NUI Galway student targets national award with research on water quality

NUI Galway student targets national award with research on water quality-image

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

NUI Galway PhD student Sandra Galvin from the Department of Bacteriology will bring the topical issue of water quality to the annual Science Speak competition in the RDS on Thursday, 3 May, 2007 where she will compete with students from the six other Irish Universities to claim the coveted national title. Compered by RTE's Pat Kenny, the contest rates the speakers' ability to communicate their research to a non-scientific audience. The judging panel, which includes Irish Times Science Editor Dick Ahlstrom, Peter Brabazon of Discover Science and Engineering, and RTE broadcasters John Creedon, Éanna Ní Lamhna and Kathriona Devereux, will determine the winner as the person best able to communicate their area of research and how it can affect peoples' everyday lives. Sandra's presentation, 'Water water everywhere - is it safe to drink?' is especially topical given the current national debate about water quality arising from the problems with water quality in the Galway region. It is based on her PhD research project which examines how to detect antibiotic resistant bacteria in water and in sewage and asks what is the significance of this issue for human health. The work is funded by the Environmental Protection Agency. Sandra's work involves analysing various water bodies around Ireland including hospital effluent, outflow from a wastewater treatment plant, source water, drinking water, sea water, river water and lake water. "The effect the environment has on our health is of increasing concern worldwide," says Sandra. "Given the current climate of water quality issues in Ireland, this research further highlights the importance of increased monitoring and assessment of our water supplies." Originally from Askeaton, in County Limerick, Sandra holds a BSc in Microbiology from UCC. Now in her second year of a PhD at the Department of Bacteriology, NUI Galway, she is one of a team of researchers involved in the 'Enhancing Human Health Through Improved Water Quality' project, led by the Environmental Change Institute at NUI Galway. Science Speak is an annual competition organised by the seven Irish Universities; NUI Galway, University of Limerick, University College Cork, University College Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin City University and NUI Maynooth. Each finalist, a postgraduate student, qualified for the national final through individual competitions in their respective university. Science Speak is a joint initiative organised by the Irish Times and the RDS in association with the Irish Universities Promoting Science. The event is sponsored by Wyeth Biotech and the Discover Science & Engineering Programme. ENDS

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NUI Galway set world record with Internet technology

NUI Galway set world record with Internet technology-image

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

Internet researchers at the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) at NUI Galway have made a major technological breakthrough in the Semantic Web, a machine readable version of the web which enables more efficient internet searching. Current internet technology means that users must filter search results and decide what is relevant. The Semantic Web enables the computer to filter information and also powers the intelligent transfer, sharing and negotiation of information between computer systems. The Semantic Web Search Engine developed at DERI is able to answer queries with more than 7 billion RDF statements in fractions of a second - the largest number reported so far anywhere in the world. An RDF statement is the entity that makes the Semantic Web semantic. Possible application areas include Social Network Applications and Analysis, eHealth applications, Web Search, location based services, and financial searches. "The importance of this breakthrough can not be overestimated" says Professor Stefan Decker, Director of DERI. "These results enable us to create web search engines that really deliver answers instead of links. The technology also allows us to combine information from the Web, for example the engine can list all partnerships of a company even if there is no single web page that lists all of them." Andreas Harth and Aidan Hogan, key researchers on the Semantic Web Search Engine project, have been working on the project for about three years. "I am excited about the prospects ahead," says Mr Harth. "We are currently working on realising inferencing - making the web truly intelligent - and we have results already." DERI is currently the largest applied research organisation in the world developing the next generation of internet technology – the Semantic Web. DERI was founded in 2003 with CSET (Centre for Science and Engineering Technology) funding from Science Foundation Ireland. It has since grown to over 100 people and has acquired significant additional research funding from sources such as the European Union Framework Programmes, Enterprise Ireland and SFI. ENDS

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Former NUI Galway Dean to deliver 30th annual Markievicz memorial lecture

Former NUI Galway Dean to deliver 30th annual Markievicz memorial lecture-image

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

The trend towards increasing outflows of people as well as the more evident inflows from other countries should be welcomed as part of Ireland's changing pattern of migration, according to a former Dean of Commerce at NUI Galway, Professor Roy Green, who will deliver the 30th Annual Countess Markievicz Memorial lecture on Tuesday, 8 May 2007. The 'Building the Innovative Capability of Organisations' lecture, organised by the Irish Association for Industrial Relations (IAIR), with the support of Medtronic and GMIT, will take place at Áras Moyola, NUI Galway from 6.30 – 7.30pm. Prof. Green is Dean of the Macquarie Graduate School of Management, one of Australia's leading business schools. Prof. Green argues that, like Australia, Ireland too must adopt a positive view of the trend for graduates to look for work abroad as well as at home, as many of these graduates are likely to return with enhanced skills and experience. Prof. Green, who was responsible for establishing the Centre for Innovation & Structural Change and J E Cairnes Graduate School of Business & Public Policy during his six years at NUI Galway, believes Countess Markievicz herself was one of the first examples of a migrant who contributed massively to the Irish nation. "The first phase of immigration comprised Irish expatriates from the less than halcyon days of the 1980s, who were forced to leave by the economic circumstances of the time and only now have the opportunity to return to senior positions in universities, public agencies and international firms, as well as professional s and skilled workers from a wide range of other countries, especially the new member states of the EU, who also want to contribute to the Irish economic transformation and build a new life here for themselves and their families," says Prof. Green. "With only a slight stretch of the imagination, you might say that London-born Constance Markievicz was an early prototype for this group, as were James Connolly, who was Scottish and New York native Eamon de Valera. "Unlike Joyce Beckett Shaw and the Massachusetts Kennedy clan, whose life and work were conducted abroad, the new generation will be gone one day but back the next, as a sophisticated, Blackberry wielding, Armani and Prada-clad globalised community, which according to AT Kearney's Globalisation Index, belongs to one of the most globalised economies in the world." Professor Green concludes that business schools have a major part to play in "preparing the next generation of leaders in our societies, through their management of organisations in both the public and private sectors, and that leadership in the future will no longer be about 'command and control', but releasing people's talent and creativity, more often than not in cross-functional, problem-solving teams, collaborative networks and 'communities of knowledge'". The lecture is free and open to the public. Further information is available from Dr Noel Harvey, Chairman of the IAIR on 091 742127 or Nuala Donohue, Department of Management, NUI Galway on 091 493771. The Irish Association for Industrial Relations was established in 1972 in response to a growing need to develop and exchange knowledge on industrial relations at the national level, providing a forum for discussion and research. Membership is drawn from management, trade unions, academics, students and others interested in industrial relations and related topics. ENDS

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June 2007

NUI Galway honours the achievements of six outstanding individuals with Honorary

NUI Galway honours the achievements of six outstanding individuals with Honorary-image

Saturday, 30 June 2007

Pictured at the Honorary Conferring on Friday 29 June, 2007(L to R): Chief Justice Pius Langa; Enya; Bill Walsh; Niall FitzGerald, KBE; Dr Jane O Leary and Nicholas Carolan Honorary Doctorates conferred on Bill Walsh, Jane O'Leary, Chief Justice Pius Langa, Nicholas Carolan, Niall Fitzgerald, KBE and Eithne Ní Bhraonáin (Enya) Six outstanding individuals from the worlds of business, philanthropy, justice, music and the arts were conferred with honorary degrees from National University of Ireland, Galway on Friday 29 June, 2007. The conferring marks remarkable achievements and distinctive contributions both nationally and internationally by individuals who have excelled in their fields. The ceremony follows last week's honorary conferring of world renowned folklorist Tom Munnelly. Commenting, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of NUI Galway said, "It is a great pleasure to welcome such a distinguished group of graduands to NUI Galway to bestow on them the highest honour that the university can confer. This year with the worlds of the arts, justice, business and philanthropy represented by graduands from South Africa, Ireland, Britain and the United States, I believe that we have a wonderfully eclectic, diverse and particularly talented group of honorees." Bill Walsh (Degree of Doctor of Laws) is the Founder and Chairman of Sequoia Associates, a private investment firm, established in 1982. He is married and has six children. A quiet, steadfast philanthropist, Walsh is a long-time member of the American Ireland Fund and received its Distinguished Leadership Award in 1997. Walsh, his wife, and six children together endowed The William D. Walsh Family Library at Fordham University, and dedicated the Lumbard Classroom in Hauser Hall at Harvard Law School. In addition, Walsh established the Lumbard Fellowship to fund summer interns from Harvard Law School and Columbia and Fordham Law Schools to work in the U.S. Attorney's Office. Jane O'Leary (Degree of Doctor of Music) was born in Hartford, Connecticut, Jane has been resident in Ireland since 1972. A founding member of Aosdána, Jane has composed over 70 works, which have been widely performed and broadcast. In 1976 Jane established the contemporary music ensemble Concorde to promote and perform new music on a regular basis. She lives in Galway where she is a founder and current chairperson of Music for Galway, founded in 1981. Jane has served on the Board of the National Concert Hall, the Arts Council, and the Cultural Relations Committee of the Department of Foreign Affairs. She was chair of the Contemporary Music Centre during a period of significant development for the centre. She has been Composer in Residence at the Royal Irish Academy of Music and currently teaches composition at DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama. Chief Justice Pius Langa (Degree of Doctor of Laws) is an inspirational jurist who is the first African Chief Justice of South Africa. He rose from humble beginnings as a worker in a shirt factory, to a court interpreter and messenger; subsequently a prosecutor and magistrate and a Judge of the Constitutional Court. Chief Justice Langa has always been involved in attempts to improve the quality of life of his fellow South Africans. He continues to assist civic organisations, townships residents association and youth and recreational groups. In an extremely competitive profession, his rise from humble beginnings in apartheid in South Africa to the Chief Justice of a free South Africa is truly remarkable and bears testimony to a courageous and indefatigable personality. Nicholas Carolan (Degree of Doctor of Literature) has achieved a national feat in the last twenty years in the establishment of the Irish Traditional Music Archive. It holds and preserves there the largest multi-media collection in existence of Irish traditional music materials: over 28,000 sound recordings, 18,000 books and serials, 10,000 images, and a mass of other materials. It also holds the largest body of information about the music, organised on unique computer catalogues: over half a million content items in all. He is best known to the public for his long-running archival television series, Come West along the Road on RTÉ and Siar an Bóthar on TG4, and for his extensive public lecturing. He has also published a profusion of books and scholarly articles on the subject of Irish traditional music. This year 2007 will be the 20th anniversary of the founding of the Archive, an appropriate time to honour Nicholas Carolan s service to the nation. Niall FitzGerald, KBE (Degree of Doctor of Laws) became the Chairman of Reuters in October 2004, having spent over thirty years with Unilever in a variety of commercial and financial jobs in several countries. During his Unilever career, he worked and lived in Ireland, the Netherlands, South Africa, the USA and the UK. Niall FitzGerald joined the Board of Reuters as a non-executive director in 2003 and became Chairman in 2004. Niall FitzGerald was awarded an honorary Knight Commander of the British Empire in 2002, and holds a number of Honorary Doctorates from American, British and Irish universities. Eithne Ní Bhraonáin-Enya (Degree of Doctor of Music) was born in Gaoth Dobhair and educated in Milford, County Donegal, Enya was born into a musical family. In 1980 she was asked to join the family group Clannad at the request of Nicky Ryan, Clannad's Manager at that time. After leaving Clannad in 1982 she commenced her musical collaboration with the producer and lyricist team of Nicky and Roma Ryan. Enya has become Ireland's best-selling solo artist in the history of the State and ranks alongside the most successful female artists in the world. She was the world s biggest selling female artist of 2001 and 2002. To date Enya has sold over seventy million albums worldwide. The honorary conferring will take place in the presence of the Chancellor of the National University of Ireland and former Taoiseach, Dr. Garret FitzGerald ENDS

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Céimeanna Oinigh bronnta ag OÉ Gaillimh ar sheisear den scoth

Céimeanna Oinigh bronnta ag OÉ Gaillimh ar sheisear den scoth-image

Friday, 29 June 2007

Ag bronnadh na gCeimeanna Oinigh inniú ag OÉ Gaillimh (ó chlé): an tArd-Bhreitheamh Pius Langa; Enya; Bill Walsh; Niall FitzGerald, KBE; Dr Jane O Leary agus Nicholas Carolan Céimeanna Dochtúireachta bronnta ar Bill Walsh, Jane O'Leary, An tArd-Bhreitheamh Pius Langa, Nicholas Carolan, Niall Fitzgerald, KBE agus Eithne Ní Bhraonáin (Enya) Fuair seisear den scoth ó shaol an ghnó, an daonchairdis, an cheartais, an cheol agus na n-ealaíon céimeanna oinigh ó Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh inniu, Dé hAoine, an 29 Meitheamh 2007. Léiríonn an bronnadh na héachtaí agus an obair náisiúnta agus idirnáisiúnta atá bainte amach ag na daoine seo sna réimsí lena mbaineann siad. Bronnadh céim oinigh an tseachtain seo caite ar an mbéaloideasaí Tom Munnelly, a bhfuil cáil dhomhanda air. Dúirt an Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, "Is mór an onóir dom fáilte a chur roimh an ngrúpa ar leith réamhchéimithe seo chuig OÉ Gaillimh agus an onóir is mó is féidir leis an Ollscoil a thabhairt dóibh á bronnadh orthu inniu. I mbliana agus réamhchéimithe ón Afraic Theas, as Éirinn, as an mBreatain agus as na Stáit Aontaithe ag déanamh ionadaíochta ar na healaíona, an ceartas, an gnó agus an daonchairdeas, is eicléictiúil, ilghnéitheach agus ildánach an grúpa céimithe atá againn." Is é Bill Walsh (Céim Dhochtúireachta sa Dlí) a bhunaigh agus atá mar Chathaoirleach ar Sequoia Associates, gnólacht príobháideach infheistíochta, a bunaíodh i 1982. Tá sé pósta agus tá seisear clainne air. Daonchara ciúin seasmhach é Walsh atá in bhall le blianta fada den American Ireland Fund agus a fuair an Gradam Ceannaireachta uathu i 1997. Mhaoinigh Walsh, a bhean chéile, agus a seisear clainne an William D. Walsh Family Library in Ollscoil Fordham, agus ba iad a thiomnaigh an Lumbard Classroom in Hauser Hall ag Scoil Dlí Harvard. Chomh maith leis sin, bhunaigh Walsh Ánracht Lumbard chun intéirnigh a mhaoiniú i rith an tsamhraidh ó Scoil Dlí Harvard agus as Scoileanna Dlí Columbia agus Fordham chun go mbeidís in ann oibriú in Oifig an Ard-Aighne sna Stáit Aontaithe. Rugadh Jane O'Leary (Céim Dhochtúireachta sa Cheol) in Hartford, Connecticut, agus tá sí ina cónaí in Éirinn ó 1972. Duine de lucht bunaithe Aosdána í Jane a bhfuil breis agus 70 saothar cumtha aici, saothar a sheinntear agus a chraoltar go mion minic. I 1976, bhunaigh Jane an ensemble comhaimseartha ceoil, Concorde, chun ceol nua a chur chun cinn agus a sheinm go rialta. Tá sí ina cónaí i nGaillimh áit ar bhunaigh sí Music for Galway i 1981 agus is í atá ina cathaoirleach air faoi láthair. Bhí Jane ar Bhord an Cheolárais Náisiúnta, na Comhairle Ealaíon, agus ar Choiste um Chaidreamh Cultúir na Roinne Gnóthaí Eachtracha. Bhí sí in Cathaoirleach ar an Contemporary Music Centre agus an t-ionad sin á fhorbairt go mór ag an am. Bhí sí ina Cumadóir Cónaitheach le hAcadamh Ríoga Cheol na hÉireann agus faoi láthair tá cumadóireacht á teagasc aici san Ardscoil Cheoil agus Drámaíochta in Institiúid Teicneolaíochta Bhaile Átha Cliath. Is dlí-eolaí den scoth an tArd-Bhreitheamh Pius Langa (Céim Dhochtúireachta sa Dlí). Ba é an chéad Ard-Bhreitheamh Afracach ar an Afraic Theas. Thosaigh sé ag obair i monarcha léinte ar dtús. Ansin fuair sé post mar theachtaire agus mar theangaire cúirte; ansin mar ionchúisitheoir. D'oibrigh sé ansin mar ghiúistís agus mar Bhreitheamh ar an gCúirt Bhunreachtúil. Tá a shaol caite ag an Ard-Bhreitheamh Langa ag iarraidh caighdeán maireachtála na ndaoine san Afraic Theas a fheabhsú. Cabhraíonn sé i gcónaí le heagraíochtaí saoránachta, cumann cónaitheoirí bailte agus grúpaí óige agus caitheamh aimsire. Is gairm fhíoriomaíoch í seo, agus léiríonn an dul chun cinn a rinne sé i gcinedheighilt san Afraic Theas go hArd-Bhreitheamh san Afraic Theas shaor, chomh misniúil agus chomh dosháraithe is atá an fear seo. Tá éacht náisiúnta bainte amach ag Nicholas Carolan (Céim Dhochtúireachta sa Litríocht) le scór bliain anuas le bunú Chartlann Cheol Traidisiúnta na hÉireann. Is ann atá an bailiúchán ilmheán is mó de cheol traidisiúnta na hÉireann: Breis is 28,000 fuaimthaifead, 18,000 leabhar agus sraitheanna, 10,000 íomhá, agus go leor ábhar eile. Is ann is mó atá eolas le fáil faoin gceol freisin – curtha in ord ar chatalóga áirithe ríomhaire: breis is leathmhilliún acu ar fad. Is fearr aithne air mar gheall ar an sraithchlár cartlainne atá ar RTÉ le fada, Come West along the Road agus Siar an Bóthar ar TG4, agus mar gheall ar a chuid léachtaí poiblí. Tá neart leabhar agus alt scolártha foilsithe aige faoi cheol traidisiúnta na hÉireann. Beidh sé 20 bliain i mbliana ó bunaíodh an Chartlann, am feiliúnach chun onóir a thabhairt do sheirbhís Nicholas Carolan don tír. Rinneadh Cathaoirleach ar Reuters de Niall FitzGerald, KBE (Céim Dhochtúireachta sa Dlí) i nDeireadh Fómhair 2004, tar éis tríocha bliain a bheith caite aige le Unilever i bpoist éagsúla tráchtála agus airgeadais i dtíortha éagsúla. Agus é ag obair le Unilever, bhí sé ina chónaí in Éirinn, san Ísiltír, san Afraic Theas, i Stáit Aontaithe Mheiriceá agus sa Ríocht Aontaithe. Rinneadh ball de Bhord Reuters de Niall FitzGerald mar stiúrthóir neamhfheidhmiúcháin in 2003 agus rinneadh Cathaoirleach de in 2004. Rinneadh Ceannasaí Oinigh Ridireachta d'Impireacht na Breataine as Niall FitzGerald in 2002, agus tá céimeanna oinigh Dochtúireachta faighte aige ó ollscoileanna i Meiriceá, sa Bhreatain agus in Éirinn. Rugadh Eithne Ní Bhraonáin-Enya (Céim Dhochtúireachta sa Cheol) i nGaoth Dobhair agus fuair sí a cuid oideachais i Milford, Contae Dhún na nGall. Bhí an teaghlach an-cheolmhar agus i 1980 d'iarr Nicky Ryan uirthi, Bainisteoir Chlannad ag an am, páirt a ghlacadh i gClannad – grúpa an teaghlaigh. I ndiaidh di Clannad a fhágáil i 1982 thosaigh sí ag ceol trí chomhoibriú leis an léiritheoir Nicky Ryan agus leis an liriceoir Roma Ryan. Is í Enya an t-amhránaí ban is mó éilimh sa tír seo agus tá sí ar dhuine de na hamhránaithe ban is cáiliúla ar domhan. Ba í an t-amhránaí ban ba mhó éilimh in 2001 agus 2002. Go dtí seo, tá breis is seachtó milliún albam díolta aici ar fud an domhain. I láthair ag an searmanas bronnta beidh Seansailéir Ollscoil na hÉireann agus an tIar-Thaoiseach, an Dr Garret FitzGerald. CRÍOCH

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NUI Galway to host 16th EAN annual conference

NUI Galway to host 16th EAN annual conference-image

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

Access to Success: the Student Experience from Pre-entry to Employment (with particular focus on students from under-represented groups) The European Access Network (EAN) in collaboration with the Access Programme Office at NUI Galway is having its 16th EAN Annual Conference from 27 - 29 June 2007. The conference will look at the student experience throughout the student life cycle, with particular focus on students from under-represented groups. The NUI Galway Access Programme promotes initiatives that encourage greater participation in university amongst under-represented groups (under presentation can be for reason of age, gender, ethnicity, disability, nationality, low-socio economic status, vocational training, geographic location or earlier educational disadvantage). According to Imelda Byrne, Access Officer, "The numbers of students progressing from our target groups to higher education has increased over the past 10 years. This conference hopes to examine in particular factors that will affect, influence or shape the experience and future employment potentials; it will also consider the role of the career services as an interface for student – university – employer to facilitate a three way dialogue on employability. Increasingly, higher education institutions are recognising the need to stimulate university – industry links and are working with local communities in order to develop the knowledge based economy." Mr. Michael Kelly, Chair of the Higher Education Authority will deliver the opening address. Mr. Chris Coughlan, Adjunct Professor at the University and e-Business Services Manager, Hewlett Packard, Galway is a guest speaker and will discuss the Role of Career Guidance in Supporting Students' Personal and Professional development. Past conferences have been very successful and were attended by high level policy makers, academics, practitioners and researchers who came to share international examples of innovative strategies and good practices. The EAN and NUI Galway are confident that this year's event will be equally successful with over 200 delegates expected. Keynote speakers include: Bahram Bekhradnia, Director, Higher Education Policy Institute, UK Ibrahim Bokharouss, ECHO, the Netherlands Michael M Crow, President, Arizona State University, USA Margaret Dane, Chief Executive, AGCAS, UK Michel Feutrie, President, EUCEN, France Annika Persson Ponten, Ministry of Education, Sweden Jaana Puukka, Analyst, OECD The EAN is the only independent, non-profit making, European organisation – but with an active international membership – which promotes equity and access to education and training for disadvantaged and under-represented groups. Over the past 15 years the EAN has through research, publications and conferences, successfully informed and stimulated access policy, raised awareness to the social and equity dimensions of higher education, facilitated pedagogic development, and disseminated research findings and examples of good practice. ENDS

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NUI Galway Student named National Siemens Innovative Engineer 2007

NUI Galway Student named National Siemens Innovative Engineer 2007-image

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

NUI Galway Biomedical Engineering student Michael Dunning has been named Siemens Innovative Engineer of the Year 2007 at a ceremony in Dublin. This prestigious award, now in its 9th year, is presented annually by Siemens and Engineers Ireland to a final year engineering student who has developed an innovative technology or product that is commercially viable. Michael, from Athlone, Co. Westmeath won the award for his final year research project, A Self-Expanding Nano-Fibrous Biodegradable Stent, which developed a stent to treat urethral strictures. Stents are small medical devices designed to be inserted into a vessel or passageway to keep it open. Professor Padraic O Donoghue, Dean of Engineering at NUI Galway, said: "I would like to congratulate Michael on his tremendous achievement in winning the prestigious Siemens Prize. This is the top award nationally for engineering graduates and there is always very keen competition for it. His success is further evidence of the high quality of the engineering programmes at NUI Galway and our strength within Biomedical Engineering. I also acknowledge the contributions of his lecturers and in particular those of his advisor, Professor Abhay Pandit." Michael received a specially commissioned trophy along with a cheque for €2,000. A further prize of €1,250 will be awarded should he decide to continue with post-graduate studies in engineering at an accredited University or Institute of Technology. Speaking after receiving the award, Michael said: "I am delighted to have won the prize, which is a wonderful accolade to have on my CV. There was some very strong competition in the final, including another student from my course, which is a great reflection on the department and is justified because of the great researchers and lecturers doing interesting and innovative research." The award is open to final year engineering students of Engineers Ireland accredited engineering degree courses from Universities and Institutes of Technology, north and south of the border. Each the year competition receives applications from 14 participating Universities and ITs who nominate two student projects each for the award. The Siemens Innovative Engineer of the Year Award encourages young engineering students to be innovative in their work and to think about the practical and commercial applications of their research. For further information on the award logon to: ENDS

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South African Chief Justice to speak at NUI Galway

South African Chief Justice to speak at NUI Galway-image

Monday, 25 June 2007

The Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway will proudly host a special visit by Justice Pius Langa, Chief Justice of South Africa, who will deliver a seminar entitled: A Review of the Work of the South African Constitutional Court: the Retrospect and Prospect on Saturday, 30 June, 2007. Last year, South Africa celebrated the 10th anniversary of the signing of its constitution. Thus, the visit by Chief Justice Langa is both timely and opportune. The constitution, signed into law by the country's first democratically elected president, Nelson Mandela, at Sharpeville, on 10 December 1996, has been widely regarded as the most progressive in the world. The protection of human rights along with the promotion of equality, diversity and social justice are among the aspirations embodied in the constitution, which was negotiated in the acute awareness of the country's history of injustice and oppression. Pius Nkonzo Langa was appointed a Judge of the Constitutional Court of South Africa in October 1994 and became Deputy President of that Court in August 1997. He was appointed Deputy Chief Justice of South Africa in November 2001 and assumed the position of Chief Justice of the Republic of South Africa on 1 June 2005. During Chief Justice Langa's early practice as an advocate of the Supreme Court of South Africa, political trials predominated, and his practice reflected the struggle against apartheid. His clientele included the underprivileged, civic bodies, trade unions and people charged under apartheid security legislation. He was also a founder member of the Release Mandela Committee (Natal) and served in the committees formed to accelerate and prepare for the release of political prisoners. Justice Langa has participated in numerous conferences abroad and delivered papers and lectures on a variety of law and human rights-related topics. He has participated in the work of constitutional review commissions in Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe, Rwanda and Tanzania. Langa assisted in the formation of and is the current chairman of the Southern African Judges Commission, a forum for Chief Justices of SADC and other jurisdictions in other Southern African jurisdictions. The Commission's focus is, among other things, the promotion and protection of the independence of the judiciary and the promotion and development of a culture of human rights in the Southern African region. According to Deputy Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights, Dr Vinodh Jaichand, the visit by Chief Justice Langa is the highlight of a very full academic year a the Centre. "This will be an opportunity to hear first-hand how the Constitutional Court's internationally acclaimed decisions have affected the lives of the millions affected by the notorious practice of apartheid. In its landmark decisions on the legal protection of the right to health care and housing, for example, the South African Constitutional Court has clearly illustrated the vital role that courts can play in the protection of socio-economic rights." Justice Pius Langa is among six outstanding individuals from the worlds of business, philanthropy, justice, music and the arts to be conferred with honorary degrees from National University of Ireland, Galway on Friday 29 June, 2007. The seminar will commence at 10 am at the Irish Centre for Human Rights and all are welcome. ENDS

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NUI Galway President to join graduates at Henley

NUI Galway President to join graduates at Henley-image

Monday, 25 June 2007

The Grainne Mhaol Club, in conjunction with NUI Galway Alumni Association, is pleased to invite all NUI Galway graduates to an afternoon & evening of rowing and entertainment at Henley Royal Regatta, (Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire) on Saturday, 7 July, 2007. The guest of honour will be Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of NUI Galway. Henley Royal Regatta is undoubtedly the best known rowing regatta in the world and holds a unique place in the respect and affection of all oarsmen. Henley also offers a fantastic social occasion, and is a highlight of the English summer social circuit. NUI Galway has a legacy of participating in, and often winning, events at Henley. In 2003, the Rowing Club won the Visitor's Fours event at Henley Royal Regatta, beating both "Boat Race" crews from Oxford and Cambridge along the way, and repeated this by winning the same event in 2005. An earlier generation of oarsmen, competing as UCG Rowing Club tasted victory in the Thames Cup in 1987 and in the Britannia Challenge Cup in 1990. The 20th Anniversary of the club's first Henley win will be marked by the 1987 crew rowing over the course during the break in racing on Saturday at this year's event. In addition to the row-past by the 1987 crew, the present generation of NUI Galway athletes will also be racing on Saturday. The Club is planning to send two extremely strong and experienced crews to complete this year; and it is expected that at least one of them will still be in the competition at semi-final stage. "If you ever were to attend Henley this would be the year to do it" declared Eamonn Hegarty, Alumni Association Board member and event organiser. The Regatta Enclosure will be the venue for the NUI Galway graduate get-together at 2:00pm. After an afternoon at the regatta, alumni will be welcomed to a barbeque hosted by the Alumni Association Board at 8:00pm. Transport will be provided for guests from Henley Town Centre to the barbeque venue, ("The Maltsters Arms" in Rotherfield Greys), and afterwards, back to Henley in time for the last train to London. For further details of the regatta timetable, dress code, barbeque venue, etc., please visit, or e-mail us at ENDS

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NUI Galway award Honorary Doctorate to world-renowned Folklorist

NUI Galway award Honorary Doctorate to world-renowned Folklorist-image

Tuesday, 19 June 2007

World-renowned folklorist, Mr Tom Munnelly received the honorary degree of Doctor of Literature from NUI Galway in recognition of his lifetime of service to the collection and publication of folksong and folklore in Ireland. Mr Munnelly was honoured at the University's summer conferring ceremony on Tuesday, 19 June, 2007. Tom Munnelly is widely recognised as one of the world s foremost collectors of traditional Irish songs in the English language, with over 20,000 songs collected to date. A native of Dublin, Mr Munnelly is an archivist/collector with the Delargy Centre for Irish Folklore in UCD, and since moving to West Clare in 1978 he has collected over 4,000 Songs from local traditional singers. He has also recorded songs, music and folklore in most other counties in Ireland. Dr Pádraig Ó Héalaí, a former lecturer in Irish at NUI Galway said: "Tom Munnelly has made an immense contribution to the future of Irish folkore studies by producing an index of all the English-language oral poetry contained in vols 1 to 2000 of the National Folklore Archive's manuscripts, some 18,000 items in all, and by developing a classificatory system for this material based on internationally accepted models. "Formidable as Tom's feats as an archivist may be, his achievement as a collector of oral tradition is truly awesome. He has recorded well over 1,000 hours of song and lore and has been responsible for the most comprehensive collection of traditional songs in English ever compiled by any one individual in Ireland. It constitutes a very substantial enrichment of the National Folklore Collection and it significantly expands the database available to future scholars in this field." Mr Munnelly was a founder member of the Folk Music Society of Ireland/Cumannn Ceoil Tíre Éireann, has acted as Chair of the Irish Traditional Music Archive/Taisce Ceol Dúchais and of Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy and has served the Arts Council of Ireland in a number of different roles. His close association with these bodies and his founding role in other local historical and folk music societies, folklore schools and singing festivals highlight his contribution to Irish cultural life. The Conferral ceremony at NUI Galway will also include the posthumous award of the PhD degree to Mr John Mulqueen of Tourmakeady, Co. Mayo and a native of Kilrush, Co. Clare. John, a graduate of UCD and Iowa, was a former Adjunct Lecturer in the Department of Civil Engineering, an employee of An Foras Talúntais and Teagasc and an international authority on soils, and died in 2006. The award will be accepted by his family. Almost 200 students from across the Faculties of Medicine and Health Sciences, Engineering, Commerce, Science, Law and Arts will also receive their degrees and diplomas at the ceremony. ENDS

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