Croí Announce Bursaries for New MSc at NUI Galway

Croí Announce Bursaries for New MSc at NUI Galway-image

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Croí recently announced the launch of five bursaries for students of NUI Galway’s new MSc in Preventive Cardiology, which commences this September. The bursaries, in the amount of €1,000 each, are sponsored by MSD Ireland. “We believe that for Irish healthcare professionals to have access to a Masters in Preventive Cardiology will ultimately be of enormous benefit to Irish patients” said Mairead McCaul of MSD at the announcement of their sponsorship of the bursary fund for the programme. “We are very pleased to be involved in this partnership and to further enhance our commitment to Croí and NUI Galway. We are delighted to announce that successful applicants to the Masters programme can apply through Croí for the MSD Preventive Cardiology Bursary.” NUI Galway will become the first university in Ireland to provide postgraduate training at Masters level in the prevention of cardiovascular disease in a unique community partnership with Croí and the West of Ireland Cardiac Foundation, in a collaborative partnership with industry partners Kerry Group, MSD Ireland and HSE West. This innovative postgraduate course is only one of two of its kind in the world and the collaboration with Croí makes it unique. The founder course at Imperial College London is fully supportive of the NUI Galway programme. Assistant Course Director of the Galway programme, Jenni Jones, recently joined Croí from Imperial College London, where she was Programme Leader for their Masters in Preventive Cardiology course. All students who accept a place on this new MSc course are eligible to apply for a bursary. Further details on the bursaries are available directly from Croí, by contacting Neil Johnson at neil@croi.ie or 091 544310. -ENDS-

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Huge Demand for Computing Education Events at NUI Galway

Huge Demand for Computing Education Events at NUI Galway-image

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

NUI Galway recently held their fourth annual Computing Summer Camp. Due to the high demand for places, this year the Computing Summer Camp ran over a two-week period with 100 students participating. Students ranged in age from 13 to 17, and came from secondary schools across Galway City and County, as well as from Dublin, Clare, Mayo, Roscommon, Westmeath and Sligo. Throughout the camp students participated in a number of activities including writing computer games in Scratch, creating web apps with HTML5 and JavaScript, building and programming autonomous robots, and making 3D computer models. On each Friday, a competition was held where students work on solo or group projects using their favourite technologies from the week, and prizes were awarded for the best ones. Organised by the Discipline of Information Technology at NUI Galway, this year a Computer Science and Information Technology Experience Day was organised for the first time organised by Drs Enda Howley and Conor Hayes. The aim was to provide senior-cycle students with a taste of university life, and featured lectures, demonstrations of research projects and hands-on software development activities. Dr Michael Madden, Head of the Information Technology Discipline at NUI Galway, said: “With our Summer Camp and Experience Day, as well as introducing second-level students to exciting technologies, we wanted to help dispel some incorrect stereotypes about degrees and careers in computer science and information technology, such as that they are male-only, solitary, and desk-bound. To that end, we particularly welcomed female participants, we arranged group projects, and we encouraged outdoor activities during break times.” The huge interest in this year’s Computing Summer Camp is mirrored by the increasing number of applications for computing degree programmes such as the BSc in Computer Science and Information Technology at NUI Galway, as well as the rapid growth of CoderDojo nationally and internationally. For more information contact Dr Michael Madden, Head of Information Technology Discipline, NUI Galway at 091 493797 or 086 7952802. -ENDS-

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Marine Scientists Explore Biodiversity and Ecosystems in Irish Waters

Marine Scientists Explore Biodiversity and Ecosystems in Irish Waters -image

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

A team of 14 scientists, led by NUI Galway’s Dr Louise Allcock, recently returned to Galway following a three-week deep sea research survey aboard the Marine Institute’s RV Celtic Explorer. Building on the success of two previous research surveys, the Biodiscovery and Ecosystem Function of Canyons Survey investigated a wide diversity of habitats and underwater communities in the Whittard Canyon system on the Irish Atlantic margin.  Whittard Canyon is one of many subsea canyons that incise the eastern margin of the North Atlantic.  From its head on the continental shelf, to its mouth out on the abyssal plain, the depth of Whittard Canyon is more than twice the depth of the Grand Canyon. Speaking about the success of the survey, chief scientist Dr Louise Allcock of the Ryan Institute at NUI Galway said: “The survey is part of an ongoing effort to understand Ireland’s deep-sea biodiversity working in parallel with a national biodiscovery programme.” Outlining the work of the scientists, Dr Allcock explained: “In addition to collecting samples of various marine organisms, the research team investigated the impact of food quality and distribution upon life in these canyons. There was a notable difference between the delivery of food particles in the different arms of the canyon that were explored, mirrored by the types of communities found.” Dr Allcock also noted the interdisciplinary nature of the research team, which included PhD students from NUI Galway, Queens University Belfast, Trinity College Dublin, and University College Cork. Two undergraduate Marine Science students from NUI Galway, Feilim O’Toole and Sorcha Cronin O’Reilly, were selected to participate in the survey earlier this year. The 3rd year students collected data for their final year projects. The research team used the Marine Institute’s Deepwater Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV), Holland 1, to collect to specimens of coral, sponges, sediment samples and other marine organisms. Spectacular footage captured by the ROV’s high definition camera included a rare giant hydroid over half a metre in diameter, clams and oysters that are over 200 years old and a deep-water rough shark (Oxynotus paradoxus). Aodhan FitzGerald, Research Vessel Program Coordinator at the Marine Institute congratulated the team’s effective use of the ROV, which logged almost 150 user hours in water depths ranging from 400 to 2500 metres. He said: “This has been a highly successful survey for the Holland 1, or Holly as the scientists on-board refer to it. The ROV sampled a vast array of specimens in a variety of terrain including sheer cliff faces at amazing depths in dives that lasted up to 14 hours.” “This survey has proven the capability of the Holland 1 as a deep-water scientific ROV”, he added. Many of the specimens collected by the research team, including a rare five kilogram sponge, will be used in biodiscovery research. Marine organisms, including the bacteria in sediment, often produce complex chemicals, some of which are likely new to science.  Biochemists and chemists will extract these chemicals and test them for antibacterial and other pharmaceutical properties with the ultimate aim of synthesising useful new chemicals in the laboratory. Dr Kostas Kiriakoulakis of Liverpool John Moores University, along with Dr Martin White, an earth and ocean scientist at NUI Galway and his PhD student Annette Wilson, conducted an extensive series of water measurements during the cruise as part of their research on the relationship between the ecosystems of the canyons and marine particles. These particles, often called ‘marine snow’, are key to understanding how the quantity and quality of available food impacts upon the creation of the underwater communities found in these canyons. Marine particles are the result of the decay of phytoplankton blooms; as the bloom sinks to the seafloor, the material provides food and nutrients to underwater communities.   By analysing the water quality and food quality data together with the video from the ROV, the scientists hope to enhance their understanding of how this complex ecosystem functions. This research survey and the Beaufort Marine Research Award are carried out under the Sea Change strategy with the support of the Marine Institute and the Marine Research Sub-programme of the National Development Plan 2007–2013. The Beaufort award in Marine Biodiscovery is a consortium between NUI Galway, UCC and Queen’s University Belfast. The Ship-Time Programme provides access to the National Research Vessels (Celtic Explorer / Celtic Voyager) for research organisations based in Ireland. The scientists blogged about their experiences and discoveries aboard the RV Celtic Explorer throughout the survey on Scientists@Sea, http://scientistsatsea.blogspot.ie/. -ends-

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Galway Fringe Festival

Galway Fringe Festival-image

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

: The Galway Fringe Festival takes place from 12 to 30 July and features art, music, readings, comedy, exhibitions, workshops and theatre. A number of the events will take place in the Cube Theatre, Áras na Mac Léinn, NUI Galway. Darren Coppinger, Venue Manager of the Cube Theatre, NUI Galway, said: “When preparing our programme, we wanted to present an exciting line of new, fresh voices. Most of the groups performing are students themselves or have recently graduated from university, and are beginning their own careers in the performing arts. So, it’s a really wonderful mix of styles on offer.” Among the productions scheduled at NUI Galway is One Last Drop which runs from 22-25 July. From the choreographer of last year’s most successful Fringe show Rewind, Claudia O’Sullivan, in collaboration with Kori Kilduff, will premier the Fringe’s only dance piece. Both women have been choreographing in collaboration for children and young adults since 2005 and are graduates of NUI Galway. In One Last Drop, we follow the stories of man and woman as they struggle with an addiction to alcohol. Watch as their stories unfold through dance and music and see how quickly life can fall from happiness and belonging to destruction and numbness. Made to Shiver by NUI Galway student Rory O’ Sullivan runs from 26-29 July. The stories of this work are rooted in the context of last summer with the events that unfolded at the Swedish House Mafia Concert and Katie Taylor’s Olympic exploits. With friendships forged from pain and a family crippled by shame, the characters look back to that cold tickle in their chest that warmed and changed their lives forever. The play was highly successful at the University’s Jerome Hynes One Act Play Series, as part of the NUI Galway Theatre Festival, where it won Best Actor and Best Sound. The Woman Who Cooked Her Husband Theatre byDebbie Isitt is a darkly comic take on contemporary love and marriage. The show was selected from among 40 others to represent Trinity College at this year's Irish Student Drama Association (ISDA) Awards, where it won Best Director and Best Actor, as well as being nominated for numerous awards, such as Best Production. It runs in Galway from 21-24 July. Theatre company 'Play Dough Productions' will present This is the Day, a new piece of writing by the up and coming playwright Cristin Kehoe, a participant on acclaimed new artist development programme 'Play On' (as part of the Dublin Theatre Festival, 2012).  The play offers a snapshot of present day rural Ireland – staging a community where everyone knows everyone and everything is as it’s always been and always will be. This is the Day runs from 15-18 July. La Petite Famille, who are travelling from France for the festival, will perform Tomorrow’s Dawn, a musical about love and friendship. The work explores intergenerational relationships between young people and parents, young people and teachers, and young people between themselves. The music seeks to immerse its audience into the heart of what it means to be young today. This new musical, which is performed in English, runs from 12-16 July. According to Riona Hughes, Society Officer at NUI Galway: “'The University Societies participation in the Galway summer festivals and the theatre programme in the Cube as part of the Galway Fringe are a testament to the talent and creativity of the students involved in societies. It is particularly gratifying for me that this year the summer programme, now in its third year, is being directed and managed by students with a very exciting and diverse selection of productions both featuring our students and guest productions. I hope that the city and its many visitors will come onto campus to enjoy our beautiful grounds and to enjoy the high quality shows and I wish all involved in the Galway Fringe a very successful festival.” The summer programme for the Cube Theatre will be launched on Wednesday, 10 July at 5.30pm in the Cube Theatre. During the launch artists from the Festival will present excerpts from their work. There will also be readings from Galway writers Kernan Andrews, Arts Editor with the Galway Advertiser, and Ruth Quinlan, the recent winner of the Hennessy First Fiction Literary Award 2013, plus a performance by the new NUI Galway Staff Choir.  A selection of music, dance, theatre and readings will also take place at a variety of locations around Galway City. Tickets are from €10-12 and are available from the Fringe Box Office or online at www.galwayfringe.ie, and from the SocsBox, Áras na Mac Léinn, NUI Galway. See www.festivals.nuigalway.ie for more details. -ENDS-

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Final Call for Applications for NUI Galway Sports Scholarship Scheme

Final Call for Applications for NUI Galway Sports Scholarship Scheme-image

Thursday, 4 July 2013

NUI Galway has issued a final call for applications to its Sports Scholarships Scheme for 2013/14. The University has a long tradition of excellence in sport and this has been enhanced by the recent success in Rowing, Hurling, Basketball, Soccer and Rugby as well as numerous individual achievements. The deadline for application for current and prospective students is Wednesday the 31st July at 5 pm. The Scholarship Programme is aimed at student-athletes of outstanding calibre who register as students of the University. The scheme is also open to students already studying at NUI Galway. In the current academic year, student athletes at NUI Galway received significant financial and professional support services.  The scholarships aim to help aspiring young sportspeople to continue to develop their sporting prowess. Currently 60 students receive support under the scheme in a broad range of sports. The scheme has assisted dozens of athletes’ progress to the highest levels of their sport in recent years and is aimed at providing them with the tools for success in the long term. Applicants for sports scholarships must satisfy the academic criteria for entry to NUI Galway and must have applied to the CAO in the usual manner. Gary Ryan is Elite Sports Development Officer at NUI Galway: “The strongest selling point of our Sports Scholarship program is the results that it is producing. We have supported the development of numerous Irish Internationals including some World Champions and medallists over the last number of years as well as the enormous success that so many of our GAA players have enjoyed at Senior and U21 level in recent years.” A former Irish Olympian and record-breaking sprinter, Gary Ryan sees a bright future for the NUI Galway sports scholarships: “Our focus is on the support of our student athletes in their dual careers. We strive to offer world class supports in one of the Ireland’s leading Universities. Our scholarship students develop skills that will sustain them in their future sporting and professional careers and the long list of successful sporting alumni is testament to that.” For the Scholarships, students who meet the University’s entry requirements will be selected on merit by an independent panel. In addition to the scholarship, students will receive specialist support including physiotherapy, treatment of injury, fitness training, coaching and support for travel to national and international competitions. More details on the Sports Scholarship Scheme at http://www.nuigalway.ie/sports/scholarships_info.html  or by calling the Sport and Recreation Unit at NUI Galway on 091 495979. All applications must be submitted online at http://www.sports.nuigalway.ie/scholarshipform.html Ends Iarratais le haghaidh Scéim Scoláireachtaí Spóirt OÉ Gaillimh – an Ghairm Dheiridh Tá Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh tar éis an ghairm dheiridh a eisiúint i leith iarratais ar an Scéim Scoláireachtaí Spóirt, 2013/14. Tá barr feabhais á baint amach le fada an lá ag an Ollscoil i gcúrsaí spóirt, agus tá ag éirí thar cionn léi le tamall anuas i Rámhaíocht, Iománaíocht, Cispheil, Sacar agus Rugbaí; tá gaiscí go leor déanta freisin ag iomaitheoirí aonair.  Glacfar go dtí 5pm, Dé Céadaoin, an 31 Iúil le hiarratais ó mhic léinn reatha agus mic léinn atá le bheith ar an Ollscoil amach anseo. Tá an Clár Scoláireachtaí ann ar mhaithe le mic léinn chláraithe de chuid na hOllscoile ar lúthchleasaithe den scoth freisin iad. Féadfaidh mic léinn atá ag staidéar in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh cheana féin iarratas a dhéanamh chomh maith ar thacaíocht faoin scéim. Le linn na bliana acadúla seo, fuair mic léinn/lúthchleasaithe in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh tacaíocht shuntasach airgid agus bhí seirbhísí tacaíochta gairme ar fáil freisin dóibh.  Tá na scoláireachtaí ann ar mhaithe le lúthchleasaithe agus imreoirí óga agus iad ag iarraidh barr feabhais a bhaint amach ina spórt féin. Faoi láthair, tá 60 mac léinn ag fáil tacaíochta faoin scéim agus is iomaí cineál spóirt atá i gceist. Tá na scórtha lúthchleasaithe ann ar éirigh leo, de thoradh na scéime, barr feabhais a bhaint amach ina spórt féin le blianta beaga anuas; is é aidhm na scéime cuidiú leo ionas go mbeidh rath orthu i bhfad na haimsire. Iarratasóirí ar scoláireachtaí spóirt, ní mór dóibh na critéir acadúla a bhaineann le háit a fháil ar chlár léinn in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh a chomhlíonadh; ní mór dóibh freisin iarratas a dhéanamh tríd an Lár-Oifig Iontrála ar an ngnáthbhealach. Is é Gary Ryan an tOifigeach Forbartha Spóirt – Éilít, in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh: “Is é an cháil is mó atá ar ár gClár Scoláireachtaí Spóirt na torthaí atá ag teacht as. Is iomaí lúthchleasaí idirnáisiúnta Éireannach atá tagtha in inmhe faoin scéim seo le blianta beaga anuas – seaimpíní domhanda agus buaiteoirí boinn i gcomórtais dhomhanda ina measc. Agus tá ag éirí thar cionn freisin leis na himreoirí CLG atá againn agus gaisce déanta acu sna Sinsir agus Faoi 21 le tamall de bhlianta.” Is iar-lúthchleasaí Oilimpeach de chuid na hÉireann é Gary Ryan a bhain curiarrachtaí nua amach agus é san iomaíocht mar rábálaí. Éireoidh thar cionn amach anseo le scoláireachtaí spóirt Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh, dar leis: “Tacaíocht a thabhairt dár lúthchleasaithe ollscoile agus iad ag iarraidh an dá ghairm bheatha a thabhairt leo – sin é is cás linn. Tá an Ollscoil seo ar cheann de na hollscoileanna is fearr in Éirinn, agus teastaíonn uainn tacaíocht den chéad scoth a chur ar fáil dár lúthchleasaithe dá réir. Na mic léinn scoláireachta atá againn, sealbhaíonn siad scileanna a sheasfas dóibh ina saol spóirt agus ina saol gairmiúil amach anseo; níl léiriú is fearr air sin ná an liosta fada alumni a bhfuil gaisce déanta acu i gcúrsaí spóirt.” I gcás na scoláireachtaí seo, roghnóidh painéal neamhspleách na mic léinn ar bhonn fiúntais; ní mór riachtanais iontrála na hOllscoile a bheith comhlíonta ag na mic léinn. Le cois na scoláireachtaí féin, tabharfar tacaíocht speisialtóireachta do na mic léinn; áirítear ar an tacaíocht sin fisiteiripe, cóir leighis le haghaidh gortuithe, traenáil corpacmhainne, cóitseáil, agus tacaíocht le gur féidir leo taisteal chuig comórtais náisiúnta agus idirnáisiúnta. Tá tuilleadh eolais faoin Scéim Scoláireachtaí Spóirt le fáil ag http://www.nuigalway.ie/sports/scholarships_info.html nó trí ghlaoch a chur ar an Aonad Spóirt agus Áineasa in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh: 091 495979. Ní mór iarratais a chur isteach ar líne: http://www.sports.nuigalway.ie/scholarshipform.html  Críoch

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High-Performance Computing Facility Receives Government Funding of €8 million

High-Performance Computing Facility Receives Government Funding of €8 million-image

Thursday, 4 July 2013

The Minister for Research and Innovation, Seán Sherlock TD today (Thursday, 4 July) announced new funding support of €8 million to the Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC) which will support 25 top-class computational scientist positions over the next three years. The funding will also allow ICHEC to maintain truly cutting edge high performance computing equipment which will complement Ireland’s ambitions to be a global leader in Big Data/Data Analytics and High-Performance Computing. ICHEC is hosted by NUI Galway, with the 25 staff based in Galway and Dublin. ICHEC provides computational and data analytical support for a range of research activities and services across Ireland’s higher education and industry sectors. For example, ICHEC works with partners such as Met Éireann, Tullow Oil and Paddy Power in areas that require expert computational staff to resolve complex business issues. It is also directly involved in European high performance computing activity through the EU supported PRACE programme. Making the announcement Minister Sherlock said: “As part of the measures contained in the Action Plan for Jobs 2013, the Government has committed to making Ireland a leading country in Europe for Big Data, a sector currently growing at 40% per annum worldwide and in which Ireland has significant competitive advantages. We are all aware of the massive volume of data being created through the explosion of social media, increased usage of mobile devices and scientific advances in recent years. It seems that 90% of data that now exists has been created in just the last two years or so. This is phenomenal. Governments and industry globally are now presented with major challenges in the management and usefulness of this data – but this also presents significant commercial opportunities too. We believe that Ireland is in a prime position to lead in the area of Big Data/Data Analytics and High Performance Computing with many large multinationals already located here including Intel, Accenture, Google, Facebook, EMC and Data Direct Networks. However Big Data also needs the computational horsepower and talented personnel to be able to store, analyse and interpret the vast amount of data being generated.” “The ICHEC team of computational scientists and technologists, which is hosted by NUI Galway, goes some significant way to providing Ireland with this much needed “compute horsepower”, and talented personnel, who can make sense of the data. I am delighted to be able to announce this funding to ICHEC via the Higher Education Authority to sustain this much needed resource. As a direct consequence ICHEC should be able to help with the leveraging of new investments and the creation of quality jobs in Ireland,” Minister Sherlock concluded. The funding announced by Minister Sherlock is being provided to NUI Galway by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and the Department of Education and Skills through the Higher Education Authority. It includes an investment of €3.7 million awarded through Science Foundation Ireland’s Infrastructure Programme call in 2012. Speaking at today’s announcement held at the Royal Irish Academy in Dublin, the Chairman of the Higher Education Authority, John Hennessy said: “ICHEC provides a vital service to the higher education and research community through the provision of expert computational staff and high end computing technology to support scientific discovery. This funding will reinforce ICHEC as a national facility to provide a cost effective and efficient means of delivering high-performance computing.” Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway, said: “NUI Galway is delighted to host this cutting-edge facility on our campus and welcomes the very significant level of investment announced by Minister Sherlock today. As a university engaged in international research in the field of Big Data, we understand well the role played by ICHEC in ensuring organisations maximise the potential of their data collection and analytics. Big Data will transform so many aspects of our everyday lives from healthcare provision to financial services, and high-performance computing is the engine that will power that transformation.” Professor JC Desplat, ICHEC Director, stated: “The ability to harness novel technologies such as Big Data, Data Analytics and High-Performance Computing will have a dramatic effect on Ireland’s competitiveness. ICHEC is committed to making the high-end expertise of its domain-experts available to industry, the public sector and academia. We anticipate that these partnerships will develop in areas as diverse as biomedical research, materials science, weather forecasting and geophysics.” There was a significant industry presence at today’s event. Martin Curley, Vice President, Director, Intel Labs Europe, Intel Corp said: “To out-compute is to outcompete. Ireland cannot be the world leader in the high performance in computing but Ireland can be a leader in the application of high performance computing - for example accurately predicting where and when the wind will blow while simultaneously aggregating energy demand requirements so Ireland can optimally use the availability of renewable energy.” Joe Mongan, Global Manager, Geophysical Technology Group, Tullow Oil, commented: “Tullow Oil welcomes today’s announcement. It further consolidates and enhances our existing advantage to have near-line access to ICHEC’s state-of-the-art, high-performance computing facilities and its highly competent professional staff.” Pascal Barbolosi, Vice President, EMEA Sales, DataDirect Networks said: “DataDirect Networks (DDN) is delighted to be here today to see continued government investment into ICHEC’s important Big Data and Analytics work in research, education and industry. DDN storage is the backbone of more than two-thirds of the world’s top 100 supercomputers and nearly half of the top 500. This innovative technology is enabling organisations and governments to extract maximum value from their Big Data and Analytics, to accelerate workflows, gain valuable insight, shorten time to discovery and gain a competitive advantage. Therefore, it is important to see continued investment into Big Data and Analytics as this will create business growth and success.” -ends-

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Going to College’ Initiative Welcomes Collaboration with Community Partners

Going to College’ Initiative Welcomes Collaboration with Community Partners-image

Monday, 8 July 2013

NUI Galway recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with representatives from the National Federation of Voluntary Bodies and intellectual disability service providers including Ability West, Brothers of Charity Services Galway, Brothers of Charity Services Roscommon and Western Care. The Memorandum of Understanding outlines the partner’s strong commitment to the ‘Going to College’ initiative at NUI Galway and their agreement to provide direct funding for the coming academic year.  ‘Going to College’ is a pioneering higher education initiative, supporting the full inclusion of students with intellectual disabilities at NUI Galway. Students are registered full-time students and are fully included in all class activities. Students also have opportunities to undertake meaningful work placement and volunteering opportunities that will enrich their lives into the future.   Aiming to support each student to develop the vision, knowledge and transferrable skills to live a more independent, inclusive life after university, the ‘Going to College’ initiative is underpinned by a rights base and recognises the strengths and potential of each student to achieve in a mainstream higher education environment. Consistent with UNESCO’s principles for inclusion in education and the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, it promotes citizenship, inclusion and participation, with a focus on the will and preferences of each individual student.  Professor Pat Dolan, Director, UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre, NUI Galway, said: “This is a significant development for NUI Galway and for students with intellectual disabilities and their families. We warmly welcome the strong university/community partnership forged with intellectual disability service providers today. Our aim is to provide each student with opportunities to engage in the full college experience here at NUI Galway, to broaden their social networks and undertake meaningful work placement and volunteering opportunities that will enrich their lives into the future. This partnership with our community partners will provide a very strong foundation in achieving this aim.”   Anne Geraghty, Director of Services with Brothers of Charity Galway, said: “Just like many people of their age, young people with intellectual disability have hopes and dreams about going to college, learning new things, making new friends and becoming part of the whole college experience. The ‘Going to College’ project supports this to happen, and the Brothers of Charity Services Galway is delighted to partner with NUI Galway.”  Breda Crehan-Roche, Chief Executive with Ability West, said: “We are delighted to support the ‘Going to College’ project.  This project is unique in that it is fully integrated in the college as students with intellectual disability are recognised as students and they are supported and encouraged to take part in all mainstream college activities.” For further information on the Going to College initiative contact Breda Casey, Going to College Co-ordinator, NUI Galway, at breda.casey@nuigalway.ie. -ENDS-

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Maths Summer Camp at NUI Galway

Maths Summer Camp at NUI Galway -image

Monday, 8 July 2013

This summer, a group of student teachers at NUI Galway will hold a four-day maths summer camp for sixth class primary pupils. Those attending MATH (Making Awesome Things Happen) will have the opportunity to learn maths and social skills in preparation for the transition to second-level. Running from 19-22 August, students will experience a range of maths activities, such as pop math, introduction to triangles, the fun circle and more. In previous years, those attending found the camp to be a great help in their transition to second-level, both through learning about maths and meeting new friends. Dr Máire Ní Ríordáin, Lecturer on the BA in Mathematics and Education programme at NUI Galway, said: “This Maths Summer Camp provides meaningful, stimulating, challenging, and engaging activities for primary pupils. It gives an opportunity for all pupils, irrespective of their ability, to participate successfully in maths activities, gaining a sense of pride in their learning and improving attitudes towards maths. The success of this is due to our enthusiastic student teachers and their commitment to providing positive experiences of maths for their pupils.” The programme is open to any student who will be commencing their first year in secondary school in September 2013. The fee for the four-day camp is €30 and materials such as calculators, pens and stationery will be provided. Early registration is advisable as places are limited. Further details on the camp including registration details may be found at www.conference.ie/Conferences/index.asp?Conference=230  or by contacting Meighan on 0876242071. -ENDS-

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NUI Galway’s School of Physics Receives Recognition for Gender Equality

NUI Galway’s School of Physics Receives Recognition for Gender Equality-image

Monday, 8 July 2013

First University in Ireland to Achieve Practitioner Award NUI Galway’s School of Physics’ work in promoting equal opportunities in science has been rewarded by the Institute of Physics. The School has been made a Practitioner under the Institute’s Juno Project, the first university in Ireland to achieve this status.  The Juno Project, established by the Institute of Physics in 2007, aspires to redress the long-standing issue of the under-representation of women at the highest levels of physics academia in the UK and Ireland. The aim of Juno is to recognise and reward departments that can demonstrate that action has been taken to address the under-representation of women in university physics and to encourage better practice for both women and men. While women make up 20% of physics undergraduates across Ireland and the UK, this number drops to 7% further along academia at the level of university professor, suggesting female physicists are less likely than their male counterparts to progress into the most senior positions in physics. The Juno principles improve working culture for all departmental staff, creating, for example, flexible working arrangements, provision for childcare and a more transparent organisational structure. The potential for improvement has driven high levels of engagement amongst Irish and UK physics departments.  Dr Miriam Byrne, Co-ordinator of the Juno project in NUI Galway, said: “Whilst this is a significant achievement within NUI Galway, the first university in Ireland to attain this status, it must also be acknowledged that both nationally and internationally, women at every level in physical science are under-represented. We have a reasonable proportion of women in our undergraduate cohort but at postgraduate and senior academic staff level there are far fewer women. This is a concern if female undergraduates do not see role models to encourage them to take up careers in science.” Professor Andy Shearer, Head of the School of Physics, NUI Galway, said: “The School of Physics is committed to increasing the number of women taking Physics courses and our participation in the Juno project is part of this. We hope that in future years this will increase the number of female graduates coming out NUI Galway with a Physics degree.” -ENDS-

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NUI Galway Release Local Weather App for iPhone

NUI Galway Release Local Weather App for iPhone -image

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Last year, NUI Galway released an Android weather app to keep Galwegians up-to-date on local weather and weather trends. Due to popular demand, the University has now released an iPhone version. The app development was carried out by Ronan Everiss, an NUI Galway Bachelor of Science in Information Technology graduate under the supervision of Dr Hugh Melvin. The weather data is provided by the Informatics Research Unit for Sustainable Engineering (IRUSE) research group at NUI Galway led by Dr Marcus Keane, Lecturer in Energy Systems Engineering at the University. Dr Hugh Melvin, Lecturer in Information Technology at NUI Galway, said: “Local weather data is used on campus across a range of research projects, from renewable energy to plant growth to climate change but we feel it is also important to provide such data to the general public, and after all, 'The Weather' provides the greatest source of conversation in Ireland. When we launched the android app last year, we were delighted with the positive feedback and level of interest, and recognised the need to create a similar app for iPhone users.” The app is free and can be found by searching ‘NUIG Weather’ in the Apple app store. The app provides live weather data (such as temperature, wind speed, wind direction, rainfall and atmospheric pressure) as well as graphs of archived data so that you can review trends in weather over last day or month. The weather data is also available via web browser from http://weather.nuigalway.ie. -ENDS-

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