NUI Galway Welcomes Over 100 Brazilian Students

NUI Galway Welcomes Over 100 Brazilian Students -image

Friday, 6 September 2013

More internationals students are enrolled in NUI Galway than any other Irish University NUI Galway welcomed the Brazilian Deputy Ambassador, Minister-Counselor, Chief of Chancery,  Elza Moreira Marcelino de Castro, and over 100 Brazilian students to its campus today. This welcoming reception coinsides with Brazil's National Independence Day, which takes place tomorrow (Saturday, 7 September). To date, 140 students from 69 universities throughout Brazil have been accepted by NUI Galway to study a range of modules from Anatomy to Zoology, and from Artificial Intelligence to Tissue Engineering. NUI Galway, with the highest number of international students in an Irish university, has been central to Ireland’s participation in Brazil’s Science without Borders (Ciência sem Fronteiras). Science without Borders directly funds 75,000 scholarships and a further 26,000 are being funded by the private sector. The programme seeks to add to students’ knowledge of science and technology and improve innovation and competitiveness through international mobility of undergraduate and graduate students and researchers. Dr Brian Hughes, Dean of International Affairs at NUI Galway, said: “NUI Galway has proven to be the university of choice in Ireland for Brazilian students. 140 students from Brazil are travelling to university in Galway under the CAPES grant programme, and we would hope that following the forthcoming funding round our Brazilian family will grow and grow!” Figures released by the Higher Education Authority show that NUI Galway has over 2,000 International students enrolled on a broad portfolio of courses, arts, business, public policy and law, science, engineering, medicine and health sciences. The students come from over 104 different countries, all continents, with international students making up 16% of the overall student population, and 27% of the University’s PhD students. The University has over 200 student exchange agreements with universities around the world. For more information visit -ENDS-

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NUI Galway Ryan Institute to explain and explore Ireland’s Renewable Energy Potential

NUI Galway Ryan Institute to explain and explore Ireland’s Renewable Energy Potential-image

Monday, 9 September 2013

Renewable energy tours to boost awareness and eco-tourism along the west coast NUI Galway Ryan Institute is to merge tourism, technology and geography to allow interested parties to witness first hand Ireland’s renewable energy potential. The eco-tour trails, supported by the EU, will offer an insight into the latest renewable energy research against the backdrop of Ireland’s world famous western coast. The tours will provide renewable energy demonstrations and training in new energy technologies, and will bring economic and educational benefits across the region to investors, local authorities, researchers, policy makers, students and the general public. Professor Colin Brown, Director of the Ryan Institute and project leader says “the renewable energy tours will provide an opportunity for local stakeholders to learn about the technology and best practice within the renewable energy sector, which can increase understanding of the technology and potential for rural communities”.  Dr Annette Harte, senior Lecturer in Civil Engineering added that not only will the renewable energy tours create jobs along the western seaboard but, she said, “will help to build expertise and promote the development of a renewable energy network across rural areas that will be sustainable beyond the project activities”. The Ryan Institute was awarded €127,000 from the EU for the REMOTE project (Renewable Energy Training and Demonstration Network for Remote Communities across the Northern Periphery Programme (NPP) area). Serena Silke has been appointed to manage the project among the five European partners. Brigit’s Garden in Roscahill, Co. Galway and the BMW Assembly are also on board ensuring the integration of the tourism and technology activities into the educational and industrial sectors along the Western region. The project secured a total of €850,000 across the partnership in Scotland, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Ireland. The NPP areas of Ireland include Galway, Mayo, Sligo, Leitrim, Donegal, Clare, Limerick, Cork and Kerry. The project’s aim is to increase and support local capacities in renewable energy solutions across the peripheral and remote communities on the northern margins of Europe and to develop their economic, social and environmental potential. -ENDS-  

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Free Blood Pressure Checks for People with Sleep Problems

Free Blood Pressure Checks for People with Sleep Problems -image

Monday, 9 September 2013

The HRB Clinical Research Facility at NUI Galway, in association with the Heart and Stroke Charity Croí, are inviting members of the public who have sleep problems to avail of free blood pressure checks on Monday, 16 September from 2-7pm at the Croí Heart and Stroke Centre, Moyola Lane, Newcastle, Galway. This initiative is part of ongoing research into reducing the risk of a heart attack or stroke, and is specially targeting people with sleep problems, such as difficulty getting to sleep, waking during the night, or people for who sleep disturbance is impacting on their daily lives. Recent sleep-related research has shown that poor sleep can increase the risk of high blood pressure and obesity, which are major risk factors for heart disease and stroke. It is well known that a good night’s sleep is essential for good health. However, with the challenges and pressures of modern life and demanding lifestyles, more and more people are experiencing poor sleep patterns. If these sleep deficits are linked to high blood pressure, it has important implications for the prevention of longer term chronic illnesses such as heart disease. People attending the blood pressure check may be suitable to be included in the research study. Nurses from the Clinical Research Facility at NUI Galway and the Croí Heart and Stroke Centre will be on hand to carry out the checks and no appointment is necessary. The event is supported by Bristol Myers Squibb. For further information, please contact Alice Power HRB Clinical Research Facility, NUI Galway, on 091 494282 or 086 0220016. -Ends-

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NUI Galway Moves Up 3 places to 284th in QS World University Rankings 2013/2014

 NUI Galway Moves Up 3 places to 284th in QS World University Rankings 2013/2014 -image

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

NUI Galway has again increased its position in the QS World University Rankings 2013/2014. Rising 3 places to 284th in this year’s ranking, NUI Galway is one of only two Irish universities to improve their standing in this year’s league table.   Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway, said of the achievement: “This is good news for NUI Galway and further acknowledgement of the developments in teaching and research that have taken place at this University in recent years.   Although all ranking systems have their limitations in that they seek to measure performance across a narrow range of criteria, the QS World University Rankings is one of the best regarded evaluations of higher education in the world, and it is great to see NUI Galway continue to make its mark on that ranking.”   President Browne added: “It is clear that Irish universities are competing in a global market now. In spite of the economic difficulties the country faces, we need to continue to invest in teaching and research if we are to continue to attract the best staff and students and to maintain and enhance Ireland’s position within higher education globally”.   NUI Galway is now ranks in the top 300 universities in the disciplines of Engineering and Technology (251), Arts and Humanities (276) and Social Sciences and Management (288). It is in the top 350 universities globally for Life Sciences and Medicine (307) and Natural Sciences (348) in the QS World University Rankings’ discipline categories.   QS Head of Research Ben Sowter said that the economic climate of recent years has been very challenging for Irish universities, with recurrent grant allocations falling 25% between 2008 and 2012. Trinity College Dublin was the only other Irish university to improve its position in this year’s ranking. The QS World University Rankings have been running since 2004 and are amongst the highest profile global evaluations of comparative university quality. The World University Rankings were conceived to present a multi-faceted view of the relative strengths of the world’s leading universities. The calculations leading to the QS World University Rankings are based on data gathered in the following categories: Academic Peer Review, Employer Review, International Faculty Ratio, International Student Ratio, Student Faculty Ratio, and Citations per Faculty (citation data supplied by Scopus).   ENDS  

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Science Communication Video Competition for Primary and Secondary Schools

Science Communication Video Competition for Primary and Secondary Schools-image

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

ReelLife Science, a novel Science video competition, was recently launched in 316 primary and secondary schools by a team of NUI Galway staff and students. The competition aims to involve school children in Science in a fun way, developing their analytical, creative and communication skills, while enabling NUI Galway researchers and students to engage in Outreach in an innovative manner. The initiative was conceived by NUI Galway’s Dr Enda O’Connell, a winner of the inaugural ‘I’m a Scientist, Get me out of Here, Ireland” competition in November 2012, securing funding for a science communication project. Additional funding to expand the project was awarded by the NUI Galway Students’ Union EXPLORE Innovation Initiative and the College of Science. Now supported by a team of NUI Galway Science communicators, ReelLife Science will award a total of €1000 in prizes, while winners will also be invited to attend the Galway Science and Technology Festival on Sunday, 24 November in NUI Galway, where their videos will be on display to the general public. Short (1-3 min) videos may be submitted by the invited schools consisting of all primary and secondary schools in Galway, and the 28 schools which participated in ‘I’m a Scientist, get me out of here, Ireland’ 2012. Videos will be judged by a panel of internationally recognised scientists, including Professor Rhodri Ceredig, REMEDI, NUI Galway and Professor Andrea Brand of Gurdon Institute, Cambridge. Emma Dalton, Science teacher and Transition Year Coordinator in St Enda’s College Galway, said of her students’ upcoming participation: “I am very excited, as this competition offers an opportunity for students to step away from the curriculum and engage in Science in a more fun way. It is also an opportunity for them to guide their own learning and then, even better, to practice sharing what they have learnt with others. I am really looking forward to seeing the ideas they come up with.” The closing date for submissions is Friday, 25 October. The winning videos will be displayed on the projects website,, Facebook page, and Twitter feed, @ReelLifeScience, where regular updates, Science news and blog posts can be found.  For further information visit or email -ENDS-

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Free App Allows Users to Book Health, Wellbeing and Leisure Appointments 24 Hours a Day

Free App Allows Users to Book Health, Wellbeing and Leisure Appointments 24 Hours a Day-image

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

A new app developed at NUI Galway allows users to book appointments 24 hours a day. The free app will be officially launched on Wednesday, 11 September, by Helplink, a new Irish social enterprise. The app means dentist, doctor, beauty salon, physio, hairdressing, and chiropractor appointments can be booked 24 hours a day, seven days a week and in real time. There is also an option to avail of cancelled appointments by viewing appointments in real time and health/wellbeing providers can fill appointments that they may have lost before. Lochlann Scott, Managing Director of Helplink and Psychology graduate from NUI Galway, said: “We all have been in those situations where, for example, it always seems to be out of hours when you need to book an appointment, or you are constantly trying to get through at nine in the morning to an engaged tone or answering machine or wasting time and money ringing around to find a free appointment. Also this service will help free up A&Es because people can find those real time appointments for minor injuries, etc.” Not only does the Helplink’s Directory and Appointment Booking service allow local and out-of-town clients find appointments fast and easily, it also has over 2,500 listings of public and private health and wellbeing services from across the nation. Some of the categories include: hospitals, opticians, home care services, chemists, late night services, yoga centres and many more. The easy to use booking app for iPhones and Androids has been created by Sean Coleman of NUI Galway’s Discipline of Information Technology, under the direction of Dr Owen Molloy. “Financial support was provided by the Enterprise Ireland Innovation Voucher scheme, which provides a very simple and cost-effective way for local industry to engage with our R&D capability”, says Dr Molloy. Helplink’s simple, easy to use website has been created with the support of Eircom. Lochlann, a research psychologist, lecturer and social care worker with the HSE, said: “The reason behind creating Helplink was to use technology to reduce the cost of providing health and support services and also to make these services and health information accessible to everyone in Ireland no matter where they are. Our directory is our first completely free service to the public and this new appointment booking system was a logical next move to my mind.” The Helplink directory is free to use, free to download and use, and details of your chosen listing will be sent to the user’s phone by text for free. The app can be downloaded from the App Store, iTunes and the Google Play Store by searching ‘helplink’. For more information please visit or contact -ENDS-

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NUI Galway Public Talk by World-renowned Astrophysicist

NUI Galway Public Talk by World-renowned Astrophysicist -image

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

NUI Galway’s Astronomy Society will welcome world-renowned astrophysicist Professor Jocelyn Bell Burnell for a special public talk entitled ‘A light-weight Introduction to Gravitational Radiation’ on Tuesday, 24 September.  Professor Bell Burnell is renowned for her discovery of pulsars, rapidly rotating neutron stars, in 1967 and has won numerous awards for her strong role in promoting science. In 2008 she became the first female President of the Institute of Physics and is a strong supporter, and role model, of women in science. This talk will introduce the topic of gravitational waves and show that researchers are on the threshold of detecting a whole new spectrum of radiation. These waves, sometimes called ripples in space-time, were first predicted by Albert Einstein. Professor Bell Burns will be examining if Einstein was right, what these ripples are, how are they created and how to detect them.  NUI Galway’s Astronomy Society was established last year and already has over 540 members. Promoting astronomy, both recreationally and academically, the society host a series of talks on astronomy and organise events to increase general awareness and understanding of astronomy. The society also works with the Galway Astronomy Club and is supported by the University's Centre for Astronomy. Professor Bell Burnell's talk will take place at 7pm in the Kirwan Theatre in the Arts/Science Building (Concourse). This talk is free and open to the general public. -ENDS-

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NUI Galway Host People, Policy, Places and the Economy Conference

NUI Galway Host People, Policy, Places and the Economy Conference-image

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Minister Sean Sherlock TD will deliver keynote address NUI Galway will host the ‘People, Policy, Places and the Economy’ Conference from 19-20 September. This two-day conference will showcase some of the research activities that have been supported by the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions Cycle 4 (PRTLI 4) and co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part the Irish Social Sciences Platform. Minister Sean Sherlock TD, Department of Enterprise, Job and Innovation, and the Department of Education and Skills, will deliver the keynote address on Thursday, 19 September. Entitled What Ireland Needs and How Universities Can Help, the address and a roundtable discussion with Minister Sherlock will begin at 6.30pm in the Aula Maxima, NUI Galway and is open to the public. On Friday, 20 September, NUI Galway will host a day-long conference highlighting examples of NUI Galway’s research and community outreach efforts and contemporary social and business debates that have been enabled through funding from the PRTLI 4 as part of the Irish Social Science Platform. Panel presentations and discussions will focus upon: the Creative Economy and Creative Places; Improving the Lives of People; and Enterprise, Entrepreneurs and the Irish Economy. Kevin Leyden, Professor of Political Science at NUI Galway, said: “At this conference we will introduce a new initiative called ‘Public Policy Puzzles’ that we hope to implement in the coming year. The goal will be to seek new ideas from the public and business on how to improve policy, places, and the economy.”  Information on guest speakers, the conference programme and registration is available at -ENDS-  

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New Bus Service from Waterford to NUI Galway

New Bus Service from Waterford to NUI Galway-image

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

New Bus Service from Waterford to NUI Galway   NUI Galway is introducing a new bus service for students from Waterford to NUI Galway, serving the following the towns: Carrick-on-Suir, Clonmel, Cashel, Cahir, Tipperary town and Limerick. This service will be operated by JJ Kavanagh and Sons, Urlingford, Co. Kilkenny. The introduction of this new service is to cater for the increasing numbers of students from these towns who are choosing to study at NUI Galway. There is currently no direct transport link in place from Waterford to Galway which makes commuting regularly difficult for students. This service will commence operating on Friday, 13 September from the Galway Cathedral  and will     Friday Sunday Price Galway-Cathedral 16.15 21.00 €15 Limerick – Arthurs Quay 17.55 22.40 €15 Tipperary – Abbey Street 18.35 23.20 €15 Cahir-Car Park 18.55 23.40 €15 Cashel – Buckleys 19.15 00.00 €14 Clonmel – Army Barracks 19.45 00.30 €14 Carrick-on-Suir – Park 20.05 00.50 €10 Waterford – Dooleys Hotel 20.30 01.15 €10     Friday Sunday Price Waterford – Dooleys Hotel 11.00 16.00 €15 Carrick-on-Suir – Park 11.25 16.25 €15 Clonmel – Army Barracks 11.45 16.45 €15 Cashel – Buckleys 12.15 17.15 €15 Cahir – Car Park 12.35 17.35 €14 Tipperary – Abbey Street 12.55 17.55 €14 Limerick – Arthurs Quay 13.35 18.35 €10 Galway – Cathedral 15.15 20.15 €10   For further information on the service, contact JJ Kavanaghs at 0818 333 222 or visit, or Celine O’Donovan, NUI Galway Schools Liaison Officer, at 087 2391219. -ENDS-  

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NUI Galway Launches ‘SPIN’ First Bike Hire Scheme Outside Dublin

NUI Galway Launches ‘SPIN’ First Bike Hire Scheme Outside Dublin-image

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

SPIN Campus Bikes offers 45 bikes at eight stations across the 102 hectare campus   NUI Galway today launched Ireland’s first bike hire scheme outside Dublin. It is part of NUI Galway’s Green Campus Initiative to allow for sustainable transport for both students and staff on and off the 102 hectare campus. The SPIN Campus Bikes are part of NUI Galway’s Travel Plan aimed at reducing the environmental impact of intra-campus travel and congestion on campus. It follows the introduction of a ‘Park and Ride’ bus facility for students and staff on the Galway campus. The scheme is the first of its kind to launch in Ireland since the highly successful ‘dublinbikes’ scheme launched in 2006. The new service will see 45 ‘intelligent’ bikes, in NUI Galway ‘Spin Campus Bikes’ colours available to hire from eight self-service stations across the campus, including the library, park and ride station and university sports centre. Students and staff must pay a €10 per year registration fee to access the bikes. They are then issued an access code which they use to hire any bike free for the first half an hour. The cost rises the longer the hire time is to encourage users to return the bikes to any station quickly, ready for the next user. NUI Galway’s Vice President for Student Experience Pat Morgan said “This scheme sits within NUI Galway’s wider vision of a sustainable, green campus as outlined in its Travel Plan 2011-2014. It is however, an eminently practical way for both students and staff to make their way around a campus that has grown considerably under the University’s capital investment plan in recent years. It further allows those who choose to ‘Park and Ride’ the option of either bus or bike when travelling from place to place on campus.” The facility, offered by GrandScheme Ltd. has been specially designed to offer utmost flexibility and minimise the on-street infrastructure required. The Newcastle-upon-Tyne based company behind the system has recently launched schemes at the University of Sunderland and Oxford, in the UK. Each bright purple custom branded bike comes with an integrated keypad unit that dispenses the lock key once the user has entered their access code. The bikes can be locked up anywhere during a hire using the lock provided. On-board GPS tracking is used to tell members how far they have ridden and ensure that bikes are returned to the dedicated racks at the end of the hire. Unlike systems found across Europe and the US, the Spin scheme does not require large heavy infrastructure docking stations and uses standard bike racks. Maintenance of the system is being provided by West Ireland Cycling, an established local business. Rob Grisdale, CEO of Grand Scheme Bike Share Limited said “Putting the technology on the bike rather than on the street in heavy docking stations makes a lot of sense. You get more data about how the scheme is being used and the whole system is more flexible. This approach is also very cost effective, meaning that we can set schemes up on any scale, from large city wide programs to smaller schemes like Spin.” More information about the scheme including details on registering with Spin can be found at -ends-

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