Major New Book Examines Celtic Tiger Cinema

Major New Book Examines Celtic Tiger Cinema-image

Monday, 14 November 2011

Irish cinema has enjoyed unprecedented commercial and critical success over the past ten years, including Oscar nominated and winning films and box office hits internationally. A new book, Contemporary Irish Film: New Perspectives on a National Cinema, co-edited by Seán Crosson of the Huston School of Film & Digital Media, NUI Galway with Werner Huber of the University of Austria, brings together scholars from Ireland and abroad to provide insiders’ as well as outsiders’ perspectives on the situation of Irish film in a period of a socio-economic sea change: the years of the so-called Celtic Tiger.   According to Seán Crosson: “The unprecedented economic growth and immigration that Ireland experienced between 1995 and 2007 did not only challenge national but also ethnic, social and gender identities. The contributions to this volume explore how films tackle these challenges and help to make sense of Ireland’s altered position in a globalised world.”   Included in the collection are contributions from leading and emerging researchers of Irish film, including: Ruth Barton, TCD; Tony Tracy, Huston School of Film & Digital Media; NUI Galway, Díóg O’Connell, Institute of Art, Design, Technology, Dun Laoghaire; and Eduardo Barros Grela University A Coruña, Galicia, Spain. The book is completed by an interview with award-winning director Lenny Abrahamson, and his collaborator, screenwriter and actor Mark O’Halloran.   Among the films discussed in the publication are some of the most successful Irish films of recent years, from Oscar winning and box office success Once (2006), to critically acclaimed works such as Adam & Paul (2004), Garage (2007), and The Secret of Kells (2009). The volume also includes a consideration of the work of Oscar-winning director and writer Neil Jordan.   Contemporary Irish Film: New Perspectives on a National Cinema will be launched by Lenny Abrahamson and Mark O’Halloran on Thursday, 24 November at 5pm in the Huston School of Film & Digital Media, NUI Galway, and all are welcome.   ENDS

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NUI Galway Home to Exclusive Archive Surrounding the Northern Ireland ‘Troubles’

NUI Galway Home to Exclusive Archive Surrounding the Northern Ireland ‘Troubles’ -image

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Launch of the Brendan Duddy Collection and Symposium on ‘Negotiating Peace’ During three extended periods between 1973 and 1993 the British government was involved in intensive secret contact with the IRA leadership through the same intermediary, Brendan Duddy, a businessman from Derry. During the first period Duddy’s home was the venue for a series of secret meetings in 1975 between the IRA leadership and senior British officials. During the second period, in 1980-81, Duddy was at the centre of intricate negotiations aimed at resolving the hunger strikes, and between 1990 and 1993 he was intensely active in contacts between the British government and the IRA. The launch of the Brendan Duddy Archive will take place on Tuesday, 22 November at NUI Galway following a half-day symposium Negotiating Peace.   Deposited at NUI Galway in 2009, the papers of Brendan Duddy provide a unique insight into the resolution of the ‘Troubles’. The archive includes coded diaries of contact as well as messages exchanged between the British Government and the Provisional Republican leadership.   The Duddy papers are directly related to the papers of Ruairí Ó Brádaigh, former President of Sinn Féin, which are also held in the James Hardiman Library at NUI Galway. Together these archives constitute one of the most important sources for understanding the attempts to resolve conflict in Ireland that culminated in the Good Friday Agreement of 1998.   Speaking about the Brendan Duddy Collection, Dr Niall Ó Dochartaigh, Lecturer in Politics at NUI Galway, said: “The papers of Brendan Duddy provide a unique insight into the resolution of the 'Troubles'. At a time when there is intense public debate on the value of negotiation with armed opponents in situations such as Afghanistan and Israel/Palestine, the Duddy papers provide a rare insight into the dynamics of back-channel negotiation that can help us to understand the role of secret negotiation in efforts to resolve conflict in other situations.”   The archive also includes several hours of filmed footage of interviews with Brendan Duddy by Dr Niall Ó Dochartaigh. The interviews cover the key historical events in which Brendan Duddy was involved. A series of articles published recently by Dr Ó Dochartaigh analyse the character of this secret communication and illustrate how the Duddy papers shed new light on key events in the Northern Ireland conflict and the peace process. They include articles recently published or shortly to be published in international academic journals including the Journal of Peace Research, International Journal of Conflict Management and Dynamics of Asymmetric Conflict as well as the Field Day Review of Irish Studies.   Dr Ó Dochartaigh added: “The papers illustrate the extraordinary pressures operating at this pivotal intersection between the British Government and the Provisional Republican leadership. They show the remarkable persistence and consistency of Brendan Duddy’s conviction that the conflict could only be ended through a negotiated settlement that included the Provisionals. From the early 1970s Brendan Duddy worked determinedly and in complete secrecy to try to draw the two sides closer together, a lifetime’s work that eventually came to fruition in the negotiated settlement of the late 1990s.”   The symposium Negotiating Peace, organised in association with the launch of the private papers of Brendan Duddy, brings together prominent figures from the worlds of academia, diplomacy and the media to explore key questions surrounding the negotiated settlement of violent conflicts, drawing in particular on the experience of negotiation in the Irish peace process.   Speaking at the symposium will be BBC investigative reporter Peter Taylor, one of the most experienced and respected journalists to have reported on Northern Ireland; Seán Ó hUiginn, a former senior Irish diplomat who was deeply involved in the Irish government contribution to the peace process; former senior British government official Michael Oatley, a central figure involved in attempts to negotiate a peaceful settlement of the Northern Ireland conflict; and Professor Paul Arthur, Honorary Associate at the International Conflict Research Centre (INCORE), former Professor of Politics and Director of the Graduate Programme in Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Ulster.   Research on the papers involves collaboration between NUI Galway’s School of Political Science and Sociology and the University of Ulster’s International Conflict Research Centre (INCORE) and both institutions will collaborate to make a selection of primary documents from the collection freely available online through CAIN (the University of Ulster’s Conflict Archive on the Internet) and NUI Galway’s library website.   John Cox, University Librarian at NUI Galway, commented: “The deposit of the papers at NUI Galway is thanks to the generosity and kindness of Brendan Duddy and his family who placed a great deal of trust in the University and its archive services to take care of the papers. This is a very significant addition to our archival collections and we are delighted to make it available to researchers following a detailed process to organise and list the collection. We will ensure the safe keeping of Brendan Duddy’s papers for future generations of scholars and researchers.”   The donation will be held in the James Hardiman Library at NUI Galway, home to a range of theatre, literary, historical and political archives. Collections include the archives of the Druid and Lyric Players theatres and of Taibhdhearc na Gaillimhe; the literary papers of John McGahern and Thomas Kilroy; the Huston Archive and original documents relating to the foundation of the Gaelic Athletic Association and the Northern Ireland 'Troubles'.   To register for the symposium see www.conference.ie     ENDS

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RTÉ Broadcaster Reaches Out to Fellow Galway Grads

RTÉ Broadcaster Reaches Out to Fellow Galway Grads-image

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

RTÉ Broadcaster Sean O’Rourke and NUI Galway have joined forces for a new University initiative to re-establish contact with its graduates.  The University is using a novel combination of web video and text messaging to reach out to its alumni and highlight the benefits of keeping in touch.  O’Rourke has recorded a short web video appeal which will feature on www.nuigalway.ie/alumni-friends/get-in-touch explaining how easy it is to get back in touch with the University, and asking those who see it to pass on the message.  Graduates, he explains, are simply being asked to text the word GRAD, followed by a space, and the year of their graduation, to 51000.  “The Alumni office in NUI Galway”, says O’Rourke, “will then get in touch and re-establish contact.” A native of Portlaoise who grew up in Galway, Seán completed a BA in English, History and Legal Science at NUI Galway, graduating in 1977. Seán was awarded the 2006 NUI Galway Alumni AIB Award for Literature, Communications and the Arts, and is the founding chairperson of the Alumni Association’s Dublin Club. He first joined RTÉ in 1982 as presenter/reporter in Radio News features. He was Political correspondent with the Irish Press between 1984 and 1989, when he returned to RTÉ as Programme Editor/Presenter, working on the News at One, Morning Ireland and This Week. Since 1995, Seán has been presenter of the News at One. In 2003, Seán began presenting The Week in Politics, a weekly review of political events on RTÉ One. He was Radio Journalist of the Year in 1997 and won PPI Awards for News Broadcaster of the year in 2008, 2009 and 2010. Seán was also conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa) earlier this year by NUI Galway. O’Rourke himself believes maintaining contact with the college is worthwhile, “I am involved with the Dublin branch of the NUI Galway Alumni” he said, “and it is a terrific way to stay connected.  We have different events, talks, evenings at the theatre, concerts, and we would simply like as many people as possible to enjoy the wonderful sense of connection and camaraderie that involvement with the Alumni association brings.”  O’Rourke explained that there are Alumni branches around the country as well as abroad and that graduates of all ages are made welcome. He added that those who spread the word would be entered into a draw the win the latest iPad on offer or a weekend away at the g Hotel.   ENDS

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One Hundred Years Later, a New Museum Guide

One Hundred Years Later, a New Museum Guide-image

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Only two tattered copies remain of the original Zoology Museum catalogue, published in 1911 by UCG, now known as NUI Galway. One hundred years later, Éamon de Buitléar has officially launched a completely new version of the booklet at a special ceremony on campus.   The Zoology and Marine Biology Museum is housed in the Ryan Institute at NUI Galway, and currently has over 500 specimens on display from a broad range of animal groups. Specimens include native animals as well as more exotic creatures, including stuffed monkeys, koalas, kiwis and the intriguing kangaroo rat.   The museum’s origins go back to the formation of the University in 1849, with many of the specimens coming from the Zoological Society of London. By 1899 it was among the best working museums of its kind to be found in any university of the time. The previous information booklet, called ‘A Catalogue of the Specimens’ was produced by Professor R. J. Anderson in 1911.   Speaking at the special ceremony on campus this week, the well-known wildlife filmmaker, Éamon de Buitléar, said: “To see this fine museum and launch this booklet is an absolute pleasure.  For many of us, the way we lead our lives today means we are getting further and further away from nature. This museum is a valuable resource and portal into our past, and an introduction into the wonders of nature.” One of the highlights of the museum is its possession of four genuine Charles Darwin specimens that were purchased from the Zoological Society of London. These consist of three mammal specimens: a grison, a cavy and an Azara’s fox; and one bird specimen, a guira cuckoo. All four specimens are native South American species and were collected on Charles Darwin’s trip aboard HMS Beagle from 1831-1836. Another special collection housed in the museum consists of over 100 ‘Blaschka models’. The father-and-son team of Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka produced beautiful, intricate glass representations of marine animals, originally developed as educational models. They are now considered to be works of art, with a value that makes them irreplaceable. “Our museum is a time capsule taking us back to the days of Darwin and other great adventurers who travelled the world collecting exotic species” said Wallace Arthur, Professor of Zoology. “This museum is part of the University, but also belongs very much to Galway and the public. We welcome visitors and encourage them to spend as much time as they wish studying the specimens in whatever way is appropriate for their needs – very different needs for different groups, for example biologists, artists and laypeople.” Free and open to the public daily, the museum attracts large numbers of visitors, ranging from the general public to school parties to visiting researchers and academics.   The museum collection is used extensively in practical classes for Zoology students. The material allows the students to examine characteristic features of species and broader taxonomic groupings at first hand.   -ends-

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European Award for Business Information Systems Programme at NUI Galway

European Award for Business Information Systems Programme at NUI Galway -image

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Highest international standards for business and management education    NUI Galway has been awarded EPAS* accreditation for its Business and Information Systems Programme. Awarded by the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD), this accreditation confirms that the BSc in Business Information Systems (BIS) meets the highest international standards for business and management education.  Achieving the accreditation is a major feat for the course, being only one of eight European undergraduate programmes to receive the five-year award.   Speaking at the formal launch of the EPAS accreditation in the J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics, President of the NUI Galway, Dr Jim Browne, said: “This is a tremendous endorsement of the activities of our Business School.  As one of only eight European universities to receive this quality mark, we in NUI Galway are proud of this acknowledgement of the quality of our business education programmes, and in particular the BIS degree programme.”   Business Information Systems is a four-year undergraduate degree that explores the use of technology in the modern business environment.  Incorporating skills development in technology, business and technology management through individual, team and virtual team project work combined with global learning and industry engagement initiatives.  Martin Hughes, Programme Director of the BSc BIS highlighted: “The BSc. BIS degree provides students with the ideal platform for a successful career in business - over 70% of the 2011 class were in career employment by graduation.”   Dr Chris Coughlan, Head of Cloud Computing Innovation Centre, Hewlett-Packard Galway, in welcoming the five-year accreditation, said: “The input of industry into the development and design of the programme has really paid off and the interaction between local and national employers and the J.E. Cairnes School of Business & Economics was particularly well received by the international peer review team. The practical effect of this interaction with industry and business is that it ensures that BIS at NUIG is ahead of the curve not only meeting their current needs but anticipating their future needs.”   NUI Galway staff, students and various industry figures attended the EPAS launch, recognising that the award signifies the quality of BIS programme graduates and their career progression globally.  The accreditation now recognises and reinforces, on an international stage, the strength of the programme and the esteem with which it is held in industry.   ENDS

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Employment Law and Mental Health Topic for NUI Galway Conference

Employment Law and Mental Health Topic for NUI Galway Conference-image

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

The School of Law in association with the Employment Law Association of Ireland will host the inaugural conference for the new LLM in International and Comparative Disability Law and Policy, entitled ‘Employment Law and Mental Health’, on Saturday, 12 November.    The conference, organised by the Centre for Disability Law and Policy and the Clinical Legal Education programme in conjunction with the Employment Lawyers Association of Ireland will address the issue of Employment Law and Mental Health in Ireland while also addressing the topic from a legal and medical perspective.    Shivaun Quinlivan, Director of the LLM in International and Comparative Disability Law and Policy, says: “This interdisciplinary approach will assist each discipline in gaining a broader understanding of the important issues that need to be addressed, which is indicative of the holistic philosophy at the core of this new LLM programme.”   The conference is aimed at legal practitioners, medical practitioners, academics, researchers, NGO’s and those involved in mental health and disability issues.    Mental Health can cover numerous issues from work related stress, post-traumatic stress disorder, or mental health problems including, for example, depression.  Employers have legal obligations and requirements in respect of these employees, and it is important to understand the various issues, both legal and medical that arise in this context.   The conference will be chaired by Dr Mary Keys of the School of Law, NUI Galway, who is the public representative on the Mental Health Commission. The conference will bring together nationally renowned experts in their respective fields, including Marguerite Bolger Senior Counsel, and Dr Ann Jeffers Consultant psychiatrist.     The conference will take place in MY243 Theatre, Áras Moyola, NUI Galway and will commence at 10am. There will be Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points available to those who are eligible and a Certificate of Attendance will be provided after the Conference.   For further information, including the conference programme, registration and a list of speakers, see www.nuigalway.ie/cdlp/events.html.   ENDS  

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NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Tipperary

NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Tipperary-image

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Secondary school students interested in NUI Galway are invited to an information evening in Tipperary on Thursday, 17 November. Parents and guardians are also particularly welcome to the event which runs from 7 to 9pm in the Anner Hotel, Thurles, Co. Tipperary. 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, including an Energy Engineering degree 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 which is brand new for 2012. “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 Tipperary, while also providing all the practical information on accommodation, CAO points, fees, scholarships and courses. With so many courses on offer, this event in Thurles is a perfect opportunity to meet current students and our lecturers to see what degree might be the right fit”, says Caroline Loughnane, Director of Marketing and Communications at NUI Galway. To find out more about the information evening in Tipperary, contact NUI Galway's Schools Liaison Office, Siobhán Dorman, Schools Liaison Office on 086 042 1591 or siobhan.dorman@nuigalway.ie. -Ends-

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NUI Galway Student Receives Hamilton Award

NUI Galway Student Receives Hamilton Award-image

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

NUI Galway Applied Mathematics student, Fionnuala Connolly, was recently awarded a 2011 Hamilton Award in Mathematics by the Royal Irish Academy (RIA). Awards were presented to students of Mathematics in nine of the higher education institutions in Ireland. Fionnuala from Knocknackarra, Galway, is currently in her final year of study for the Bachelor of Science in Applied Mathematics and was assessed along with all third-year students in all mathematical degrees taught in NUI Galway. She was judged to be the most outstanding candidate, based on her examination results in her mathematics courses. Congratulating Fionnuala on the award, Professor Michel Destrade, Head of Applied Mathematics at NUI Galway, said: “We are delighted that Fionnuala won the Award this year. It was well deserved because she was indeed an exceptional student, not only in Applied Maths but also in Pure Maths. We were also impressed that seven of the nine Hamilton awardees were female students. This reflects well on studies which show that in general girls perform better than boys in secondary school Maths, although only a minority of them choose to pursue a Degree in Mathematics, Physics, or Engineering.” The recipients of the Hamilton Award in Mathematics received a scroll presented by Fields Medallist Professor Howard Witten from the Princeton Institute of Advanced Studies, who then delivered the 2011 Hamilton Lecture. The announcement of the awards formed part of Hamilton Day activities at the RIA which celebrate Hamilton's life and contribution to mathematics, on the day after the anniversary of his famed ‘Quaternion walk’.   -Ends-

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NUI Galway Awards 32 New Sports Scholarships

NUI Galway Awards 32 New Sports Scholarships-image

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

At a special ceremony in the University last night (Monday, 7 November), 32 new recipients of NUI Galway student Sports Scholarships were presented by President, Dr Jim Browne.  This brings the total number of students receiving sports scholarships at NUI Galway to 60. Recipients this year include Jennifer Byrne who was part of the Irish Women’s soccer team that reached the quarter finals of the FIFA World Cup this summer in Trinidad and Tobago. Mervue United Goalkeeper, Gerard Hanley is among those to receive a Soccer Scholarship. Gerard was recently called up the Irish U21 squad, and his sister Marion is a past recipient of a Tennis Scholarship at NUI Galway. Dean Higgins and Billy Lane, members of the Galway All-Ireland Minor Hurling winning team, were among those presented with hurling Scholarships, while Joss Moore was part of the U21 Football Galway team that took this years All-Ireland title. European Junior Silver medallist in Kickboxing, Desmond Leonard will be preparing for the World Championships later this year, while Heather Cary will be lining out for the Connacht and NUI Galway Ladies Rugby teams. A number of the new scholarship holders will be targeting the 2016 and 2020 Olympics in their careers such as Kevin McGlade and Ruairí McGeever from Swimming, Freddie Timmins, Hockey and Archer Darren Wallace. Also presented at the ceremony were two Gaelic Football Scholarships sponsored by Cadbury’s for outstanding U21 Footballers as part of their sponsorship of the U21 Football Championship.  This year’s recipients are Gary Sweeney and Éinne Ó hEochaidh. NUI Galway Elite Sports Development Officer, former Olympic Sprinter and former Director of Coaching for Athletics Ireland, Gary Ryan, said:  “The NUI Galway Sports Scholarship scheme has a broad range of extremely talented young athletes and over the past number of years we have put in place excellent supports that have helped many of our students improve their performance significantly and to attain enormous success both in their sporting career and at the same time receiving an excellent education. Receiving this scholarship is a fantastic opportunity for these students as they will have access to some of the best people working in sport in Ireland.” Scholarship benefits include a subsistence grant, coaching, medical and physiotherapy support, performance nutrition and performance psychology, strength and conditioning as well as performance planning and mentoring.  Each Scholarship is built around the individuals needs and their chosen sport. NUI Galway Sports Scholarships awardees: Rugby: Heather Cary from Ontario, Canada Soccer: Gerard Cheevers from Carnmore, Co. Galway Soccer: Jennifer Byrne from Athlone, Co. Westmeath Soccer: Gerard Hanley from Barna, Co. Galway Soccer: Joe Woods from Ballinasloe, Co. Galway Soccer: Brian Gaffney from Salthill, Galway city Soccer: Cian McBrien from Knocknacarra, Galway city Soccer: Cian Fadden from Knocknacarra, Galway city Gaelic Football: Eilish Ward from Mountcharles, Co. Donegal Golf: Enda Cradock from Gort, Co. Galway Hockey: Freddie Timmins from Circular Road, Galway city Kickboxing: Desmond Leonard from Riverstown, Co. Sligo Swimming: Kevin McGlade from Knocknacarra, Galway city Swimming: Ruairí McGeever from Derrycastle, Co. Tipperary Basketball: James Brophy from Knocknacarra, Galway city Basketball: Kenneth Hansberry from Tuam, Co. Galway Basketball: Eabhnait Scanlon from Listowel, Co. Kerry Camogie: Chloe Morey from Sixmilebridge, Co. Clare Gaelic Football: Jason Doherty from Newport, Co. Mayo Gaelic Football: Greg Higgins from Tuam, Co. Galway Gaelic Football: Joss Moore from Mountbellew, Co. Galway Gaelic Football: Sean Moran from Claregalway, Co. Galway Hurling: Gerard O’Donoghue from Gort, Co. Galway Hurling: Colm Galvin from Clonlara, Co. Clare Hurling: Dean Higgins from Castlegar, Co. Galway Hurling: Billy Lane from Kilcolgan, Co. Galway Rowing: Sean O’Connor from Daingean, Co. Offaly Rowing: Cliona Hurst from Ballinasloe, Co. Galway Rowing: Richard Bennett from Renmore, Galway city Archery: Darren Wallace from Portlaoise, Co. Laois Cadburys/ GAA U21 Football Scholarship Gary Sweeney from Ballinasloe, Co. Galway Éinne Ó hEochaidh from Spiddal, Co. Galway   -ENDS-

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Volunteers Needed for Galway Science and Technology Festival Exhibition

Volunteers Needed for Galway Science and Technology Festival Exhibition-image

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Volunteers are being sought to support the 14thannual Galway Science and Technology Festival Exhibition, a free, family-oriented event taking place at NUI Galway on Sunday, 27 November. The organising committee and NUI Galway are looking for 100 volunteers to help out on the day. At the event, hundreds of scientists, engineers and business innovators will showcase their work at over 60 interactive stands representing areas including research, education, industry and the environment. Visitors to the Exhibition will be able to participate in experiments, watch demonstrations, and discuss ideas with researchers from NUI Galway and GMIT as well as industry representatives from the festival’s main sponsor Medtronic and others such as Boston Scientific, CISCO, Hewlett Packard, Avaya, Covidien, SAP, Lake Region and Creganna. Different exhibits will allow the public to learn more about topics such as life-saving medical devices, renewable energy, IT in the future, kitchen chemistry, and much, much more. NUI Galway’s museums will all be open on the day, and the popular 3D tour of the universe makes a welcome return. Dean of Science at NUI Galway, Professor Tom Sherry, commented: “We are delighted to have the Galway Science and Technology Festival Exhibition returning to the grounds of NUI Galway for the second year in a row. Last year’s event was a huge success, and this year the main area that we have been working hard on improving is in better dealing with the large numbers of visitors that we are expecting. For this purpose, we are inviting anyone who is interested to volunteer some of their time on the 27th, to help us get people around to all of the different activities that will be spread across the NUI Galway campus.” “We eagerly look forward to the active participation of the NUI Galway volunteers force to making this an outstanding success again”, said Tom Hyland Galway Science and Technology Festival Chairman. A science and technology background is not required to volunteer as information and training will be given in advance of the event. To sign up for volunteering please contact william.brennan@nuigalway.ie . For general information on the Festival see www.galwayscience.ie and to pre-book the shows for the Exhibition visit www.galwayscience.eventbrite.com Ends

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