Monday, 11 November 2019

Fourteen NUI Galway postgraduate courses have been shortlisted in five categories for the national gradireland Higher Education Awards 2019. The categories include Best New Course, Best Science Course, and Best Business Course of the Year, and award winners will be announced on Friday, 22 November at a reception in Dublin. The postgraduate courses that have been shortlisted are: Best New Course: MSc in AgriBiosciences, Masters in International and Comparative Business Law, MSc in International Accounting and Analytics, MSc in Exercise Physiology and Application in Therapy, and MSc in Cellular Manufacturing and Therapy Postgraduate Course of the Year Award in Law: Masters in International and Comparative Business Law Postgraduate Course of the Year Award in Business, Finance and Management: MSc Business Analytics and the MSc Digital Marketing Postgraduate Course of the Year Award in Computer Science and Technology: MSc in Business Analytics and  MSc in Medical Technology Regulatory Affairs . Postgraduate Course of the Year Award in Science: MSc in Medical Physics and MSc (AgriBiosciences) ans  MSc in Medical Technology Regulatory Affairs. The annual Postgraduate Course of the Year Awards recognises excellence amongst Irish postgraduate course providers. The winning courses are judged on the success of the course including employability of graduates, recognition of the course’s quality or ranking by external bodies, research record of academic staff, and providing a good experience for students. Judges also take feedback from students into consideration when selecting a winner. Valerie Leahy, Postgraduate Recruitment Officer at NUI Galway, said: “We’re delighted to again make the shortlist for these important national awards; it’s great that the calibre of our postgraduate courses is being acknowledged, as is their effectiveness in terms of employability, and interaction with industry and business. These courses are now accepting applications and those interested can apply online via the NUI Galway postgraduate applications system at www.nuigalway.ie/postgraduateapplications. We also offer generous full-time taught masters scholarships for first-class students, so that’s another reason to consider NUI Galway for postgraduate studies.” Over 5,000 postgraduate students (including international students) currently attend NUI Galway and the University offers a wide range of fourth level courses, developing programmes based on its traditional academic strengths of Arts, Social Sciences, Celtic Studies, Commerce, Medicine, Nursing, Health Science, Law, Engineering, Informatics and Science. These areas have been augmented with innovative Research Centres in areas as diverse as Biomedical Engineering, International Human Rights, Digital Media and Film Studies, and Regenerative Medicine. -Ends-

Friday, 8 November 2019

NUI Galway and Zagreb University conduct longitudinal study on male adolescent sexual aggressiveness and pornography use A research study conducted by NUI Galway and Zagreb University in Croatia on 600 Croatian male high school students aged 15-17 over a 20- month period, has found that pornography use is associated with sexual aggression over time but only when people report a pre-disposition to aggression. In isolation, pornography use does not predict sexual aggression. The aim of the study, which was published in the journal Aggressive Behaviour, was to provide robust and precise (individual level‐based) longitudinal insights about the often hypothesized link between pornography use and sexual aggression. The researchers focused on the following two questions: Is pornography use during middle to late adolescence related to male adolescents’ sexual aggressiveness? Do personality traits account for the relationship between pornography use and sexual aggression? The study found that frequent pornography use during the first round of data collection was associated with sexual aggressiveness, but over time pornography use did not predict sexual aggression. In other words those who reported sexually aggressive tendencies were also more likely to watch a lot of pornography. Those who watched none or very little pornography were least likely to report that they had acted in a sexually aggressive way. This was consistent across six time points (every three months) throughout the 20-month study. Bullying and peer pressure consistently predicted sexual aggression. This supports other research (Espelage, Basile, Leemis, Hipp, & Davis, 2018 study conducted in the US), which shows that people who report non-sexual aggression such as bullying or delinquency in early adolescence are more likely to report sexual aggressiveness in later adolescence. Adolescence is a key stage in sexual development, where beliefs about appropriate sexual behaviour is formed. It is well documented that many harmful behaviours manifest during adolescence, with approximately half of sexual offenders reporting their first assault during this time. The rising prevalence of pornography use mostly, but not exclusively, among male adolescents has prompted concerns among researchers and policy makers about the impact of pornography, which can portray sexual aggression, on youth sexual socialisation - particularly regarding the replication of aggressive or violent behaviour. However, much of the research that explores the link between pornography use and sexual aggression is based on cross-sectional data (data collected at one point in time from different people) and the direction of these associations is largely unknown. The researchers believe there is a need to explore this relationship over time using longitudinal data with the same cohort of people, as conducted in this study. Lead researcher of the study, Dr Kate Dawson, School of Psychology, NUI Galway, said: “Taking into account the need to prevent sexual coercion among young people, and the significant association between pornography use and self-reported sexual aggressiveness at the age of 16–17 years, we suggest that school-based sexual violence prevention programmes should commence for that age group. Intervention efforts should also address the potential contributing role of violent pornography in the reinforcement of sexually aggressive behaviour. Similarly, our findings may inform recently proposed pornography literacy programmes, which provide tools for critical interpretation of sexually explicit imagery, but also to educate that a lack of consent is never acceptable.” The study was carried out by Dr Kate Dawson from the School of Psychology and Active Consent Programme at NUI Galway and Dr Azra Tafro and Professor Aleksandar Stulhofer from Zagreb University, Croatia. To read the full study in the journal Aggressive Behaviour, visit: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/ab.21854 -Ends-

Thursday, 7 November 2019

NUI Galway will officially launch the archive of Siobhán McKenna, commencing a day of celebration of the eminent career of the actress and director, including a symposium and exhibition on Friday, 15 November. President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins will attend as Guest of Honour along with members of McKenna’s family, her great friend Margaret McCurtain along with respected theatre figures, Garry Hynes and Lian Bell. Following the deposit of her papers in NUI Galway in 2012, the James Hardiman Library will officially open the Siobhán McKenna archive to scholars and the public. Siobhán McKenna (1922-1986) was an internationally renowned actress and director. Born in Belfast, she moved early in life to Galway when her father became a lecturer and subsequently professor at University College Galway. She graduated with first-class honours from the University in 1943. Her acting career had already commenced while she was a student, including lead roles at the Taibhdhearc before joining the Abbey Theatre following her graduation. Her subsequent international career included acclaimed performances in London, Paris and New York. She became the first Irish actor to win a Tony award in 1956. Following her return to Ireland in 1960 she took on director as well as acting roles in Ireland and internationally, directing 15 plays in the 1970s. Despite failing health from the late 1970s onwards she continued to act until the year of her death, 1986, her final role being that of Mommo in Tom Murphy’s play Bailegangaire, performed at Druid Theatre and subsequently in London and Dublin. She was a member of the Council of State between 1975 and 1986 and was also a human rights activist, campaigning against apartheid in particular. The James Hardiman Library at NUI Galway holds the Siobhán McKenna Archive. The collection consists of 55 boxes of material in paper and audio-visuals, covering all aspects of her life and career, as well as material relating to her family and friends. Highlights include material relating to over 77 different productions she was involved in, including scripts, correspondence, photographs and press cuttings. The productions span a number of companies, and the geographical spread includes Ireland, England, Europe, the United States and Australia. Her television and film roles are also featured. There is material relating to her writing and political activism, including Northern Ireland issues and the anti-apartheid movement, along with research notes and copies of a range of talks at festivals, book launches and other events. The collection was donated to NUI Galway through the generosity of her son Donnacha O’Dea, as well as the good offices of Margaret MacCurtain, and Siobhán McKenna’s manager from the 1970s onwards, Johnny Hippisley. The catalogue of the archive is at https://tinyurl.com/yylzlnsl.   The University holds a number of closely-related collections including those of Taibhdhearc na Gaillimhe, the Druid and Lyric Players Theatres, playwright Tom Kilroy, actor Arthur Shields and, in digital format, the Abbey and Gate Theatres. These collections reflect NUI Galway’s position as a leading centre for research and teaching in theatre and drama. The launch of the archive in the O’ Donoghue Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance will be followed by a symposium titled ‘Celebrating Siobhán McKenna’. The symposium includes a panel discussion on ‘Women Theatre-makers Now!’ which will discuss the position of women theatre-makers four years after the Waking the Feminists campaign was started to advocate for equality for women theatre-makers. Panelists will include Lian Bell (Waking the Feminists), Ionia Ní Chroinín (Moonfish Theatre Company) and Dr Tanya Dean (Technical University of Dublin and co-author of the Gender Counts report). Lelia Doolan and historian Dr Margaret McCurtain will be in conversation remembering the life of Siobhán McKenna followed by an interview with Garry Hynes on her recollections of working with Siobhán, while Professor Lionel Pilkington will deliver a lecture on McKenna’s acting and activism. The symposium will draw to a close with a short performance of a devised work-in-progress piece in the Irish language inspired by McKenna’s archival materials and performed by students of the BA in Drama, Theatre and Performance at NUI Galway. President of NUI Galway, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, said: “Siobhán McKenna is one of Ireland’s great cultural icons. It is a huge honour for NUI Galway to hold such an extraordinary collection of her excellence and high standards. Siobhan’s archives is a significant resource now open to all of our students and staff to enjoy, and of course the wider public globally. It is especially fitting and respectful that her archives are held in our University given her close ties as a graduate of this University and that of her father who was as a teaching professor here, which led to Siobhán’s long-term association with Galway’s rich cultural heritage and her extraordinary acting career.” Dr Ian Walsh, Lecturer in Drama and Theatre Studies at NUI Galway commented: “Siobhán McKenna is an inspirational figure for students at NUI Galway not only through her extraordinary achievements as an actress of international renown but also in her political activism, commitment to the Irish language and her leadership of artistic projects. McKenna was a theatre-maker before that term had been established and it is fitting that in the symposium that celebrates the launch of this archive that we have a panel discussion on where women theatre-makers are now, four years after the Waking the Feminists campaign. The archive will no doubt lead to new exciting research on McKenna’s many achievements and it has already led to the creation of a new work in the Irish language by students of the BA in Drama, Theatre and Performance on the life and legacy of Siobhán McKenna. I am greatly looking forward to seeing this work-in-progress at the symposium.” John Cox, University Librarian at NUI Galway, said: “The Siobhán McKenna archive is an invaluable addition to our collection of theatre archives. It will provide many insights into her eminent career and we are delighted to open it for research and teaching, helping to ensure the continuation of her lasting legacy for Irish and international theatre.” For more information about the Siobhán McKenna Symposium contact, ian.walsh@nuigalway and for more details about the event, visit: https://bit.ly/2MPqt1P -Ends-

Thursday, 7 November 2019

Tá sraith léachtaí ar siúil ag Coláiste na nDán, na nEolaíochtaí Sóisialta agus an Léinn Cheiltigh in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh. Díríonn an tsraith seo ar Ollúna nua-cheaptha an Choláiste agus leanfar di le léacht ón Ollamh Pearsanta, Lillis Ó Laoire ar an Déardaoin 28 Samhain, ag 5.00p.m. in Institiúid de Móra, Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh (G010). Ina chaint dar teideal, Ó Turgenev go Toraigh: Taighde ar thraidisiúin amhránaíochta na Gaeilge, pléifidh an tOllamh Ó Laoire torthaí a chuid taighde ceannródaíoch ar amhránaíocht na Gaeilge le tríocha bliain anuas in Éirinn. Léiríonn an scéal ‘Ceoltóirí,’ ón chnuasach Scéalta Sealgaire,comórtas idir bheirt amhránaithe, ina ndéantar cur síos ar bhuanna na beirte iomaitheoirí. Is scéal cumhachtach rúndiamhrach é agus tugtar léargas máistriúil ann ar thréithe an taibhléirithe san amhránaíocht. Nochtar ann chomh maith an  nasc idir amhráin agus spiorad an náisiúin. Tugtar léargas cosúil leis sin i scéal Phádraig Mhic Phiarais, ‘Bríd na nAmhrán.’ Agus an dá scéal seo mar phointí tagartha aige, pléifidh an tOllamh Ó Laoire cúlra agus comhthéacs a chuid taighde ar an amhránaíocht. Beidh trácht aige ar Thoraigh agus ar Sheosamh Ó hÉanaí chomh maith. Mar is cuí ar an ócáid, agus sa dea-chleachtas inchuimsitheach is fearr a léiríonn spiorad an dátheangachais in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh, tabharfar an léacht i nGaeilge agus cuirfear aistriúchán comhuaineach Béarla ar fáil. Dúirt an Dr Seán Crosson, An Leas-Déan Taighde i gColáiste na nDán na nEolaíochtaí Sóisialta agus an Léinn Cheiltigh in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh, an méid seo: “Cúis áthais dúinn leanúint leis an tsraith léachtaí poiblí seo. Tugann sí deis iontach don Ollscoil an pobal mór a chur ar an eolas faoin taighde nuálach ceannródaíoch ar ardchaighdeán atá siúl san Ollscoil. Is é an tOllamh Ó Laoire an t-ochtú cainteoir sa tsraith. Go dtí seo tugadh léachtaí ar an mbeartas sóisialta, ar an oideachas, ar an smaointeoireacht pholaitiúil, ar theiripithe ar líne, ar an stair agus ar shíceolaíocht na hiompraíochta. Is onóir mhór í deis a thabhairt don Ollamh Ó Laoire labhairt mar chuid den tsraith seo. Is scoláire agus duine d’amhránaithe móra comhaimseartha na hÉireann é, fear a roinn a thuiscint ar thábhacht an tseanchais bhéil agus na n-amhrán go fial fairsing le blianta, trína chuid taighde agus trína chleachtas.” -Críoch-

Thursday, 7 November 2019

A lecture series at the College of Arts, Social Sciences, and Celtic Studies at NUI Galway featuring new Professors in the College will continue with Personal Professor in Irish, Professor Lillis Ó Laoire, on Thursday, 28 November at 5pm, in the Moore Institute NUI Galway (GO10). In his talk titled ‘Ó Turgenev go Toraigh: Taighde ar thraidisiúin amhránaíochta na Gaeilge’ (From Turgenev to Tory: Research on Irish-language song traditions), Professor Ó Laoire will share findings from his ground-breaking research over the past thirty years of the song tradition in Ireland. The story ‘Singers’ by Turgenev from the collection Hunters Tales portrays a competition between two singers, giving a description of the abilities of each competitor. It is a powerful, mysterious story and is a masterful presentation of  the characteristics of song performance. The connection between song and the spirit of a nation is also made. A similar portrayal is found in P. H. Pearse’s story ‘Bríd na nAmhrán.’ Taking these two narratives as reference points, Professor Ó Laoire will discuss his research into song taking in background and context; his field work in Tory Island and the work of Joe Heaney will also feature. As befits the occasion, and in NUI Galway’s best spirit of inclusive bilingualism, the lecture will be delivered in Irish, with simultaneous translation into English. Dr Seán Crosson, Vice-Dean for Research in the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies at NUI Galway, said: “We are delighted to continue this lecture series which provides a great opportunity for the University to make the general public more aware of the world-leading innovative research being undertaken in the college. This is the eighth speaker in the series which has featured contributions to date in the areas of social policy, education, political thought, online therapies, language transmission, historical research, and behavioural psychology. It is a great honour to now feature Professor Ó Laoire in the series, an academic who in his research, publications, and practice as one of Ireland’s finest contemporary sean-nós singers, has brought a deeper appreciation and understanding of the value and significance of our oral traditions to both the academic community and the wider public.” -Ends-

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

From 7-9 November, a major labour history conference will be hosted by the Discipline of History at NUI Galway, exploring ‘Labour, Gender and Class in the Struggle for Irish Independence, 1918-1924’.  This free conference is one of the highlights of the Decade of Centenaries programme for 2019. It is co-organised by the Irish Congress for Trade Unions and the Irish Centre for the Histories of Labour and Class at NUI Galway and is supported by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. The programme includes an address by the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht on Saturday, 9 November.   Over two-and-a-half days, sixty scholars will scrutinise the interplay between labour, gender, and class during the revolutionary period in Ireland. At the core of the conference, a series of five expert panels will discuss contentious questions: the role of trade unionists (including Irish immigrant trade unionists) in the revolutionary events; the impact of the struggle on the lives of women; the existential challenges presented by sectarian polarisation in the North-East; and the several competing ideologies in the labour milieu. The conference will also feature original research from established and emerging scholars, which will illuminate the regional experience of the revolution, with particular attention to the West of Ireland and to the Belfast region. On Friday, 8 November a special resource will be launched by Noel Ward of the Irish National Teachers Organisation to assist teachers in engaging with themes relating to labour, gender and class when teaching the Struggle for Independence. This teachers’ handbook will be a freely available resource for schools, published on the Irish Congress of Trade Unions website. The programme also includes an innovative theatre workshop, theatrical presentations, a walking tour, musical performances and a History Ireland hedge-school, in venues on the NUI Galway campus and in Galway City. Minister Josepha Madigan, said: “I am very pleased to support this timely and important conference. I commend all involved at NUI Galway and the Irish Congress of Trade Unions for their collaborative and imaginative approach which has created a really interesting and engaging programme of events. I am delighted to support events such as this, which encourage respectful and meaningful debate.  “One hundred years on, we have the freedom and the maturity to really delve into and consider the various narratives surrounding the complex events of this formative period in our shared history. We have learned that the exploration of our past can be an empowering, enriching and healing process, which encourages us to look to the future and the values that we wish to preserve for the generations to come.”  Dr John Cunningham, co-organiser of the event, Discipline of History, NUI Galway, said: “The period between 1918 and 1924 was when Labour and the trade unions became an important factor in Irish social and political life, when socialist and republican ideologies and organisations interacted with one another, as reflected in the Democratic Programme of the first Dáil, and in relatively well-known episodes such as the Limerick Soviet and the general strike against conscription. By examining these and lesser known incidents of the period, and by interrogating the character of the various social in Ireland, the conference will add to the historical understanding of the struggle for Irish independence in all its complexity.” Patricia King, General Secretary of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, said: “The crucial role played by the Labour Movement in the Struggle for Independence has been largely forgotten. The first general strike in Irish history was in 1918 to oppose conscription. Three more followed, concluding with that against militarism and the drift to Civil War in 1922. Other major contributions were the drafting of the Democratic Programme of the First Dáil, the role union organisers played in creating the Dáil Courts, collecting the Dáil loan and creating alternative state structures to challenge British rule. While many trade unionists played prominent roles in the Irish Volunteers and Citizen Army, often at the cost of their own lives.”  All events are free, and light lunches and a catered meal will be served in the Mechanics Institute, Middle Street, Galway, on Friday, 8 November.  Events at NUI Galway will take place in the O’ Donoghue Centre. For further information visit, https://ichlc.wordpress.com, register at https://bit.ly/2BZbuND or logon to www.eventbrite.ie and search for ‘Labour, Gender and Class in the Struggle for Irish Independence’. -Ends- 

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

Teachers’ Research Exchange (T-REX) National Award to the School of Education, NUI Galway to Support Innovation in Teacher Education NUI Galway School of Education lecturer, Dr Clíona Murray has been awarded a prestigious teacher researcher award within the national T-REX (Teacher’s Research Exchange) Module Innovation Framework. Dr Murray teaches on the Professional Master of Education and Máistir Gairmiúil san Oideachas programmes in the School of Education at NUI Galway, and her main research interests are in teacher identity and professional development, education policy studies, and inclusion and diversity in education. Coordinated by Mary Immaculate College, Limerick with partners NUI Galway, University of Limerick, and Marino Institute of Education, Dublin - T-REX is a nationally funded online platform and set of tools to support teachers and educational researchers and professionals to collaborate, undertake and share research, and is freely available to all teachers in Ireland. Following an open call for proposals, an independent review panel, which included Initial Teacher Education representation, teacher representation and student representation conducted a rigorous review of applications from all over the country. The five national awardees developed proposals which impressed the panel in terms of their creativity and innovativeness; value for student learning; and exploitation of what the T-REX platform has to offer. Each of the awardees will receive financial, academic and technological support to develop their modules and to integrate the T-REX research platform and approach. Speaking of her award, Dr Clíona Murray, School of Education, NUI Galway, said: “This funding from the T-REX Module Innovation Framework will support the development of a collaborative research community within the Practitioner-Based Research module of the Máistir Gairmiúil san Oideachas, and enhance the emergent research literacy skills of students in initial teacher education at the School of Education in NUI Galway.”  Dr Tony Hall and Dr Cornelia Connolly, the T-REX Principal Investigators at NUI Galway’s School of Education, said: “The Module Innovation Framework is an important component of the T-REX ecosystem to help bridge research and practice in Irish education. It is designed to support lecturers and teacher educators to embed the T-REX platform and philosophy within their own teaching practice. We would like to congratulate Dr Clíona Murray on her award, which should help to enhance teacher education at NUI Galway, as an important part of the wider national deployment of T-REX, supported by the National Forum, the Teaching Council, the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment and Centre for Effective Services.” Funded by the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, T-REX recognises and encourages module leaders in Initial Teacher Education and Early Childhood Education in Ireland to re-design their modules to incorporate the T-REX platform into their teaching. For more information about T-REX, visit: www.t-rex.ie. -Ends-

Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Symposium to support people working in men’s health and to discuss and provide solutions to combating isolation and building resilience in men’s lives The School of Nursing and Midwifery at NUI Galway will host a Men’s Health Symposium focusing on the current issues that affect men’s health across their lifespan. The free event is aimed at health professionals and allied professionals who have an interest in men’s health and wellbeing, taking place on International Men’s Day on Tuesday, 19 November. The symposium offers attendees the opportunity to discuss, debate and seek solutions to current issues influencing men’s wellbeing across generations. It coincides with the Movember movement in promoting conversations and dialogue about men’s mental health, masculinity, suicide prevention, prostate cancer, health promotion, social isolation and personal stories. In partnership with the Centre for Nursing and Midwifery Education, Galway and the HSE’s Health Promotion Unit, the symposium will specifically examine the influence masculinity has on men’s health; building resilience; and promoting positive mental health and wellbeing for men. It will also highlight how men can access services that will support their health and wellbeing along with motivating them to adopt healthier lifestyle behaviours. A wide range of experts, practitioners, researchers and men’s health advocates from across Ireland will present on current issues in men’s health: Cathal Gallagher, Operation Transformation Leader 2019 will talk about his operation transformation experience and credits the show for helping him transform his outlook in life and making physical and mental health changes. Davy Glennon, Senior Galway Hurler will talk about his former battle with gambling addiction. Biddy O’Neill, Health and Wellbeing Programme, Department of Health will talk about men’s health in the workplace through a holistic approach. Dr Noel Richardson, CIT will talk about a space for vulnerability in men’s lives and Suicide in Ireland Report. Dr Phil Noone, NUI Galway will talk about aging men in rural Ireland and social inclusion. Laura Tully, AIT will talk about engaging farmers in physical activity, health and wellbeing and The Roscommon Fit Farmers Project. John Wall, Prostate cancer advocate will talk about living with prostate cancer. Dr Bróna Mooney, Symposium Chairperson from the School of Nursing and Midwifery at NUI Galway, said: “Younger men’s experience of prostate cancer is influenced by their adherence to traditional masculine narratives, which may both assist them in recovery and deprive them of important sources of social and emotional support. This symposium addresses topics such as mental health, social isolation, health promotion initiatives and a range of other critical men’s health issues.” Paul Gillen, Health Promotion and Improvement Services, HSE and Marissa Butler, Centre of Nursing and Midwifery Education, Galway, said: “We are delighted to co-organise this Men’s Health Symposium with NUI Galway. This event will highlight the importance of focusing on and supporting initiatives that seek to improve men’s health and wellbeing, to promote positive male role models and encourage us as health professionals to engage men and boys in healthier lifestyle choices.” The symposium will take place from 8.30am-4pm on Tuesday, 19 November in the main Lecture Theatre, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Arás Moyola Building, NUI Galway. To register to attend, visit www.eventbrite.com and search for ‘Men’s Health Symposium’. Follow on Twitter @n_gnursing and @CMNEGalway and #mhsym2019 and on Facebook at School of Nursing & Midwifery, NUI Galway. -Ends-

Monday, 4 November 2019

Documentary follows three personal stories of the patients’ voice impacting major research programmes in neonatal brain injury, Type 1 diabetes and chronic pain from arthritis CÚRAM, the SFI Centre for Research in Medical Devices based at NUI Galway has announced the documentary, The Patient Effect has been selected as the Science on Screen commission for 2019. The documentary will have its world premiere screening at Pálás Cinema in Galway on Saturday, 16 November at 6pm. The documentary tells the story of public and patient involvement in research – how tapping into the lived experience of patients, their families and carers, has the potential to hugely enhance the quality and relevance of health and medical research. Directed by Mia Mullarkey, this Irish documentary follows three personal stories, which reflect the power of including public and patient voices in planning and conducting research. Paul Ryan, father to Sophia who was born premature at 25 weeks, is contributing to a major research programme, exploring the most effective methods to monitor and manage babies with neonatal brain injury. Cameron Keighron (NUI Galway Student’s Union VP and Education Officer) lives with Type 1 diabetes and has been heavily involved in developing a new way of delivering healthcare to young people with diabetes. Margaret Devaney and the Swinford Arthritis Walking Group in Co. Mayo, provide a first-hand insight of the impact of chronic pain on their day-to-day life with medical device developers at NUI Galway, inspiring the developers in their research endeavours. Professor Andrew Murphy from NUI Galway and Director of the HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland, said: “In health research, it is crucial that the public and patient voice is heard, helping to ensure that publically-funded research addresses issues that matter to patients. We hope this documentary will inform people about the importance of public and patient involvement in research and inspire both the public and researchers to get involved.” Produced by Alice McDowell of Ishka Films, the chosen documentary overcame stiff competition from production companies based all over Ireland. Speaking about the documentary, McDowell said: “Patient and public voices have the power to transform the way we approach scientific and medical research in Ireland and worldwide. We've certainly witnessed this phenomenon during the past couple of months of filming and are excited to share three moving and inspiring stories in our soon-to-be-released documentary.” Science on Screen is a collaborative initiative of CÚRAM and Galway Film Centre, partnering this year with the HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland and PPI Ignite @ NUI Galway. The scheme has been running since 2016 and has seen the production of four documentaries on topics ranging from Parkinson’s Disease (Feats of Modest Valour) to Tendon Injury (Mending Legends), to Diabetes (Bittersweet) and Stroke (A Tiny Spark). These films have been screened at prestigious film festivals around the world, had eight national broadcasts on RTÉ and TG4 and reached an audience of one million. Professor Abhay Pandit, Scientific Director of CÚRAM, NUI Galway, said: “CÚRAM is delighted to see our Science on Screen programme evolve through a partnership with the HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland and PPI Ignite @ NUI Galway this year. This film demonstrates the potential of public and patient involvement in research including the medtech field. Science on Screen has brought stories of Irish research to a global audience and we are excited to see where this film will go.” Alan Duggan, Manager of Galway Film Centre, said: “The competition for the Science on Screen commission showcases the wealth of creative talent working in documentary in Ireland. We are incredibly proud to be continuing to work with CÚRAM on this wonderful initiative and we are delighted to welcome HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland and PPI Ignite @ NUI Galway to the partnership this year. We have no doubt that The Patient Effect will go on to be as successful as all of the other Science on Screen commissions that have already screened to audiences around the world.” Free tickets for the premiere on Saturday, 16 November at 6pm in Pálás Cinema, Spanish Arch, Galway are available on: https://bit.ly/2WICydr. The Patient Effect will also be screened in the ARD Family Resource Centre, Doughiska on Thursday, 21 November at 12pm. All are welcome. The documentary is funded by a Health Research Board award to the HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland and by CÚRAM, SFI Research Centre for Medical Devices, NUI Galway. For more information, contact Martha Killilea, NUI Galway, at: martha.killilea@nuigalway.ie. Click here to view a short trailer of The Patient Effect: https://vimeo.com/367628357. -Ends-

Tuesday, 5 November 2019

BioExel held its Medtech Opportunity Investor showcase in the Meyrick Hotel on recently, featuring over 40 start-up companies based in Ireland. This aim of the showcase was to provide national and international investors the breath of exciting opportunities emerging from the Medtech start-up ecosystem, particularly in the west of Ireland. The event illustrated how start-ups in the region are innovation drivers, developing novel life-changing technologies in collaboration with healthcare professionals, academia, manufacturers, SMEs and multinationals. Examples of this can be shown in some of the successes from the Bioexel companies such as; 1)Hidramed Solutions - CEO Suzanne Moloney from Hidramed Solutions is developing HidraWear, the world’s first adhesive-free wound care solution for suffers of Hidradenitis Suppurativa (HS) which is a disease of the skin that affects at least 1 in 100 people.  Suzanne said: “Bioexel really enabled me put a structure in place for my medical concept and through constant support and mentoring I developed a commercial roadmap that has led to IP, product design, clinical trial, CE marking, and seed investment. The dedicated Accelerator is a great mechanism to engage with experienced mentors and become part of the environment that supports each other on the start-up journey” 2)Bluedrop Medical another Bioexel participant successfully raised €3.7m in 2019 with a mix of investment and EU grant funding to enable further clinical emersion of the product. The home based system performs a daily scan of the patient’s feet and sends the data to the cloud for analysis through advanced algorithms capable of detecting abnormalities. By detecting skin damage early, the technology could enable healthcare providers to prevent hundreds of thousands of amputations, improving lives and significantly reducing costs. 3)Cortechs has created data-driven, therapeutic applications that use cognitive training, brainwaves and biofeedback    data to improve Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). This is based on neurofeedback which is scientifically proven to improve attention deficit behaviors. The company has already received an EU grant of €1.3m for development of their products and is now open for seed investment of €2m. BioExcel’s two-year pilot delivered great success with 14 companies securing investment and funding of €9.7m and creating 52 jobs. BioExel is managed by Medtech Director, Dr Sandra Ganly, also a co-founder of BioInnovate Ireland and Senior Research Fellow in NUI Galway, and Fiona Neary, Commercial Director and co-founder of BioExel, and Innovation Operations Manager at NUI Galway. The Western region has a strong Medtech ecosystem and this is actively supported by the expertise and infrastructure at NUI Galway. The strength of this ecosystem was very visible at the event as 25 NUI Galway start-up companies exhibited, presented and showcased to an audience of investors not only in person but streamed to investor’s locations around the world from San Francisco, Boston, New York, London and Geneva. The event encapsulated panel discussions, words from key opinion leaders and successes from early stage companies. The event was opened by Fiona Neary, before opening remarks from Professor Ciarán hÓgartaigh, President of NUI Galway, and Tomás Ó Síocháin, CEO of the Western Development Commission (WDC). Between pitches and presentations by companies present, insightful panel discussions took place. The first panel discussion, chaired by Dr Sandra Ganly, focused on the impact of grant supports on fundraising strategies for start-ups and how these grants are enabling the start-up community progress to market readiness. Sandra was joined by Tony O’Halloran, CTO and Co-Founder of Aurigen Medical, Dr. Brendan Boland, CEO and Co-founder of Loci Orthopaedics Ltd, and Dr Imelda Lambkin, Manager of Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund at Enterprise Ireland. The second panel discussion focused on the role and impact of domain specific accelerators on an ecosystem and how the success of Bioexel shows this model works. This panel was chaired by Gillian Buckley, General Partner for BioExel and Investment Manager for the WDC. She was joined by Donnchadh Cullinan, Manager of Banking Relations and Growth Capital at Enterprise Ireland, Eimear Gleeson, Investment Associate at Atlantic Bridge Ventures and David Murphy, Director of the Innovation Office at NUI Galway. According to Gillian Buckley, “Bioexel has filled a critical gap in the Western Region’s ecosystem and supports a new generation of MedTech companies. Bioexel builds on the reputation of the West of Ireland as an international centre of excellence in Medtech. Bioexel along with the WDC Investment Fund are unique resources to the region’s entrepreneurs to set up and grow indigenous Irish businesses from a regional location.” Jennifer Melia, Manager, High Potential Start-Ups, Enterprise Ireland, said: “Enterprise Ireland is committed to supporting early stage collaborative innovative opportunities between the enterprise sector and health system with the aim of internationalising medtech technologies. To date, 14 new and emerging enterprises have and continue to benefit from the BioExcel programme through direct collaboration with international technology and healthcare sector stakeholders. Enterprise Ireland has supported the programme which successfully delivered on its objective to accelerate the commercialisation process of new technologies, products and services in a regional location.” BioExel is a partnership programme funded by Enterprise Ireland, Western Development Commission, Galway University Foundation, Bank of Ireland seed and early stage equity fund, and hosted by NUI Galway. The University is home to Ireland’s only centre for stem cell manufacturing, extensive translational and clinical facilities, biomedical sciences research laboratories, and the CÚRAM Centre for Research in Medical Devices. This is further strengthened by NUI Galway’s expertise in funding grants, knowledge transfer, and innovation programmes such as BioInnovate and BioExel. –ends-

Monday, 4 November 2019

The ‘Inaugural Professors In Conversation Series’ featuring newly appointed Business Professors at NUI Galway will continue on Wednesday, 6 November with Esther Tippmann, Professor of Strategy, Leadership and Change. She will talk about developing multinational corporation subsidiaries in Ireland. The lunchtime event hosted by the J.E. Cairnes School of Business & Economics and Whitaker Institute is free and open to the public. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is critical to the success of the Irish economy. Professor Tippmann will discuss the challenges of and opportunities for developing subsidiaries of multinational corporations. She will draw on research-based insights into how managers in subsidiaries can deliver value beyond their mandate, develop innovative solutions within a complex organisational setting and develop their roles and mandates. The talk will provide insights for well-established subsidiaries and subsidiaries of young scaling firms. Professor Tippmann will be in conversation with Mark Gantly, President of the American Chamber of Commerce Ireland and Senior R&D Director at Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Professor Alan Ahearne, Director, Whitaker Institute, NUI Galway, said: “The subsidiaries of multinational corporations (MNCs) employ thousands of people in Galway and hundreds of thousands of people across Ireland. With the recent bad news of significant jobs losses at Novartis in Cork and Molex in Clare, we need to understand better how MNCs’ subsidiaries in Ireland evolve and how they compete within their own corporate structures and in the global marketplace.”  Professor Esther Tippmann, NUI Galway, said: “Given the importance of Foreign Direct Investment to the Irish economy, our research on subsidiary development offers many systematic insights for leaders of subsidiaries on how to grow and evolve activities and mandates. Together with colleagues here at NUI Galway, we are excited about future research opportunities in this area and strong engagement with subsidiaries in the region and beyond.” Mark Gantly, Senior R&D Director at Hewlett Packard Enterprise, said: “US multinationals have played an important role in the development of the Irish economy over the last 50 years, and it’s clear that the Irish subsidiaries have steadily increased their strategic contribution to those companies. It’s important that we are rigorous in our analysis of the reasons for this success, and I am delighted to support Professor Tippmann and the wider team at NUI Galway as they conduct their research.” The event will take place on Wednesday, 6 November from 1pm-2pm in Room CA110 in the J.E. Cairnes Building, North Campus, NUI Galway. To book the event, visit: https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/conversations-with-our-newly-appointed-professors-prof-esther-tippmann-tickets-78146758057 -Ends-

Monday, 4 November 2019

Over 6,000 Students to Graduate Over 6,000 students will graduate from NUI Galway at the University's winter conferring ceremonies, which take place from Saturday, 9 November to Wednesday, 20 November. NUI Galway has also announced the names of those to be conferred with Honorary Degrees at the 2019 Winter Conferring. The eleven individuals to be conferred with Honorary Degrees are:  Seamus O’Grady – Retired Director of Adult and Continuing Education at NUI Galway Shelley McNamara – Director of Grafton Architects Yvonne Farrell – Director of Grafton Architects Orla Guerin – Broadcaster and journalist with the BBC Cathal Goan – Broadcaster, journalist, editor and former Director General of RTÉ Mary Gordon – Founder/President of Roots of Empathy Paul Farrell – Country Manager for IBM Nuala Ward – LGBT+ activist and advocate Fergus Finlay – Retired CEO of Barnardos John Ging – Director of the Operational Division at the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Breandán Feiritéar – Broadcaster and former Head of Raidió na Gaeltachta and TV, film and radio producer for RTÉ and TG4 Speaking on the announcement, NUI Galway President, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh said: “NUI Galway is fortunate to be associated with many outstanding honorary graduates throughout its history and those being honoured this year form a particularly distinguished group. Each one has made an excellent and distinctive contribution to the diverse fields of adult and continuing education; children’s rights, journalism and broadcasting; international social entrepreneurship; research, development and innovation; activism for social change; contribution to society, human rights and our defence forces. NUI Galway is very pleased to be in a position to respect and recognise these exceptional individuals. Each of those we honour also have a special bond with our region - drawing on the unique experiences, strengths and challenges with which we as a University also engage – our proud record of achievement in widening access to education, this year marking the 50th anniversary of the establishment of Adult and Continuing Education; our strong association with the Defence Forces since 1969; our profile on international human rights, and our emphasis on creativity and innovation. In honouring these exceptional individuals, we also signal what we value in areas that matter to us and to our society. We are delighted that our honorary graduands are being honoured at the same time as we celebrate the achievements of over 6,000 of our students across our four Colleges. On behalf of NUI Galway, I am delighted to honour all of our graduates and their achievements, a great occasion for everyone involved.” The Adult Learning and Professional Development conferring sessions taking place on Saturday, 9 November, at 11am, 1.30pm and 4.30pm. The conferring ceremonies from 11 to 20 November will take place at 11am and 3pm each day. -Ends-

Monday, 4 November 2019

Bronnfaidh an Ollscoil Céimeanna Oinigh ar aon duine dhéag Bronnfar céim ar bhreis is 6,000 mac léinn as na cúig choláiste in OÉ Gaillimh ag searmanais Bhronnadh Céimeanna an Gheimhridh, a bheidh ar siúl san Ollscoil ó Dé Sathairn, an 9 Samhain go dtí Dé Céadaoin, an 20 Samhain. D’fhógair OÉ Gaillimh chomh maith ainmneacha na ndaoine a mbronnfar Céimeanna Oinigh orthu ag Bronnadh an Gheimhridh, 2019. Is iad seo a leanas an t-aon duine dhéag a mbronnfar Céimeanna Oinigh orthu:  Seamus O'Grady – Stiúrthóir an Oideachais Aosaigh agus Leanúnaigh in OÉ Gaillimh atá ar scor Shelly McNamara – Stiúrthóir Grafton Architects Yvonne Farrell – Stiúrthóir Grafton Architects Orla Guerin – Craoltóir agus iriseoir leis an BBC Cathal Goan – Craoltóir, iriseoir, eagarthóir agus iarArd-Stiúrthóir RTÉ Mary Gordon – Bunaitheoir/Uachtarán Roots of Empathy Paul Farrell – Bainisteoir Tíre IBM Ward Nuala – Gníomhaí LGBT+ Fergus Finlay – Príomhfheidhmeannach Barnardos atá ar scor John Ging – Stiúrthóir an Rannáin Oibríochta ag Oifig na Náisiún Aontaithe um Chomhordú Gnóthaí Daonnúla (OCHA) Breandán Feiritéar – Craoltóir agus iarCheannaire Raidió na Gaeltachta agus léiritheoir teilifíse, scannáin agus raidió do RTÉ agus TG4 Ag labhairt dó faoin bhfógra, dúirt Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an tOllamh Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh: “Tá an t-ádh le OÉ Gaillimh céimithe oinigh den scoth a bheith aige in imeacht na mblianta agus is cinnte gur grúpa ar leith iad céimithe oinigh na bliana seo. Tá a c(h)ion féin déanta ag gach céimí oinigh daoibh i réimsí éagsúla maidir le hoideachas aosach agus leanúnach; cearta leanaí, iriseoireacht agus craoltóireacht; fiontraíocht shóisialta idirnáisiúnta; taighde, forbairt agus nuálaíocht; gníomhaíochas don athrú sóisialta; cion don tsochaí, cearta an duine agus ár bhFórsaí Cosanta. Is cúis áthais dúinn anseo in OÉ Gaillimh an deis a bheith againn aitheantas a thabhairt do na daoine den scoth seo. Tá ceangal ar leith ag gach duine a bhfuilimid ag bronnadh onóir orthu lenár réigiún ag tarraingt ar an taithí, na láidreachtaí agus na dúshláin uathúla a bhaineann linne mar Ollscoil chomh maith – ár gcáil as na héachtaí atá bainte amach againn i leith rochtain ar oideachas a leathnú, agus muid ag ceiliúradh i mbliana 50 bliain ó bunaíodh Oideachas Aosach agus Leanúnach; an ceangal láidir atá againn leis na Fórsaí Cosanta ó 1969; ár bpróifíl maidir le cearta daonna idirnáisiúnta; agus an bhéim a leagtar ar an gcruthaitheacht agus an nuálaíocht. Thar ceann OÉ Gaillimh, tá áthas orm onóir a bhronnadh orthu as a gcuid éachtaí.” Seisiúin bhronnadh céimeanna an Ionaid Foghlama agus Forbartha Gairmiúla d’Aosaigh ar siúl Dé Sathairn, an 9 Samhain ag 11am, 1.30pm agus 4.30pm. Beidh na searmanais bhronnta ar siúl ag 11am agus 3pm gach lá idir an 11 agus an 20 Samhain. -Críoch-

Monday, 4 November 2019

Irish Technology start-up, Joulica, based at NUI Galway’s Innovation Centre has today (4 November 2019) announced that it is launching its revolutionary realtime Customer Experience analytics solution at the Websummit in Lisbon from 4-7 November. The solution is pre-integrated with the Amazon Connect contact center and Salesforce.com CRM solutions, and uniquely provides realtime customer experience analytics across a broad array of contact center technologies and enterprise data sources. Joulica’s solution allows its global customers, that include Banks, Insurance providers and Mobile operators, to understand the experience their customers have when interacting with them over the phone, web, mobile, social media and video. By utilising predictive analytics across contact center platforms and other data sources, it is able to break out insights and actions by customer segment, location and demographic, and allows their customers to deliver improvements in realtime. The launch comes after Joulica announced significant jobs growth earlier in the year, reinforcing Galway’s position as the driving force of Ireland’s Information and Communication Technology industry. The development is supported by the Government through Enterprise Ireland’s Research, Development and Innovation Fund. Founded in 2016, Joulica has grown rapidly and enjoyed strong commercial success based on its expertise in the Customer Experience domain, realtime analytics and cloud-native software development. The launch coincides with Joulica establishing a presence in the US with a new office location in New York. Speaking at today’s announcement, Tony McCormack, CEO of Joulica, said: “Joulica has deep expertise in the Contact Center industry and we have combined this with world-class data analytics and cloud-native software skills to bring this unique solution to market. We are launching first on Amazon, given the innovation Amazon Connect and the entire Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform brings to the Contact Center domain. Amazon has given excellent support to Joulica, including access to their Technology partner program and AWS Activate. “From its inception, Joulica has been fortunate to work with global customers who are at the forefront of the digital transformation revolution. This opportunity combined with a deep understanding of the requirements that Enterprise customers place on high-scale, resilient software solutions gives Joulica a unique edge when it comes to accelerating innovation in large-scale Enterprises.” Joulica was the winner of the TechExcellence and ITAG Awards in 2019 and were highlighted as the exemplar technology start-up by the Irish Government in their 2019 regional development plan. The company will be exhibiting at the Websummit in Lisbon and can be found beside the Growth Lounge in the partners’ area. For more information about Joulica, visit: www.joulica.io. -Ends-

Monday, 4 November 2019

The School of Engineering, in collaboration with Launchpad at NUI Galway and Engineers Ireland, organised a series of career talks during the recent Undergraduate Open Days on October 4th-5th, 2019. The events titled ‘Become an Engineer and shape the world we live in’ were hosted by Dr Magdalena Hajdukiewicz and Dr Maeve Duffy from the School of Engineering, and involved interesting talks from eight Engineers. The inspiring speakers from different engineering disciplines, including civil, mechanical, biomedical and electronic/electrical, described their reasons for choosing engineering and showed a diversity of their career paths. With Engineers Ireland reporting a shortage in almost all engineering occupations, and a persisting significant gender gap, where only 13% of 2018 engineering graduates were women, it is crucial to promote engineering as a profession, among both men and women, and ensure a sustainable society, environment and economy. Dr Hajdukiewicz said: "I believe educational institutions and engineering professionals play a significant role in reaching out to young people and their parents, to demonstrate and communicate the exciting opportunities and professional independence an engineering career can provide." This was the third time this event was organised during Open Days and it is planned to be scheduled for future Undergraduate Open Days. Dr Duffy said: "In choosing an engineering course, it is important to understand what a typical day in the life of an engineer involves after graduation. Our graduate speakers provided excellent insight into their varied roles, while demonstrating how much their work has impacted, even early in their careers."   

Monday, 4 November 2019

NUI Galway and PwC Ireland have joined forces on a significant new strategic partnership to support and promote talent for business. PwC and the J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway will collaborate on the University's Bachelor of Commerce Skills Pathway focusing on developing students' innovation and entrepreneurial talent. The programme will comprise three modules: skills for success; skills for business and innovation, creativity and enterprise. Emma Scott, People Partner, PwC Ireland said: "Our research indicates that one of the greatest challenges for business is the lack of key skills. As one of Ireland's largest graduate recruiters, we recognise the importance of developing talent, having the digital skills for the new world of business. This talent development allows students to think beyond the classroom, with the communication, teamwork and emotional skills needed for a fast moving tech enabled environment. We are delighted to partner with the NUI Galway to help prepare students for the Irish and international workplace equipping them with the relevant skills to become world-class business advisors." Dr Tom Acton, Head of School, J.E Cairnes School of Business and Economics, NUI Galway said: "We are delighted to announce this exciting partnership with one of our top employers, PwC. We are very proud of our unique Bachelor of Commerce Skills programme, which was initiated by former Aer Arann entrepreneur, Pádraig Ó Céidigh and involves a Dragon's Den-type module where students engage in innovative group-based entrepreneurial projects supported by industry mentors. This support from PwC will enable students to be creative and innovative in their future business careers, and we welcome this opportunity to build on our excellent relationship with PwC, a relationship that extends over many decades." In addition to focusing on skill and competency development, the new programme will also involve peer-assisted learning, resilience training to cope with the challenges of early university life, employability skills and mentoring. -Ends-

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

Get Teenagers Moving with CÚRAM’s new ‘Strength in Science’ cross-curricular resources for PE and science teachers CÚRAM, the Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Research Centre for Medical Devices based at NUI Galway, is launching cross-curricular resources for secondary school teachers to increase teenage girls’ interest in both learning science and participating in exercise. The ‘Strength in Science’ project funded by SFI’s Discover Programme, is a collaboration of researchers, science teachers, Physical Education (PE) teachers, and fitness instructors. In Ireland, only 8% of female secondary school students receive the Department of Education and Skills recommended 60 minutes of PE per week. Time pressure due to school work was the most common reason cited for the allocation of too little PE during school hours. By strongly linking PE lessons to the science curriculum, educators will hopefully feel as if the time dedicated to PE is not taking away from preparing for exams. Four lesson plan kits are available that are linked to the Junior Cycle PE and Science curricula, which can also be used for Senior Cycle and later primary school students. The kits integrate the work of world-leading, Irish researchers with the scientific effects of exercise on different areas of the body to prevent vascular disease, osteoporosis, stroke, and neurodegenerative disorders. NUI Galway researchers featured include vascular surgeon Ms Niamh Hynes, biomedical engineer Professor Laoise McNamara, and neuroscientists Dr Karen Doyle, Dr Séan Fitzgerald, Dr Una FitzGerald, Dr Jill McMahon, and Enrico Bagnoli. Each kit includes a lesson plan for teachers, a short video, and a flyer covering the topic for students to share with family members. Additionally, a booklet is available describing unique extracurricular exercises available in Ireland such as cheerleading, Zumba, dance, circus performance, yoga, and CrossFit. Fitness professionals contributing to the project include Donna Larkin from CrossFit Galway/French Vanoli, Stuntworx Elite Gymnastics and Cheer, Classes Withmel, FITTSteps Training, Ashtanga Yoga Galway, 4M Dance Centre and Galway Community Circus. Clair Hogan, a PE teacher at Salerno Secondary School, says of the resources: “This is a wonderful pack for the classroom. The lesson plans are fun and easy to implement. The videos are excellent and visually allow the students to link the scientific facts they learn in their science lessons to the benefits they get in their bodies when exercising.” Professor Abhay Pandit, Scientific Director of CÚRAM at NUI Galway, said: “We hope that students will be able to contextualise scientific concepts by understanding the effects of physical activity on their bodies and how it can prevent chronic illnesses. We want to make science more personal and relevant to teenagers by linking how the biology and physics involved in exercise affects their health.” All resources are free and available for teachers, students and parents at http://www.curamdevices.ie/curam/public-engagement/teachers-in-residence/strength-in-science/. To request further information about the project, email sarah.gundy@nuigalway.ie. -Ends-

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

NUI Galway will hold its annual Postgraduate Open Day on Tuesday, 5 November, from 12-3pm in the Bailey Allen Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn. Open Day is an important event for professionals, graduates and current undergraduates who are focusing on their future, with the aim of upgrading their qualification, broadening their skills-set, increasing their specialist knowledge and ultimately improving their job prospects and earning power. Open Day will showcase over 180 of NUI Galway’s full-time and part-time postgraduate taught programmes, and an extensive range of research masters and doctoral research options. Academic staff and students will be on hand to answer questions on specific courses and opportunities at the University. Talks at the Postgraduate Day will include Valerie Leahy, NUI Galway Postgraduate Recruitment Officer, who will discuss Postgraduate Practicalities. Professor Lucy Byrnes, Dean of Graduate Studies, NUI Galway, will give a talk on Funding for Postgraduate Research, including Hardiman Scholarships, and the Career Development Centre will also be hosting an information session on employability with input from an industry partner, Medtronic, on graduate employability.  Valerie Leahy, Postgraduate Recruitment Officer, explains why students should start researching their options early: “A key part of the decision to pursue a postgraduate qualification is finding out as much as possible about the application process and the funding options available. The upcoming Open Day brings together all the key people and organisations who provide support and information to postgraduate students.” NUI Galway is also launching a number of new programmes for entry in 2020 including two new Diabetes programmes. The College of Arts are launching a number of new employment focused Masters options including MA Creative Arts: Production and Curation, MA Rural Futures Planning and Innovation and MA Sports Journalism and Communication. There is also a new Computer Science - Artificial Intelligence Masters programme, which will be offered on a full-time, part-time/online basis. The College of Science is offering a new MSc Sustainable Environments, which is a multidisciplinary course integrating environment, health and sustainability issues within the natural and built environment. This programme includes fieldwork and site visits, where students can benefit by learning from practical experience. Visitors to Open Day can also find out more about a new MSc in International Marketing and Entrepreneurship, and a unique MSc in Ageing and Public Policy. To find out more about NUI Galway’s suite of postgraduate programmes, and to book a place at the Open Day visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/postgraduate-open-day/. -Ends-

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

A Tiny Spark, the award-winning documentary which follows both the story of three people who have had a stroke and the scientists leading research in this area at NUI Galway, will have its television premiere on World Stroke Day, Tuesday, 29 October on RTÉ 1. Directed by Niamh Heery and produced by Caroline Kealy of Swansong Films, the film is made under the Science on Screen initiative run by CÚRAM SFI Research Centre for Medical Devices at NUI Galway and Galway Film Centre. A Tiny Spark focuses on three stroke survivors, Rebecca, Trevor and Helen, who talk about life after a stroke and their individual roads to recovery. It also looks at research which is being led by NUI Galway neuroscientist, Dr Karen Doyle, and involves the analysis of removed blood clots to determine what information they may yield and could point to big improvements for stroke treatment. It is the first study of its kind in the world, and is an international collaborative study between NUI Galway, hospital partners in Beaumont Hospital and throughout Europe, and the Mayo Clinic in the US. The research is carried out in partnership with Cerenovus. The film has scooped two international awards to date - Best Medical Short at Sci On! Film Festival in Nevada and Humanitarian Award for Short Film at DOCUTAH - and beautifully combines intimate interviews with animations created by Eric Dolan. Filmmaker Niamh Heery commented: “Our participants’ bravery in their journey through surviving stroke was very humbling when making A Tiny Spark. As filmmakers it was a privilege to be able to respond to these stories with the endeavours of Irish researchers who continue to push scientific boundaries, tackling stroke to improve lives all over the world. We hope viewers will see this as an example of how courage and innovation can prevail over the most painful things in life.” Science on Screen is a partnership between CÚRAM and Galway Film Centre which began in 2016 with the aim of increasing the level of scientific storytelling produced for the screen and the four films made to date have reached audiences of over one million. Professor Abhay Pandit, Scientific Director of CÚRAM said: “This film is touring the world from Nevada to Mexico to New Delhi and it has won two international awards along the way. Now CÚRAM SFI Research Centre for Medical Devices are excited for Irish audiences to enjoy its TV premiere on RTÉ 1 on such a timely day as World Stroke Day.” Alan Duggan of the Galway Film Centre said:“A Tiny Spark has already garnered huge success on it’s international festival run which is a credit to the film itself and the team behind it. Galway Film Centre is delighted that an Irish audience will now have the opportunity to see it broadcast on RTÉ on World Stroke Day.” The film will screen at 11.15pm on RTÉ 1 on Tuesday, 29 October. Follow the films journey on Twitter and Facebook: @atinyspark1 View A Tiny Spark trailer here:  https://vimeo.com/291731458 -Ends-

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

For the second year running, NUI Galway students will be taking the plunge into the sea every day in November to raise funds and awareness for NUI Galway students’ mental health and wellbeing services. ‘Coldvember’ was organised in 2018 by six NUI Galway students as part of the Movember movement, a leading charity working to raise awareness and funds for men’s health, and raised over €7,000. NUI Galway student and one of the organisers, Eoin Ryan, said: “Based on the success of last year we were keen to take on the challenge again, however we all agreed that we would like to see the entire campaign focused around the University, so that our effort could have a greater impact in our community. We approached the Students’ Union and the University’s counselling services and we began to discuss where our money would have the greatest impact, and also how we could use our campaign to spread a positive message about mental wellbeing.” The students hope that money raised from the campaign will provide more access for students to counselling sessions and provide education for staff and students through workshops. They aim to help enhance the use of virtual counselling in the NUI Galway students Counselling Services by providing trained counsellors to review exercises undertaken by students, providing feedback, and organising one-to-one sessions if needed. Barney McIlroy, NUI Galway student and event co-organiser, said: “NUI Galway’s student counselling service offers free counselling to over 19,000 students, and already does great work in providing workshops to students and staff. However, in a community the size of NUI Galway, and with the prevalence of very broad mental health issues amongst college students, there is always a lot asked of them, and there is always more that could be done. Another aim is to promote positive mental wellbeing, primarily through the act of getting a group together and jumping in the sea. This aim is much less tangible than our financial goal, but is of equal importance to us!” For those wanting to join or support ‘Coldvember’ please follow the students on Instagram @coldvember_nuig where times and locations will be updated regularly. For more information or to donate visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/coldvember-nui-galway. -Ends-

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) recently announced the winners of its 2019 Energy Awards at a gala event which saw NUI Galway take away the top prize for Energy Team of the Year. NUI Galway has set its sights on the campus being one of the greenest universities in the world. They impressed judges with their inclusive and long-term approach to energy management. As part of its strategy, the Energy Team run initiatives and campaigns which encourage and provide tools to students and staff on how they can reduce energy use on campus and in their homes. Already at 36% energy reduction, NUI Galway continue to work towards their ambitious target of a 40% energy reduction by 2020. NUI Galway are committed to reducing energy and carbon consumption in line with the Government Climate Action Plan 2030. The Energy Management System developed by NUI Galway Energy Team allows for independent verification and monitoring by SEAI of our energy and carbon reduction on campus. The Energy Team will continue to lead by example by implementing best practices in energy efficiency to meet the highest energy management standards and be at the forefront of sustainable development. The University aims to deliver on this commitment by promoting the concept of energy efficiency at all levels in the organisation from students and academics to administration staff and contractors.  Earlier this year, the University was awarded the internationally recognised Green Flag by An Taisce’s Green-Campus programme on behalf of the Foundation for Environmental Education. The SEAI award further demonstrates the Universities commitment to sustainability and its achievements to date.  Assistant Director of Estates Operations, Noel O’Connor, said: “We are absolutely delighted to receive this award, it validates the hard work and dedication that the Energy Team has been putting in for many years. We all have a role to play in helping to build a sustainable society, and universities in particular, have a responsibility to promote sustainability through leadership, education, knowledge exchange, research and corporate social responsibility. A sustainable campus is one which maintains a green and healthy environment, promotes the use of resources efficiently and instils in graduates and staff the importance of urgently tackling environmental challenges.”  A total of nine awards were presented to businesses, communities and public sector organisations recognising their commitment and dedication to excellence in energy management and creating a cleaner energy future. Congratulating all the finalists and award winners, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton, said: “How we respond to the challenge of climate disruption will define us as a generation. These awards are a good opportunity to highlight those taking leadership and managing their energy use in a more sustainable way.” -Ends-

Thursday, 24 October 2019

Seed investment will support the company through first-in-human trials of a device to treat Atrial Fibrillation with initial patients expected to be treated in about one year NUI Galway-based medical device spin-out company, AtriAN Medical has announced the closing of a €2.3 million seed round investment to commercialise a new treatment for Atrial Fibrillation (AFib). The technology was conceived at Mayo Clinic in the US, the company has further progressed the device in Ireland and is now ready to begin clinical trials. The seed investment was led by Western Development Commission and  include Mayo Clinic Ventures, Enterprise Ireland, Atlantic Bridge and Xenium Capital as well as private angel investors with a strong med-tech track record. The current seed investment will support the company through first-in-human trials of the device with initial patients expected to be treated in about one year at a specialist centre in Europe. The AtriAN Medical team is already engaged with specialists in the University of Amsterdam Medical Centre and Na Homolca Hospital in Prague. The irregular heart-beat of Atrial Fibrillation causes the patient to have palpitations, weakness, fatigue and dizziness. In addition, patients with AFib are five times more likely to have a stroke due to the formation of clots. It affects 2% of the population under the age of 65 and 9% of the population over the age of 65. The current treatment options for patients are limited, and are associated with significant complications. The first option is to take anti-arrhythmic drugs. However, the medication is effective in only approximately 30% of patients, and even for these patients, bring extensive side effects. The next option is to have a cardiac ablation. This ablative treatment uses either heating or freezing of tissue to create an intentional scar on the inside of the heart, this is known as pulmonary vein isolation (PVI). However, PVI has variable efficacy and many patients will require a repeat treatment within one to two years. The AtriAN Medical treatment selectively and non-thermally (without burning, or freezing) treats five specific locations on the outside surface of the heart where the Atrial Fibrillation initiates. The device delivers very short and precise electrical signals that ‘knock-out’ hyperactive neuronal cells at these locations. This reduces the overall ‘sensitivity’ of the heart to AFib, providing a very long-term, and durable treatment as these hyperactive cells will not regenerate. The technology originated at Mayo Clinic. Following initial discussions between Mayo clinicians with NUI Galway’s Professor Mark Bruzzi and Barry O’Brien around co-development opportunities, a formal collaboration was entered into and the teams at NUI Galway and Mayo Clinic set about progressing the development of the technology. This collaboration came about as a result of an over-arching agreement between Enterprise Ireland and Mayo Clinic to enable collaboration to take place between Mayo Clinic and Irish third level institutions. The collaborative development project that followed was funded by Enterprise Ireland through the Commercialisation Fund programme and by Mayo Clinic. The Commercialisation Fund programme is co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) under Ireland’s European Union Structural and Investment Funds Programme 2014-2020. This early funding allowed the group to complete pre-clinical studies and also enabled the team to recruit Ken Coffey in a commercial role for further development along with the subsequent addition of John Reilly, a previous Bio Innovate Ireland fellow to lead the device development. Mr Ken Coffey, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of AtriAN Medical, said: “We would like to thank our investors for their tremendous support of AtriAN. Securing this seed round funding will allow us to progress towards clinical trials to find long-term resolution of this prevalent and debilitating disease. There is currently no suitable treatment and we believe our technology will offer patients a powerful and safe treatment that should last for years.” Mr Barry O’Brien, Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of AtriAN Medical, said: “Our technology targets the source of the problem bringing together technical developments relating to pulsed electric fields and recent scientific findings in the field of cardiac electrophysiology. Several years of excellent research at Mayo Clinic and NUI Galway gives us the confidence to bring this forward for patient trials.” Alan Hobbs, Manager, High Potential Start Ups (Lifesciences and Industrial) at Enterprise Ireland, commented: “AtriAN Medical is a great example of the world-class medical device High Potential Start-Up (HPSU) cluster in the west of Ireland and Enterprise Ireland is delighted to support them in this seed round. We have been there since the start and it’s great to see the progress made since we supported the original commercialisation funding. We wish Ken, Barry and all the team every success with the trials phase and look forward to continuing to work with them to achieve their global ambition.” Ms Kelly Krajnik, Director Strategic Operations, Mayo Clinic Ventures, said: “Mayo Clinic has been active and at the forefront of this research field for some time. We are now delighted to make this investment in AtriAN Medical, to directly support the first clinical trial of this exciting new technology.” Samuel Asirvatham M.D. Cardiac Electrophysiologist at Mayo Clinic commented “The need for improved approaches to treatment of AFib is immense and we are very pleased to be supporting the AtriAN team as they now bring forward this novel technology to patient trials. After several years of pre-clinical research and device development it is exciting to finally see this being evaluated in a clinical trial.” Dr Jacinta Thornton, Associate Director of the Innovation Office in NUI Galway, said: “Having supported the development and management of the technology over the last number of years in NUI Galway, we congratulate Ken and Barry on securing this investment and we commend them on reaching this important milestone.” For more information about AtriAN Medical, visit: www.atrianmedical.com. -Ends-

Thursday, 24 October 2019

SOAR involves the creation and delivery of a series of communication workshops for NUI Galway Access Students facilitated by LK Shields’ Artist in Residence, James Riordan LK Shields Solicitors are delighted to announce SOAR, a new partnership with the Access Programme at NUI Galway. This partnership has been made possible through our relationship with Business to Arts and the Creative Ireland Programme’s National Creativity Fund.  It will involve LK Shields working with artist James Riordan to develop a programme of workshops for the University’s Access students. These workshops will help NUI Galway Access students develop presentation skills and leadership skills to assist them prepare for entering the workforce, and to overcome barriers to progressing in their chosen career. This partnership is part of LK Shields’ ongoing Corporate Social Responsibility strategy which is guided by the principles of access, inclusion and opportunity, and focuses on assisting the following causes: disadvantaged young people, homelessness and the environment. Commenting on the announcement, Michael Kavanagh, Chairman, LK Shields Solicitors said: “We are delighted to assist the NUI Galway Access students and hope that the SOAR workshop series will help them achieve their personal and career goals. Central to our firms’ values are the ideas of access and opportunity and we believe these values firmly align with the ethos of NUI Galway Access.  My colleagues and I look forward to participating in the collaborative workshops that form part of this series of workshops and wish the students every success this academic year.” Dr Mary Surlis, Academic Director, NUI Galway Access Programme, said: “SOAR offers a very exciting opportunity to our students to engage in a professional programme of personal and professional development setting, and to experience the support and encouragement of a team of dedicated contributors committed professionals, from both the Arts and the Professions. Experientially, this will undoubtedly benefit our students enormously.” Andrew Hetherington, Chief Executive, Business to Arts said: “Alongside our Creative Ireland Programme partner, we are looking forward to working with LK Shields, NUI Galway Access and theatre practitioner James Riordan. We look forward to seeing the residency develop, fostering an environment of collaboration, learning and wellbeing through creative practice.” -Ends-

Wednesday, 23 October 2019

Global warming is now a major threat to the ability of our food systems to equitably feed a growing world population, a major conference in Dublin will hear this week. Climate change is likely to reduce global production of staple foods such as rice and wheat, while causing a reduction in the nutritional value of important staple foods. Such issues will form the agenda of the annual conference of the Irish Forum for International Agricultural Development (IFIAD). Not only are crop yields and the nutritional value of foods under threat from climate change, but the change in temperatures is also likely to have a dramatic effect on crop diseases and on pest populations. Warmer conditions and changing seasons are affecting the breeding cycles of insects harmful to agricultural crops, livestock and human life. Climate change poses the most severe threats to the food systems, livelihoods and nutrition of rural people in some of the poorest and most vulnerable regions of the world. Established by a consortium that includes the Dept. of Agriculture, Irish Aid, Teagasc, Ireland’s agricultural development NGOs and Irish universities, IFIAD’s 4th Annual Conference takes place at Iveagh House, headquarters of the Dept of Foreign Affairs today (Wednesday, 23October). Guest speakers at the event include keynote speaker Gilbert Houngbo, a former Prime Minister of Togo who is President of the Rome-based International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Julia Wolf, climate change officer at the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), Lawrence Haddad of the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and Bruce Campbell from the global Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security program of the CGIAR. Irish youth leader and climate change activist Sophie Healy Thow, Margaret Ngetha of Self Help Africa and John Gilliland of Devenish Nutrition will also speak at the event. The Chair of IFIAD, Professor Charles Spillane from the Ryan Institute at NUI Galway, said: “The food systems that supply our food and nutrition will need to undergo significant transformations if they are to become more sustainable and equitable in the face of climate change and other sustainability crises. Such shifts will require large-scale changes in how our food is produced, processed and consumed in everyday diets. We face major challenges to reduce the environmental footprint of our foods while increasing its nutritional quality and affordability. In parallel, our agrifood value chains and associated employment will need to become more resilient to adverse impacts of climate change. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development contains the pledge to “leave no one behind”, and in particular to “reach the furthest behind first”. “From a nutritional perspective, the 700 million people suffering from severe undernutrition, and the 650 million people suffering from severe over nutrition leading to obesity, can be considered as amongst the nutritionally “furthest behind”. This years IFIAD Conference will debate what can be done to ensure a “just transition” of our food systems in the face of climate change to better meet the needs of those who are nutritionally the “furthest behind”. The Conference will present some of the measures and options for our food systems to respond to these issues, nationally and globally.” IFIAD was established as a forum for Irish researchers, practitioners and policy advocates to better leverage Ireland’s expertise for the benefit of development programmes overseas, and to maximise Ireland’s contribution to agriculture-driven poverty reduction in developing countries. -Ends-

Wednesday, 23 October 2019

Professor Timothy O'Brien, Dean of the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at NUI Galway and Consultant Endocrinologist at Galway University Hospitals has received the Mayo Clinic Distinguished Alumni Award. The award was established by the Mayo Clinic Board of Trustees in 1981 to acknowledge and show appreciation for exceptional contributions of Mayo Clinic alumni to the field of medicine. Professor O’ Brien is an internationally recognised clinician-scientist with expertise in regenerative medicine applied to the treatment of diabetes complications. He has influenced a generation of Irish clinicians and scientists. His ties to Mayo Clinic allow trainees from NUI Galway and Galway University Hospitals to spend time at Mayo Clinic and for Mayo faculty to spend time in the University and hospital in Galway, ensuring that the Mayo Clinic ethos is evident on the wards, and in the clinics and laboratories, in Ireland. He is also a director of the Regenerative Medicine Institute at NUI Galway and is lead endocrinologist at Saolta University Health Care Group and co-director of CÚRAM, the SFI Centre for Research in Medical Devices at NUI Galway. In addition to his administrative and leadership responsibilities, Professor O’ Brien has a major teaching commitment to the School of Medicine at NUI Galway and was twice awarded the Pat McHugh Medal for Best Consultant Teacher. He maintains a busy clinical practice in general internal medicine, diabetes, endocrinology and metabolism. He established a Bariatric Medicine Clinic in Galway University Hospitals, one of only two such centres in Ireland. Previously Professor O’ Brien was an endocrinologist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester and an associate professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science. During his Mayo Foundation Scholarship at the Gladstone Institute at the University of California, San Francisco, Professor O’ Brien developed expertise in gene therapy. When he returned to Mayo Clinic, he established one of the first gene therapy laboratories at Mayo and published internationally recognised studies exploring the role of nitric oxide synthase in modulating the vascular endothelium. His major scientific contributions at NUI Galway have been delivering first-in-man studies of mesenchymal stem cell-derived regenerative medicine therapies for diabetes complications, including diabetic nephropathy and critical limb ischemia. He has coordinated two multinational consortia, REDDSTAR and NEPHSTROM, funded by the European Commission. Professor O’ Brien has also contributed significantly to the local Galway economy through collaborations with medical device companies and startups as a result of his research activity. Professor O’ Brien is on the governing body of NUI Galway and executive management team of the Saolta University Health Care Group, one of six hospital groups in Ireland’s Health Service Executive. With these leadership roles, he has influenced and shaped the direction of higher education and health care sectors regionally and nationally. Under his leadership, the NUI Galway campus has been transformed with new buildings dedicated to biomedical science, medical education, clinical research and stem cell manufacturing. A native of Cork, Professor O’ Brien received a PhD in medicine and a medical degree from University College Cork. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship as a Mayo Clinic Scholar at the Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease in San Francisco, and a fellowship in endocrinology and metabolism at Mayo Clinic School of Graduate Medical Education in Rochester. He completed internal medicine residency at Cork University Hospital in Ireland. -Ends-

Tuesday, 22 October 2019

‘Navigating Ireland’s Theatre Archive: Theory, Practice, Performance’ examines how Irish theatre continues to capture our history in a political, social and cultural context Navigating Ireland’s Theatre Archive: Theory, Practice, Performance, a new book by Dr Barry Houlihan, Archivist at NUI Galway, explores the processes of engaging with the documented and undocumented record of Irish theatre history and broadens the concept of evidential study of performance through increasingly diverse archives and digitally restored records. The archive is a repository of evidence and material including annotated scripts, photographs, correspondence, administration, recordings and other remnants of the mechanics of producing theatre. Audience members depend on the liveness of theatre, to be within a moment of performance that is unique and present, one that defies capture. Today, through digital means, it is possible to reconstruct and relive past moments from Ireland’s theatre past. It is possible to be within touching distance of the riotous moments at the emergence of a new National Theatre for Ireland over a century ago; to sense what is was like to see a new play by Lady Gregory, G.B. Shaw, Samuel Beckett, Marina Carr or Tom Murphy for the first time; to relive Druid Theatre bringing Synge’s works back to the Aran Islands, to witness great actors, powerful moments, deep silences, as well as the cheer of a standing ovation. Dr Barry Houlihan, Archivist, James Hardiman Library at NUI Galway, says: “The archive of Irish theatre is a resource for the public, researchers, and artists to interrogate and challenge the past through its history and through its tangible evidence, stories, and personalities captured within the archive. Digital technology enables us to reanimate our theatrical heritage and witness it again as new audiences today. We are a country of theatre-goers, story-tellers, and performers, and our theatre’s heritage is a part of our culture and identity. “The book argues for the potential of the archive, for the ongoing and digital recording and archiving of our theatrical heritage. In doing so, we document a powerful tool of our country’s culture: our theatre and our artists who reflect our society and imaginations. The digital archive enables us to witness and relive those moments as new audiences into the future.” Individual chapters within the collection look at what defines the tradition of Irish theatre ‘British’ theatre, or ‘Northern Irish’ theatre, terms which are perhaps less straight-forward today. As we face the uncertainty of Brexit, the borders of our histories and archives will continue to grow digitally with instant global access to records of theatre a growing reality. In 2016, #WakingTheFeminists, a women-led movement of theatre-makers emerged to respond to a paucity of opportunity and engagement for women artists at the Abbey Theatre. It awoke, not just a reflection on employment and work practices across the Irish theatre section, but also about the status of the archive and repertoire itself – and where women theatre-makers are recorded in the archive. The book also covers theatre archives that address our difficult and dark past, right up to the present day in ‘The Asylum Archive’ of Direct Provision, oral history archives, the ‘Anglo Tapes’ and the 2008 financial crash, and to current debates around Repeal of the Eight Amendment in the Irish Constitution. Within the book, personal memoirs and experiences are opened up, such as memories of the establishment of a new theatre, the Lyric, in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in the 1950s that blossomed from amateur to professional while soon being in the ominous shadow of the cloud of conflict during ‘The Troubles’. Founded by Mary O'Malley in 1954, the Lyric [Players] Theatre afforded communities in Northern Ireland an outlet from which to escape political and sectarian divide and be part of a cultural movement. Archives preserved and digitised at the Hardiman Library in NUI Galway, include the Abbey Theatre and Gate Theatre digital archives; Druid Theatre Company archive; Taibhdhearc na Gaillimhe archive; Lyric Theatre Belfast archive; Galway International Arts Festival archive; as well as papers of playwrights and actors such as Thomas Kilroy, Siobhán McKenna, Patricia Burke-Brogan and Arthur Shields, among others, creating a bilingual record of Irish and international theatre and performance in Ireland and abroad. This book brings together key thinkers, scholars and theatre-makers who engage with the archive of Irish theatre and performance in terms of its creation, management as well as its artistic interpretation. New technological advances and mass-digitisation allows for new interventions with the repertoire and archive of Irish theatre and performance. This volume includes wide-ranging discourse, new critical thought and case studies from archivists, theatre scholars, historians and artists who each work to navigate Ireland’s theatre archive in order to uncover and reconstruct the past practice of performance through new digitally enhanced means. Dr Barry Houlihan is an archivist at the James Hardiman Library in NUI Galway, and teaches Irish theatre history at the University’s O’Donoghue Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance. He holds a PhD on Irish theatre and social engagement. His research interests include theatre historiography, political and social theatre, archival and cultural theory and digital humanities. He is also a project team member of the Abbey Theatre and Gate Theatre Digital Archive Projects. Navigating Ireland's Theatre Archive: Theory, Practice, Performance is published and available from Peter Lang Press, Oxford (2019) and is part of the Series: Reimagining Ireland, see: https://www.peterlang.com/view/title/63197 will be launched on Thursday, 24 October by Dr Caitriona Crowe. A symposium discussing current research and practice in digital theatre, archival curation and the archival futures for performance will take place on the same day, see: https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/performance-and-the-archive-presence-absence-and-digital-memory-tickets-70036299457 or logon to www.eventbrite.com and search for Performance and the Archive. For NUI Galway’s Archive collection, visit: http://library.nuigalway.ie/collections/archives/ -Ends-

Tuesday, 22 October 2019

Researchers from the School of Psychology at NUI Galway are currently recruiting participants from ages 16-35 in the Galway area to participate in a new psychology therapy study being trialed for individuals who are in the first five years of a diagnosis of psychosis. Early psychosis, which refers to a range of mental health difficulties often associated with experiences of hallucinations or delusions, can result in significant difficulties with social and occupational functioning. The CReST-R study (Cognitive Remediation and Social Recovery in Early Psychosis Study) focuses on helping to improve everyday functioning in young people aged 16-35, living with psychosis. The study will involve weekly one-to-one therapy sessions over the course of 10 weeks, with an assessment before and after completion of therapy. This trial is part of a Health Research Board funded programme entitled YOULEAD (Youth Mental Health Research Leadership) as part of a collaboration between mental health researchers at NUI Galway, UCD and RCSI, and health service providers, including the HSE and JIGSAW. Established in 2018, the vision for the YOULEAD programme is to build capacity for internationally excellent research in youth mental health by training future leaders in youth mental health research. The YOULEAD Programme will address three main needs: To identify preventable risk factors for youth mental health (such as drug use). To overcome the barriers to accessing treatment (such as living away from home without a GP). To evaluate existing treatments and build on these with novel programmes (such as the CReSt-R program). Professor Gary Donohoe, YOULEAD Programme Director and Professor of Psychology at NUI Galway, said: “We know that providing more multi-component treatments consisting of both medication and interventions targeting social and occupational functioning led to significantly better outcomes for patients. But these multi-component therapies are still lacking in Ireland. The CReSt-R study seeks to build an evidence base for how these multi-component therapies can be provided in the Irish health system.” Emma Frawley, YOULEAD Clinical Research Fellow, School of Psychology, NUI Galway, said: “The CReSt-R study is targeted at supporting those in the early stage of psychosis, addressing strengths and challenges of the individual with the goal of helping people function in their everyday life. It is an opportunity to receive 10 weeks of therapy and contribute to our understanding of how psychosocial interventions contribute to recovery in this group. I myself, am delighted to be part of building this evidence base in an Irish context.” To participate in the study and for more information contact Emma Frawley on email at CRESTR@nuigalway.ie or phone 086 8527199. For more information about YOULEAD, visit: www.nuigalway.ie/youlead -Ends-

Tuesday, 22 October 2019

NUI Galway will host a CAO information evening for students, parents, guardians and guidance counsellors in the Clonmel Park Hotel in Clonmel, Co. Tipperary, on Thursday, 24 October, from 7-9pm.   The evening will begin with short talks about NUI Galway and the undergraduate courses it offers. Afterwards, current students and NUI Galway staff will be on hand to answer any individual questions in relation to courses and 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 its innovative programmes developed in response to the changing needs of the employment market. NUI Galway is launching four new degrees for 2020 entry responding to the needs and the demands of the job market- Law and Taxation, Law, Criminology and Criminal Justice, BSc Genetics and Genomics, and a BSc Geography and Geosystems. Information on these new degrees will be available at the information evening. There will be a representative from across the University’s five colleges available to answer questions about the programmes on offer, entry requirements, and placement and employment opportunities. Members of the Accommodation Office will be on hand to answer any queries about on-campus or off-campus options, including the new Goldcrest on-campus development, which brings the total of on-campus beds to 1193. Sarah Geraghty, Student Recruitment and Outreach Manager at NUI Galway, said: “Students choose NUI Galway as they want to study with the best academic and research minds in their field. They want to study in our new state-of-the-art facilities, such as the new Human Biology Building for medicine students and in Ireland’s largest engineering school, the Alice Perry Engineering Building. The location of our campus in the heart of Galway city appeals to students who want to live in a vibrant and creative city and who want to find a new home away from home. We look forward to meeting Leaving Cert students and their parents to explore if NUI Galway is the right fit for their third level studies.” For more information contact Caroline, Duggan School Liaison Officer on caroline.duggan@nuigalway.ie or 087-2391219. -Ends-

Tuesday, 22 October 2019

NUI Galway recently presented the 2019 MSc in Medical Physics scholarship. This MSc in Medical Physics programme is designed to meet the demand for qualified medical physicists. It is primarily geared toward training for physicists in the application of radiation physics in medicine but maintains a reasonable exposure to key aspects of clinical engineering so that students receive a comprehensive knowledge of the application of the physical sciences and engineering to medicine. The 2019 MSc in Medical Physics scholarship awardees include: Walton scholarship award – Kevin Byrne Van der Putten scholarship award – David Connolly George Johnstone Stoney scholarship award – Michael Moran Postgraduate International Merit scholarship award – Sthuthi Medepalli Postgraduate scholarship – Morgan Healy and Ryan Muddiman International scholarship holders - Anwar Beleehan and Rawan Tawatti The course is unique in that it is closely integrated with the University Hospital Galway. The majority of lectures and course materials are delivered by hospital staff. The course provides a unique opportunity to see the operation of a busy academic hospital. In September 2015, NUI Galway’s MSc in Medical Physics was the first European MSc programme to be awarded North American accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Physics Education Programmes (CAMPEP) and the second programme worldwide. Dr Mark Foley, Academic Director of the MSc in Medical Physics at NUI Galway, said: “I am delighted to see these MSc students rewarded for their hard work. These scholarship awards are the first step on their career paths and will hopefully inspire them to follow in the footsteps of past MSc in Medical Physics graduates many of whom are in senior positions in industry and hospitals nationally and internationally in a short space of time since the first intake in 2002.” Dr Christoph Kleefeld, Clinical Director of the MSc in Medical Physics at NUI Galway, said: “Students can pursue their research projects in hospitals locally and nationwide providing the students not only with research skills but also with first-hand experiences of the routine work of a medical physicist and an understanding of clinical workflows in busy hospital departments.  Experiences such as these will add to the student’s future employment prospects.” -Ends-

Thursday, 17 October 2019

Annual Research and Innovation Symposium Celebrates Research Impact The achievement of seven outstanding researcher at NUI Galway were recognised recently through the President’s Awards for Research Excellence. The President’s Awards for Research Excellence reward and celebrate the contributions of staff to excellent, relevant, and innovative research that enhances NUI Galway’s reputation at an international level. During the annual Research and Innovation Symposium, NUI Galway President, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh presented awards to seven individuals in three categories. The Research Supervisor Awards went to: Dr Su-Ming Khoo from the School of Political Science and Sociology for her research into the academic quality in Irish and South African Universities. Professor Paul Murphy from the School of Chemistry for his research in the development of inhibitors of carbohydrate binding proteins including those involved in infection, inflammation and cancer. In the Early Stage Researcher Category, the award winners were: Dr Lorraine Morgan from the School of Business and Economics, for her research in Open Source Software, Inner Source, Open Business Models, Value Networks and Crowdsourcing. Dr John McCrae, Data Science Institute, for his work on the development of data about languages around the world. In the Established Researcher Category, the award winners were:  Professor John Canavan from the School of Political Science and Sociology for his work with UNESCO Child and Family Centre and the Child Welfare Sector. Professor Dympna Casey from the School of Nursing and Midwifery for her work on the MARIO Project, a companion robot for people living with dementia. Professor Martin O’Halloran from the Colleges of Medicine and Engineering for his work on the design and commercialisation of novel patient-centred medical devices. Speaking at the awards, which are now in their sixth year, NUI Galway President, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh said: “I would like to commend our seven colleagues today who have demonstrated a high level of research excellence and commitment to our students. They are part of our collective efforts to achieve societal and economic impact and advance our research mission. “ The Research & Innovation Symposium showcased the impact of NUI Galway’s research which reverberates internationally. James Dillon, Research Impact Manager in Queens University, Belfast spoke about supporting the research community in the pathway to impact, before joining a panel discussion with NUI Galway’s: Jacinta Thornton, Associate Director, Innovation Office; Claire O’Connor, Director of Institutional Research; Edel Murphy, Public and Patient Involvement (PPI); and Tony O’Flaherty, Head of National Research Programmes, Research Office. Threesis talks by PhD students Siobhán Morrissey, School of Humanities, and James Blackwell, School of Physics and a student entrepreneurship talk by Aaron Hannon, School of Engineering were followed by a second panel discussion centred on Research Perspectives. The panel was made up by Professor Molly Byrne, School of Psychology; Professor Vincent O’Flaherty, School of Natural Sciences; Dr Sharon Glynn, School of Medicine; and Professor Siobhán Mullally, Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights; and Dr Nessa Cronin, Centre for Irish Studies and Moore Institute. At the event, Professor Lokesh Joshi, Vice-President of Research at NUI Galway, spoke about the focus of the University’s research: “As a public university we are here for a purpose, and that purpose is to benefit society and to deliver public good. I think this is something which drives us all as a research community - we want to make a change in the world – this drives us, this inspires us. I would like to congratulate today’s awardees for their exemplary commitment to their research and to our wider purpose.”      -ends-