Free Lunchtime Film Screenings at NUI Galway to Celebrate Ageing

Free Lunchtime Film Screenings at NUI Galway to Celebrate Ageing-image

Thursday, 10 May 2012

The inaugural ‘Reel Lives Film Festival’, organised by The Irish Centre for Social Gerontology (ICSG) at NUI Galway, is offering free lunchtime screenings of films celebrating ageing across the lifecourse from 21-25 May as part of the Bealtaine Festival. Alison Herbert, ICSG PhD student and event organiser, said: “We age from the day we are born, so to celebrate ageing is to celebrate life itself. Ageing is not just old age; ageing is a part of and relevant to all of us, and film is an ideal genre to get the message across that ageing is to be celebrated.” To help celebrate ageing, the ICSG will screen the following films: Venus - a comedy/drama examining inter-generationality, starring Peter O’Toole, Leslie Phillips and Vanessa Redgrave. This 2006 filmwas nominated for an Oscar, BAFTA, Screen Actors Guild and a Golden Globe. The Savages: multi-award-winning 2007 comedy/drama, starring Phillip Seymore-Hoffman and Laura Linney. The Straight Story: multi-award-winning David Lynch 1999 film, starring Richard Farnsworth and Sissy Spacek. Harold and Maude – a Golden Globe nominated 1971 Hal Ashby comedy/romance celebrating inter-generationality. A cult classic starring Ruth Gordon and Bud Cort. About Schmidt – Golden Globe winning 2002 comedy/drama starring Jack Nicholson and Kathy Bates. The Man Who Planted Trees: Academy-winning short French-Canadian 1988 animation (L’homme qui plantait des arbres), narrated by Christopher Plummer and a tribute to the animator Frédérick Back. The lunchtime screenings, open to everyone, begin each day at 1pm in lecture hall IT125, of the IT Building on NUI Galway’s campus.  Each film will be followed by a short panel and audience discussion.  All films, with the exception of The Man Who Planted Trees, loaned by film-maker Pat Comer, are sponsored by Screenclick, Dublin. Parking is available on campus to non-NUI Galway personnel within pay and display areas.  The venue has all facilities available to hand; including cafés, restrooms, and a lift is available for easy access. Further information is available from 091 495461 or visit www.icsg.ie. -ENDS-

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Minister to Address Forum on Children’s Rights at NUI Galway

Minister to Address Forum on Children’s Rights at NUI Galway-image

Thursday, 10 May 2012

A New Era in Child Protection The UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre at NUI Galway will today (Thursday, 10 May) host a forum on Children’s Rights.  The event will feature a keynote address: A New Era in Child Protection delivered by Frances Fitzgerald, TD and Minister for Children and Youth Affairs. The holding of a referendum in relation to the rights of children under the constitution is one of the key commitments made by the Government in relation to children and young people and is expected to be held in 2012.       Minister Frances Fitzgerald said: “The Government and I are committed to a comprehensive programme of reforms aimed at improving the lives of Ireland’s children and strengthening children’s rights. However no single change will be as momentous as that to our constitution. If we want to address the historic lack of focus on children; if we want to truly create a new era for child protection; if we want to really give effect to children’s rights, while recognizing the importance of the family, then we can do it by amending the constitution.” Professor Pat Dolan, UNESCO Chair in Children, Youth and Civic Engagement, NUI Galway and Professor Alan Smith, UNESCO Chair in Education for Pluralism, Human Rights and Democracy, University of Ulster will deliver an independent Commentary outlining the need for greater recognition of the rights of the child in Ireland and the inter-play between the rights of the child and rights of parents.  According to NUI Galway’s Professor Dolan: “Our perspective is simple, what is good for children, is good for their parents and ultimately to the benefit of civic society.  We believe that incorporating a commitment to children’s rights in the constitution would build a stronger culture of protecting children in Irish society and is in keeping with international obligations.” The Forum will be moderated by Carl O’Brien, Chief Reporter at the Irish Times and will include a Question and Answer session from the audience.   The Minister will also launch a new book by Professor Pat Dolan and Bernardine Brady of the Child and Family Research Centre A Guide to Youth Mentoring: Providing Effective Social Support. The UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre is committed to strengthening the rights of children and young people.  Ireland is emerging from a period in which some children, whether in the care of the State or of their families were not provided with adequate protection and support.  Providing greater recognition of the rights of the child through stronger constitutional recognition has the potential to embed children’s rights principles and standards into all decision-making by public bodies and inform the practice of those working with children.  An independent report completed by the UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre in conjunction with the Galway City Partnership and St Vincent de Paul will also be officially launched by the Minister today. The NUI Galway report titled ‘Making a Difference, An Independent Evaluation of the Incredible Years Programme in Pre-Schools in Galway City’ evaluated the impact of the Incredible Years Programme on the children during their period in the pre-school and tracked the children as they entered primary school.  The report outlines particularly significant changes in the children behaviour and makes strong recommendations relating to pre-school education inIreland.   ENDS

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American Students Selected as NUI Galway Ambassadors

American Students Selected as NUI Galway Ambassadors-image

Thursday, 10 May 2012

(l-r): Secretary General, Seán O Foghlú; Siobhan Allaeddini from California representing NUI Galway; and Gill Roe, Manager Education in Ireland. Siobhan Allaeddini and Siobhan Keenan have been selected as Student Ambassadors for NUI Galway. A new initiative by Education in Ireland, the Student Ambassador Programme is aimed at raising awareness of the quality of Irish degree and Study Abroad programmes, while also assisting and encouraging interested students as they embark on their applications. Californian Siobhan Allaeddini is a second year Arts student at NUI Galway, while Siobhan Keenan, from New Jersey, is in her second year of a Commerce degree at the University. Ireland is the ninth most popular destination in the world for American students because of its worldwide reputation for high quality education and for offering the warmest of welcomes to students from all over the world. The current batch of Student Ambassadors come from 16 States in the US and represent all seven Irish universities. Throughout the academic year, the Student Ambassadors share their experience and insights of life as a student in Ireland through blogs, articles and video posts, connecting prospective American students and their families with those already studying in Ireland. When these students return home they will from time to time work with Education in Ireland and the Irish universities at promotional events in their area. Education in Ireland is a government initiative aimed at promoting Irish higher education and English language schools overseas.  To check out the blog and learn more about Education in Ireland’s outreach to US high schools and universities, please visit http://blog.educationinireland.com/ or Education in Ireland USA on Facebook. -ENDS-

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NUI Galway Students Selected for Washington Ireland Program 2012

NUI Galway Students Selected for Washington Ireland Program 2012-image

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Two NUI Galway students, Annita Brady and John Campion, are among a select group of 30 candidate’s chosen to participate in the 2012 Washington Ireland Program (WIP). Each year, the successful candidates, who have shown a commitment to service and a track record of leadership, take part in an eight-week internship program in Washington DC. The programme aims to help the students to develop skills through work experience, educational opportunity, and hands-on citizenship both at home and in the US. A native of Drung, Co. Cavan, Annita Brady is a Postgraduate Diploma in Education student at NUI Galway. In 2011 she received an MA in Military History and Strategic Studies in NUI Maynooth. During her four years at NUI Maynooth, Annita played an active role in The Friends of Raphael’s Society as Chairperson for two years and now currently volunteers with the Galway Traveller Movement assisting with homework clubs. John Campion, a third-year Medical student from Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny, is currently on clinical placement in Montpellier, France. At NUI Galway, he has instigated a special study module in Applied Adolescent Mental Health Promotion and is Founding President of NUI Galway Friends of Médecins Sans Frontières, who participated in the Rotaract Italy Roundtrip for Cultural Understanding in 2011. John has undertaken studies in French, Italian, Irish Sign Language, Arabic and Gaeilge and has previously worked with the Centre for Talented Youth, Ireland, as Instructor in Medicine and as Assistant Residential Coordinator. Commenting on the internship, John said: “I’m really looking forward to working in Washington. Several of its hospitals and research facilities are at the cutting edge of medical innovation; making breakthroughs that have a huge impact on diagnosis and treatment of illness globally, including here in Ireland. On top of that, this summer, the White House is determined, in the face of strong Republican opposition, to push ahead with implementing Obamacare, which aims to improve Americans’ access to healthcare services. For me, WIP will provide great insight into high-level experimental medicine and healthcare policy-making.” The WIP students are required to commit to a minimum of 30 hours of public service before their placement in Washington DC, and are encouraged to take on a new community service project. While in Washington DC the students will complete an extensive leadership curriculum with their peers – developing their leadership skills and learning from the leadership experiences of those in Global leadership positions. Students will also complete an individual internship. The program is supported by both Governments and the universities in Ireland and Northern Ireland. The internships include placements on Capitol Hill, government agencies and the private sector.  Previous students have interned in the offices of then US Senators Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, former Presidential Candidate Senator McCain, at the Headquarters of the World Bank and at CNN. For more information visit www.wiprogram.org. -ENDS-

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Symposium on Complaints to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child

Symposium on Complaints to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child-image

Friday, 11 May 2012

International experts on children’s rights will gather at NUI Galway on Monday, 14 May, for a symposium on a new UN protocol to strengthen the rights of children. In December, the UN General Assembly approved a Third Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on a communications procedure, which will allow for individual children to submit complaints regarding specific violations of their rights under the Convention. The Convention was the last of the major UN human rights treaties to adopt such a mechanism and the Protocol is a major achievement for the protection of children’s rights. The event is being hosted by the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway.  According to the Centre’s Professor Ray Murphy: “Access to justice for children has traditionally proven challenging due to the invisibility of children, children’s lack of maturity and experience, as well as conflicts between children’s interests and those of adults. Cases taken by children have been rare and are overwhelming heard from the perspective of parents, as it is they who most frequently take the relevant cases.” The different needs of children have also been lost in the complaints mechanisms of the mainstream human rights instruments. The Committee on the Rights of the Child will hear cases with the guiding principles of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in mind- the right to be heard, the best interest principle, non-discrimination and the right to life survival and development.” It is thought the new protocol will have wide-ranging implications for custodial issues, child slavery, education rights and discrimination issues. The Symposium, ‘Complaints to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child – Opportunities for Ireland’, will hear from a number of speakers with experience in the field of children’s rights including Dr Maria Herczog, Member of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child; Veronica Yates, Child Rights International Network; Dr Geoffrey Shannon, Special Rapporteur to the Irish Government on Child Protection; Tanya Ward, Chief Executive, Children’s Rights Alliance; Colm O’Gorman, Executive Director of Amnesty International and Dr Aoife Daly, University of Essex. Speakers will provide a variety of perspectives on the nature of the Protocol and the opportunities which it provides across the spectrum of children’s rights- in the areas of child protection, economic as well as civil and political rights. Professor Murphy added: “Ensuring widespread ratification of the Third Optional Protocol will be a challenge. This symposium aims to consider the relevance of the Protocol and opportunities for Ireland to lead in the ratification process. It aims to raise awareness of the Protocol amongst non-governmental organisations, academics and Government, and will culminate in a Call for Ratification of the Protocol which attendees are welcome to sign if they so wish. It is expected that this symposium will be just one part of a number of activities around the Protocol, raising awareness and encouraging ratification.” -ends-

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Conflict and Peace Topics for Discussion at NUI Galway Conferences

Conflict and Peace Topics for Discussion at NUI Galway Conferences -image

Friday, 11 May 2012

The Centre for the Study of Nationalism and Organised Violence (CSNOV) at NUI Galway is pleased to announce two upcoming seminars.  ‘Talking Peace: A seminar on communication, contact and dialogue aimed at reducing or ending violence in Northern Ireland’ will take place on Wednesday, 16 May between 10am - 5pm in the Moore Institute at the University.  ‘Armed Conflict in Comparative Perspective’ will take place on Friday,18 May from  9am - 5pm in the Aula Maxima. ‘Talking Peace’ willbring together key actors with direct experience of mediation, negotiation and decision-making in the Irish peace process, including Sir Kenneth Bloomfield; Larry and Shauna Duddy; Dr Maurice Hayes; Jim Gibney; Dr Harold Good; Rev. Chris Hudson and Dr Martin Mansergh.  Professor Brendan O’Leary,University of Pennsylvania, will act as respondent. The symposium brings participants together with leading academics working on the politics of conflict and peace in Northern Ireland, including Professor James McAuley(University of Huddersfield); Dr Niall Ó Dochartaigh (NUI Galway); Dr Graham Spencer (University of Portsmouth); Dr  Katy Hayward(Queen’s University Belfast); Professor Jonathan Tonge (University of Liverpool); Professor  Robert White(Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis). ‘Armed Conflict in Comparative Perspective’ is a multidisciplinary conference bringing  together leading scholars working on aspects of armed conflict from a range of disciplinary perspectives. It will address key issues of concern to sociologists, political scientists and historians studying inter-state wars, civil wars, armed conflicts, urban violence and insurgencies. Speaking about the Talking Peace seminar, Dr Niall O’Dochartaigh, NUI Galway, said: “Communication through intermediaries and mediators was crucial to the peace settlement in the North but this important aspect of the peace process remains little understood, partly because it was shrouded in secrecy. It is an urgent matter to understand how such communication might play a role in resolving other situations of conflict today. “It is particularly appropriate that the seminar is taking place in Galway because the west of Ireland provided the setting for some very important encounters aimed at ending conflict in the North, such as the meeting between Protestant clergymen and the IRA leadership in Feakle Co. Clare that paved the way for the IRA ceasefire of 1975. It was a setting where people could talk at some distance from the centres of power and media attention in Dublin  and Belfast.” Dr O’Dochartaigh added: “The Talking Peace seminar explores this issue through a conversation between those with direct experience of the workings of government and of mediation during the conflict in the North and academics studying the conflict. The witness seminar format provides a unique historical methodology for exploring difficult historical topics of this kind through a kind of group interview where participants in historical events share, discuss and sometimes challenge each others' recollections. We are running the seminar in partnership with colleagues from King’s College London where the Institute of Contemporary British History has organised numerous witness seminars over many years and has built up extensive expertise in this method.” These events are supported by the Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences, the Moore Institute, the School of Political Science and Sociology and the Institute for Business, Social Sciences and Public Policy, NUI Galway. These events are open to all but seating is limited. For registration please contact: Stacey.scriver@nuigalway.ie ENDS

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Summer School on the International Criminal Court

Summer School on the International Criminal Court-image

Monday, 14 May 2012

The Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway is accepting delegates for its 2012 summer school on the International Criminal Court to be held 18-22 June in Galway. The summer school on the International Criminal Court (ICC) offered by the Centre is widely acknowledged to be the premier programme of its kind, attracting participants from around the world. During the five days of intensive lectures, delivered by leading specialist in the field, students are provided with a detailed working knowledge of the establishment of the Court, its applicable law, its structures and its operations. Lectures also speak to related issues in international criminal law, including universal jurisdiction, immunities and the role of the victims. According to Ray Murphy of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway: “The ICC is arguably the most important international institution to have been established since the creation of the United Nations. Its aim is combating impunity for atrocities, and it is at the forefront of a broader movement for achieving accountability and justice around the world. Only last month, it reached a milestone in convicting the first former head of state since the Nuremburg trials.” Professor Murphy added: “While the trial and ultimate conviction of Liberia's former president Charles Taylor garnered international headlines for tales of supermodels and diamonds, the true headline is the championing of accountability in respect of international crimes.” During the summer school on the International Criminal Court, expert presentations will be delivered by Professor William Schabas, Middlesex University and Chairman of the Irish Centre for Human Rights; Professor Siobhan Mullally, UCC; Dr Shane Darcy, Lecturer and Professor Ray Murphy, Irish Centre for Human Rights; Mr. John McManus, Department of Justice, Canada; Dr Mohamed M. El Zeidy and Ms Miriam Spittler, the International Criminal Court; Dr Nadia Bernaz, University of Middlesex; and Dr Annyssa Bellal, Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights and the Irish Centre for Human Rights. To register, visit http://www.conference.ie/Conferences/index.asp?Conference=16 or email iccsummerschool@gmail.com for more information. -ends-

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Public Lectures on Sustainable Consumption

Public Lectures on Sustainable Consumption-image

Monday, 14 May 2012

Public lectures at NUI Galway on Friday 18 and Saturday 19 May, will look at our throwaway culture, and ask what a future with everyone living more sustainably might look like. Philosopher Kate Soper, from London Metropolitan University will provide a public lecture entitled Towards an alternative prosperity? Irish “belatedness” and the politics of consumption on Friday 18 May, from 4.30-5.30pm in the Engineering Building at NUI Galway.Author of the book The Politics and Pleasures of Consuming Differently, Soper believes that we need to rethink how we live in the light of impending environmental catastrophe. Her core argument is that alternative ways of living can be more enjoyable than consumerism and this leads to her notion of alternative hedonism. A second public lecture on the topical issue of sustainable consumption will be delivered at 12 noon on Saturday, 18 May, in the Engineering Building by Elizabeth Shove, Professor of Sociology at Lancaster University. Professor Shove’s area of expertise is the relationship between consumption, everyday life, sustainability and ordinary technology. She is co-author of the book The Design of Everyday Life which looks at the design of common household products through to their use in the home. The lecture will be followed by a panel discussion by a group of top US and European academics on the futures of sustainable consumption research. This panel discussion will take place from 2pm until 4pm on Saturday afternoon in the same venue. These lectures are part of an international conference, ‘Challenging Consumption: Pathways to a More Sustainable Future’ which NUI Galway is hosting from 18-20 May. The event brings together leading researchers to discuss current practices, challenges and futures for research in the area of sustainable consumption. The conference is part of the Consensus project, a four-year research project involving collaboration between NUI Galway and Trinity College Dublin. Funded by the EPA STRIVE Programme, the project is the first of its kind to look at sustainable consumption on the island of Ireland. The Consensus project focuses on four key areas of household consumption that impact negatively on the environment: transport, energy, water and food. This research is exploring how a shift towards more sustainable consumption might be encouraged, measured and governed. Therefore, one of the key outputs of this research is to make recommendations for local and national programmes concerning sustainable consumption policies. According to the Consensus project manager Dr Frances Fahy, Lecturer in Geography at NUI Galway: “Our conference is intended to explore opportunities for future research collaborations and facilitate exchange between currently existing sustainable consumption networks. All conference participants at this event are active members of US and European sustainable consumption research communities. The public lectures and panel discussion will provide an opportunity to discuss household consumption and the various ways in which it impacts negatively on the environment as well as to explore how a shift towards more sustainable consumption might be encouraged, measured and governed.” During the three-day event, academics will discuss their research in the area of sustainable consumption; exploring a variety of themes that range from sustainable transport to premature product obsolescence. Keynote speakers include: Maurie Cohen, New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA; Tim Cooper, Nottingham Trent University, UK; Mike Goodman, King’s College London; Inge Ropke, Technical University of Denmark as well as members of the Consensus project team from NUI Galway and Trinity College Dublin. For more information email consensus@nuigalway.ie ENDS

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Gradam NáisiúntaBuaite ag Ionad an Acadaimh i gCarna

Gradam NáisiúntaBuaite ag Ionad an Acadaimh i gCarna-image

Monday, 14 May 2012

Bronnadh Gradam Náisiúnta na Gaeilge ar an gCainéal iTunes U-GOGG (An Chomhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta agus Gaelscolaíochta) ag searmanas i gCaisleán Bhaile Átha Cliath le gairid. Is ar champas Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge i gCarna a rinneadh an obair fhorbartha agus is í COGG a rinne maoiniú ar an tionscadal. Toradh é ar chomhpháirtíocht idir COGG agus Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh. “Údar mór áthais d’Ollscoil na hÉireann Gaillimh gur bhain an Cainéal iTunes U-COGG gradam eRialtais amach le gairid. Tugann an gradam aitheantas don saineolas atá á shaothrú sna daonnachtaí digiteacha san Acadamh trí chéile ach go háirithe in Ionad na hOllscoile i gCarna.  Bhí ról lárnach ag an gcomhpháirtíocht le RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta sa tionscadal mar gur forbraíodh acmhainní foghlama bunscolaíochta an Chainéil ó bhunábhar i gCartlann shabhair RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta agus ó Chartlanna OÉ Gaillimh féin.”, a deir Niall Mac Uidhilin, feidhmeannach ríomhaireachta le hAcadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge. Cuimsíonn an Cainéal iTunes U–COGG acmhainní físe agus fuaime ar mhaithe le sealbhú agus saibhriú na Gaeilge i mbunscoileanna Gaeltachta agus lán-Ghaeilge. Forbraíodh 300 mír fhoghlama nua dírithe go háirithe ar dhaltaí Rang 5 agus 6 sna bunscoileanna. Áiríonn na míreanna foghlama amhráin, dánta, scéalta, faisnéis, tomhasanna, agus míreanna staire. Tá na míreanna á gcur i láthair i gcanúintí éagsúla a roghnaíodh ó bhunábhar i gcartlanna saibhre RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta agus OÉ Gaillimh.  Chuathas i gcomhairle le saineolaithe ábhar: Máire Uí Dhufaigh, Inis Oírr agus Bairbre Ní Thuairisg, Scoil Náisiúnta Chamuis, a scríobh na moltaí foghlama le dul in éineacht leis na míreanna. Lárnach sa bpróiseas forbartha freisin bhí Anna Ní Chartúir, Scoil Náisiúnta Leitir Mucú agus Mairéad Ní Chualáin, Scoil Náisiúnta Leitir Mealláin, beirt mhúinteoirí a bhfuil sárthuiscint acu ar riachtanais fhoghlama teanga scoláirí sna spriocscoileanna. Roinn an bheirt a gcuid ama ar an tionscnamh go fial flaithiúil agus ar bhonn deonach. Inniúlacht Cartlainne Meán a rinne an obair theicniúil agus dearaidh ar an gcainéal.  Tá an cainéal ar fáil ar itunes.cogg.ie. Tá treoirlínte faoin mbealach le theacht ar an gCainéal le fáil ar www.acadamh.ie -CRÍOCH-   Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilgeand COGG win National e-Government Award A project developed in Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge at NUI Galway was presented with an Ireland eGovernment Award at a ceremony in Dublin Castle recently. The iTunes U–COGG channel was developed with with funding provided by An Chomhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta agus Gaelscolaíochta (COGG). The iTunes U–COGG channel, which won the in the Irish language category award, comprises of video and sound resources to promote the acquisition and enrichment of the Irish language in all-Irish schools both within and outside the Gaeltacht. In this initial stage of the project, three hundred media clips have been carefully selected and are aimed at 5th and 6th classes. These learning clips cover genres such as song, poetry, stories, factual, puzzles and historic. The clips are presented in different dialects selected from the rich archive materials of RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta and NUI Galway.  Niall Mac Uidhilin, Computer Executive with Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, said: “We at NUI Galway are delighted that the iTunes U-COGG channel has received this eGovernment award. This award recognises the expertise that the Acadamh has accumulated in the digital humanities, and particularly in the centre in Carna. The partnership with RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta played a central role in the project as the channel’s digital learning resoures for national schools were developed from the rich archive materials and resources of RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta as well as from the archives of NUI Galway. The project builds on the digitisation work that was previously done on the archive on the campus in An Cheathrú Rua.” A panel of experts were consulted for the project including Máire Uí Dhufaigh, Scoil Náisiúnta Inis Oírr and Bairbre Ní Thuairisg, Scoil Náisiúnta Chamuis who wrote the learning guides to be included with the clips. Anna Ní Chartúir, Scoil Náisiúnta Leitir Mucú and Mairéad Ní Chualáin, Scoil Náisiúnta Leitir Mealláin, were also central to the development of the project. Both have an acute understanding of the language learning requirements of national school children in the target schools and gave freely and voluntarily of their time to forward the project. Inniúlacht Cartlainne Meán were responsible for the technical and design work on the channel.  The channel is available at  itunes.cogg.ie. Guidelines on how to access the channel can be found at  www.acadamh.ie. -ENDS-

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Fascinations of Plants Day at NUI Galway

Fascinations of Plants Day at NUI Galway-image

Monday, 14 May 2012

NUI Galway will lead Ireland’s involvement in the first ever international Fascination of Plants Day which will be held on Friday, 18 May. The Fascination of Plants Day will be celebrated by 39 countries worldwide, with the common goal getting people enthused by the importance of plant science. A photography and art exhibition celebrating ‘Our Fascinating Flora’ will officially open at the NUI Galway Art Gallery on Friday, 18 May at 2pm and run until Wednesday, 23 May. Featured exhibits willinclude works from botanical artist Margareta Pertl, and artists Miriam de Burca, Alan Crowley and Peter Sherry. Ceramic art will include exhibits from Veronika Straberger, Anna Pielach and Louise Browne, and wood turning from Ambrose and Bríd O’Halloran. Winners of the national Fascination of Plants Day photography competition will also feature. Stories, all featuring the theme of plants, will be told by renowned storyteller Rab Fulton in the Art Gallery on Friday, 18 May at 11am and by Dr Maria Tuohy and members of Biochemistry at 3pm.  Another feature of the celebration of plants will be a tree climbing session, on Wednesday, 23 May outside Áras de Brún, near the Quadrangle Building, with Keith Browne and experts from NUI Galway Mountaineering Club. Volunteers from the club will help the public get up into the trees using harnesses and ropes, to see what goes on at canopy level. Dr Zoë Popper, Lecturer in Botany and Plant Science at NUI Galway, said: “Plants are fascinating, and beautiful.  Having the ability to directly synthesise their own food has enabled plants to successfully colonise, adapt to, and diversify within almost every niche on the planet.  There are over 250,000 plant species and they are vital for us in terms of agriculture, food, horticulture and forestry. Plants also play a role in non-food products such as paper, timber, chemicals, energy, and pharmaceuticals.” Other themed events are taking place around the country, with participation by the National Biodiversity Data Centre, National Botanic Gardens, Trinity College Dublin and Burrenbeo. For more information regarding events in Ireland visit http://www.plantday12.eu/ireland.htm# and http://fascinationofplants.blogspot.com -Ends-

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