Triumph for Westway Health and Element Software

Triumph for Westway Health and Element Software -image

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Galway companies Westway Health and Element Software were named as Best Early Stage company and New Start company respectively at InterTradeIreland’s 11th annual all-island Seedcorn Investor Readiness Competition. The winners were announced at the grand final of the competition at Clontarf Castle in Dublin last night. Westway Health as Best Early Stage company will take away a cash prize of €100,000 and Element Software wins €50,000 as the Best New Start company. Two Northern Ireland companies were also recognised at the Awards.  Belfast-based Blow Moulding Technologies and See.Sense from Newtownards each won €20,000 as the Northern Ireland regional winners in the Best New Start and Best Early-stage categories respectively.Their recognition at the Awards brings the total prize money secured by Northern Ireland companies in the Competition to date to €645,000. Seedcorn is the island’s largest business competition for new start and early stage companies in any sector, from any part of the island.  The competition, aimed at companies who have a new equity funding requirement, has an overall total cash prize fund of €280,000.  To date, InterTradeIreland has supported over 1,950 enterprising companies through the Seedcorn process with previous finalists going on to secure more than €174 million worth of equity. Bizimply from Dublin was also awarded for the best venture stemming from a University spinout / support programme, walking away with a cash prize fund of €10,000 on the night.  Speaking at the final, Thomas Hunter McGowan, CEO, InterTradeIreland said:“To be truly investor ready, it’s not all about the pitch and having a perfect presentation; the proposition, the substance behind it and the team are all key for potential investors.  Seedcorn provides young companies, who are at a critical stage of their development, the opportunity to really put their proposition to the test.  This year we opened our master classes to all the 24 companies that were taking part in the regional finals, which was a valuable opportunity for them.  Not only does this give companies an opportunity to test their proposition robustly but it also starts them off on the journey to learn from the experience of those that have already ‘been there, done that’.  “Both Westway Health and Element Software have overcome extremely tough competition throughout the Seedcorn process and their success highlights that they are the bright stars for the future.  The team at InterTradeIreland and I sincerely congratulate them both and we look forward to working with them and watching them grow.” Westway Health has developed a technology designed to tackle major problems in human and animal medicine and to fight antibiotic-resistant bacteria, like MRSA.  Westway Health has specifically focused on the treatment and prevention of bovine mastitis (infection of the udder) which is a major health and economic issue, costing the dairy industry in the EU and US over €3 billion a year.  Conventional antibiotics are currently used to treat mastitis. However, this solution has poor treatment outcomes, leading to culling of cows and lost milk revenues, as milk from cows treated with antibiotics must be withdrawn from sale for a period of time during and after treatment.  Westway Health’s product, PanaMast, is the first non-antibiotic solution meaning farmers can continue to sell milk during and following treatment.  As up to 80% of dairy cows exhibit some signs of infections at some stage each year, this will have a major impact on the bottom line of farmers and milk producers. Prof. Vincent O’Flaherty, Chairman, Westway Health and Head of NUI Galway's School of Natural Sciences said; “The Seedcorn competition process was a great learning curve and we received invaluable feedback from investors, entrepreneurs and advisors regarding our pitch and business plan.  The potential market for PanaMast is €1.5 billion per annum from the major markets in Europe, the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. We are absolutely thrilled to have received this recognition from the Seedcorn judges, especially when we were up against such tough competition.  The prize money will help us to fund formal clinical trials next year and to advance towards our target of PanaMast hitting the shelves by 2017.” Founded in 2011 by Dorothy Creaven (CEO) and James Harkin (CTO), Element Software developed Element Wave, a real-time analytics and mobile messaging platform for app publishers who want to address the issues of customer retention and user conversion.  One of the biggest issues with the mobile app market is low user retention with more than 70% of mobile app users drop off within the first three months. Real-time analytics and mobile messaging platform, Element Wave, tackles this problem for app publishers by keeping people interested in using their apps. Dorothy Creaven, CEO, Element Software said: “We are absolutely delighted to be InterTradeIreland's Seedcorn winner in the New Start category for 2013. With the high standard of competition, it has been great validation for our new product, Element Wave, and an important milestone for our mobile technology company. Element Wave is the next generation in mobile marketing for B2C companies as it helping to solve the major problem of low user retention in the mobile app industry. The Seedcorn competition has meant a lot to us in terms of attracting marketing and investment opportunities, and the prize money will mainly be used to assist us in closing sales with our growing customer base outside of Ireland. Seedcorn is much more than a standard competition; the feedback on our business plan that we have received along the way has really helped to push our business ahead and we look forward to announcing more exciting news in 2014.” The Seedcorn competition imitates the real-life investment process and gives companies a valuable opportunity to put their business idea to the test and ensure that it is investor- ready and stands up to external scrutiny.  Business plans received were initially assessed and short listed companies were subjected to a rigorous investment pitch process by a panel of judges made up of entrepreneurs, investors and business experts in competing for the Best New Start and Best Early Stage Company titles on a regional basis in Connacht & Leinster, Munster, Dublin and Northern Ireland. The regional winners in each category secured an initial €20,000 share of the prize fund for their company. Finalist companies also benefit from being part of the InterTradeIreland Seedcorn Network – an extensive business and investment community that helps boost their profile, contacts and future potential investment opportunities. Further details are available on http://www.intertradeireland.com/seedcorn/.  Follow the Seedcorn Competition on Twitter (@ITI_seedcorn #Seedcorn) or on LinkedIn (Seedcorn Network).

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How Does Research at NUI Galway Affect You, Your Family, Your Community?

How Does Research at NUI Galway Affect You, Your Family, Your Community?-image

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

NUI Galway’s researchers will have the answers at the final of Threesis; Three Slides, Three Minutes Ever wondered how research at NUI Galway affects you, your family, and your community? The public are invited to a competition which might just answer that question on Thursday December 12th, at 7.30 pm in An Taibhdhearc Theatre, Galway City Centre. The THREESIS competition will see NUI Galway staff and students present their research to the audience and a panel of judges in accessible language a non-expert can understand, in three minutes or less. Each of the 8 finalists will have only three slides and three minutes to communicate their research area and relevancy. Competitors are judged on how well they convey their subject and their ability to communicate to a general audience. Each of NUI Galway’s five priority research areas will be represented, with topics ranging from the brain structure of people with Bipolar Disorder to the transport of pollutants in groundwater. The winner will receive a prize and award, based on the decision of the judges who will include: Eithne Verling, Director of the Galway City Museum; Professor Lokesh Joshi, Vice-President of Research at NUI Galway; and Johnny Holden, Irish Times Journalist and Editor of the NUI Galway Research Matters Publication. Professor Lokesh Joshi said: “This event will provide a snapshot of the diversity of research going on at NUI Galway.  The talks will be sharp and to-the-point, with plenty of time while the judges deliberate for NUI Galway researchers and members of the community to share ideas over a glass of mulled wine.”  He added “The audience will also be treated to a short talk from last year’s THREESIS competition winner, Dr. Ronán Hennessy.  His talk “Making Time for Old Lines” is based on his work in developing an animated Google Earth based application for visualizing the evolution of the Irish rail network.” The event is free and refreshments will be served on the night.  Please RSVP to ryaninstitute@nuigalway.ie . -Ends-

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NUI Galway Project Helps Europeans to Understand Europe

NUI Galway Project Helps Europeans to Understand Europe-image

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

 EU initiative, Puzzled by Policy, provides a  free, interactive platform for understanding public attitudes to key policy issues An NUI Galway project, led by INSIGHT will offer Europeans the opportunity to understand key EU policies and issues. The project, an EU Commission eGovernment project aims to give Europeans a voice in policy creation. Developed by leading IT companies, public authorities, universities and NGOs from across Europe, Puzzled by Policy aims to consult with people in a way that is both fun and engaging. It combines innovative online tools with traditional face-to-face consultation techniques to ensure accessibility, transparancy and inclusion, transforming the way in which those who shape European policy listen to and get feedback from the public.  Developed over the last 3 years, Puzzled by Policy is a unique combination of online and offline engagement. The online platform, which is freely available to utilise, download and install, makes it easy for any organisation to begin talking with people about the issues that affect them most. Deirdre Lee, Project Co-ordinator from INISIGHT@NUI Galway, says “Puzzled by Policy has demonstrated that new web technologies can improve our democratic systems and can help produce more effective government policy, through open and transparent processes.” “Such innovative technologies are imperative for supporting Irish government initiatives such as the eGovernment Strategy, Open Data Initiative and Open Government Partnership, and was used as part of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Ireland consultation process to define Ireland’s first OGP National Action Plan” she said. Policy Profiler offers a unique way for citizens to understand where their views lie on the political specturm. The uDebate eParticipation platform enables people to freely discuss and exchange ideas. Consultation initiators (government, NGOs, research institutes, thinktanks, etc.) can access all this information in a summarised, visual form to help them understand exactly where public opinion lies on key issues. Ten policy-makers from regional, national and European governments engaged in the Puzzled by Policy process, as did over a hundred NGOs from Spain, Hungary, Greece, Italy, Slovenia and Ireland. Since its inception, the Puzzled by Policy platform has had over 200,000 page views with 6,600 people actively participating. Puzzled by Policy will be presented at a number of major international events over the coming weeks, including the European Commission and EESC’s ‘European Integration Forum’, the Council of Europe’s ‘World Forum for Democracy’ and the Assembly of European Regions’ ‘Building Inclusive Societies Conference’. For more information on adopting Puzzled by Policy visit http://puzzledbypolicy.moonfruit.com/ or www.puzzledbypolicy.eu, or contact Deirdre Lee, the project coordinator, at NUI Galway at 091 495336 or email deirdre.lee@deri.org. -Ends-

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90% of 2013 NUI Galway H.Dip in Software Design and Development Graduates Find Employment

90% of 2013 NUI Galway H.Dip in Software Design and Development Graduates Find Employment -image

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

The innovative Higher Diploma in Software Design and Development offers internships to graduates and works with leading ICT companies to meet their employment needs   NUI Galway President Dr Jim Browne has awarded the first group of students their Higher Diploma in Software Design and Development (Industry Stream) programme.  90% of those that graduated from the course have found employment. The programme is an innovative collaboration between NUI Galway and leading Information and Communication Technology (ICT) companies which help design the course and provide internships for the graduates. Dr Enda Howley, Director of the Higher Diploma in Software Design and Development (Industry Stream) said “we are seeing huge benefits of closer collaboration between academics and industry and we are fortunate now that these students are able to reap the rewards of this new programme.” “The first year of the programme has exceeded all expectations” he said “and we look forward to working with many more talented students over the coming years and engaging with more new companies interested in developing their long-term supply chain of talent.” The ICT Skills scheme was devised by the Higher Education Authority (HEA) to fund the university fees of suitable graduates from areas such as engineering and science to give them the skills that are needed in the software development industry. NUI Galway has developed the Higher Diploma programme with a view to selecting up to 20 highly performing graduates from areas such as Civil Engineering and pairing them for re-training and internships with suitable industry partners.    -ends-  

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Áiseanna Nua Ilmheáin agus Ilghníomhacha Seolta ag Scoil an Oideachais OÉ Gaillimh

Áiseanna Nua Ilmheáin agus Ilghníomhacha Seolta ag Scoil an Oideachais OÉ Gaillimh-image

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Tá áiseanna nua ilmheáin, toradh comhshaothar foirne agus mic léinn faoin scéim EXPLORE seolta ag Scoil an Oideachais, Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh Forbraíodh na háiseanna Ardteistiméireachta seo mar iBooks. Tá siad bunaithe ar churaclam Éiceolaíochta agus Tíreolaíochta na hArdteistiméireachta. Is de thoradh compháirtíochta idir mic léinn agus foireann an DGO (Dioplóma Gairmiúil san Oideachas) a forbraíodh na iBooks seo faoin scéim EXPLORE agus le maoiniú ó COGG (An Chomhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta agus Gaelscolaíochta). Ba iad Séan Ó Grádaigh agus Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir ón DGO a bhí mar bhainisteoirí togra agus a stiúir. Áiseanna teagaisc agus foghlama iad atá feiliúnach do mhúinteoirí agus do dhaltaí araon, atá daite, mealltach, spreagúil agus lán le pictiúir, físeáin agus idirghníomhaíocht. Ag seoladh na sraithe dó, thréaslaigh Gearóid Ó Conluain, Rúnaí na hOllscoile le foireann agus le mic léinn an DGO a rá “Is sampla den scoth iad na háiseanna seo d’fhiúntas comhoibriú foirne agus mic léinn agus béim na hOllscoile ar nuálaíocht agus ar thacaíocht d’úrsmaointe.” Dúirt Seán Ó Grádaigh, agus é ag tagairt do na leabhair thíreolaíochta: “Is fíorannamh a fhaigheann múinteoirí tíreolaíochta an deis a gcuid daltaí a thabhairt amach le hobair allamuigh a chomhlíonadh, ach ag baint úsáide as an gcineál seo teicneolaíochta, is féidir linn an tíreolaíocht bheo a thabhairt isteach sa seomra ranga.” “Tá idir scileanna teicneolaíochta, digiteacha agus praiticiúla le feiceáil agus le foghlaim ag baint úsáide as na leabhair seo. Cuireadh go mór le máistreacht ar an ábhar agus le cumas teicneolaíochta na múinteoirí faoi oiliúint agus iad ag forbairt na leabhar seo” a dúirt Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir. Is féidir teacht ar an háiseanna seo saor in aisce ar an iBook Store.   The School of Education in NUI Galway has launched Leaving Cert iBooks, the product of staff – student collaboration on the Dioplóma Gairmiúil san Oideachas   iBooks developed by the School of Education in NUI Galway are breathing new life into Woodland Ecology and Geography Fieldwork for Leaving Cert students. The iBooks are the result of NUI Galway’s EXPLORE student / staff innovation collaboration. Seán Ó Grádaigh and Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir from the Dioplóma Gairimiúil san Oideachas in the School of Education collaborated with students from the course to develop the iBooks with the aid of funding from An Chomhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta agus Gaelscolaíochta (COGG) Rúnaí na hOllscoile Gearóid Ó Conluain congratulated staff and students on the iBooks and said “The School of Education’s iBooks are an excellent example of the benefits of staff / student collaboration and underline NUI Galway’s commitment to facilitating innovation and bringing good ideas to life.” Project manager Seán Ó Grádaigh said “Geography students rarely get the opportunity to experience the great outdoors, but this type of technology brings the living Geography into the classroom.” Co-manager Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir said “Using these books enhances not only content knowledge, but also develops digital literacy and practical skills. The student teachers gained invaluable experience in subject mastery and in educational technological competency during the project.” The interactive multimedia teaching resources are aimed at both teachers and students and are packed with imagery, videos and interactive learning. They are now available in the iBook store.   -ENDS-

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NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Athlone

NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Athlone-image

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Athlone Secondary school students interested in NUI Galway are invited to an information evening in Athlone on Thursday, 12 December. Parents and guardians are also particularly welcome to the event which runs from 7 to 9pm in the Radisson Blu Hotel, Athlone, Co. Westmeath. The evening will begin with short talks about NUI Galway and some of the 60 courses it offers. Afterwards, current students and NUI Galway staff will be on hand at information stands to answer any individual questions in relation to courses offered by the University and about practical issues like accommodation, fees and scholarships, and the wide range of support services available to our students. The ever-increasing popularity of NUI Galway is in-part due to a whole suite of innovative new programmes, developed in response to the changing needs of the employment market. Unique programmes include a Bachelor of Arts in Human Rights, an Energy Engineering degree which is taught in the University’s new Engineering Building, Ireland’s largest School of Engineering, and a Maths and Education degree aimed at training Maths teachers. Visitors to the information evening will also get information on NUI Galway’s newest degree programme, a BA in Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies, BA in Journalism, BA in Science (Physics- degree options in Applied, Astrophysics, Biomedical or Theoretical) and a Bachelor of Commerce (Gaeilge) which is brand new for 2013-14.  “NUI Galway has a great deal to offer. Our own students tell us our lecturers are inspirational and challenge them to achieve their full potential. The student experience in Galway is second to none, and we want to bring a taste of that to Athlone, while also providing all the practical information on accommodation, CAO points, fees, scholarships and courses. With so many courses on offer, this event in Athlone is a perfect opportunity for prospective students to meet current students and lecturers to see what degree might be the right fit for them”, says Caroline Loughnane, Director of Marketing and Communications at NUI Galway. To find out more about the information evening in Athlone, contact NUI Galway's Schools Liaison Officer, Celine O’Donovan on 087 2391219 or celine.odonovan@nuigalway.ie. -Ends-

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NUI Galway Lead €1.24m Irish and Japanese Research Consortium

NUI Galway Lead €1.24m Irish and Japanese Research Consortium-image

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Project aims to foster academic-industry research interactions between Ireland and Japan    An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny T.D. has announced that a consortium of Irish Higher Education Institutions, led by NUI Galway has been awarded €1.24m in funding to collaborate with their Japanese counterparts through Science Foundation Ireland’s (SFI) International Strategic Cooperation Award (ISCA). The NUI Galway-led consortium of Irish Research Bodies will partner with 21 Japanese Universities and a number of companies and research institutes, with the aim of building strategic partnerships to perform cutting-edge scientific research, encourage more industry-informed research, and foster academic-industry interactions between Ireland and Japan. Speaking in Tokyo, Japan, An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny TD said, “This new initiative, supported by the Irish Government through Science Foundation Ireland, will build on the extensive linkages that already exist between the Irish and Japanese research communities. It will encourage a higher level of research engagement at both an academic and industrial level." "The ultimate aim" An Taoiseach said "is to create innovative products, services and jobs to benefit Ireland and Japan as well as tackling important social challenges such as caring for an ageing population and climate change. Importantly, it will also help increase awareness of Ireland’s growing international standing in the area of research among potential new partner organisations in Japan.” Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of SFI and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government, said, "Ireland ranks 20 in the world for the quality of its research. Our focus on funding excellent scientific research with impact is important for the economy and country. Ireland continues to develop strategic international partnerships. Through SFI’s ISCA programme we are fostering new important research collaborations between Irish based Researchers and both academic and industry partners in Japan.”  The partnerships developed by the consortium will address 6 key thematic areas which align with both Irish and Japanese research priorities. These are:  ·         Environmental and climate sciences and technologies; ·         ICT and Big Data analytics; ·         Advanced manufacturing and materials; ·         Imaging and optics; ·         Future healthcare including connected health; ·         Medical devices and regenerative medicine. Project Leader, Professor Ciaran Morrison of NUI Galway, commented "Many Irish researchers already have significant interactions with Japanese colleagues but until now there has not been a framework to support those interactions and to convert them into more tangible collaborations.  The key goal of this initiative is to promote Irish science to Japanese research institutions, in order to forge new collaborative links between researchers in the two countries. Japanese research is very strong and Irish researchers can really benefit from closer association with their Japanese counterparts".   ENDS  

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NUI Galway Students' Union Launch €20,000 Enterprise Awards

NUI Galway Students' Union Launch €20,000 Enterprise Awards-image

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

                         The NUI Galway Students’ Union Enterprise Awards, now in their 4th year, reward enterprise and innovation among students.   The NUI Galway Students’ Union Enterprise Awards, now in its fourth year, invites students across the campus to put forward proposals for a project or business. The winner will receive a prize of €10,000 investment capital and the two runners up will receive prizes of €5,000 each. The NUI Galway Students’ Union Enterprise Awards aim to unlock the potential of NUI Galway students by providing financial support and expertise for students who wish to start a project in the areas of business and/or social entrepreneurship. The awards are generously supported by NUI Galway and NUI Galway Students’ Union. The closing date for submissions is 5pm Friday 17th January. More information is available at www.su.nuigalway.ie  NUI Galway President Dr Jim Browne said “The Enterprise Awards offer an opportunity for students to bring ideas to life and, in doing so, learn invaluable business and entrepreneurial skills. A key aim in NUI Galway is to offer our students a broad skillset that builds on their academic achievements and prepares them for the challenges of working life. “ Sean Kearns, President of NUI Galway Students’ Union, said “the Enterprise Awards are a showcase for the best and brightest student minds on campus. They reflect the dynamic, innovative and creative graduates we all wish to see emerging from NUI Galway, now and in the years ahead.” 2012 Enterprise Award Overall Winner Niamh Duffy said “The NUI Galway Students’ Union Enterprise awards is a truly life changing experience. Having zero business knowledge prior to taking part, the skills and knowledge I gained were invaluable to making my vision a reality no matter what the outcome. A year on and we are getting ready for our big launch thanks to the awards!”   -Ends-  

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NUI Galway Researchers Identify and Value The West’s 2,466 Creative Industries in €1.1m EU Project

NUI Galway Researchers Identify and Value The West’s 2,466 Creative Industries in €1.1m EU Project -image

Monday, 2 December 2013

  The Creative Edge Project shows that the Audio Visual Sector added €72m to the economy of county Galway alone in 2012, employing over 600 people   UNESCO has identified the creative economy as one of the most rapidly growing sectors of the world economy. The recently published Creative Economy Report further confirmed that the creative economy can transform export earnings, job creation and an economy’s ability to generate income.    The Creative Edge project, at the Whitaker Institute in NUI Galway is a €1.1 million funded initiative supported by the European Union through the Northern Periphery Programme that has explicitly focused on the development of the Creative Economy in Europe’s peripheral regions.   To mark the end of the Creative Edge project, NUI Galway’s Whitaker Institute will host a conference entitled ‘How Creative Industries Contribute To and Shape Peripheral Region Societies and Economies?’ on Monday, 2 December, 11am – 3pm in An Taibhdhearc, Middle St. in Galway City.     Key findings of the research carried out by members of the Whitaker Institute point to the vibrancy of the Creative Economy across the Western Region of Ireland:   The West of Ireland is home to 2,466 creative industries, ranging from micro enterprises to those who employ hundreds in this growing sector. The audio visual sector in Galway alone contributed over €72 million to the local economy in 2012, employing over 600 people in highly skilled positions County Galway hosted 83 festivals and events in 2012 ranging from local fairs to international events like the Volvo Ocean Race, which brought in over €62 million in expenditure to the Galway city-region. Graduates trained in creative economy pursuits are four times more likely to set up their own business. The creative sector has positive spillover benefits into other industrial sectors and more broadly in terms of contributing to social and community development as well as place making and identity formation.   Dr Patrick Collins, School of Geography and Archaeology and the Whitaker Institute for Innovation and Societal Change at NUI Galway, said: “This is important work because we in the west of Ireland have an obvious competitive and comparative advantage in creative/cultural produce. We are known for our ability to tell stories, to paint a picture through the use of different media, and this sort of narrative construction is fundamental to success in the Creative Economy.”   The project focuses on four regions across the northern periphery of Europe - Vasterbotten in Northern Sweden; Kemi-Tornio, in Northern Finland; South East Economic Development region in Northern Ireland; and the West of Ireland, all of whom share a high degree of rurality.   James Cunningham, Director of the Whitaker Institute for Innovation and Societal Change, said: “The Creative Edge project has demonstrated the importance of the creative industries to the economic and social vibrancy of peripheral communities and has piloted new ways of how this sector can retain local authenticity while having an international focus in exploiting new markets and opportunities.”   Ian Brannigan, Regional Development Director of the Western Development Commission said "The WDC is delighted to continue our efforts with the Whitaker institute to grow the creative industries sector in the West of Ireland and beyond. Our “mycreative-edge.eu” platform has allowed hundreds of regional creative businesses to  access global markets and with 8,500 unique views last month alone we are excited to see interest translate to sales in the run up to the Christmas season".   Those interested in creating a free online profile and promoting their creative business internationally with MyCreativeEdge can register at www.mycreativeedge.eu/register.   -ends-

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NUI Galway Invites 4th, 5th & 6th Classes to Apply for its Youth Academy!

NUI Galway Invites 4th, 5th & 6th Classes to Apply for its Youth Academy!-image

Monday, 2 December 2013

Are you in primary school? Would you like to see what NUI Galway is like? Monday, 02 December, 2013: NUI Galway is inviting students from 4th, 5th and 6th class to apply for a taste of university life. NUI Galway Youth Academy is now taking applications for its next round of courses beginning in January 2014. Classes will run over six Saturday mornings in January and February from 10am to 12.30pm, followed by a graduation ceremony for the University’s youngest graduates in March 2014! To date almost 400 students from primary schools across Galway city and county have participated in a range of specially designed courses ranging from IT to Italian and Engineering to Psychology. NUI Galway established their Youth Academy in 2012 in order to give 4th, 5th and 6th class primary school students with ability a stimulating introduction to University life.  The Academy gives students and their families a taste of what it is like to study at one of Ireland’s most popular universities, and perhaps, inspire them to progress to third-level education. All courses are highly interactive and use a variety of teaching techniques to ensure students get the most out of their time at NUI Galway. The courses offered as part of the Youth Academy include: Idea detectives-Exploring the world with Philosophy Discovering Italy: Italian Language and Italian Genius Psychology: who we are, how we think and what we do Engineering our planet A fun introduction to computer programming, the internet and multimedia Weird stuff our ancestors did Words and books: playing with language and literature Introduction to Mandarin Bio-EXPLORERS Ocean Physics: Motion in the Ocean When Play Becomes Performance: How to Make Drama A fee of €150 per student applies for the six week programme and the graduation celebration day. A limited number of scholarships providing free places to students are available depending on family circumstances. To apply for the Youth Academy or for further information on all of the courses visit www.nuigalway.ie/youthacademy. Places are allocated on a first-come first-served basis and students participate in one course for the duration of the programme. The closing date for applications is Friday, 13 December and early booking is advisable. Geraldine Marley, the Youth Academy Coordinator said: “We are delighted to announce the next round of courses for 2014 and are looking forward to welcoming children and their families to NUI Galway.” -Ends-

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