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Major US Research Award for Professor Frank Barry
Thursday, 5 January 2012
One of Ireland’s leading scientists working in the field of stem cell therapy is to receive the 2012 Marshall R. Urist Award for Excellence in Tissue Regeneration Research. Professor Frank Barry, Director of the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science (NCBES) at the National University of Ireland, Galway, is to be given the award by the Orthopaedic Research Society. This is the first time the award will go a scientist working outside of the US. The Marshall R. Urist, MD Award was created in 1996 and is sponsored by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. This prestigious award honours an investigator who has established him/herself as a cutting-edge researcher in tissue regeneration research, and has done so with a sustained ongoing body of focused research in the area of tissue regeneration as it relates to the musculoskeletal system. The award is named after Dr Marshall R. Urist (1914-2001) who carried out pioneering studies on bone induction and the identification of bone morphogenetic protein, or BMP, which revolutionised orthopaedic medicine. Harry A. McKellop, Chair of the Awards and Recognition Committee of the Orthopaedic Research Society, said: “The Urist Award honours investigators who have made significant contributions to research in tissue regeneration. It is presented to Professor Barry in recognition of his outstanding achievements in the field of cell mediated therapies in bone and joint repair, and the impact of his research on improving the understanding of tissue regeneration and joint metabolism.” Professor Frank Barry, who is from Cobh, Co.Cork, moved to the US in 1990 to work with Osiris Therapeutics, based in Baltimore, which is now one of the leading companies engaged in the development of stem cell therapies. In 2004 he moved back to Ireland, as Scientific Director of the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at NUI Galway, a role he continues to hold. He took over as Director of NCBES in 2009, and oversees 70 academic investigators and 300 researchers as they develop innovative diagnostic and therapeutic solutions in the areas of Biomedical Engineering, Cancer, Neuroscience, and Regenerative Medicine. Commenting on the announcement, Professor Barry said: “It is an extraordinary honour for me personally to receive this award and I am very grateful to the Orthopaedic Research Society for recognising the research I have been involved in over the last number of years. I am fully aware that research of this nature involves teams of scientists and I have been very fortunate to work with many talented and innovative researchers in the US and especially now at NUI Galway.” The Marshall R. Urist Award includes an honorarium of $5,000 and a commemorative plaque, which will be presented to Professor Barry during the 2012 Annual Meeting of the ORS in San Francisco, on 6 February. Professor Barry will join the company of previous distinguished recipients, including Drs. Ernesto Canalis, A. Hari Redi, Arnold Caplan, Richard Coutts, Thomas Einhorn, Steven Goldstein, Rocky Tuan, Farshid Guilak, Chris Evans, Vicky Rosen and Jay Lieberman.
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Sports Talk Looks at Scoring Technology in GAA
Monday, 9 January 2012
The next talk in the NUI Galway public talk series on Sports Technology will take place on Tuesday, 17 January at 6pm. Entitled A score or not a score – that is the question! Score detection and other technologies in Gaelic games, soccer and other field sport, the talk will be delivered by Liam Kilmartin, Lecturer with the School of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway. According to Liam Kilmartin: “From Geoff Hurst in 1966 to Frank Lampard in 2010, the inability to determine whether valid goals have been scored in soccer has generated much press and debate. Similar discourse has erupted at times in GAA circles particularly relating to hurling where determination of valid point scores is often even more challenging due to the speed and height of the sliotar.” The talk will initially focus on the challenge of score detection in a number of sports, and will examine technologies which have been proposed for use in both soccer and Gaelic sports, ranging from a prototype system developed for the GAA in the late 1990s to contemporary systems such as Hawkeye and other candidates for ‘goal line technology’ currently being considered by FIFA. The second half of the talk will examine in a broader sense how modern communication and sensor technology is being used in team sports such as soccer, GAA, Australian football and rugby to aid in monitoring player performance both in training and during actual games. The final portion of the talk will examine possible future technologies which could help with player’s mental focus, possibly determining when they are in the zone and hence ready mentally to perform at an optimal level. Liam Kilmartin, an NUI Galway Engineering graduate, has been a Lecturer in Electronic Engineering at the University since 1994. His research interests include signal and image processing algorithms and applications and wireless and mobile communication technology. He was one of two Principle Investigators on a GAA/Enterprise Ireland (formerly Forbairt) co-funded project which ran from 1998 to 2002. The project focused on the development of technology to facilitate automated score detection in hurling. In recent years, his research interests have also focussed on how advanced technologies such as GPS, wireless communications and signal analysis can be applied to maximise athletes’ physical and mental conditioning. The free public talk will take place in room ENG-3035 in the Engineering Building at NUI Galway. The series of Sports Technology talks is being organised as part of NUI Galway’s degree programme in Sports & Exercise Engineering, whose students are being educated to design the next generation of sports and exercise systems and devices. For more information on the Sports Technology talks, which are supported by Engineers Ireland (West), and the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, visit www.ExerciseEngineering.com or call 091 492728.
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NUI Galway opens the door of opportunity for basic computer training
Tuesday, 10 January 2012
NUI Galway is pleased to announce the launch of a new computer training initiative aimed at people categorised as digitally excluded. Working in partnership with Limerick Community Connect, DCU and Age Action Ireland, NUI Galway will deliver basic computer training to 400 people between January and June of 2012. ‘Click & Connect’ is funded by the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources and will be delivered by the Discipline of Information Technology at NUI Galway. All training will be provided without charge. Experienced tutors will introduce learners to the very basics of computers and teach them computer activities such as: surfing the web, setting up and using email, how to download photographs, how to access Government information on-line. Classes will be small and will be carried out in local, non-formal learning settings. Professor Gerry Lyons, Dean of the College of Engineering and Informatics, stated that there are thousands of people living in Ireland today who have been left behind when it comes to the internet. Referring to the new computer training initiative he said: “Older people will particularly benefit, as will unemployed people and disadvantaged groups in the Galway region. These people miss out on opportunities most people take for granted. For example, those not yet online cannot send emails, do internet searches for products or information, or conduct Government transactions online.” NUI Galway has designed training material suitable for beginners, with plenty of support and encouragement from the volunteer tutors. The training provided will be very basic and is intended as practical guidance for people with no prior experience of computers and the internet. Classes will be just two hours duration over three consecutive weeks and are a great opportunity to be part of this amazing digital world. If you would like more information on NUI Galway’s ‘Click and Connect’, or to register for the classes, please contact the co-ordinator Trish O’Connell in the Discipline of Information Technology at 087-0571967 or e-mail her at clickandconnect@nuigalway. Training begins the week of 16 January. ENDS
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NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Fermanagh
Monday, 9 January 2012
Secondary school students interested in NUI Galway are invited to an information evening in Enniskillen on Thursday, 19 January. Parents and guardians are also particularly welcome to the event which runs from 7 to 9pm in the Kellyhevlin Hotel, Enniskillen, Co. Fermanagh. 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 Fermanagh, while also providing all the practical information on accommodation, CAO points, fees, scholarships and courses. With so many courses on offer, this event in Enniskillen 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 Enniskillen, contact Gráinne Dunne, Schools Liaison Office at NUI Galway, on 087 2440858 or firstname.lastname@example.org. -Ends-
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NUI Galway Academics Appointed to Council of State
Wednesday, 11 January 2012
Professor Gerard Quinn, Director of the Centre for Disability Law and Policy and Professor Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh, Professor Emeritus in History have been appointed by President Michael D. Higgins to sit on the Council of State. Judge Catherine McGuinness, Adjunct Professor of Law has also been nominated by the President. Other nominees include Mr Michael Farrell, Professor Deirdre Heenan, Mr Ruairí McKiernan and Ms Sally Mulready. Professor Gerard Quinn Professor Gerard Quinn is the Director of the Centre for Disability Law and Policy at the NUI Galway School of Law. The Centre is part of a new Lifecourse Policy Research Institute at the University which researches policy innovation covering age, child and family as well as disability. He is a graduate of UCG (BA, LL.B.), was called to the Irish Bar in 1983 and holds a masters (LL.M.) and doctorate in law (S.J.D.) from Harvard Law School. His specialization is international and comparative disability law and policy. Professor Quinn led the delegation of Rehabilitation International (RI) at the UN Working Group that elaborated the new UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. He has worked in the European Commission and held a number of posts such as Director of Research at the Law Reform Commission and First Vice President of the European Committee of Social Rights (Council of Europe). He is a former member of the Irish Human Rights Commission. He voluntarily participates on a number of international boards dealing with disability law and policy issues. Professor Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh is Professor Emeritus in History and former Dean of Arts and Vice-President of NUI Galway. A former member of the Senate of the NUI and of the Irish-US Fulbright Commission, and a former Cathaoirleach of Údarás na Gaeltachta, Professor Ó Tuathaigh has published widely – in Irish and English – on many aspects of modern Irish history. Judge Catherine McGuinness Judge Catherine McGuinness was called to the Bar in 1977 and to the Inner Bar in 1989. She was a member of Seanad Éireann from 1979-82 and was a previous member of the Council of State from 1988-90. She served as a Judge of the Circuit Court from 1994-1996, of the High Court from 1996-2000 and of the Supreme Court from 2000-2006. From 2005-2011, she was President of the Law Reform Commission. She is currently the Adjunct Professor of Law at NUI Galway. Michael Farrell Michael Farrell is the senior solicitor with Free Legal Advice Centres. He was involved in the Civil Rights movement in Northern Ireland and is a former co-chairperson of the Irish Council for Civil Liberties. Michael was a member of the Irish Human Rights Commission from 2001 until last year and is currently the Irish member of the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance. He is also a member of the Human Rights Committee of the Law Society.Professor Deirdre Heenan Deirdre Heenan is Provost and Dean of Academic Development for the University of Ulster’s Magee Campus, where she a member of the Senior Management Team. She was appointed to a Lectureship in Policy Studies at the University of Ulster in 1995 and became a Professor in 2007. Professor Heenan is a co-founder and former co-director of the Northern Ireland Life and Times Survey which has become a key statistical resource for schools, academics and policy makers. Her particular areas of expertise are devolution, education and social care. In 2008-9 Deirdre spent nine-months working as a policy adviser in the Office of the First and Deputy First Minister. Last year she was appointed by Health Minister, Edwin Poots, to join the five strong panel of advisers to assist with the Review of Health and Social Care Services in Northern Ireland. Ruairí McKiernan Ruairí McKiernan is a community activist and social entrepreneur. He is the founder of the national youth organisation SpunOut.ie. He is also a founder and organiser of the Possibilities 2011 Social Summit. Ruairí is a business graduate and is a recipient of numerous awards including a Social Entrepreneurs Ireland Award, a Net Visionary Award, and a Junior Chambers International Award. After 8 years as CEO of SpunOut.ie, he recently stepped down to develop new social innovations. Sally Mulready Sally Mulready has made a huge contribution to the Irish emigrant community in Britain over many decades. She was born in Dublin and moved to Hackney, London with her mother in the 1970s. Sally is a local Labour councillor in the London Borough of Hackney since 1997. In her former capacity as the Secretary of the Federation of Irish Societies, Sally was involved in securing the Irish Government’s agreement for the creation and funding of five Survivor Outreach Services in Britain. She is also a founder member of the Irish Women’s Survivors Network and Director of the Irish Elderly Advice Network. Sally was prominently involved in the campaign to free the Birmingham Six and is currently active in the Magdalene Laundries issue.
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CAO Information Days for Mature Students at NUI Galway
Wednesday, 11 January 2012
NUI Galway will host two CAO Information Days on Thursday, 19and Friday, 20 January in the Arts Millennium Building on campus. These drop in sessionsare specific to mature students aged 23 (or over) who may not have had the opportunity of participating in third level studies previously and who are now considering embarking on this new journey. The information sessions will take place from 10am to 4pm each day. Information will be provided on all full-time degrees available to mature students at NUI Galway, the entry requirements for each degree and on how to fill your CAO application correctly and on the selection process itself. There will also be a focus on financial and other supports within the University during your time as a student. NUI Galway advises all mature students to apply through the CAO system, which has a closing deadline for applications of Wednesday, 1 February, 2012. In particular, mature Arts applicants should note that the MSAP Exam (Mature Students Admissions Pathway Exam) is required for entry to programmes in the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies degrees. Mature applicants for Arts degrees must apply firstly through the CAO before 1 February and then register on-line for the MSAP exam at http://www.msap.acer.edu.au/ The MSAP exam will take place on Saturday, 18 February, 2012 at testing centres nationwide. A short talk providing information on the MSAP exam and tips on how to prepare and register for the exam will take place from 1pm to 1.30pm on both days of NUI Galway’s CAO advisory sessions. Trish Hoare, Mature Students Officer at NUI Galway, has noticed a growing interest in returning to formal study: “With the economic downturn, many are looking to develop new employment opportunities by studying for a degree. However it is imperative that prospective students know how to apply correctly through the CAO, deadlines of application and are aware of assessments involved for some degree programmes.” Speaking in advance of the advisory sessions, current mature student at NUI Galway Caroline Gorman, said: “My return to college first started with the NUI Galway Commerce Foundation course in 2009. Successfully completing this course gave me both the opportunity and confidence to start a full time degree. Thanks to the skills I learned through the part time access course, I found it much easier to make the transition into full time education, and subsequently succeed in my exams. I’ve just begun the second year of my BComm degree, and I love every minute of it! I would encourage anyone thinking of studying Commerce as a mature student to take full advantage of these fantastic courses and of the advisory sessions, and to explore the possibilities which they can create for the future.” ENDS
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Brendan Duddy’s ‘Red book’ Goes Online
Thursday, 12 January 2012
The full text of the ‘red book’, intermediary Brendan Duddy’s handwritten account of the 1981 hunger strike negotiations, has now been made available online by the James Hardiman Library at NUI Galway where the document is held as part of the Brendan Duddy Archive. A transcript of the handwritten diary, originally created in 2001 by a relative of Brendan Duddy’s in consultation with him, has also been placed online. The documents, when set alongside the recently released official papers from the UK National Archives, and the Republican account originally outlined in the book ‘Ten Men Dead’, add significantly to our knowledge of the 1981 hunger strike negotiations. Commenting on this announcement, Dr Niall O Dochartaigh, Lecturer in Politics at NUI Galway, said: “This fractured and occasionally very personal handwritten record provides us with a sense of the intensity of these contacts and the biting tensions at this intersection between the British government and the Provisional Republican leadership. It provides an informal record of these contacts from the perspective of the intermediary that adds significantly to our understanding of the dynamics of these backchannel negotiations. It highlights in particular the importance of struggles over deadlines and the timing of moves by both parties.” 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. John Cox, University Librarian at NUI Galway, noted: "The James Hardiman Library is pleased to provide wider access to this important document by making it available online as part of our digitisation initiatives." 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) Documents can be viewed at: archives.library.nuigalway.ie/duddy/
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Irish Minister of Health to Speak at Nation’s First Ever International Autism Conference
Thursday, 12 January 2012
The Irish Centre for Autism and Neurodevelopment Research at NUI Galway, in partnership with Autism Speaks and The American Ireland Fund, Launch the First International Autism Conference in Ireland The Irish Centre for Autism and Neurodevelopment Research, in the School of Psychology at NUI Galway, in partnership with Autism Speaks, Galway University Foundation and The American Ireland Fund, are delighted to announce their first international conference, "Autism Spectrum Disorder: from Clinical Practice to Educational Provision," which began today, Thursday 12 January and Friday, 13 January 2012.THE conference continues tomorrow when Minister of Health, Dr James Reilly TD will address an audience of over 600 researchers, healthcare professionals, teachers, and parents from around the world. The conference will unveil the latest research on early diagnosis of autism and will focus on providing practical solutions and approaches to diagnosis, clinical management, education, and adult service provision. “This is a tremendous example of transatlantic cooperation to tackle one of the most demanding and complex issues affecting millions of families worldwide,” said Kieran McLoughlin, CEO of the American Ireland Fund. “The partnership between Autism Speaks and NUI Galway and the willing support of our donors is a wonderfully tangible expression of the depth of Irish-American relations.” International experts from the fields of health and education will discuss best practices, from diagnosis to intervention. Experts include Professor Connie Kasari from the Centre for Autism Research and Treatment at UCLA; Professor Cathy Lord, Director of the Weill Cornell Medical College and New York Presbyterian Hospital Institute for Brain Development; Professor Richard Foxx of Penn State University; and Professor Helen McConachie of Newcastle University. “We are delighted to be hosting such distinguished international experts,” said Conference organiser and lecturer in Psychology at NUI Galway, Dr Geraldine Leader. “It is only through the use of the latest up-to-date evidence based practices that we can ensure best outcomes for all individuals on the autism spectrum.” Parents of autistic children have been invited to attend and participate in workshops on early intervention and caring for children on the autism spectrum. Adrian Jones, a parent of an autistic child, a board member of Autism Speaks and Managing Director at Goldman Sachs, welcomed the conference. “Our family has been dealing with autism since we got Liam's diagnosis 10 years ago, during which time we have been fortunate to benefit from the insight and guidance of experts in the field,” Jones said. “We've seen the impact that Autism Speaks has had in generating awareness throughout the US, and the tangible benefits to families of its many programme initiatives. We hope the insights of global experts at this conference will accelerate improvements in care for Irish children and adults with autism.” Virginia Bovell, co-founder of the Tree House School in London, will speak about her longtime campaign for autism services in England. Bovell will share stories of raising her son Danny, who is on the spectrum, and discuss her experience in the context of the wider policy and intellectual environment. The conference workshops will highlight new technologies and practical strategies for managing challenges faced in schools for helping children on the autism spectrum. They will discuss treating associated medical conditions, and present the latest research on early signs of autism and the use of medication for people on the autism spectrum. President of NUI Galway Dr Jim Browne said the conference highlights NUI Galway’s commitment to autism research and underscores the translational dimension of the University’s work. “With over 600 parents, professionals and support workers present to learn from best international practice, we are bringing our research-led teaching from the clinic to classroom and back again,” Browne said. “This conference will be an important landmark for many families affected by autism.” The Centre for Autism and Neurodevelopment Research at NUI Galway will be officially launched by President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins on Friday, 24 February. For further information on the conference, or to register, visit www.conference.ie. ENDS
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NUI Galway Observatory Open Nights
Monday, 16 January 2012
NUI Galway's Centre of Astronomy will continue its 2011/2012 programme of open evenings at its Imbusch Observatory in Dangan. The Observatory provides state-of-the-art observing facilities for NUI Galway's astrophysics students and the open evenings are an opportunity for the general public to come in and visit. Weather permitting, the free open evenings will take place at 7pm on 25 January, 8 and 22 February, and 7 March. An informative hour-long lecture will be followed by a hands-on viewing of the sky by night, weather permitting. The Imbusch Astronomical Observatory was opened in 2004 and is used by students studying Physics and Astronomy at NUI Galway. The observatory is equipped with a modern computer controlled 16" telescope and camera, and a radio telescope with a hydrogen line spectrometer, which is able to map out and measure the velocity of the sun and the Milky Way. There is also a 10" portable telescope - computer controlled – for visual observations of planets, star clusters, nebulae and other bright objects. Bookings are limited to two tickets per person and is strictly by ticket only. Tickets are allocated on a first come first served basis. All bookings are by email and those interested should send requests to email@example.com. -ENDS-
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Mature Students at NUI Galway to Benefit from €60,000 in Scholarships
Monday, 16 January 2012
NUI Galway has announced details of new scholarships scheme for mature students. In total, 30 new scholarships will be awarded, consisting of €2,000 per student for every year of their study. The new initiative is open to mature applicants, 23 years and over, applying through the CAO by 1 February, and commencing study in autumn 2012. Scholarships will be awarded based on merit, and those interested should apply as normal through the CAO process. The top 30 applicants will be automatically selected for a scholarship and notified before September 2012. The 30 scholarships will be allocated across three areas: Entrants via the Mature Student’s AdmissionsPathway (MSAP). Entrants via the Access Foundation programmes. Entrants who are mature (23 years of age at 1 January of year of entry), who are entitled to enter the programme to which they are admitted from School Leaving results. There are some limitations on who will qualify for possible selection, for example, students with a Local Authority Higher Education grant or similar awards will not be eligible for the scholarship. Interested students should visit the NUI Galway website for further detail about the scholarships and for information about the general mature student application process.Dr Martina Ní Chúlain, Admissions Officer at NUI Galway, explains: “The new Scholarships for Mature Students are an incentive to attract more of the brightest and most committed students, and to support their return to full-time education. Mature students bring so much to the campus and to their classmates, and we hope to offer the scholarship as a support in making the transition into third-level education easier.”Mature students make up a significant part of the student population at NUI Galway, with over 1,200 full-time mature students across all schools and disciplines.For more information on studying at NUI Galway as a mature student visit www.nuigalway.ie/mature/scholarships or phone 091 492 695. -ends-
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