Engineering and Informatics, recently unveiled the car alongside Shell representatives, students and alumni. “The Shell Eco-Marathon was first established in 1939 and I am delighted to see students from our College of Engineering and Informatics participate as the event challenges students across the world to design build and race ultra-efficient vehicles. There has never been an Irish team to compete in the event and this will change in 2015 with NUI Galway's contribution to the world of eco-friendly transport. This is a great team of students taking on the design, building and racing Ireland's most fuel efficient car and I really do commend them and wish them well.” Shell Eco-marathon is one of the world’s most challenging student innovation competitions and takes place annually in Europe, America and Asia. The competition brings together current and future leaders, along with a broader public passionate about energy issues. It encourages debate around sustainable solutions to the challenge of rising global energy demand. Speaking at an event today where the Engineering students presented and exhibited the vehicle, Michael Crothers, Managing Director of Shell E&P Ireland Limited, said: “Shell E&P Ireland is delighted to support NUI Galway’s College of Engineering and Informatics as it competes in the 30th anniversary of the Shell Eco-marathon in 2015. The design of ultra-energy efficient vehicles is both a lot of fun and a great chance to learn as students apply their talents across a broad spectrum of engineering disciplines.”  Continuing, Mr Crothers added: “The NUI Galway team will be pitting their technical skills against 3,000 of the best and brightest engineering students in Europe, and I know they will represent the great tradition of Irish engineering excellence very well.  I wish the team every success in the competition.” For more information on NUI Galway’s entry visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/NUIGEcoMarathon, or visit www.nuigalway.ie/thegeec. -Ends-

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Irish Centre for Human Rights and ICCL win top EU Rights contract

Irish Centre for Human Rights and ICCL win top EU Rights contract-image

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

The Irish Centre for Human Rights (ICHR), NUI Galway, in close collaboration with project partner the Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL), has won a major EU contract for Irish Law and Social Data Research and will become Ireland’s new national focal point for the European Union Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA). This is the first time that the prestigious FRANET-Ireland contract for data collection and research services on fundamental rights issues in Ireland has been awarded to an Irish University-led bid. FRANET is the FRA’s multidisciplinary research network. It is composed of contractors in each EU Member State who provide relevant data to FRA on fundamental rights issues, to facilitate the Agency’s comparative analyses. This work of the FRA then informs EU policy and initiatives across the EU member States. The ICHR/ICCL project has assembled a team of Ireland’s leading human rights and social science experts, located at academic institutions and in civil society. Professor Michael O’Flaherty, the Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights, who becomes the FRANET Senior Expert for Ireland, commented: “We are very pleased to take on this contract that will generate crucial findings for the strengthening of fundamental rights in Ireland and across the EU. We are particularly pleased to partner with the ICCL and with Ireland’s top specialists to undertake this ground-breaking work.” Mark Kelly, the Director of the Irish Council for Civil Liberties, who becomes the FRANET Senior Legal Expert for Ireland, said: “We are delighted to have this opportunity to work with the ICHR to ensure that the EU’s Fundamental Rights Agency has legally accurate and up-to-date information about the state of human rights in Ireland. We also look forward to spreading the word about the important evidence-based research published by the FRA.” Research will focus on a number of thematic areas. These include: access to justice; victims of crime, including compensation to victims; respect for private life and protection of personal data; Roma integration; judicial cooperation; rights of the child; discrimination; asylum, immigration and borders; racism, xenophobia and related intolerance.   ENDS

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Become Scientists for a Day with NUI Galway

Become Scientists for a Day with NUI Galway -image

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Following the huge success of their respective roadshows, Cell EXPLORERS, Eco EXPLORERS and Kitchen Chemistry based in NUI Galway, are joining forces to host a day of fun science-related activities for children aged 7 to 13 years on Thursday, 30 October. DNA extractions, colourful chemical reactions and live exotic animals will be part of this exciting programme. With Cell EXPLORERS, children will learn about the fascinating world of cells and DNA. They will then learn how to design an experiment to extract DNA from fruit that they can do at home with their parents! Kitchen Chemistry will teach children how to make their own glow sticks and how to grow crystals at home. Eco EXPLORERS will complete the day with an exciting display of live exotic animals, ranging from tarantulas to snakes and stick insects. All three workshops will be delivered by NUI Galway students and staff members, all of whom want to share their enthusiasm for science. The workshops will run from 10am to 3pm and the cost of attending is €10 per child, with discounts available for multiple bookings (€15 for 2 children, €20 for 3 children). To register, email cellexplorers@nuigalway.ie or or call 091 495748. Registration forms and payments will be organised on the day, from 9.30am to 10am. Places are limited, so early booking is advised. -Ends-

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NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Castlebar

NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Castlebar-image

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Secondary school students interested in NUI Galway are invited to an information evening in Castlebar on Thursday, 23 October. Parents and guardians are also particularly welcome to the event which runs from 7 to 9pm in the Harlequin Hotel, Castlebar, Co. Mayo. The evening will begin with short talks about NUI Galway and some of the 60 courses it offers. Afterwards, current students and NUI Galway staff will be on hand at information stands to answer any individual questions in relation to courses offered by the University and about 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 new programmes, developed in response to the changing needs of the employment market. Unique programmes include a Bachelor of Arts in Human Rights, an Energy Engineering degree which is taught in the University’s new Engineering Building, Ireland’s largest School of Engineering, and a Maths and Education degree aimed at training Maths teachers. Visitors to the information evening will also get information on NUI Galway’s newest degree programme, a BA in Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies, BA in Journalism, BA in Science (Physics- degree options in Applied, Astrophysics, Biomedical or Theoretical) and a Bachelor of Commerce (Gaeilge). Caroline Loughnane, Director of Marketing and Communications 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 Mayo, while also providing all the practical information on accommodation, CAO points, fees, scholarships and courses. With so many courses on offer, this event in Castlebar 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 Castlebar, contact NUI Galway's Schools Liaison Officer, Celine O’Donovan on 087 2391219 or celine.odonovan@nuigalway.ie. -Ends-

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NUI Galway Student Wins International Undergraduate Award

NUI Galway Student Wins International Undergraduate Award-image

Monday, 13 October 2014

Winners selected from almost 5,000 submissions from 200 institutions worldwide An NUI Galway student was awarded a 2014 Undergraduate Award - an international academic awards programme that identifies top students across the globe through their innovative undergraduate research. A further ten NUI Galway students were highly commended. Louisa Brophy Browne from Knocknacarra, Galway City was announced winner of the Undergraduate Award in the Classical Studies & Archaeology Category for her paper entitled Discuss and Evaluate the Main Points of the Debate on the Ethnics of Archaeological Work in War Zones and Occupied Territories Using Case Studies. Judged by a panel of academics and industry experts from each field, the winning essays were selected from almost 5000 submissions in over 200 colleges and universities across the globe. Congratulating Louise and the other highly-commended NUI Galway students, NUI Galway President, Dr Jim Browne said: “Louisa's success highlights the high quality of study which our undergraduate students are engaged in. Such success in these Awards will undoubtedly add lustre to the academic development of our students as well as underscore NUI Galway’s increasing profile as a centre of world-class research and teaching.”  Each winner is recognised as the top student in their respective field globally and will be awarded a gold medal of this achievement. Louisa, along with the 48 other UA winners, will be brought to Dublin for the UA Summit from 19-21 November to receive her medal. The Summit is designed to celebrate these outstanding students from across the world, and to inspire them with speakers assembled from a diverse range of backgrounds. For further information on the UA Summit and the results of the 2014 Undergraduate Awards, please see http://www.undergraduateawards.com. -Ends-

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Insight hosts major Workshop On ‘Controlled Natural Language’

Insight hosts major Workshop On ‘Controlled Natural Language’ -image

Monday, 13 October 2014

The Insight Centre for Data Analytics recently hosted a major international workshop in NUI Galway on ‘Controlled Natural Language’ that was attended by renowned experts in a field that is becoming increasingly important as a methodology for describing technical information related to web technologies. According to Dr Brian Davis of Insight, “The everyday or natural languages that humans use to communicate can be difficult for machines to understand as it is inherently ambiguous with for instance the same word having entirely different meanings in different contexts. So ‘Controlled Natural Language’ or CNL is designed to be a simplified language with restricted vocabulary, grammar, and semantics (meaning) which can be used to improve technical communication among humans, especially for non-native speakers of the respective natural language and is now commonly used in sectors such as ICT, localisaton, airline industries, global maritime among others. Applications include authoring and translating technical doucuments. It is about making it easier for computers to understand and to analyze documents faciliating for instance creating datababes or automatic translations into other languages.” Speakers at the workshop, that was sponsored by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), Eurosentiment (http://eurosentiment.eu/ ) and Digital Grammars, included Professor Marti A. Hearst of the University of California at Berkeley, Professor Aarne Ranta of the University of Gothenburg and Professor Johan Bos, Univeristy of Groningen. Co-organisers of the workshop were Dr Brian Davis (Insight), Dr Tobias Kuhn (ETH, Zurich) and Dr Kaarel Kalijurand (University of Zurich). The Insight Centre for Data Analytics, funded by Science Foundation Ireland, is a joint initiative between researchers at Dublin City University, NUI Galway, University College Cork, University College Dublin and other partner institutions. Insight brings together more than 200 researchers from these institutions, with over 30 industry partners, to position Ireland at the heart of global data analytics research. For further information, contact Dr Brian Davis at brian.davis@insight-centre.org. -Ends-

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8x8 Festival Brings Global Perspectives to Irish Campuses

8x8 Festival Brings Global Perspectives to Irish Campuses-image

Friday, 10 October 2014

This October and November, the 8x8 Festival will be taking place on campuses in NUI Galway, UCC, UCD, TCD and DCU. 8x8 is a development focused arts festival, presented by Suas Educational Development and University campus partners. The festival is designed to raise awareness and challenge student’s perspectives of some of the key issues that are shaping our world today. A national survey of third level students conducted by Suas in 2012 found that 85% of students think it is important to take action on global development issues; yet only one in five believed that they could influence decisions affecting our world. This festival was born out of a need to inspire action amongst student and youth populations. In 2014 over 2,500 people attended the 8x8 Film Festival and for this year’s Festival we are expecting an increase in interest. The 8x8 exhibition touches the surface of what is currently happening worldwide. The exhibition and associated events bring together elements that we believe are key to achieving sustainable development and global justice. The exhibition begins with a focus on consumerism, its impact on people and the environment and the rising competition for natural resources. It continues with a glimpse into innovative solutions to development challenges before focusing on education and its role in sustainable development. Finally, it puts a lens to the topic of human rights, and people’s participation in democracy. The festival was launched recently, and will run in NUI Galway the week of October 13th, after which it will tour to DCU, UCC and finally UCD. Each campus will host the outdoor photo exhibit as well as a number of events including speaker events, discussions and film screenings, drawing out the themes of the festival. To find out more about the films, and to book free tickets for the festival, visit www.stand.ie/8x8. The 8x8 Film Festival is funded by Irish Aid and Europe Aid, and is part of the Irish and European Global Campus Programme. In NUI Galway it is part of the new Societies Global Week which runs from the 13th-17th of October  The themes for the week are: Celebrating Difference, Being Kind to The Planet & Understanding Global Issues. The timetable can be viewed on www.socs.nuigalway.ie.  There is a Global Fair on Monday 13th in the Bailey Allen Hall which will be transformed into a Global Village from 12pm-4pm.  Highlights will include Games from around the world - Storytelling - Short Films - Cakes of the World - Free Veggie Pizza - How to build a Water Purification System - Bicycle checks - Pétanque - Free tours - Food from all over the Globe - Dance - Stalls...and our community partners will be involved highlighting and raising awareness of global and green issues. ENDS Tugann Féile 8x8 léargais domhanda do hollscoileanna na hÉireann   Beidh an féile 8x8 ar siúl an Deireadh Fómhair agus Samhain seo i gcampas OÉ Gaillimh, UCC, UCD, TCD agus DCU. Féile na healaíona í dírithe ar forbairt idirnáisiúnta, a chur i láthair ag Suas Educational Development agus a bpáirtnéirí na hollscoile. Bhí an fhéile a cruthaíodh chun feasacht a ardú agus dúshlán a chur ar na mic léinn faoina príomh-shaincheisteanna ár ndomhan sa lá atá inniu. Thug Suas faoi deara tríd suirbhé náisiúnta i 2012 gur cheap 85% na mic léinn go bhfuil sé an-thábhactach chun gníomh a ghlacadh ar saincheisteanna forbartha domhanda; afach, ní chreideann ach duine as gach cúigear go bhfuil siad ábalta tionchar a chur ar na cinntí a théann i bhfeidhm ár ndomhan. Rugadh an féile seo amach as an gá chun gníomh a spreagadh i measc pobal na mac léinn agus an óige. Bhí níos mó ná 2,500 duine i láthair ar an féile i 2014 agus bímid ag súil le méadú an bhliain seo. Léiríonn an taispeántas 8x8 dúinn cuid de na rudaí ag tarlú ar fud an domhain faoi láthair. Tugann an taispeánas agus na imeachtaí a bhaineann leo heilimintí go bhfuil lárnach le forbairt inbhuanaithe agus ceartais dhomhanda le chéile. Thosaigh an taispeántas le díriú ar an tomhaltachas, a thionchar ar dhaoine agus ar an gcomhshaol agus leis an iomaíocht ag ardú le haghaidh acmhainní nádúrtha. Leanann sé ar aghaigh le léargas ar réitigh nuálacha le dúshláin forbartha roimh díriú ar oideachas agus ar a ról i bhforbairt inbhuanaithe. Ar deireadh, cuireann sé lionsa ar an ábhar ar chearta an duine, agus rannpháirtíocht na ndaoine sa daonlathas Beidh an Féile ar seoladh ar campas TCD ar an 6 Deireadh Fómhair, ar campas OÉ Gaillimh ar an 13 Deireadh Fómhair le haghaidh Seachtain an Domhain ina dhiaidh sin a mbeidh sé ar camchuairt go DCU, UCC agus ar deireadh UCD. Beidh gach gcampas a óstáil an taispeántas grianghraf amuigh faoin aer chomh maith le roinnt imeachtaí, le imeachtaí cainteoir  díospóireachtaí agus scannáin san áireamh, téamaí na féile ag tarraingt amach. Chun a fháil amach níos mó faoi na scannáin, agus chun ticéid saor in aisce don fhéile a chur in áirithe, cuairt a thabhairt ar www.stand.ie/8x8. Bíonn an Féile 8x8 a maoiníodh le Irish Aid agus Europe Aid, agus bíonn sé i bpáirt mar chuid de The Irish and European Global Campus Programme.

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Innovative New Resources to Support Mental Health in Galway

Innovative New Resources to Support Mental Health in Galway-image

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Galway Senior Hurler Fergal Moore was at NUI Galway this week to launch a new series of cards promoting ‘Art and Positive Mental Health’. His visit also saw the official start of Mental Health Week at NUI Galway and the announcement of a new online resource for students, Student Health101. Student Health101 is a dynamic, continuously updated, monthly digital magazine for students, providing new information on nutrition, relationships, fitness and recipes every month for free. Widely available throughout the US and Canada, NUI Galway is the first third-level institute in Ireland to offer this resource, customised and edited for NUI Galway students. It includes student videos and comments from NUI Galway students as well as information about local events and resources available. There is also a parents’ edition, to help parents keep informed in order to better support their students. The ‘Art and Positive Mental Health’ set of cards list five simple steps to maintaining mental health and wellbeing. The size of a business-card, they will be available across campus. Sponsored by the Mental Health Association Galway, supported by Mental Health Services, HSE West and NUI Galway Health Promotion Service, the cards also feature original art by service users of the Céim Eile Day Centre and Service Users from Galway Training Centre, Merlin Park. At NUI Galway, Mental Health Week runs until Friday and features a range of opportunities to maintain one’s mental health. Students and staff can try meditation or laughter yoga, or enjoy ‘Laughter is the Best Medicine’, a lunchtime comedy session. The show features an hilarious hour of entertainment from storyteller, comic and author Rab Fulton, who is also the editor of the NUI Galway health and resilience blog http://riskybizzness.blogspot.ie/ According to Cindy Dring, NUI Galway Health Promotion Coordinator, “Mental health underpins all health and wellbeing, and helps us to enjoy life more, so we all need to protect and strengthen our mental health every day. Find out what helps you to feel happier, and then do it!” On Saturday, 11 October at 10am, NUI Galway, in association with the Kingfisher Club, will host its second annual charity 8K Run/Walk. The route consists of a traffic-free, mixed terrain run around the University’s campus and along the banks of the river Corrib. The official charity partner for this event is Jigsaw Galway and coincides with global events around World Mental Health Day. ENDS

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