NUI Galway Academic appointed Vice President of US Optics Society

NUI Galway Academic appointed Vice President of US Optics Society-image

Thursday, 30 October 2008

The Optical Society of America (OSA) has announced that Professor Christopher Dainty of NUI Galway has been elected as its 2009 vice president. As vice president, Professor Dainty will automatically become president-elect in 2010 and then the society s president in 2011, followed by a one-year term as past president. Christopher Dainty holds the chair of applied physics in the School of Physics at the NUI Galway and has been active in the global optics community for several decades. He was recently elected to membership of the Royal Irish Academy. President of NUI Galway, Dr James J. Browne, said: "I would like to congratulate Professor Dainty on his election to the post of Vice-President and President elect of the OSA. This is a fitting recognition of his contribution to the science of optics and adds lustre to his own reputation, that of his research group and indeed of the University. NUI Galway is proud to count Professor Dainty as one of its academic staff.' A Fellow of OSA, Dainty has been an OSA member since 1971. With widespread participation in OSA activities, he has been involved with topical meetings, awards and has been a two-time past member of the Board of Directors. In addition, Dainty has provided technical expertise to the organization's initiatives as a member of the Computational Optical Sensing and Imaging Program Committee, Adaptive Optics: Analysis and Methods Program Committee, and the Signal Recovery and Synthesis Program Committee. Dainty also served as the secretary-general and president of the International Commission for Optics, as well as the president of the European Optical Society. He currently is a member of the board of the European Technology Platform "Photonics 21" and is also on the external/scientific advisory boards of The Center for Adaptive Optics (Santa Cruz) and The Institute of Photonic Sciences (Barcelona). His research interests include optical imaging, scattering and propagation. In these areas, he has co-authored or edited six books, approximately 140 peer-reviewed papers and 220 conference presentations. The Applied Optics Group at NUI Galway was established in 2002, under the direction of Chris Dainty, and funded by a major grant from Science Foundation Ireland (SFI). The SFI funding was renewed for a further five years in 2007. The Applied Optics Group has significant interaction with industry in Ireland, Europe, United States, and in Japan. Frank Gannon, Director General of SFI commented on the significance of the appointment: "I congratulate Professor Chris Dainty on his election as Vice President of the Optical Society of America for 2009 and President-Elect for 2010, and President in 2011. Since his move to NUI Galway in 2002, Professor Dainty through his dedication and expertise has established a cutting edge world-class Applied Optics research group, which now numbers approximately 25 researchers. The Group s research focuses in four areas: adaptive optics, vision science, imaging and scattering. Professor Dainty has contributed significantly to the development of Optical Engineering in Ireland, in addition he has developed strong collaboration with industry". ENDS

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The History of Newspapers Subject of Conference at NUI Galway

The History of Newspapers Subject of Conference at NUI Galway-image

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

A conference entitled 'New Directions for Press History in Ireland ' takes place from Friday, 31 October, to Saturday, 1 November, at NUI Galway. Academics, students and media practitioners will debate and consider research being undertaken into newspaper and periodical history in Ireland and abroad. The event is organised by the Newspaper and Periodical History Forum of Ireland, which was established this year by a number of scholars and academics. Central to the study of media history is the idea that newspapers are more than just a source on information for historians - they were important players in their own right. Among the contributors to the conference are Mark O'Brien, the author of an important new history of the Irish Times, as well as a history of the Irish Press; Maurice Walsh, former Irish Times and BBC journalist and the author of The News From Ireland: Foreign Correspondents and the Irish Revolution; and Professor John Horgan, Emeritus Professor of Journalism at DCU and former Irish Times journalist. According to Dr Simon Potter, Lecturer in History at the School of Humanities, NUI Galway: "From the Skibbereen Eagle keeping its eye on the Czar of Russia, to the Irish Times which is about to enter its 150th year, to the Belfast News Letter which was founded in 1737 and can claim to be the oldest continually published English language newspaper in the world - newspapers and periodicals have played a central role in our history over the past 200 years. Until recently the study of our newspaper culture and the journalists who worked within it was, with some honourable exceptions, more or less ignored". James Curran of Goldsmith College, University of London, one of the pioneer interpreters of media history, will also speak at the event, with a presentation called 'New Directions in Media History'. Michael de Nie of the University of West Georgia, USA, will discuss aspects of British reporting of the empire, especially with regard to Ireland and India. Dr Niamh O'Sullivan, the Professor of Visual Culture at the National College of Art and Design in Dublin, will look at the illustrators of nineteenth century periodicals. The conference will also feature sessions set aside for young scholars to present short papers on their research. To register, or for further details, contact Simon Potter on 091 493 625 or by email at -ends-

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Ireland's first UNESCO Chair appointed at NUI Galway

Ireland's first UNESCO Chair appointed at NUI Galway-image

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

A UNESCO Chair in Children, Youth and Civic Engagement has been established at NUI Galway. The first UNESCO Chair awarded in the Republic of Ireland, the Chair will be hosted at the Child and Family Research Centre in the University's School of Political Science and Sociology. Professor Pat Dolan, Director of the Child and Family Research Centre at NUI Galway, with over 20 years experience in family support frontline work, policy and research, has been appointed as the Chairholder. Professor Dolan commented: "It is an honour and a challenge to take a lead role in exploring civic engagement in young people as a method for mobilising children's rights and addressing needs in Ireland and across the world". The UNITWIN/UNESCO Chairs Programme was launched in 1992 to advance research, training and programme development in higher education by building university networks and encouraging inter-university cooperation through transfer of knowledge across borders. Today 617 UNESCO Chairs and 60 UNITWIN Networks have been established within the Programme, involving over 740 institutions in 125 countries. Funded under the UNESCO University Education Twinning and Networking Scheme, the programme of work associated with the Chair, will focus on an exchange of learning among international University partners and affiliated centres for children, which work on civic engagement programmes in countries including Bulgaria, Lithuania and Zambia. For NUI Galway, the establishment of a formal mechanism for the exchange of knowledge in the area of children, youth and civic engagement across, and between, institutions of higher education and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), will bring a new dimension to its work in this area. President of NUI Galway, Dr James J. Browne commented: "We, at NUI Galway, are particularly honoured to be awarded the first UNESCO Chair in the Republic of Ireland. We look forward to fruitful cooperation with UNESCO and are delighted with this opportunity to enhance the University's commitment to community and civic engagement". The establishment of the UNESCO Chair builds on the Child and Family Research Centre's (CRFC) range of applied practice and high-quality research in relation to working with young people experiencing adversity. The Centre, officially launched in 2007 with significant support from The Atlantic Philanthropies, is affiliated with a range of other University centres of excellence, NGOs and civil society organisations dedicated to enhancing the welfare of, and improving opportunities for, disadvantaged children and youth. The Centre is internationally recognised for its expertise in the development and testing of educational models, such as youth mentoring that bring about improved outcomes for children. The CFRC will work with two key partners in Ireland: the Community Knowledge Initiative at NUI Galway, a forum through which the University plays a leading role in the development of civic leadership skills in students; and Foróige, Ireland's leading voluntary youth organisation providing informal education and social skills building to enable young people involve themselves in their own development and the development of society. According to Seán Campbell, CEO of Foróige: "The collaboration will add significantly to the body of knowledge on what works for helping young people develop as active citizens, particularly those dealing with difficulties in their lives". -ends-

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NUI Galway Researchers Investigate Health, Ageing and Retirement

NUI Galway Researchers Investigate Health, Ageing and Retirement-image

Friday, 24 October 2008

Researchers at the Irish Centre for Gerontology, NUI Galway have co-published the results from the first Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE). The objective of the study is to identify the key issues for people aged 50 and over in Ireland which will help inform policy makers, particularly regarding the financial, health and social inclusion aspects for an ageing economy. According to Dr Brenda Gannon, Deputy Director of the Irish Centre for Social Gerontology at NUI Galway: "By 2021 the proportion of the total population aged 65 and over in Ireland will have grown significantly from the current level of 11 per cent to an estimated 15 per cent. The force of this demographic change will impact on all facets of society, particularly public pensions and the health service. This survey has provided up-to-date knowledge on the health care needs and financial position of older people in Ireland. For the first time, we now have data for Ireland on people aged 50 years and over to compare with other European countries". Key findings regarding healthcare use were that 80 per cent of people aged 50-59 had seen their GP at least once in the last 12 months, compared to 93 per cent of those aged 70 and over. One in five people aged 70-79 had one inpatient stay in hospital in the previous 12 months, with many more aged 80 and over have overnight hospital inpatient visits. Other key findings include: Physical Health: one third of individuals aged 50-59 have a long term illness, this increases to over 40 per cent for older age groups. Mental Health: one in three females aged 50-59 have felt sad or depressed in the last month, this proportion is higher among the older age groups. Financial worries: 11 per cent of women have great difficulty in making ends meet compared to 7 per cent of males. Care needs: over one third of people aged 70-79 felt that the care they received for daily activities did not meet their needs adequately. Children: 85 per cent of people aged 50 and over had children and of those, at least one in five children lived in the same household, one in ten lived nearby and 15 per cent lived abroad. The second part of the survey will begin in 2009, and will include interviews with the same individuals on similar aspects of their lifestyle. For further in formation on the research, which was carried out in conjunction with UCD, visit -ends-

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NUI Galway Engineering Students Awarded Prestigious Scholarships

NUI Galway Engineering Students Awarded Prestigious Scholarships-image

Friday, 24 October 2008

Two first-year engineering students at NUI Galway have been presented with scholarships by Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Mary Coughlan T.D.. Emma Tarpey from Monaleen, Limerick and Máire Kane from Dangan, Galway, both received a Science Foundation Ireland/DELL Scholarship – Young Women in Engineering 2008. Emma Tarpey is studying Civil Engineering and Máire Kane is studying Undenominated Engineering. Both will benefit from an annual award of €2,000 for three years and a DELL notebook computer. In addition, to help develop their careers, they will have the assistance and support of an active researcher as a mentor, and one summer's research-internship in an academic research laboratory or an industry R&D laboratory. The Scholarship aims to attract and encourage more high-achieving young women into third-level education in engineering disciplines. Now in its third year, the scheme focuses on young women entering designated engineering degree programmes. NUI Galway has a long tradition of encouraging female engineers; Alice Perry graduated from the University in 1906, becoming the first woman with a degree in engineering in Ireland or Great Britain, if not the world. Professor Padraic O'Donoghue, Dean of the College of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway, said: "We are very proud of Máire and Emma and delighted that their success is recognised through the prestigious SFI/Dell awards. The engineering courses on offer at NUI Galway attract a very high caliber of student. The ethos of the College of Engineering and Informatics is to encourage students to develop their innovative and creative skills and also provides an environment which is internationally recognised as student centered with emphasis on the student as a partner in the learning process". Applications for this SFI scholarship were received from eligible candidates nationwide and were extremely competitive, with a total of ten awarded. Specific criteria for applications include the achievement of an A1 or A2 grade at Higher Level in the Leaving Certificate Examination in Mathematics or Applied Mathematics and Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Technical Drawing, Engineering or Construction Studies. -ends-

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Public Lecture to Launch Global Women's Studies Programme at NUI Galway

Public Lecture to Launch Global Women's Studies Programme at NUI Galway-image

Thursday, 23 October 2008

A public lecture by Muslim women's rights scholar and activist, Dr Norani Othman, will mark the formal launch of the Global Women's Studies Programme at NUI Galway on Wednesday, 29 October. Guided by the ethics of international human rights, the Global Women's Studies Programme undertakes teaching and research to deepen understanding of the gender dimensions of global issues such as conflict and peace, global economic crisis, religious fundamentalism, human trafficking and disease pandemics. Dr Othman is Associate Professor and Senior Fellow at the Institute of Malaysian and International Studies, and her lecture will be entitled 'Muslim women's human rights: national and international dimensions'. A founding member of a highly regarded Muslim women's non-governmental organisation Sisters in Islam Forum Malaysia, Dr Othman is no stranger to controversy. Her book Muslim Women and the Challenge of Islamic Extremism was recently banned by the Malaysian authorities. According to Dr Nata Duvvury, who co-ordinates the Global Women's Studies Programme with Dr Niamh Reilly at NUI Galway: "We look forward to having such an internationally respected and renowned expert as Dr Othman officially launch the Global Women's Studies Programme at NUI Galway. The Programme is unique in Ireland because it focuses on exploring women's experiences of globalisation from a human rights perspective". Dr Niamh Reilly added: "For example, when states cut social spending women often bear the brunt by increasing their unpaid caring work; the vast majority of trafficked people are women and girls; worldwide, women are becoming HIV positive at a faster rate than men; in situations where fundamentalist politics take hold, the behaviour of women and girls is the first target of repressive action; women rarely initiate conflicts but bear the greatest cost of its catastrophic disruption to daily life, and are generally excluded from post-conflict decision making". Part of the School of Political Science and Sociology, The Global Women s Studies Programme builds on a long-established tradition of Women's Studies at NUI Galway. It currently has over 40 students, which include the first intake of new B.A. Connect with Women's Studies and the M.A. in Gender, Globalisation and Rights. There are also more than ten Ph.D. students researchers in its Gender Research Group. Dr Othman's visit is co-sponsored by the Development Education and Research Network at NUI Galway. For further information about the Launch of the Global Women's Studies Programme and the Public Lecture which takes place at 6pm on Wednesday, 29 October, in Áras Moyola at NUI Galway, contact Gillian Browne on 091 493450 or email -ends-

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Week of Autumn Conferring Ceremonies Continue at NUI Galway

Week of Autumn Conferring Ceremonies Continue at NUI Galway-image

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Over 4,000 students will graduate from NUI Galway during the Autumn Conferring Ceremonies which take place from 17-24 October. NUI Galway will also confer four Honorary Masters Degrees during the ceremonies on: Galway hurling legends, brothers Seán and Jimmy Duggan; University soccer supporter, Tony Corcoran; and Chemistry technician, John Muldoon. Seán and Jimmy Duggan will be recognised for their lifetime contribution to Galway hurling. Tony Corcoran will be honoured for his marvellous service over several decades to the University's Soccer Club. John Muldoon will be honoured for his contribution to Chemistry at NUI Galway and to community life. A further honourary degree will be given to Sarah Wairimu for her work with children in Kenya, many of whose parents died of AIDS. Speaking ahead of the ceremonies, NUI Galway President Dr James J. Browne, said: "On behalf of NUI Galway, I congratulate all our graduands and extend a warm welcome to their parents, families and friends. We are delighted to acknowledge their outstanding achievements and wish them continued success in the future. The University is also very pleased to be associated with the exceptional individuals on whom honorary Masters degrees will be conferred at these week-long ceremonies". The annual Autumn Conferring Ceremonies began at NUI Galway with the Adult and Continuing Education ceremonies, where awards were conferred on 892 students who completed their certificate, diploma and degree courses at many locations across the country. -ends-

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First conferring for BA in Community and Family Studies

First conferring for BA in Community and Family Studies -image

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

The Community Education Centre, NUI Galway warmly congratulates all students awarded the Diploma in Arts: Community and Family Studies, following the successful completion of the first two years of a four year (part-time) degree programme in Community and Family Studies. This new BA programme is one of the first such programmes in Ireland to provide adult learners with the opportunity to study community and family work policy and practice through the medium of distance learning. The attainment of the Diploma in Arts: Community and Family Studies marks the mid point of this Degree cycle and is testament to the effort and commitment of the students who graduated on Friday, 17 October, 2008. Speaking at the conferring ceremony, President of NUI Galway, Dr James J. Browne, said: "This flexible blended-learning degree programme builds on the University's track record in Community Development and now provides a significant opportunity for all of you graduating tonight to progress into degree level studies in the Social Sciences." The Community Education Centre is a core component of Adult and Continuing Education at NUI Galway. Seamus O'Grady, Director of Adult and Continuing Education highlights the ever increasing significance of education in light of the fundamental challenges now facing both our economy and society, and more particularly the role of educational institutions in assisting communities to respond to these challenges. "Over the past 30 years Adult and Continuing Education has actively supported community development, this BA programme is designed to meet identified needs, and build on the University's track record of community engagement and the promotion of life-long learning. Global trends have a local effect and the research strengths of the University, particularly in the field of Political Science and Sociology, can assist families and communities to tackle new and existing challenges" he said. Focussing on key areas such as community development, family support, youth work, childcare, health and general political and socio-economic studies, the BA in Community and Family Studies seeks to respond to the requirements of our ever changing society, and also to the requirements of a broad spectrum of adult learners seeking recognised qualifications in formal education. -Ends-

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Website Celebrates Student Life in the Seventies Ahead of Reunion

Website Celebrates Student Life in the Seventies Ahead of Reunion-image

Monday, 20 October 2008

NUI Galway alumni from the classes of 1978 and 1979 have been asked to upload their photos and memories to a new website ahead of a reunion on Saturday, 22 November. The reunion is being billed as an opportunity to meet up with old friends, listen to talks from favourite lecturers and alumni, and view a photo exhibition. In addition, the event will feature a buffet in the Student's Union Bar followed by a night of music from musicians popular in Galway in the late 1970s. The reunion is being led by former Student's Union President, Brendan Smith, who now works with the Digital Enterprise Research Institute at NUI Galway. According to Brendan: "We were part of the generation that finally benefited from third-level state grants and free post-primary education. With the arrival of the multi-national corporations, the introduction of new technologies, and fierce public debates on family planning other once taboo social issues, the country was experiencing unprecedented change. The students of this era were true pioneers being both recipients and initiators of this new Ireland". For more information on the reunion and submitting photos to the website contact Brendan (Speedie) Smith at or the NUI Galway Alumni Office on 091 493750. -ends-

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Seachtain de Shearmanais Bronnta Céimeanna an Fhómhair ag Tosú in OÉ Gaillimh

Seachtain de Shearmanais Bronnta Céimeanna an Fhómhair ag Tosú in OÉ Gaillimh-image

Monday, 20 October 2008

Cúig Mháistreacht Oinigh le Bronnadh, agus Céim á Bronnadh ar 4,000 Mac Léinn Bainfidh os cionn 4,000 mac léinn céim amach in OÉ Gaillimh sna Searmanais Bronnta Céime a bheidh ar bun idir 17-24 Deireadh Fómhair. Bronnfaidh OÉ Gaillimh Céim Mháistreachta Oinigh ar na daoine seo a leanas: Laochra iomána na Gaillimhe, na deartháireacha Seán agus Jimmy Duggan; Tacadóir de chuid fhoireann sacair na hOllscoile, Tony Corcoran; bunaitheoir árais leanaí sa Chéinia, Sarah Wairimu; agus an teicneoir Ceimice, John Muldoon. Tabharfar aitheantas do Sheán agus do Jimmy Duggan as a bhfuil déanta acu i rith a saoil ar son na hiomána i nGaillimh. Tabharfar onóir do Tony Corcoran as an tseirbhís iontach atá tugtha aige le blianta fada anuas do Chumann Sacair na hOllscoile. Táthar ag tabhairt aitheantais do Sarah Wairimu as a cuid oibre le leanaí sa Chéinia, leanaí ar bhásaigh go leor dá gcuid tuismitheoirí den ghalar SEIF. Tabharfar onóir do John Muldoon as a shaothar ar son na Ceimice in OÉ Gaillimh agus ar son an phobail. Ag labhairt dó sular thosaigh na searmanais, dúirt Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr James J. Browne: "Thar ceann OÉ Gaillimh, déanaim comhghairdeas lenár gcéimithe ar fad agus tá fearadh na fáilte roimh a dtuismitheoirí, a dteaghlaigh agus a gcairde. Tá ríméad orainn aitheantas a thabhairt dá gcuid éachtaí agus guímid gach rath orthu san am atá le teacht. Tá an Ollscoil thar a bheith sásta chomh maith go mbeidh sí luaite le cúigear eisceachtúil a mbronnfar céim Mháistreachta oinigh orthu ag na searmanais seo a mhairfidh go ceann seachtaine." Cuirfear tús le Searmanais bhliantúla Bronnta Céimeanna an Fhómhair in OÉ Gaillimh leis na searmanais Oideachais Aosaigh agus Leantaigh, áit a mbronnfar dámhachtainí ar 892 mac léinn a chríochnaigh a gcúrsaí céime, dioplóma agus teastais in ionaid éagsúla ar fud na tíre. - críoch -

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