Thursday, 4 April 2019

Minister Halligan launched 2019 National IP Protocol, referencing Ireland’s “competitive edge”   Protocol provides a practical framework for businesses to access and use Irish research with a dedicated section on the formation of spin-out companies   NUI Galway spin-out company Loci Orthopaedics shares its spin-out experience with attendees Knowledge Transfer Ireland’s (KTI) national roadshow to present the IP Protocol 2019 to businesses and researchers around the country, arrived in NUI Galway today. The Protocol, which is in its third edition, is produced and managed by Knowledge Transfer Ireland on behalf of the Department of Business, Enterprise & Innovation. It provides a practical, best practice framework for businesses, from start-ups and SMEs to large multi-nationals and entrepreneurs to access and utilise Irish research to drive economic growth.   The Protocol sets a benchmark for good practice in the commercialisation of valuable intellectual property all around the country, on terms that are fair to researchers and business alike, and in ways that are predictable and consistent from one negotiation to the next.   The IP Protocol has been a reference point for business and research communities since it was first produced by the Department in 2012. This new Protocol is an update to the previous IP Protocol published in 2016. Recognising the significant numbers of spin-out companies coming out of research performing organisations around the country, the new Protocol includes a dedicated section on best practice in the formation of spin-out companies.  It also includes a summary of the issues relating to state aid in the commercialisation of research.   Brendan Boland, CEO of Loci Orthopaedics, an NUI Galway-based spin-out company, shared his first-hand experience of growing a spin-out company with attendees at the event: “One in 10 of the general population and one in three women over 55 suffer from thumb base arthritis and through our research with NUI Galway, a hugely innovative implant for the treatment of this condition came into being. With the support of the Innovation Office at the University, we have been able to take this technology and spin out of the lab and onto the path of commercialising it for the benefit of arthritis sufferers around the world.   “I am very pleased that the IP Protocol 2019 includes a new chapter on spin-out company formation which is a great acknowledgement of the importance of university spin-outs in the start-up ecosystem of Ireland and I look forward to sharing some of the highs and lows from our journey so far with attendees at today’s 2019 IP Protocol launch.”   Commenting, Minister Halligan, Minister of State at the Department of Business Enterprise and Innovation and the Department of Education and Skills, said: “The commercialisation of public research to drive innovation and Ireland’s economic competitiveness is a key pillar of the Government’s innovation strategy, Innovation 2020. While investment in research performing organisations the length and breadth of the country is critical, it must go hand in hand with an effective strategy to put that research into the hands of businesses for the benefit of the Irish economy and society. The National IP Protocol is a key element of that strategy.   “In today’s climate, more than ever, it is vital that we harness the considerable abilities of Ireland’s researchers, so as to give businesses the best possible competitive edge on the European and global stage.”   Commenting, Alison Campbell, Director of Knowledge Transfer Ireland, said: “I am delighted to welcome the publication of the new IP Protocol. The new section on spin-out company formation developed in consultation with people operating at the coal-face is particularly welcome and was drafted to address a gap in the framework. The range of practical tools produced by Knowledge Transfer Ireland that are referenced throughout the Protocol and its associated Resource Guide have been expanded. The aim of these tools is to provide relevant resources that demystify knowledge transfer and allow commercialisation and collaboration to flourish, while protecting the interests of all parties and freeing up researchers and businesses to get on with the business of innovating.”   The National IP Protocol 2019 comprises two documents:    1)      the policy document which sets out the framework underpinning research collaboration and access to intellectual property from state-funded research.     2)      the resource guide which provides an overview of the national IP management guidelines and links to a wealth of resources and template documents that support these guidelines. It also provides an overview of the knowledge transfer structures in Ireland and the kinds of agreements that can be used to formalise research-industry engagements and spin-out company-related contracts.   The Protocol is the product of an extensive consultative process facilitated by Knowledge Transfer Ireland with representatives from industry, investors, entrepreneurs, agencies and research organisations to ensure that Government policy supports all types of enterprises engaging with publicly-funded research in Ireland.   For more information or to download the National IP Protocol 2019 visit www.knowledgetransferireland.com/managingIP

Thursday, 4 April 2019

The Irish Universities Association, (IUA) signed an agreement in Jakarta today with the Ministry of Research, Technology, and Higher Education (MoRTHE) in Indonesia to participate in its overseas scholarship programme as a trusted partner. The programme places PhD candidates into Irish Universities who are currently lecturing in Indonesian Universities. The agreement is for five years and the IUA hope to see over 300 students progress through the program. The agreement signing was witnessed by representatives of a number of Irish universities travelling in the region. This follows on from the Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the fields of Higher Education and Research signed by the MoRTHE with the Department of Education and Skills in Ireland in September 2018, in Jakarta by then Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton. There are over 4,000 public and private universities in Indonesia, of which over 17,200 hold a Master’s level degree. The MoRTHE is investing in the development and training of these lecturers to improve the quality of higher education in the country. Overseas PhD placements are an option for some lecturers who meet the requirements of the MoRTHE, these include an English language level of 6.0 on the IELTS score and as well as holding a permanent lecturing position at one of the Indonesian Universities. Since 2008 the MoRTHE has sent over 2,000 lecturers abroad to undertake PhD Doctoral training. Dr Andrew Flaus, Vice-Dean International, College of Science, NUI Galway, said: “This is a significant development in our continued efforts to attract sponsored PhD students from Indonesia and follows on from a visit by DIKTI to NUI Galway in January. Our current Indonesian students have proven to be excellent ambassadors for their home country and we look forward to welcoming many more.” In 2017 the IUA, with the support of Education in Ireland and the Irish Embassy in Jakarta, led a delegation of its seven member universities to Indonesia to meet with education government officials and some of its universities.  It was immediately apparent that the PhD offering in Ireland was an excellent fit for the capacity building needs of Indonesia. Ireland’s reputation as leaders in doctoral education in Europe has proved very attractive for international PhD candidates. Sinéad Lucey, Head of International Affairs and External Engagement at the IUA said: “It has been our great pleasure working in co-operation with the staff at Ministry of Research, Technology, and Higher Education in Indonesia. The IUA is looking forward to growing this partnership and developing the relationship between Irish and Indonesian universities. This agreement is as a result of a ‘team Ireland’ approach. Indonesia is the largest country in the ASEAN region and a valuable partner for higher education institutions. There are many internationalisation opportunities for Irish Universities with Indonesian universities. The support of Education in Ireland and the Embassy in Jakarta has been so important in this process. Ireland is a small country and when the agencies collaborate effectively, it equals success.  Critically the involvement and continued involvement of key academic staff and the Deans of Graduate studies in the universities has been instrumental in getting the agreement over the line. A delegation from the Ministry visited all seven IUA member universities in January 2019 and were highly impressed at the PhD offering in Ireland. The delegation also identified significant opportunities for Indonesian universities to further engage with Irish universities. I hope that the IUA partnership with the Ministry is a stepping stone to a long standing mutually beneficial relationship that will lead to high quality internationalisation in both systems. “ The MoRTHE’s Director General of Resources for Science, Technology, and Higher Education, Professor Ali Ghufron Mukti states that recently the MoRTHE reinstalled the so-called BPPLN Scholarship, which is an Overseas Doctoral Scholarship Programme dedicated to Indonesian lecturers. Through the programme, Indonesian lecturers will have more opportunities to pursue their PhD degrees overseas with the funding support from the Indonesian Government. The programme also opens up more opportunities for overseas universities to be strategic partners, as the programme will prioritize those universities who are willing to offer special support to the students nominated by the MoRTHE. Thus the MoRTHE welcomes IUA as the new strategic partner for the abovementioned program, as IUA offers not only internationally recognized universities but also financial privileges to the qualified students nominated by the MoRTHE. This is a mutually beneficial partnership.

Thursday, 4 April 2019

Founder, Chairman and CEO of Merit Medical Systems, Fred Lampropoulos has been appointed as an Adjunct Professor of Engineering at NUI Galway. The role is honorary and as part of his new role Fred will mentor NUI Galway staff and students. Fred is a highly distinguished medical innovator and has invented and holds more than 240 patents on devices used in the diagnostic and therapeutic treatment of cardiovascular disease. President of NUI Galway, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, said: “NUI Galway is honoured to appoint Fred Lampropoulos as an Adjunct Professor in Engineering in recognition of his distinguished career as a medical device industry leader and a healthcare visionary. As an innovator and a pioneer of the medtech sector, Fred has a lifetime of experience and industry knowledge which we are delighted that he will share with our students and colleagues at NUI Galway. Lampropoulos and Merit Medical Systems, the company he founded are a vital part of the medtech cluster in Galway; employing 1,000 people in our city which is home to Merit’s European headquarters. We are delighted to welcome Fred as an Adjunct Professor and we look forward to the insights and experience which he will bring to the University and to the College of Engineering and Informatics.” Dean of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway, Professor Peter McHugh said: “It is highly appropriate that NUI Galway honours Fred as an Adjunct Professor in Engineering, as it recognises the huge contribution Merit Medical, through his leadership, has made to engineering education and indeed our broader educational mission at NUI Galway, and we look forward to this developing even further into the future.” Fred has been in the medical device industry for over 30 years. After serving as the Chairman and Chief Executive of Utah Medical, Lampropoulos founded Merit Medical Systems, Inc. in 1987. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Governor’s Medal for Science and Technology, CEO of the Year, and was inducted into the Utah Business Hall of Fame. He is an Honorary Colonel in the Utah National Guard, and holds a number of honorary doctorates, including Doctorate in Business Administration from Westminster College in Salt Lake City, recognising his contribution to and development of industry and education within the state of Utah. Speaking about his announcement, Fred Lampropoulos said: “NUI Galway has one of the premier engineering schools nationally and internationally, with a proud history going back to the opening of the University itself in 1849. I’m honoured to be recognised by this world-class institution with professionally accredited engineering degree programmes, and cutting-edge research characterised by break-through engineering science discoveries linked with real-world societal impact.” -Ends-

Thursday, 4 April 2019

The importance and prestige of Paracycling is on the rise, but insight in Paracycling aerodynamics is very limited. Therefore, researchers from NUI Galway (Ireland), Eindhoven University of Technology (The Netherlands) and KU Leuven (Belgium) have used advanced technologies such as engineering simulation (Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)) developed by ANSYS and wind tunnel facilities typically dedicated to aerospace, nuclear or automotive research to better understand and improve the complex aerodynamics of elite Paracycling tandem and handcycling disciplines. The results show that decisive gains can be achieved by counter-intuitive postures and wheel selection that can change the outcomes in the Paracycling competitions in the games next year.  Dr Eoghan Clifford, NUI Galway, a four-time paracycling world champion and current Paralympic Champion has joined forces with Professor Bert Blocken, Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) and KU Leuven, recognised worldwide for his expertise in elite cycling aerodynamics. Surprised by the scarcity of scientific research performed on Paracycling where many fundamental insights are lacking, they decided to set up the first large open scientific research project into Paralympic cycling in collaboration with Drs. Magdalena Hajdukiewicz (NUI Galway), Dr Yasin Toparlar (TU/e), Dr Thomas Andrianne (U Liège) and Dr Paul Mannion (who was jointly awarded a PhD by NUI Galway and TU/e for his work on this project). The project combined computer simulation (CFD) with ANSYS software on Irish and Dutch supercomputers with wind tunnel testing in the wind tunnels of Eindhoven University of Technology and the University of Liège. The investigation focused on both tandem cycling and H1-H4 handcycling. This investigation resulted in four key new findings. Applying these findings in races would yield significant gains in terms of time. In recent top races at Rio 2016, the difference between Gold and Silver or missing the podium was often a matter of seconds: Tandem cycling: Men - 4 km pursuit (Rio velodrome) – Gold to Silver (1.6 seconds); Bronze to 4th place (0.9 seconds). Tandem cycling: Men 30 km time trial (Rio road) – Gold to Silver 8.8 seconds. Tandem cycling: Women – Tandem 3 km pursuit (Rio velodrome) – Gold to Silver (3.5 seconds). In qualifying 0.8 seconds separated the 3rd place position from the 5th place position (3rd and 4th quality for a medal ride off). Tandem cycling: Women 30 km time trial (Rio road) – Silver to Bronze 0.8 seconds. Handcycling: Men 20 km time trial (Rio road) – Gold to Silver in some cases was as low as 2 seconds and 10 seconds with Silver to Bronze being as low as 0.9 seconds in one category. The research resulted in four key new findings that are generally opposite to what Paracyclists and their entourage would expect and that in race circumstances can make very significant differences in time: The typical time-trial setup with a time-trial handlebar for the pilot and the stoker does not provide the lowest aerodynamic resistance. The stoker holding the seatpost of the tandem bicycle (frame-clench setup) provides a gain of 8.1 s over a 10 km race. The most aerodynamic race setup of the tandem cyclists is not the one where pilot and stoker bodies are closest to the horizontal. The pilot being slightly more upright gives a benefit of 6.5 s over 10 km. The most aerodynamic wheel choice for a H1-H4 handcycle is not disk wheels at the rear, as commonly accepted, but two spoked wheels at the rear, because disk wheels would channel the flow between these wheels and create extra suction (drag) on the cyclist body. Spoked wheels at the rear and a single disk wheel at the front would save 16 s on 10 km. For downhill handcycling, athletes tend to adopt the so-called 6 o’clock position, with the hands in the lowest position and the arms tucked against the body. The 9 o’clock position with hands farthest upstream has a 4.3% lower drag, which gives a gain of 0.8 s over a 500 m descent. As a 4-time paracycling world champion and current Paralympic champion Dr Eoghan Clifford has corroborated these findings and with the research team and high performance coaches has tested athletes and used the findings to guide these athletes towards better performances. Dr Eoghan Clifford, College of Engineering and Informatics, NUI Galway, said: “This has been one of the most exciting and challenging projects I have worked on. The extensive experimental and computational modelling work was unprecedented for Paralympic cycling and indeed for most sports. The work will fundamentally impact Paralympic cycling and will cause teams and engineers to rethink their approach to aerodynamics. This work also opens the door for world-class Paralympic athletes to have the same expertise and equipment available to them as other professional athletes. At the world championships and Paralympics where tenths of seconds can decide medals this work can unlock that vital time!” Professor Bert Blocken, Eindhoven University of Technology & KU Leuven, said: “I am passionate about Sports aerodynamics because it really pushes the boundaries of computer simulation and wind tunnel testing. In most topics on aerodynamics, accuracies of 5-10% are considered sufficient. In sports aerodynamics however, tenths or even hundredths of percentages can be decisive. This first extensive open project in Paralympic cycling reveals new insights to obtain such gains in these competitions.” Thierry Marchal, Global Industry Director Sports & Healthcare, ANSYS, concluded: “As the engineering simulation leader, ANSYS is keen to assist the sport community improving safety and performance of athletes by adopting a technology traditionally used in the aerospace and automotive industries. Elite sport is an ideal window to illustrate the impact of pervasive simulation across all industries.” Paralympics Ireland Chief Executive Officer, Miriam Malone, added: “I would like to congratulate the research team on the publication of this fantastic research. The results published will fundamentally change the approach that many paracyclists take to their sports and will ensure that more exciting times lie ahead as performances improve. It is particularly pleasing that Paralympics Ireland board member and Paralympic champion, Dr Eoghan Clifford, is spearheading this research project.” Neill Delahaye, National Performance Coach, Cycling Ireland, added: “Cycling Ireland has had significant international success in Track Cycling and Road Cycling over recent years. To compete with the world’s top nations, we actively engage with research and innovation. From the outset we recognised this work could have significant benefits for our athletes especially given aerodynamics plays such a key role in cycling.” Scientific publications about this project: https://surfdrive.surf.nl/files/index.php/s/mCw2JSapLPcKa6Z Photos of Dutch World Champion handcycling in Eindhoven wind tunnel:  https://surfdrive.surf.nl/files/index.php/s/Tjdpjx2ScpFadn9   Photos of Irish tandem cyclists in Eindhoven wind tunnel: https://surfdrive.surf.nl/files/index.php/s/7RHe3wP9EifBol9  

Thursday, 4 April 2019

Indecon research identifies an average wage premium of 38% - 43% for university graduates over those with no formal education and a large cash payback to the State from investment in universities Universities generate €386 million per annum in export earnings and €1.5 billion in R&D impacts  The Irish economy benefitted by €8.9 billion last year from Ireland’s seven universities newly published research has confirmed. The first ever socio-economic impact research undertaken on the role universities play in the economy and society has been carried out by Indecon on behalf of the Irish Universities Association. The Impact Study looks across a variety of areas to assess the impact universities have on research, society, the economy and individuals, including the benefits arising from international students. Findings from the report include: The seven universities contribute a total of €8.9 billion to the economy. There has been a significant increase in the number of students enrolling for a university education which correlates with the demand for more highly skilled employees in the Irish economy. In 2017 over 120,000 students enrolled, up 50% from 2000. Indecon have identified a cumulative net gain to the Exchequer of €1,606 million in net present value terms based on the lifetime net earnings projections for the 2017 – 2018 cohort of new entrants to the seven universities.  This is based on a net gain to the exchequer from the lifetime earnings of individual undergraduate degree holders of €62,000. In other words, the Exchequer gains a net €62,000 over the lifetime of the graduate in today’s money terms when all costs to the Exchequer are taken into account. -          University graduates generate an income premium significantly beyond those with no third level education and have consistently lower unemployment rates, even during the recession years. -           The average lifetime net premium for an undergraduate degree holder is €106,000 compared to a UK premium of £88,000 for graduates from the prestigious Russell Group Universities. Master’s Degree holders’ net premium rises to €146,000 and PhDs’ to €222,000. These figures are net of tax and factor in the costs incurred by students in obtaining their degrees and income foregone during their years at university. -          Irish Universities make a total research impact of €1.5 billion to the economy. This breaks down into €632 million from direct research expenditure, €373 million spill-over impact of university-based research on the wider economy, and €526 million from indirect and induced effects. -          In 2017 – 2018 there were 16,701 full-time International students living in Ireland. Indecon estimated that the total annual export income generated for the Irish economy from International students at €386 million. The report provides further detail on the social and cultural impacts of Irish Universities along with supporting 22,000 jobs, both directly and indirectly. “There has been much debate over the economic return university education generates in Ireland without any rigorous scientific analysis of the actual impacts”, said Brian MacCraith, Chair of the Irish Universities Association. “This vacuum has not served the debate well and I am pleased to say that we have now got a detailed independent assessment on the impact Irish Universities have on our society, our economy and on us as individuals. “What is certain from the report is the significant positive impact Irish Universities are having, from the €8.89 billion contributed annually to the Irish economy to the 21,801 full-time jobs supported, including 15,724 directly employed. “The 50% increase in student enrolments since 2000 is a precursor to an even greater demographic bubble which will place an intolerable strain on the already under-resourced university system. Unless the Government and the broader political community are prepared to deliver a sustainable core funding solution, the opportunities afforded to today’s students may be curtailed for many current and future primary and secondary students. As a society, we cannot let this happen.” Commenting on the research Jim Miley, Director General of the IUA said: “The role of universities is to produce well-rounded, employable graduates and to provide centres of innovation through their research work. The Indecon report shows for the first time that, universities not only do that but also generate a cash surplus for the State over the long-term. This surely provides a compelling case for the Government and the Oireachtas to prioritise the reform of the funding model for higher education.  Next Sunday will mark the 1,000th day since the Cassells Report, the Government-appointed Expert Group, identified the scale of the funding gap for higher education and made clear recommendations about dealing with it. The Indecon Report shows that more State investment in university education isn’t just the right thing to do; it’s the profitable thing to do.” Speaking about the research, Alan Gray, MD of Indecon said: “This analysis is the first of its kind in Ireland.  Indecon undertook a rigorous evidence-based examination on the full range of impacts of Irish universities on the Irish economy and society generally. Ireland has a more highly educated population than the EU average which is often cited as a key reason both multinational organisations and indigenous enterprises base operations here. Our analysis shows the positive impacts that universities have on research and innovation, on graduates earning power and on the positive returns to the Exchequer for their investment.” Indecon Research Economists were appointed by the Irish Universities Association, following a competitive tender process, to cover the combined impact of the seven universities represented by the IUA – NUI Galway, Dublin City University, Maynooth University, Trinity College Dublin, University College Cork, University College Dublin and University of Limerick. The report is available to read in full at www.saveourspark.ie/universities-impact Ends

Wednesday, 3 April 2019

Dr Mirko Daniel Garasic, a Research Scholar, UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights and Adjunct Professor in Bioethics, with LUISS University in Rome, will deliver a seminar at the University entitled ‘Beyond Normality? Technologies Between Assistance and Enhancement’. The seminar will take place on Friday, 5 April, from 12.30-5pm in the Moore Institute, Hardiman Building. The ongoing development of new technologies to replace or improve human functions pose a number of pressing Ethical, Legal and Societal (ELS) questions. These questions relate to issues relating to personal experiences and public acceptability, human freedom and equality, safety, and accountability over such new technologies and their uses.  During the event a number of questions related to current and emerging developments will be discussed including: The evolving notion of human enhancement, understood as improvement beyond the norm, in relation to specific technologies (biomedical, machine-based or genomics) and their various contexts of application (healthcare, education, workplace, military/defence). Wearable Robots such as exoskeletons or robotic suits that may replace lost body functions, for example after spinal injuries, or enhance functioning, for example increasing lifting strength for workers in logistics centres, healthcare or the military. New ‘algorithmic age’ where human choices are increasingly influenced by ‘Big Data’ and dependent on mathematical and computational algorithms, with applications as mundane as the curation of Facebook newsfeed or product suggestions on Amazon, but also highly impactful AI-supported medical diagnosis or even decisions on child protection measures or criminal justice matters. The use of cognitive enhancements (e.g. the drug Ritalin) in competitive contexts, such as employment and higher education, leading to questions of a “cognitive arms race” among students and workers in the knowledge economy. To help with such questions, Dr Garasic will be working with NUI Galway’s Dr Heike Felzmann and Dr Oliver Feeney on the topic of wearable robotic and enhancement technologies. Dr Oliver Feeney, a researcher with the Centre of Bioethical Research and Analysis in NUI Galway, said: “Futuristic technologies are being developed that have immense potential for benefiting humankind, while also having the significant potential for negative consequences for individuals and wider society. This highlights the urgent need for ongoing ethical, legal and societal impact discussions, involving a wide range of perspectives, in order to contribute to the development of robust regulations and legislative frameworks, both nationally and globally.” The seminar will conclude with the official launch of the project ‘B-CAUSE: Building Collaborative Approaches to University Strategies against Exclusion in Ireland and Africa: pedagogies for quality Higher Education and inclusive global citizenship’. Led by NUI Galway’s Dr Su-ming Khoo and Professor Paul Prinsloo, University of South Africa, B-CAUSE is a collaboration between the two universities. For more information, please contact the main event organiser: Dr Heike Felzmann at heike.felzmann@nuigalway.ie, or visit https://bit.ly/2TSv2tt.

Wednesday, 3 April 2019

Commandant Leo Quinlan will deliver a public lecture in the Moore Institute at NUI Galway on the experience of his father, Commandant Pat Quinlan, in the historic Battle of Jadotville, 1961. The lecture will take place on Tuesday, 9 April, at 5pm. The Battle of Jadotville took place in the Congo and represents the largest military action carried out by the Irish Army against a foreign army since the founding of the State. 155 Irish soldiers (some as young as 15 and 16 years of age) fought 3,500 soldiers of the Katanga Army and survived. This action is the topic of a number of books, articles, radio and TV documentaries and a 2016 film currently showing on Netflix, The Siege of Jadotville. This talk on the Battle of Jadotville describes various actions by the men of ‘A’ Company during their six-month tour of duty in the Congo and provides the audience with information on this historic encounter not generally in the public domain, based on Commandant Pat Quinlan’s memoirs. The speaker, Leo Quinlan, was commissioned as a Lieutenant and served in the Irish Army for 25 years, and overseas with the United Nations. During his army service he served with many Jadotville veterans. After leaving the army he has worked as a consultant/project leader for the European Commission in 47 countries. He lives in Barna, Co. Galway, where he works as a professional landscape artist with his own Art Gallery. Professor Daniel Carey, Director of the Moore Institute, NUI Galway, commented: “The Battle of Jadotville is truly historic and it remains remembered as a remarkable demonstration of heroism. Leo Quinlan is in a unique position to tell the story of this episode through his father’s involvement and recollections.” For more information contact Daniel Carey, Moore Institute, NUI Galway, at Daniel.carey@nuigalway.ie or 091 493083.

Wednesday, 3 April 2019

Tá an tóir atá ag mic léinn ar OÉ Gaillimh ag dul i dtreis i gcónaí tar éis do bhreis agus 5,000 mac léinn an ollscoil a roghnú mar a gcéad rogha don bhliain acadúil 2019-2020. Reáchtálfaidh an Ollscoil a Lá Oscailte Earraigh bliantúil ar an Satharn, an 6 Aibreán, ón 9am go 3pm.  Is ionann sin agus ardú 5% ar fhigiúr na bliana seo caite in iarratais chéad rogha ar OÉ Gaillimh, agus áirítear leis an líon iarratas sin 64% de na hiarratasóirí leibhéal 8 uile as cúige Chonnacht. Tá 5,351 mac léinn ar fud na tíre a bhfuil rogha le déanamh acu fós ar a n-iarratas CAO, agus cabhróidh sé go mór leo siúd, agus lena dtuismitheoirí, freastal ar Lá Oscailte OÉ Gaillimh agus iad ag iarraidh cinneadh eolasach a dhéanamh. Tiocfaidh pobal na hOllscoile le chéile do Lá Oscailte OÉ Gaillimh agus beidh siad i mbun breis agus 80 caint, seisiún eolais agus zón idirghníomhach, agus ar fáil chun ceisteanna a fhreagairt faoi chúrsaí i gColáiste na nDán, na nEolaíochtaí Sóisialta agus an Léinn Cheiltigh, Coláiste an Ghnó, an Bheartais Phoiblí agus an Dlí, Coláiste na hEolaíochta agus na hInnealtóireachta agus Coláiste an Leighis, an Altranais agus na nEolaíochtaí Sláinte. Beidh mic léinn reatha ar fáil chomh maith chun comhairle phraiticiúil a thabhairt, turais den champas a threorú i nBéarla agus i nGaeilge, agus fíorbhraistint de shaol na hOllscoile in OÉ Gaillimh a thabhairt do mhic léinn ionchasacha. Reáchtálfar turais i rith an lae de na roghanna lóistín atá ar fáil, chomh maith le hÁras Innealtóireachta Alice Perry, na háiseanna Altranais agus Cnáimhseachais, an Leabharlann agus Ionad Uí Dhonnchadha don Drámaíocht, an Amharclannaíocht agus an Taibhléiriú.  Tá an-éagsúlacht cúrsaí fochéime ar fáil in OÉ Gaillimh, agus ba cheart go mbeadh gach duine in ann ábhar spéise a aimsiú as breis agus 70 rogha. Is i Halla Bailey Allen a bheidh an príomhspás taispeántais, áit a mbeidh léachtóirí agus mic léinn ar fáil chun labhairt le mic léinn ionchasacha agus le tuismitheoirí faoi na cúrsaí atá ar fáil. Leanann an Ollscoil ag cur a rogha cúrsaí in oiriúint chun go mbeidh rochtain ar an rogha fochéimeanna is forásaí ag mic léinn. Ina measc siúd, tá roinnt cúrsaí nua á gcur ar fáil don bhliain 2019/20, a n-áirítear leo siúd an BA Oideachas (Eolaíocht Ríomhaireachta, agus Staidéir Mhatamaitice), an BA (Stair agus Staidéir an Domhandaithe), an BA Rialtas (Polaitíocht, Eacnamaíocht agus Dlí), Baitsiléir Dlí agus Cearta an Duine, an BA (Ceol), an BA (Scannán agus Meán Digiteach), an BA (Eolaíocht Sonraí) agus an BA (Dána Digiteacha agus Teicneolaíocht).  Cuirfear eolas ar fáil chomh maith faoin gcéim i nGnó agus Dlí agus an Chéim Bhaitsiléara i nDlí Sibhialta atá á seoladh in athuair. Moltar do thuismitheoirí chomh maith iarracht a dhéanamh freastal ar an gCaint do Thuismitheoirí, áit a mbeidh ionadaithe i láthair ó Sheirbhísí do Mhic Léinn, ón Oifig Iontrála agus ón Oifig Lóistín le heolas a thabhairt maidir le táillí, maoiniú agus go leor eile. Ba cheart do thuismitheoirí agus do mhic léinn a gceisteanna a bheith réidh acu, féachaint le fáil amach an bhfeilfeadh an Ollscoil do riachtanais agus d’uaillmhianta an mhic léinn.  Beidh ionadaithe ó fhoireann Sheirbhísí Tacaíochta OÉ Gaillimh ar fáil chun bualadh le mic léinn agus le tuismitheoirí ar an Lá Oscailte, agus áireofar leo sin ionadaithe ón bhfoireann Tacaíochta Míchumais.   Seo í an chomhairle a bhí ag Lucy Dockery, Ambasadóir na Mac Léinn agus mac léinn le hEolaíocht sa bhliain dheireanach, do mhic léinn áitiúla agus do mhic léinn ar cuairt araon: “Bíodh is go mbíonn seans bualadh le léachtóirí agus ceisteanna tábhachtacha a chur ag an Lá Oscailte, deis iontach atá ann chomh maith an campas a fheiceáil, agus bualadh le mic léinn reatha agus ceisteanna a chur orthu faoina n-eispéiris. Is í an fhoghlaim atá ag croílár an eispéiris ollscoile, ach ag an Lá Oscailte feicfidh tú céard atá éagsúil faoi OÉ Gaillimh agus an cineál saoil atá ag mic léinn anseo, sa seomra léachta agus lasmuigh de.” Beidh sraith cainteanna, ceardlann agus máistir-ranganna ar siúl i rith an lae. I measc na mbuaicphointí, áirítear na cinn seo a leanas: An Spórt in OÉ Gaillimh Máistir-rang ceoil leis an Contempo Quartet Seisiún eolais do mhic léinn lánfhásta Ceardlann Drámaíochta Eolas faoi Ghairmeacha – Ag Cur le d’Infhostaitheacht Iarratas a dhéanamh ar dheontas SUSI Bealaí rochtana ar an Oideachas, HEAR/DARE agus FETAC san áireamh. Zón idirghníomhach Innealtóireachta agus IT I bhfianaise an rogha mór cainteanna, turas agus deiseanna labhairt le comhaltaí foirne na hOllscoile, moltar do mhic léinn ionchasacha clárú roimh ré, an clár a íoslódáil agus a gcuairt a phleanáil. www.nuigalway.ie/opendays. -Críoch-

Tuesday, 2 April 2019

Níos mó ná 5% d’ardú ar iarratais chéad rogha CAO faoin 1 Feabhra 2019 Tá ardú suntasach tagtha ar an éileamh ar chúrsaí OÉ Gaillimh i mbliana tar éis do bhreis agus 5,000 mac léinn an ollscoil a phiocadh mar chéad rogha don bhliain acadúil 2019-2020. Ardú os cionn 5% i líon na n-iarratas céad rogha a bhí ann i gcomparáid leis an mbliain seo caite. Tá an t-ardú seo tarlaithe i gcomhthéacs náisiúnta inar tháinig fás 0.5% ar líon na n-iarratas a fuair an CAO i gcomparáid leis an mbliain seo caite. Bhí an t-éileamh méadaithe seo le feiceáil sna réimsí ábhair a mbíonn tóir orthu go traidisiúnta, a n-áirítear leo sin gnó, dlí, innealtóireacht, eolaíocht bhithleighis, altranas agus leigheas, agus bhain cuid den bhorradh freisin leis na hiarratais a rinneadh ar thrí chéim nua sna Dána agus ar chéim nua sa Dlí a bheidh ag glacadh le mic léinn den chéad uair i Meán Fómhair 2019. Clár nuálaíoch agus uathúil is ea an chéim i nDlí agus Cearta an Duine, a rabhthas ag tnúth go mór leis, agus is é seo an chéad chéim dá leithéid in Éirinn. Tógann an chéim seo ar cháil dhomhanda Ionad na hÉireann do Chearta an Duine agus cuirfidh an cháilíocht seo ar chumas na gcéimithe oibriú i réimse an dlí nó an bheartais idirnáisiúnta um chearta an duine, nó i gcleachtas dlí, agus tabharfaidh siad faoi oiliúint ghairmiúil dlí chomh maith mar dhlíodóir nó mar abhcóide. Seolfaidh Coláiste na nDán, na nEolaíochtaí Sóisialta agus an Léinn Cheiltigh trí chéim nua in 2019. Dhá chéim idirdhisciplíneacha nua is ea an BA (Stair agus Staidéir an Domhandaithe) agus an BA Rialtas (Polaitíocht, Eacnamaíocht agus Dlí) a thabharfaidh an deis do chéimithe eolas agus tuiscint uathúil a fháil ar raon ábhar gaolmhar. Clár oiliúna tosaigh comhthráthach do mhúinteoirí ceithre bliana is ea an BA Oideachas (Eolaíocht Ríomhaireachta, agus Staidéir Mhatamaitice) agus ullmhófar céimithe chun bheith incháilithe eolaíocht ríomhaireachta agus matamaitic a mhúineadh. Is mar seo a leanas a labhair an Meabhránaí agus Uachtarán Ionaid, an tOllamh Pól Ó Dochartaigh: “Tá óige an lae inniu comhfhiosach maidir leis an tsochaí trí chéile, agus iad ag féachaint le dul i ngleic leis na saincheisteanna is dúshlánaí atá romhainn, an t-athrú aeráide, mar shampla, nó an ceartas sóisialta.  An fhianaise air seo ná na cúrsaí atá roghnaithe ag na hiarratasóirí CAO, a bhfuil cúrsaí á roghnú acu agus gairmeacha a n-ullmhú acu inar féidir leo tionchar cumhachtach agus dearfach a bheith acu ar an domhan mórthimpeall orthu. Tá spéis láidir á léiriú ag mic léinn in Éirinn agus san Eoraip sa chéim nua i nDlí agus Cearta an Duine. Tá OÉ Gaillimh á roghnú ag na mic léinn mar gheall ar an gcáil sármhaitheasa atá uirthi go domhanda sa ghort acadúil seo. Táimid ag tnúth le tacú leis an gcéad ghlúin eile agus iad i mbun a gcuid scileanna a fhorbairt agus a rian a fhágáil ar an domhan. “Gné shuntasach den bhreithniúchán a dhéanann mic léinn ar chúrsaí i gcónaí is ea na deiseanna fostaíochta a éiríonn astu agus i bhfianaise an mhargaidh fostaíochta láidir atá ann faoi láthair, tá muinín ag mic léinn, agus iad ag roghnú na gcúrsaí sin, go ligfidh siad dóibh staidéir a dhéanamh ar na rudaí is ansa leo, saineolas agus scileanna inaistrithe a fhorbairt, taithí thar lear agus san ionad oibre a fháil, agus ullmhú do ghairmeacha solúbtha agus fiúntacha.” Tugtar cuireadh do mhic léinn agus do thuismitheoirí tuilleadh eolais a fháil ag an lá oscailte fochéime a reáchtálfar in OÉ Gaillimh Dé Sathairn, an 6 Aibreán, 9am-3pm. Cláraigh anois ar https://www.nuigalway.ie/opendays/. CRÍOCH

Tuesday, 2 April 2019

Seven Alumni Award winners will be honoured at a gala night of food and entertainment NUI Galway has announced that broadcaster and Grace Diamonds Founder, Gráinne Seoige will host this year’s Gala Ball and Alumni Awards. A graduate of NUI Galway, Gráinne was presented with the Duais don Gaeilge in 2007 in recognition of her work in the Irish language. The seven Alumni Award winners will be presented with their awards at the Gala Ball on Saturday, 13 April, in the Bailey Allen Hall. The NUI Galway Alumni Awards recognise individual excellence and achievements among the University’s more than 100,000 graduates worldwide. Now in its twentieth year, the Awards programme boasts an impressive roll call of more than 100 outstanding NUI Galway alumni, including Gráinne Seoige, who have gone on to make an impact in their chosen field, and in so doing honour their alma mater. Among the distinguished honorees are President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, broadcaster, Seán O’Rourke, business leaders, Tara McCarthy (Bord Bia), Adrian Jones (Goldman Sachs) and Aedhmar Hynes (Text 100), figures from public life such as Pat Rabbitte, Eamon Gilmore (former Tánaiste) and Máire Whelan (Attorney General), and sports figures such as rugby international, Ciarán FitzGerald and Olive Loughnane (Olympic medallist). The winners of the seven alumni awards to be presented at Gala 2019: Alumni Award for Arts, Literature and Celtic Studies – Sponsored by Deloitte Journalist & RTÉ London correspondent, Fiona Mitchell – BA 1993 Alumni Award for Business and Commerce - Sponsored by Bank of Ireland Aviation entrepreneur, Dómhnal Slattery - BComm 1988 Alumni Award for Law, Public Policy and Government - Sponsored by Ronan Daly Jermyn Senior counsel and jurist, Grainne McMorrow - BA 1980, LLB 1983  Alumni Award for Engineering, Science and Technology - Sponsored by Merc Partners Cancer scientist, Dr John Lyons - BSc 1979 Alumni Award for Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences - Sponsored by Medtronic Surgeon and clinical educator, Dr Ronan Waldron - MB BCh BAO 1976, MMedSc 1984 Gradam Alumni don Gaeilge - Urraithe ag OÉ Gaillimh Journalist and broadcaster, Póilín Ní Chiaráin - BA 1965 Alumni Award for Contribution to Sport - Sponsored by Bank of Ireland Sports medicine pioneer, Dr Mick Molloy - MB BCh BAO 1968 For ticket and booking information contact Alumni Relations on 091 494310 or email alumni@nuigalway.ie. Online bookings at www.guf.ie.

Tuesday, 2 April 2019

Novelist and NUI Galway English lecturer, Mike McCormack, has been inducted into the Hennessy Literary Awards Hall of Fame. At the ceremony NUI Galway Masters in Writing graduate, Eamon Doggett, was presented with the First Fiction Award for his story Flipping Burgers. Mike McCormack, originally from Louisburgh, Co. Mayo, has published two collections of short stories, Getting It in the Head and Forensic Songs and three novels - Crowe's Requiem, Notes from a Coma and Solar Bones. In 1996, he was awarded the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature. In 1998, Getting It in the Head was voted a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. A story from the collection, The Terms, was adapted into an award-winning short film directed by Johnny O'Reilly. In 2006, Notes from a Coma was shortlisted for the Irish Book of the Year Award.   In May 2016, Mike’s third novel, Solar Bones, the story of a dead man returning to rural Mayo on All Souls’ Day, was published going on to win the Goldsmiths Prize. Solar Bones was voted ‘Novel of the Year’ at the Irish Book Awards 2016 and won the International Dublin Literary Award of €100,000, the largest literary prize in the world for a single novel published in English. Eamon Doggett, from Bettystown, Co Meath, works as a digital sports reporter in Dublin. He said of his story Flipping Burgers: “My story was loosely based on a friend’s work experience and times I spent in a Burger King in Dublin. Fast food places have their own tics and customs, and aspirations seem to me to hang in the air; people swaying between dreams and their own destruction and the world’s.” According to Professor Sean Ryder, Chair of English at NUI Galway: “Mike McCormack’s induction into the Hennessy Hall of Fame is a timely recognition of the impact of his astonishing and innovative fiction, not just recently, but over a writing career of many years. His work has continually tested new possibilities for the ways stories can be told, and has given voice to unforgettable characters and compelling visions. This award confirms what we know already: he is one of the most original writers of our time. For Eamon Doggett, the Hennessy First Fiction Award is a gratifying affirmation of an exciting emerging talent. Both Mike and Eamon deserve heartiest congratulations on their awards, and NUI Galway’s English and Creative Writing programmes are honoured by their association with us.” Dr John Kenny, Director of the MA in Writing at NUI Galway, said: “The Hennessy Literary Awards was a great evening for English and Creative Writing here at NUI Galway. The induction of Mike McCormack into the Hennessy Hall of Fame is a major further endorsement of his status as one of our most distinguished writers, and our undergraduate and postgraduate students continue to benefit enormously from his eminence as an artist, his insights into the world of professional writing, and his fostering skills as a teacher and mentor. Eamon Doggett, one of two MA in Writing graduates shortlisted for the Hennessy First Fiction Award, was co-winner of our inaugural Sylvia O’Brien Prize earlier this year, and his Hennessy win has confirmed his emergent reputation as a young writer of great quality and promise. Seeing Mike and Eamon, writers at such different stages of their careers, recognised in this way by the Hennessy Awards is both stirring and gratifying.”

Tuesday, 2 April 2019

The 2019 Galway heat for FameLab, the worlds biggest science communication competition, was held recently at An Taibhdhearc in Galway City. The event saw 12 scientists compete for two places in the national final in front of a crowded audience. FameLab Galway 2019 was organised by the College of Science at NUI Galway in association with the British Council in Ireland. The goal of a FameLab presenter is to explain scientific concepts to a general audience in just three minutes. The competition is open to scientists, mathematicians and engineers working across Ireland in both the public and private sectors. The 12 participants in FameLab Galway 2019 came from a variety of backgrounds and career stages ranging from undergraduate students to established postdoctoral researchers, as well as IT professionals. The presentations gave the audience an insight into some fascinating areas ranging from Rock and Roll and the Right Hand Rule to Threats to Modern Medicine. The winner of this year’s FameLab Galway heat was Dr Fiona Malone, a Biomedical Engineer and postdoctoral researcher from GMIT. Her PhD investigated the trajectory paths of the blood vessel arrangement in ischaemic stroke patients. She has represented GMIT at various science communication events like Thesis In 3, Research Fest and Soapbox Science, and is featured regularly in STEM blogs and podcasts. The runner-up was James Blackwell, a full-time PhD student in NUI Galway. His research is funded by The Irish Research Council and sees James split his time between the School of Physics and School of Applied Mathematics. Through his research, he is investigating how ultrasound can create stiffness maps of the brain which could help surgeons identify brain tumours and other diseases. James was also the winner of the Threesis final last December. The audience vote went to Megan Griffiths for her talk titled ‘Soothing Scales and Scutes’. Megan spoke about the therapeutic potential of reptiles as she balances her final year in Zoology studies at the Ryan Institute teaching first and second year labs as well as running the animal room on campus. Megan captured the audiences’ attention with her engaging talk and the very large live snake wrapped around her body. Winner, Dr Fiona Malone and runner-up James Blackwell will both have the opportunity to participate in the FameLab Ireland Final which will be held at the Science Gallery, Dublin on Thursday, 11 April 2019. Before that they will be invited to attend an all-expenses paid Communication Masterclass. The winner of the National competition will have a chance to compete in the International FameLab Final at the Cheltenham Science Festival, in the UK in June 2019. The compere for the evening was Professor Michel Destrade, Chair of Applied Mathematics at NUI Galway, previous winner of FameLab Galway and runner up of FameLab Ireland 2016. The judges panel included Paul Fahy, Artistic Director, Galway International Arts Festival; Laura Rigney, Director of Brigit’s Garden; Laoise McNamara, Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Principal Investigator, NUI Galway; and Brenda Romero, game designer, artist and Fulbright recipient, Romero Games. Commenting on the success of the event Brenda Romero, one of the event judges, said: “FameLab was such an incredible, intellectual pleasure! I loved the variety of topics, and particularly enjoyed the winning presentation. Fiona had such a great presence and important information to boot!”  Eoin Murphy, Centre for Chromosome Biology at NUI Galway and FameLab organising committee member, said: We were really happy with the success of this year’s Galway FameLab heat. The energy in the room was amazing and I am personally delighted to see FameLab continue to grow.” FameLab Ireland 2018-19 is funded by Science Foundation Ireland and is supported by Cpl Resources Plc and Henkel Ireland Limited. It is managed by the British Council Ireland in collaboration with Newstalk 106-108FM, NUI Galway, Science Gallery Dublin, TCD, UCC, UCD, and UL. For more information on FameLab visit www.britishcouncil.ie/famelab or follow on Twitter @FameLab_Ireland and @FameLab_Galway.

Monday, 1 April 2019

NUI Galway Bachelor of Commerce graduate, Alan Mulligan will release his first film, ‘The Limit Of’ nationwide on Friday, 5 April. At the age of 30 Alan realised that he had a passion for film-making, deciding to leave his successful role in Finance to become a film producer, director and writer, without any previous experience. The new gripping psychological thriller is a story based on Alan’s career as a young banker during the Celtic Tiger years, and the crippling recession that followed. James Allen, played by actor Laurence O’Fuarain, is a successful, controlling, thirty-something banker where a family tragedy occurs at the hands of his employer. James decides to take action which forces him to face a terrible childhood secret. Meanwhile, his mysterious co-worker Alison, played by IFTA-nominated Sarah Carroll, has her own agenda, which puts her on a collision course with James, triggering a dark spiral of deceit, revenge and murder. The film captures the voracious greed in the financial sector along with modern day society’s demand for control. ‘The Limit Of’ premiered to a standing ovation at the 2017 Galway Film Fleadh. Alan was invited to various international film festivals, and the film was nominated for awards in a broad range of categories. ‘The Limit Of’ has won Best First Feature at the Portugal International Film Festival, 2018; and the Director’s Choice Awards, Best Emerging Filmmaker (non-New England), at the Woods Hole Film Festival, Cape Cod, 2018. On the breadth of skills and expertise acquired at NUI Galway and through industry experience, Alan, from Charlestown, Co. Mayo, said: “I know that I didn't study film in university, but without the business background and techniques I learned through my education, I would not have been able to produce, direct and write a feature film. Most of the film making process is very much business related, it's just all built around creativity.” Dr Tom Acton, Head of School, J.E. Cairnes School of Business & Economics said: “We wish Alan every success in the launch of his first feature film. We are delighted to see our BComm graduates leveraging their breadth of diverse skills across a variety of industries.” ‘The Limit Of’ is released throughout Irish cinemas from 5 April, with the Eye Cinema hosting a special Q & A screening on Tuesday, 9 April at 6:20pm. This screening will be attended by Alan and the lead cast.  For more information about ‘The Limit Of’ visit: https://www.facebook.com/thelimitof/ or to book tickets https://www.eyecinema.ie/movie/the-limit-of. For information on business degrees at NUI Galway visit: http://www.nuigalway.ie/commerce/. -Ends-

Monday, 1 April 2019

As NUI Galway’s popularity continues to grow with over 5,000 students choosing NUI Galway as their university of choice for the 2019-2020 academic year, the University will hold its annual Spring Open Day on Saturday, 6 April, from 9am to 3pm.  NUI Galway has experienced a year-on-year increase of over 5% in first preference applications, attracting 64% of all level 8 applicants from Connacht. With 5,351 students nationally yet to make a course choice on their CAO application, attending NUI Galway’s Open Day will be vital for students and parents wishing to make well-informed decisions. During Open Day NUI Galway’s university community will come together to host over 80 talks, information sessions, interactive zones and will be on hand to answer all questions relating to courses in the College of Arts, Humanities and Celtic Studies, College of Business, Public Policy and Law, the College of Science and Engineering and the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences. Current students will also be available to offer practical advice, lead campus tours, both in English and Irish, and will give prospective students a real sense of university life at NUI Galway. Tours of the accommodation options, the Alice Perry Engineering Building, the Nursing and Midwifery facilities, the Library and the O’Donoghue Centre for Drama Theatre and Performance will be available throughout the day. NUI Galway offers over a rich diversity of undergraduate courses, with over 70 options there is something for everyone. The Bailey Allen Hall will play host to the main exhibition space where lecturers and students will be on hand to talk to prospective students and parents about all the courses on offer. The University continues to evolve their offerings to ensure that students have access to the most progressive degree options. Amongst these is a number of new offerings for 2019/20 entry including the BA Education (Computer Science and Mathematical Studies), BA (History and Globalisation), BA Government (Politics, Economics and Law), Bachelor of Law and Human Rights, BA Music, BA Film and Digital Media, BA Data Science, BA Digital Arts and Technology. There will also be information on the relaunched Business and Law degree and Bachelor of Civil Law. Parents are also advised to leave time in the schedule to attend the Parents Talk where there will be representatives from Student Services, the Admissions team, and the Accommodation team, with information on fees and funding and more. Parents and students are advised to be well prepared with questions and the goal should be to come away knowing if the University will be a good fit for the students’ requirements and ambitions. There will be representatives from NUI Galway’s Support Services team available to meet students and parents at Open Day, including representatives from the Disability Support team.   Student Ambassador, and final year Science student, Lucy Dockery has some advice for local and visiting students alike: “While Open Day is a chance to meet lecturers and ask important questions, it’s also a fantastic opportunity to see the campus in action and to meet current students and ask them about their experiences. The University experience has learning at its core but Open Day also gives you the opportunity to see why NUI Galway is different and what student life is like here, both outside and inside the classroom.” A programme of talks, workshops and masterclasses will run throughout the day. Highlights include: Sport at NUI Galway Music Masterclass with Contempo Quartet Mature Students information session Drama Workshop Careers Information- Building your Employability Applying for a SUSI grant Access routes into Education, including HEAR/DARE and FETAC Engineering and IT interactive zone With such a range of talks, tours and opportunities to engage with university staff, prospective students are advised to register in advance, download the programme and plan your visit in advance. www.nuigalway.ie/opendays. -Ends-

Monday, 1 April 2019

Music for Galway has entered into a new strategic partnership with NUI Galway. The Memorandum of Understanding between the long-established music organisation and the University was signed recently by NUI Galway President, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, and Chair of Music for Galway, Anne O’Maille. The new partnership will give students on NUI Galway’s new BA in Music the opportunity to work closely with some of Europe’s top performers. Students will have regular workshops with performers, developing such skills as critical listening, analysis and concert reviewing. In addition, they will have the chance to take up an internship with Music for Galway, at the end of which they would organise one of the concerts for the following season. Chair of Music for Galway, Anne O’Maille said: “After nearly four decades of close ties with NUI Galway, we are delighted to formalise our relationship with the University. Music for Galway is proud to have played an important part in creating the environment in which a BA in Music in Galway could become relevant and possible. We look forward to working with the Head of Music, Dr Aidan Thomson and his team to link with and support the development of this programme for many years to come.” Speaking at the announcement of the partnership, NUI Galway President, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, said: “For almost forty years Music for Galway has enriched the cultural life of our region. Over that period NUI Galway has been proud to support Music for Galway in a range of ways. With the formalising of our partnership and working together we will now build on that tradition by developing new learning opportunities for our students as well as adding to the cultural fabric of our hinterland. Music for Galway has always been defined by a spirit of service – bringing music to the audiences which it serves in Galway and the West of Ireland – making it truly for Galway. As a University we share that same spirit of service towards our region and this is signalled in this new cultural partnership.” Head of Music at NUI Galway, Dr Aidan Thomson, said: “The internships will give our students a unique, practical opportunity to learn about arts management. They will be in excellent hands working with Music for Galway. It is tremendously exciting to think that there will soon be professional concerts in Galway that will be organised entirely by students.” For more information on the BA (Music) Degree programme at NUI Galway visit www.nuigalway.ie/artsmusic/.   -Ends-

Monday, 1 April 2019

NUI Galway will host Ireland’s first ‘Open Science Week’ with the aim of showcasing the importance of research and education that is accessible to everyone. The inaugural event will take place from 8–12 April.  Open Science Week 2019 will bring together researchers, academics, educators, policymakers and members of the public to highlight and showcase what open science is and how it can be achieved, and to work together towards creating knowledge that is open and accessible to everyone. Events taking place throughout this innovative initiative will target several elements of Open Science, including Open Data, Open Access, Open Education and Citizen Science.  Open Science is a global movement towards research and educational practices that are collaborative and transparent. The aim of open science is to make research and educational resources such as publications, data, research outputs and teaching and learning resources publicly available as early as possible, as well as actively encouraging participation in the research process by the general public and co-creation of knowledge.  Throughout Europe, it is estimated that €250 billion is expended annually on publicly funded research - bringing its own scrutiny, pressure and urgency. Open Science Week 2019 will address some big questions and problems that demand nothing short of a paradigm shift in how research is conducted: How do we make sure our research is properly reproducible? How do we eliminate the rare but deadly publication-pressure induced fraud that threatens to taint legitimate findings with the stain of fake news? Are there more effective alternatives to academic peer review? What should the role of universities be in a society that is increasingly networked and open? Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, President of NUI Galway, commented: “I am delighted to see Ireland’s first Open Science Week being led by colleagues at NUI Galway. Knowledge and scholarship are important drivers of our society and our economy. Investment in education and research - which generates such knowledge - is harvested by increased public access to and engagement with knowledge outputs – publications, data and a greater sense of relationship between the citizen and knowledge. Open access and the inaugural Open Science Week 2019 represents the evident social dividend from investment in education and research and I commend colleagues at NUI Galway, and beyond, for highlighting this area of societal importance.”  Dr Elaine Toomey, Health Behaviour Change Research Group (School of Psychology) and Open Science Week committee member at NUI Galway, said: “It’s really exciting to see such a wide range of activities and events taking place across campus for Open Science Week, and in particular to see such great engagement from different disciplines within the University. We’re also really hoping to get as many people from outside the University involved as possible, as this is an issue that affects everyone, whether or not they realise it.”   On Monday, 8 April Professor Lokesh Joshi, Vice President of Research at NUI Galway, will officially launch Open Science Week at NUI Galway’s Hardiman Building. It will be followed by the Screening of the movie ‘Paywall: the Business of Scholarship’ and a Q&A. Paywall focuses on the need for open access to research and science and questions the rationale behind the $25.2 billion a year that flows into for-profit academic publishers. (https://paywallthemovie.com/); Wikipedia edit-a-thon on Women in Science highlights how women in science are under-represented on Wikipedia, with just 18% of biographies for women. Tuesday, 9 April events include: Data Conversation - Talking Historical Data which aims to bring data practitioners of all kinds together to talk about how researchers might best create, collect, use and share data in the context of Open Science; Open Educational Resources (OER) Policy Lab is the first ever OER Policy Lab that aims to collect global OER policies with a special focus on Europe, identify new functionalities needed for the OER Policy Registry and develop a global network of OER Policy experts to facilitate global mainstreaming of Open Education.  On Wednesday, 10 April the 10th Annual Open Educational Resources (OER) Conference 2019 will be held for the first time in Ireland. Keynote speakers include: Dr Kate Bowles (University of Wollongong); Dr Su-ming Khoo (NUI Galway); Taskeen Adam (University of Cambridge); Caroline Kuhn (Bath Spa University); and Judith Pete (Catholic University of Eastern Africa). This year’s conference theme is: ‘Recentering Open: Critical and Global Perspectives’, focusing on critical approaches to open education and how Open Education can improve educational access, effectiveness, and equality. On the 11-12 April an Open Science in Irish Health Research: two-day introductory workshop for Early Career Researchers will take place. This two-day workshop funded by the Irish Health Research Board intends to introduce ‘all things Open Science’ for early career researchers in health. For registration and full details visit: www.nuigalway.ie/openscienceweek and follow #OpenSciGalway on Twitter. -Ends-

Monday, 1 April 2019

NUI Galway will hold its MBA Open Evening on Wednesday, 10 April, at 6.30pm in J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics. The MBA at the J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics now also offers six scholarships available to applicants from a wide range of industry and backgrounds. All scholarships on offer cover up to 50% tuition fees for the NUI Galway MBA, commencing September 2019. The mission of the NUI Galway MBA is to developing globally talented leaders of vision, with regional edge. The programme was recently re-accredited by AMBA, which is the global mark of excellence for MBA education worldwide. Scholarships on offer include: 30% Club Scholarship for Female Leaders MedTech MBA Scholarship Social Impact MBA Scholarship Information and Communications Technology MBA Scholarship NUI Galway Foundation MBA Scholarship for NUI Galway Alumni J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics MBA Scholarship To be eligible for the scholarships applicants must have submitted their applications to the programme by Friday, 10 May, 2019. Martin Hughes, MBA Programme Director, J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway, said: “Driven by experienced, passionate and dedicated faculty, the NUI Galway MBA integrates an academically rigourous and challenging real-world business education with industry learning and global learning. Pursuing an MBA is about positioning oneself for further success and we are delighted to broaden access to our MBA through the introduction of these scholarships.” Gillian Harford, Country Executive for the 30% Club Ireland, commented: “Providing focused support for female talent is one of the key pillars of our strategy and we know how important and impactful executive education is for senior career progression.  We are immensely grateful to NUI Galway for their very generous support in the provision of the Executive MBA.” To register for the MBA Open Evening visit https://www.nuigalway.ie/mba/. For more information on scholarship application process, or to submit your application please, contact Mairead McKeon, MBA Programme Administrator at mba@nuigalway.ie. -Ends-

Friday, 29 March 2019

NUI Galway researcher Dr Páraic Ó Súilleabháin was recently awarded a Charlemont Grant Award from the Royal Irish Academy from his research examining the effects of personality and loneliness on cardiovascular disease in old age, which he leads. On receiving the award, Dr Ó Súilleabháin, said: “I am delighted to win such a prestigious award. This provides me with an excellent opportunity to travel to Florida State University, and develop collaborative links with one of the leading international experts at the intersection of psychological functioning and physical and cognitive health.” Funded by the Academy, the Charlemont Grants are designed to act as a career springboard to assist scholars in strengthening their international mobility and developing international collaborative networks. As a result of this grant, Dr Ó Súilleabháin will hold a visiting research fellow position at Florida State University under the mentorship of Professor Angelina Sutin. For further details on the RIA Charlemont Grant please visit www.ria.ie. -Ends-

Friday, 29 March 2019

NUI Galway will lead a new €13 million SFI Centre for Research Training in Genomics Data Science. The new Centre will train a generation of 100 highly skilled PhD graduates to harness the collective potential of genomics and data science to have transformative scientific, economic and societal impacts. Announced recently by Minister Heather Humphreys TD Minister for Business, Enterprise, and Innovation, and Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development, John Halligan TD and Science Foundation Ireland, the Centre will be led by NUI Galway and will involve partners from UCD, TCD, RCSI and UCC.  A genome is an organisms complete set of DNA or genetic material and it contains all of the information needed to build and maintain that organism. Genomics is the branch of science that studies genomes to see how they direct the growth and function of cells and organisms and it is a key area of fundamental science with real-world impacts in areas from human health to agriculture and food production. In recent years the field of genomics has undergone a revolution, driven by new technologies that generate data on an enormous scale. In order to make sense of the large and complex datasets arising from analysis of genomes we require highly trained data scientists, who can turn this data into useful information that can increase scientific understanding and enable us to harness the power of genomics to drive innovation and create real-world solutions. Professor Cathal Seoighe, Stokes Professor of Bioinformatics, and Director of the SFI Centre for Research Training in Genomics and Data Science, NUI Galway, said: “Genomes are at the heart of all living things. In combination with modern data science techniques, genomics has the capacity both to reveal deep biological insights and to transform applications of the life sciences from health to food and agriculture.”  One of the main areas where genomics is having a real world impact is the study of how mutations and abnormalities in our genome causes diseases such as cancer – this is the main research focus of Dr Eva Szegezdi, lecturer in biochemistry at NUI Galway and one of the 6 lead scientists in the centre. Dr Szegezdi said she is, “working to understand how cancer cells can alter their genome to become resistant to chemotherapy and to find ways to exploit mutations in cancer cells to develop new therapies that only kill the cancer cells.” Genomics has impacts across a broad range of sectors, including human health, industrial biotechnology, food science and agriculture. In health, genomics is already beginning to be used to diagnose rare genetic disorders. It can also predict the risk of common, complex disorders, in which lifestyle plays a role, raising the possibility of interventions targeted towards at-risk individuals. New cancer therapies now target specific genomic mutations found in cancer cells. Genomics is also used to guide improvements in agricultural crops, enabling disease resistance and improving yields. Genomics-guided animal breeding has resulted in large gains in productivity, with further improvements possible.  For more information about the Centre for Research Training in Genomics Data Science, email genomicsCRT@nuigalway.ie and visit: https://genomicsdatascience.ie/. -Ends-

Friday, 29 March 2019

NUI Galway-led Global Energy Management System project empowering Boston Scientific to become the first global medical device company to commit to being carbon neutral by 2030 Researchers from NUI Galway with Boston Scientific have been shortlisted in the ‘Irish Higher Education Institution or Research Centre with US corporate links’ category for their GEMS, Global Energy Management System project. They were shortlisted with other organisations for the 2019 US-Ireland Research Innovation Awards announced recently at the American Chamber of Commerce Transatlantic Conference in Dublin. The US-Ireland Research Innovation Awards are a joint initiative of the American Chamber of Commerce and the Royal Irish Academy. Now in their fifth year, the awards recognise excellence in research innovation, creation and invention by an organisation, as a result of US Foreign Direct Investment in Ireland. NUI Galway with Boston Scientific were shortlisted for GEMS, a Global Energy Management System scientifically developed by Dr Marcus Keane and researchers from the College of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway, Boston Scientific and Insight Centre for Data Analytics and Ryan Institute, also based at NUI Galway. GEMS has empowered Boston Scientific to become the first global medical device company to commit to being carbon neutral by 2030. For multi-national companies, assessment of cost-effective energy efficiency projects across a global site base is a complex problem involving multiple multi-level variables such as climate, economics, building type, technologies, culture and product mix, to name a few. Much of the facility management research and practice to date is ’site’ focused with little practical guidance for the global energy manager. The GEMS research project proposes a novel methodology for assessing capital energy-efficiency projects at a global level. The project scope will cover the systematic development and implementation of a methodology that supports sustainable decision making within a ’Global Energy Management System’ based on the following four pillars: Site Characterisation; Performance Evaluation; Shared Learning / Dissemination; Corporate Policy: The implementation will commence with a pilot study in a single Irish site (in BSC Galway) to allow development of the initial methodology, further expanding to a number of facilities in the same region (Cork and Clonmel) to allow analysis of variables such as building type, product mix and management structure. With additional sites across the globe, the variance caused by both climate and economics can next be added as part of a truly global ’Design of Experiments’. Dr Marcus Keane from the College of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway, said: “The NUI Galway, Insight, Ryan Institute and Boston Scientific Corporation GEMS project (2013-2018) created a unique academic-industrial partnership that fostered Research and Development innovation underpinned by a high level of commitment of senior personnel from both organisations resulting in publications in high impact journals (Energy & Cleaner Production), Level 8 and level 9 degrees achieved by BSC personnel (Mr Ronan Coffey and Dr Noel Finnerty), and intellectual property and commercial grade Information Technology product development of the GEMS methodology and tool chain.” Dr Noel Finnerty (Director of Global Real Estate & Facilities at Boston Scientific (BSC), said: “Over the past five years the GEMS methodology has steadily embedded itself into the day-to-day running of our Sustainability program. It is now the corner stone of our approach to energy management both at a site level and corporate level, with the maturity model providing a common language to enable this. The rigour and structured approach to GEMS has led to an unpresented level of investment by BSC on energy efficiency. We are experiencing more and more requests from our key customers and the investment community to disseminate our sustainability program. I can safely say GEMS is now well and truly engrained into the BSC culture and is front and centre to any energy related sustainability discussions within BSC and with our external stakeholders.” All shortlisted organisations will make a short presentation followed by a Q&A session with the assessors on Tuesday, 16 April. The overall winner of each category will be announced at the American Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner on Friday, 17 May in Dublin. The awards are sponsored by KPMG and Ulster Bank with media support from The Irish Times. For more information about the GEMS project, visit: http://www.iruse.ie/iruse/projects/gems/. -Ends-      

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

NUI Galway’s Discipline of Speech and Language Therapy are currently hosting the ‘Who Am I?’ photography exhibition. Róisín de Búrca, from Galway and a member of the National Advisory Council of Down Syndrome Ireland, officially opened the exhibition on World Down Syndrome Day on Thursday, 21 March. The ‘Who Am I?’ exhibition is an initiative of the National Advisory Council of Down Syndrome Ireland and present images and stories of the lives of adults with Down Syndrome. The project was devised and curated by the Council members in collaboration with photographer Eric Molimard. The exhibition consists of 12 images which have been taken at a location chosen by each Council member and the image is connected with a lived experience in each person’s life. Dr Clare Carroll, Lecturer in Speech and Language Therapy at NUI Galway, said: “This exhibition provides a unique opportunity to observe images and stories of the lives of 12 adults with Down Syndrome. The images and the stories are vibrant and diverse and they share how adults with Down Syndrome are involved in society. The exhibition achieves its goal to challenge perceptions of Down Syndrome in society.” Róisín de Búrca, National Advisory Council of Down Syndrome Ireland, said: “The reason I chose this image for my photograph was to show everyone that it’s important to stand up for yourself and no matter where life takes you, be proud of who you are.” The exhibition, which is open to the public, is running in the Arts Millennium Building from until Tuesday, 30 April. -Ends-

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

A new lecture series at NUI Galway’s College of Arts, Social Sciences, and Celtic Studies at NUI Galway will focus on major research achievements in the College in recent years. Entitled Spotlight on Research, the series will begin on Thursday, 4 April with a lecture from Dr Jacopo Bisagni. Dr Bisagni, based in the Discipline of Classics at NUI Galway, is the leader of the Ireland and Carolingian Brittany: Texts and Transmission (IrCaBriTT) project which was awarded major grant support under the Irish Research Council’s Laureate scheme in 2018. The grant was awareded to examine the impact of the scholarly heritage of early Christian Ireland on the shaping of cultural identity in medieval Britanny Dr Seán Crosson, Vice-Dean for Research in the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies at NUI Galway, said: “The Spotlight on Research series aims to highlight the world leading and ground-breaking research being undertaken across our College. Academics within the College have received national and international recognition for the research they are undertaking, including major awards and research funding. This series provides a platform for us to bring these research achievements to the attention of both the academic community and the wider general public.” The lecture will be held in GO10, Moore Institute at 1pm on Thursday, 4 April. Future lectures in the series include: Dr Maura Farrell, Lecturer in Geography at NUI Galway and Principle Investigator on the Horizon 2020 funded RURALIZATION Project, who present on the topic of ‘Researching the Rural: Going Global and Staying Local’ on Tuesday, 7 May at 1pm. On Thursday, 6 June at 1pm Dr Charlotte McIvor, Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance, and Dr Pádraig MacNeela, Dr Siobhán O’Higgins, and Kate Dawson of the School of Psychology, will discuss the The Active Consent programme, recently awarded major funding support by the Lifes2good Foundation in partnership with Galway University Foundation and NUI Galway.

Tuesday, 26 March 2019

CÚRAM, the Science Foundation Ireland Centre for Research in Medical Devices at NUI Galway and Galway Film Centre will host the ‘Science on Screen 2019’ Information Day for filmmakers on Friday, 5 April. This year, CÚRAM and Galway Film Centre will partner with the HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland and PPI Ignite @ NUI Galway for Science on Screen 2019. A fund of €35,000 is available to create a half-hour documentary on the topic of Public and Patient Involvement (PPI), which means that people who are likely to be affected by new medical treatments or programmes developed through research are directly involved in planning and shaping decisions about the research. PPI Ignite @ NUI Galway aims to bring about a culture change in how health research is conducted across the University, supporting researchers to enable the public and patient voice to guide their research.  In Ireland, many research teams have incorporated Public and Patient Involvement excellently into their research, notably in the areas of intellectual disability, mental health, diabetes, primary care, chronic disease and dementia. This year, filmmakers are being invited to bring the story of Public and Patient Involvement to the big screen.  Science on Screen has been running since 2016 and is a fund for documentaries set in the world of science. To date, four documentaries have been produced and they have been screened throughout the world, received national broadcast and won international awards. The films have reached an audience of over one million people. A Tiny Spark (2018) highlights research of removed blood clots to see what information they may yield; Bittersweet (2017) captures the Irish health system’s fight to treat the rising number of diabetic patients; Feats of Modest Valour (2016) looks at the physical reality of living with Parkinson’s Disease; and Mending Legends (2016), researches the physical and psychological impact of tendon injuries among athletes.  CÚRAM and Galway Film Centre together run the ‘Science on Screen’ project, which aims to facilitate, promote and increase the inclusion of science, technology, engineering and maths content and research in Irish film and TV production. The CÚRAM funded documentary filmmaking provides access to leading scientists and laboratories within CÚRAM, to explore methods of scientific ‘story telling’ and to produce a short film that incorporate aspects of current research being carried out by CÚRAM and its academic partners. These documentaries are available for community and educational screenings nationwide. The Information Day will include speakers from PPI Ignite @ NUI Galway, HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland, CÚRAM and Galway Film Centre. The event will commence at 10.30am on Friday, 5 April and will run for approximately two hours at CÚRAM, Biomedical Sciences Building, North Campus, NUI Galway. Bookings are necessary, visit www.eventbrite.ie and search for (Science on Screen Information Day) and a schedule will be sent to attendees in advance.  PPI Ignite is funded by the Health Research Board and the Irish Research Council. This Science on Screen documentary is funded by the Health Research Board’s Knowledge Exchange and Dissemination Scheme 2018 awarded to the HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland, and supported by CÚRAM. For more information, contact Mary Deely, CÚRAM, NUI Galway at mary.deely@nuigalway.ie or Jade Murphy, Galway Film Centre at jade@galwayfilmcentre.ie. For more information about Science on Screen, visit: www.curamdevices.ie. -Ends-

Tuesday, 26 March 2019

The School of Education at NUI Galway recently organised and hosted the inaugural computer science education summit, CSforAll. The Summit was supported by Google and marked the first time CSforAll was hosted outside of the United States, with attendees from across Ireland, Europe and the US. This coincided with the announcement that the School of Education at NUI Galway will commence a new BA Education (Computer Science and Mathematical Studies) undergraduate initial teacher education programme in September 2019. CSforAll is a large-scale global movement to mobilise and promote computer science education among all students and teachers. Initiated and championed by President Barack Obama when he hosted the inaugural CSforAll Summit in the White House. Key stakeholders such as National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, Professional Development Service for Teachers, and the Department of Education attended along with international speakers from Michigan State University, Munich University, industry and James Whelton, the co-founder of Coderdojo who delivered the keynote address. Gaelscoil Riabhach, Loughrea, Co. Galway, Castleblayney College Monaghan, Presentation Secondary School Warrenmount, Dublin, Coláiste Chiaráin Limerick and Scoil Bhríde Mercy Secondary School, Tuam were the selected Showcase Schools at the event. A key message and conversation topic of the day was about the equity in Computer Science – reiterating the message that one can be a great programmer no matter background, gender or race. What is important is increasing baseline Computer Science knowledge amongst all and providing everyone with the opportunity to learn – computer science is about equity, fun, transformation, digital literacy, and so much more. There was discussion also regarding the mental health issues around computing and social media. Dr Cornelia Connolly, event organiser and Lecturer with NUI Galway’s School of Education, said: “As the first CSforAll outside of the US, NUI Galway's event marks an historic development in Computer Science education in Ireland, bringing together the key educational stakeholders and partners in celebrating and exploring the potential of coding and computational thinking in Irish classrooms and schools. At a time when Irish schools are piloting Computer Science as a Senior Cycle subject, we were delighted to host CSforAll and the watershed initiatives taking place around the country and internationally, including the inspirational work of Irish pupils and teachers working creatively with a range of innovative technologies, including micro-controllers, coding applications and software.”    The Summit website, including photos from the day, are available at https://sites.google.com/view/csforallirelandsummit/home.

Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Researchers from Earth and Ocean Sciences and the Ryan Institute at NUI Galway have carried out a study on seaweed blooms that occur in Irish estuaries on an annual basis as a result of nutrient enrichment. Nitrates and phosphates from the land flow into the sea, which can lead to the growth and proliferation of green seaweeds, commonly known as Sea Lettuce (mainly Ulvoid species). In affected bays and estuaries the shore becomes so green that these seaweed blooms are referred to as “green tides”. In Ireland, The Tolka Estuary in Dublin Bay and Courtmacsherry and Clonakilty Bays in west Cork are heavily affected by these green tides. In this study, Dr Liam Morrison and Dr Ricardo Bermejo sampled several seaweed blooms on a seasonal basis, assessing the two types of sea lettuce morphologies present and extracting the DNA to identify the range of species present. Nutrient enrichment in our marine waters has increased worldwide as a consequence of the growing human population, especially in urban centres along the coastal zone. Nutrient enrichment in European coastal waters has been identified as a key pressure on water under the Water Framework Directive (WFD), and the reduction of nutrient loads from agricultural practices and wastewater treatment are the main restoration measures. Although green tides are not generally toxic to humans their occurrence, by virtue of their sheer size, impacts shore-based activities including navigation, tourism, fisheries and the recreational use of our coastal amenities. Lead researcher of the study, Dr Liam Morrison from Earth and Ocean Sciences at NUI Galway, said: “Ireland is famous for its green countryside but this should not include our beaches too. Green tides present a large and costly problem for humans and coastal ecosystems. We need to work harder on trying to keep nutrients out of the water achieving a good balance between agronomic and environmental gains, especially with the removal of milk quotas and increased intensifciation in dairy farming in Ireland.” Dr Morrison, added: “In terms of the circular economy, more research is needed into the re-use of this seaweed biomass for example as potential fish meals or for energy production. This could create the potential to consider these blooms as a resource.” This research was part of an Environmental Protection Agency funded ‘Sea-MAT Project’ (http://www.seamatproject.net) and was carried out over two years. These results were recently published in the journal Harmful Algae. Results revealed that these seaweed blooms contain several different species, with Ulva prolifera, Ulva compressa and Ulva rigida the most frequent species. The species composition changes over the year and this species succession was common to both estuaries. The blooms are dominated by anchored species during spring and early summer, changing to more floating morphologies during late summer and autumn. Nutrient enrichment of estuarine and coastal waters (e.g. from direct discharges such as wastewater treatment plants and diffuse sources such as agricultural runoff) is considered a key factor for the development of green tides. While different locations can have similar nutrient inputs, the way the green tides form and develop can be quite different. This complicates the ability to predict these events based on information about nutrient status alone. This research has provided key information on the development of these blooms over their growing season and gives managers better information for understanding their scale and impacts. The results showed that the amount of green seaweed in the Tolka Estuary in Dublin Bay appeared to have increased over the last 20-30 years. These findings should be considered for the development of management and monitoring strategies since the different types of seaweed may play an important role in the balance of nutrients and biomass in the estuary or determine the response to pollutant exposure. Furthermore, the presence of different seaweed species with different ecological requirements could favour the duration and extension of the bloom. The EPA Research Programme is a Government of Ireland initiative funded by the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment. To read the full study in journal Harmful Algae, visit: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1568988318301859?via%3Dihub

Monday, 25 March 2019

Students to highlight their investigations into wrongful convictions Monday, 25 March, 2019: The NUI Galway Innocence Clinic will host an onstage-conversation with Paddy Armstrong, wrongfully convicted as part of the Guildford Four, and journalist Mary-Elaine Tynan in their first ever appearance in the west of Ireland on Tuesday, 2 April, 2019 at the Aras Moyola Large Lecture Theatre. As part of the programme, NUI Galway students, who have been investigating wrongful convictions with the NUI Galway Innocence Clinic, will also highlight their work in a panel discussion moderated by Mary-Elaine Tynan.  Armstrong and Tynan collaborated on Life After Life: A Guildford Four Memoir, which was published two years ago, the book is a nakedly honest and compelling exposure of Armstrong’s experience being wrongfully convicted, its crushing aftermath and the ultimate restoration of his life. The NUI Galway Innocence Clinic is a fledgling initiative launched in September 2018 with the cooperation of the School of Law, Journalism Programme and Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway under the guidance of Anne Driscoll, a visiting US Fulbright Scholar and award-winning journalist. During the first semester, Driscoll taught students about wrongful convictions, how they happen and why, as well as how to use journalism techniques and skills to investigate wrongful conviction cases. In the second semester, the students have been applying those lessons in an investigation of the Maamtrasna murders case. Myles Joyce, who was wrongfully convicted and hanged in 1882, received the second posthumous presidential pardon in Irish history by President Michael D. Higgins on 4 April, 2018. Students have been looking at the claims of innocence made by four other men who falsely pleaded guilty in the case – Myles’ brothers Martin, Patrick, and Patrick’s son Thomas Joyce, along with John Casey. Anne Driscoll, US Fulbright Scholar at NUI Galway, said: “We are thrilled that Paddy Armstrong and Mary-Elaine Tynan have agreed to share their story with the students of the NUI Galway Innocence Clinic, the greater NUI Galway community and the public at large. There is an important role for both law and journalism in addressing the injustice of a wrongful conviction and we hope this programme will explore that very idea. This special event is the culmination of a year of extraordinary exploration and learning by the law, journalism and human rights students who have participated in the Innocence Clinic. And as my Fulbright scholarship comes to a conclusion, I want to express how profoundly grateful I am to NUI Galway for having the vision and commitment to offer students this unique and valuable learning opportunity. Having an Innocence Clinic is both good for students and good for society.” The event is free and open to the public but registration is required at Eventbrite here https://innocenceclinic.eventbrite.ie.  Life After Life: A Guildford Four Memoir will be available for sale and for signing by Paddy Armstrong and Mary-Elaine Tynan beginning at 5pm outside the Aras Moyola Large Lecture Theatre. The programme will begin at 5:30pm followed by a reception afterwards.  For more information visit: http://www.nuigalway.ie/business-public-policy-law/school-of-law/innocenceclinic/.  -Ends-

Tuesday, 26 March 2019

The Irish Centre for Human Rights recently launched the LLM in International Migration and Refugee Law and Policy. Conducting the launch was Gráinne O'Hara, Head of the Department of International Protection at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, who spoke on her experience of working with refugees in Mexico, the former Yugoslavia, Burundi, Sudan (Darfur), the US, Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq.  The LLM in International Migration and Refugee Law will commence in September, 2019 and is the only course of its kind on offer in an Irish university. The Irish Centre for Human Rights, as one of the world’s premier university-based institutions for the study and promotion of human rights, is uniquely placed to deliver this course.  Ms O’Hara also spoke to the need for highly qualified postgraduates in the area of migration and forced displacement, both at the policy level and in the fields, saying: “At a time when human mobility, and forced displacement in particular, is to the forefront of so many highly charged political discussions, the value of academic discipline on the distinct but related issues of migration and refugee flight comes into its own. The LLM in International Migration and Refugee Law and Policy on offer from the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway is a case in point. A clear understanding of the relevant legal frameworks, coupled with evidence-based analysis on field realities, is critical to good policy making.” The programme enables the development of expertise in international, regional and domestic law, policy and practice in the areas of migration, human trafficking and refugee law. There is the opportunity to combine the study of international migration with specialised courses in international humanitarian law and peace operations, gender and law, child rights, and international criminal law. The core-teaching programme is supplemented with a programme of guest seminars, workshops and conferences engaging with leading experts and practitioners in the field of refugee protection, human trafficking, international migration, human rights law and public policy. For more information on the LLM programmes at NUI Galway visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/business-public-policy-law/school-of-law/courses/postgraduatetaughtcourses. -Ends-

Monday, 25 March 2019

Over 5% increase in CAO first preference applications by 1st February 2019 NUI Galway has seen a substantial increase in demand for its courses this year, with over 5,000 students making it their university of choice for the 2019-2020 academic year. This marked a year-on-year increase of over 5% in first preference applications, against a national picture which saw the number of applications received by the CAO by 1 February grow by 0.5% on last year’s levels. The increased demand for places was experienced across traditionally popular subject areas including business, law, engineering, biomedical science, nursing and medicine and also resulted from applications to three new arts degrees and a new law degree enrolling in September 2019 for the first time. The much anticipated Law and Human Rights degree is an innovative and unique programme and will be the first of its kind in Ireland. Building on the Irish Centre for Human Rights’ global reputation, graduates will be well positioned for work in international human rights law, policy or legal practice and will also pursue professional legal training as a solicitor or as a barrister. College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies are launching three new degrees in 2019. The BA (History and Globalisation Studies) and the BA Government (Politics, Economics and Law) are two new inter-disciplinary degrees that will give graduates unique knowledge and understanding across a range of related subjects, whilst the BA Education (Computer Science, and Mathematical Studies) is a four-year concurrent initial teacher education programme which will prepare graduates for eligibility to teach computer science and mathematics. According to Registrar and Deputy President, Professor Pól Ó Dochartaigh: “Our young people are socially conscious and looking to tackle the most pressing issues facing society, from climate change to social justice.  We can see this in the course choices of CAO applicants, who are opting for courses and preparing for fulfilling careers where they can have a powerful and positive impact on the world around them. The new Law and Human Rights degree has attracted strong interest from Ireland and Europe from students who are choosing NUI Galway for its global reputation for excellence in the field. We look forward to supporting this next generation as they further develop their skills and make their mark in the world. “Employability prospects remain an important consideration for students choosing a course and the current buoyant graduate jobs market is giving confidence to students to choose courses which will allow them to follow their passions, develop expertise and transferable skills, gain experience abroad and in the workplace and prepare for highly flexible and rewarding careers.” Students and parents are invited to find out more at NUI Galway’s upcoming undergraduate open day is taking place on Saturday, 6 April, 9am-3pm. Register now at https://www.nuigalway.ie/opendays/.

Monday, 25 March 2019

Ag searmanas speisialta in OÉ Gaillimh inniu (Déardaoin, 21 Márta), bhronn Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an tOllamh Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, Dochtúireacht san Fhealsúnacht (PhD) ar bhreis agus 70 mac léinn. Bronnadh céimeanna Máistreachta agus Dochtúireachta Leighis ar roinnt mac léinn. Bronnadh Dochtúireacht Eolaíochta ar an Ollamh James P. O’Gara, Ollamh Pearsanta le Micribhitheolaíocht in OÉ Gaillimh as Saothar Foilsithe ag searmanas an lae inniu chomh maith. Bhí céimithe ó gach Coláiste san Ollscoil i measc na gcéimithe sin ar bronnadh PhD orthu, Coláiste na nDán, na nEolaíochtaí Sóisialta agus an Léinn Cheiltigh; Coláiste an Ghnó, an Bheartais Phoiblí & an Dlí; Coláiste na hInnealtóireachta agus na hIonformaitice; Coláiste an Leighis, an Altranais agus na nEolaíochtaí Sláinte; agus Coláiste na hEolaíochta. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an tOllamh Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh: “Ba mhaith liom comhghairdeas a dhéanamh le gach céimí as a gcáilíocht dochtúireachta a bhaint amach ar an lá mór seo, mar thoradh ar a gcumais, a n-iarrachtaí agus a ndúthracht le blianta fada. Tá OÉ Gaillimh bródúil go mbíonn ár gcuid céimithe ina gceannairí a mhúnlóidh an todhchaí agus a mbeidh tionchar dearfach acu ar fud an domhain - go náisiúnta agus go hidirnáisiúnta. Is é misean na hOllscoile seo domhan níos fearr a chruthú tríd an teagasc, taighde agus an tionchar atá againn agus déanaimid é seo go follasach leis an méadú mór atá tagtha ar líon na gcéimithe PhD le blianta beaga anuas.” Beidh an chéad searmanas bronnta eile ar siúl in OÉ Gaillimh i rith an tsamhraidh ar an Máirt, an 11 Meitheamh. -Críoch-

Friday, 22 March 2019

CÚRAM researchers recently took part in the launch of an international, €15 million, 20-partner project titled iPSpine (Induced pluripotent stem cell-based therapy for spinal regeneration) held in Utrecht, The Netherlands. The Science Foundation Ireland Centre for Research in Medical Devices based at NUI Galway will participate in the five-year project which falls under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 programme to fund research that improves knowledge, testing, and exploitation platforms that address the future of advanced therapies in Europe. The project is being coordinated by Professor Marianna Tryfonidou at Utrecht University. The iPSpine research project aims to address chronic lower back pain, which is the leading cause of disability and morbidity worldwide. It impacts more than 700 million people globally of all ages, each year. Lower back pain is a major cause of reduced activity and work absence and imposes an economic burden of nearly €240 billion every year in the EU. IPSpine will use state-of-the art technology to design a novel therapy for lower back pain that will be closer to clinical translation after completion of the project in 2023. The treatment will use advanced stem cells and smart biomaterials that can be injected into the degenerated discs in the spine to help re-populate regions that have deteriorated, with the goal of returning spinal function. Professor Abhay Pandit who is the lead of one of the work packages in iPSpine and the Scientific Director at CÚRAM in NUI Galway, said: “The iPSPine research project addresses a critical patient need. Partnering in this unique consortium provides CÚRAM the opportunity to see our therapeutic design contribution through to implementation stage. This will enable an accelerated translation of our research to therapy and produce real solutions for those who urgently need it.” Professor Marianna Tryfonidou, head of the research project at Utrecht University, said: “The success of this innovative project will be possible by mobilization of our unique consortium. The network is rich in diverse expertise that ranges from the basic science to the development and implementation of a working treatment for chronic lower back pain. I am delighted and ready to kick-off the project and begin working with this talented network.” The iPSpine consortium includes 20 partners across Europe, the United States of America, and China. Their expertise includes Fundamental Science, Therapeutic Design and Final Implementation. Follow the iPSpine research project on Twitter @iPSpine -Ends-