University response to US Attacks

Thursday, 13 September 2001

Release date: 13 September, 2001

University response to US Attacks

NUI, Galway shares pain of US students and staff

The impact of recent events in the US has been felt globally. NUI, Galway has implemented a range of measures to help the 400 US staff and students at the campus. Students support services such as counselling and chaplaincy have been intensified and a special Ecumenical Prayer service held to reflect the solidarity and support for the US staff and students, many of whom have been affected by the recent events in New York and Washington. The University has also announced that the annual Gala Banquet scheduled to take place on 6 October, has been postponed as a mark of respect to the victims of this week's terrorist attacks in the United States.

"The University has an extensive range of links with many institutions and individuals in the US said Professor Ruth Curtis, Vice-President for Development and External Affairs, NUI, Galway. We have collaborative links with many American third level institutions in areas of research, teaching and student exchange. In addition, many of the University's 40,000 graduates live and work in the United States. The University also has close links with US companies based in Galway and the West region. These important relationships, and our US students and staff on campus highlight how we are all brought into close contact with the terrible events of recent days."

According to Professor Curtis the University s "main concern right now is for the 400 US students who have registered at NUI, Galway for their Junior Year Abroad programme. Many of these young people are very upset and far from home and the support which we give them at this time is vital. Student counsellors and chaplains have been inundated and have reacted by setting up a Support Centre with facilities including counselling and medical services and a bank of telephones to enable them speak with their friends and relatives in the US.

Taking all those factors into account, it was decided it would be inappropriate to hold a celebratory event, such as the Gala Banquet at this time. The annual Gala Banquet is the social highlight of the University calendar, with distinguished guests travelling from many countries, including the US, to renew old acquaintances, mark developments in the University and celebrate alumni achievement. "We are postponing this event, preparations for which were well advanced, to demonstrate our solidarity with the four hundred US students and staff on campus", said Professor Curtis. The Gala Banquet will now take place on Saturday, 2 March, 2002 in the Radisson SAS Hotel.

Ends

Information from: Máire Mhic Uidhir, Press Officer, NUI, Galway. Tel. 091 750418. Mobile: 087 2986592

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