NUI Galway PhD Student Receives Award at International Conference in Egypt

NUI Galway PhD Student Receives Award at International Conference in Egypt-image

Friday, 22 June 2012

Declan Gavigan, a PhD student from NUI Galway’s College of Engineering and Informatics and the Ryan Institute, recently received the Top Young Engineers’ Award. A native of Ardara, Co. Donegal, Declan was awarded the prize for a paper he presented on ‘Strength and durability performance of stabilised soil block masonry units’ at the International Association of Bridge and Structural Engineering (IABSE) Conference. This conference attracted 120 delegates from around 30 countries and included sessions on Sustainable Development and Structural Engineering; Structural Engineering and Renewable Energy Sources; Smart Structures, New Materials and Construction Techniques. Dr Jamie Goggins, Chartered Engineer and Principle Investigator for this research project at NUI Galway, said: “I would like to congratulate Declan on winning this prestigious international award that recognises his significant contribution as a young research engineer to sustainable development and structural engineering. Declan’s paper on ‘Strength and durability performance of stabilised soil block masonry units’ is an important document in the research into stabilised soil blocks or SSBs as they are commonly known. Although there is ample literature on the application of SSBs in tropical countries, their potential use in a European climate has not been fully investigated. Declan is part of an NUI Galway Sustainability and the Built Environment research group, which is currently investigating the feasibility and suitability of SSBs for use in a European context through extensive testing in terms of durability, strength and appearance.” Stabilised soil blocks are cost-effective masonry blocks formed by compressing a suitable mixture of soil, cement and water into a mould. These masonry units have a low impact on the environment, as their main component, the soil, is often sourced directly from the site of construction. SSBs are extensively used in the construction of both structural and non-structural elements in many developing countries. SSBs have less negative impact on the environment than alternative masonry technologies, such as clay fired bricks or concrete masonry blocks. The most commonly-used stabiliser used in the manufacture of SSBs is Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC), which is their most expensive and energy-intensive ingredient. Replacing OPC with alternative waste materials and by‐products is a cost‐effective process, and their use in SSBs can benefit the environment, especially where disposal to landfill is the alternative. The ability of blocks to resist prevailing rain, wetting and drying cycles, freezing and thawing cycles, and chemical attack are critical if there are to be applicable in a European climate. The extensive laboratory studies carried out as part of this research projects indicate that SSBs have adequate durability for typical use in the construction of buildings in Europe. In addition, the research has shown that SSBs containing waste materials and by-products as cement replacements can have adequate, and sometime superior performance to specimens containing OPC only as a stabiliser. On the other hand, utilising waste products in the manufacture of the blocks such as pulverised fuel ash (pfa) from peat-fired power plants have been shown to reduce the performance of SSBs. As an output from this research project, the development of a comprehensive code of practice and design guidelines on the manufacturing and use of SSBs is envisaged to aid the future commercial development of SSBs. This research project is associated with the priority thematic area ‘Sustainability and the Built Environment’ of the Ryan Institute at NUI Galway. -ENDS-

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Success for NUI Galway Students in the Ireland Fund Business Plan Competition

Success for NUI Galway Students in the Ireland Fund Business Plan Competition-image

Friday, 22 June 2012

Four NUI Galway PhD students Paul Lohan, Ana Cimpian, Sean Gaynard and Fiona Griffin, reached the final of the Ireland Fund Business Plan competition held at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin on Tuesday, 19 June, 2012. Their innovative medical device business proposition, created as part of their participation in the BioInnovate Ireland programme, secured the team joint third place. BioInnovate Ireland is a specialist training and collaboration programme in medical device innovation. It is modelled on Stanford University’s prestigious Biodesign Programme. This competition seeks out the best business ideas from nine Universities across Ireland. The team of four who worked on this project since last November are first-year PhD students in the Structured PhD Programme in Biomedical Engineering and Regenerative Medicine (BMERM). For the competition, 19 teams were shortlisted for the semi-finals, from a large pool of applicants, from which four teams were selected for the final based on their business plan sales pitch to the judging panel. Professor Peter McHugh, Director of BMERM at NUI Galway, commented: “This is a fantastic achievement for the students, the BioInnovate and BMERM programmes and the University. It really shows the synergy that can be achieved between programmes to deliver a ‘best in class’ graduate and further demonstrates NUI Galway’s leadership position in the medical technology area.” Dr Mark Bruzzi BioInnovate Ireland Programme Director added that the interaction between the postgraduate multi-disciplinary teams and the BioInnovate Ireland Fellows, Academics, Clinicians and Industry Experts has produced a class of students who will have a significant long-term impact on the graduate medical technology market place in Ireland. The BioInnovate Ireland programme offers a unique medical device innovation training opportunity. It has achieved unparalleled access to Ireland’s leading academic researchers, clinicians, and industry experts, while the activity is underpinned by world-class facilities available through the support network.  BMERM is an inter-disciplinary and inter-institutional structured PhD programme, led by NUI Galway, that is funded under the Programme for Research in Third-Level Institutions (PRTLI) Cycle 5 and co-funded under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). -ends-

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Part-Time Diploma in Irish Music Studies at NUI Galway

Part-Time Diploma in Irish Music Studies at NUI Galway-image

Monday, 25 June 2012

NUI Galway is taking applications for the redesigned Diploma in Irish Music Studies. The programme will give an interdisciplinary introduction to the ways in which Irish traditional music, song and dance have contributed to the creation of identity amongst Irish communities on the island of Ireland and beyond. The Diploma in Irish Music Studies will give students an opportunity to explore Irish music and dance in a classroom environment. Topics studied will include: transmission of Irish traditional music; diaspora and Irish music, song and dance; negotiating identity through Irish traditional music; and Irish traditional music and commodification, which examines the production and consumption of Irish music and how something that is perceived to be 'old' and 'traditional' functions successfully in the 21st century. Dr Louis de Paor, Director of the Centre for Irish Studies at NUI Galway, said: “The practical element of this diploma offers numerous benefits to participants. We provide unrivalled access to contemporary sean-nós practitioners and the chance to engage and learn from both their performance and educational methods. This course enables participants to draw on the wellspring of traditional culture in Connemara, a rich resource on the doorstep of NUI Galway.” The Diploma in Irish Music Studies also includes a practical element, offering participants the opportunity to engage with ‘masters’ of the sean-nós singing and dancing tradition, in a workshop environment. In conjunction with the Sean-nós Performer-in-Residence Scheme and Comhrá Ceoil at the Centre for Irish Studies, this practical element reflects the wider commitment of the University to Irish traditional music, song and dance. The course runs on a part-time basis over two years, taking place one night a week. It begins in September 2012 and the deadline for registration is Friday, 13 July. Further information can be found at www.nuigalway.ie/adulteducation or contact Samantha Williams in the Centre for Irish Studies at 091 492051 or samantha.williams@nuigalway.ie ENDS   Dioplóma Páirtaimseartha i Staidéar Cheol na hÉireann ar siúl in OÉ Gaillimh Tá OÉ Gaillimh ag glacadh le hiarratais ar an Dioplóma athdheartha i Staidéar Ceoil na hÉireann. Cuirfear tús idirdhisciplíneach leis an gclár le cur síos ar na bealaí ar chuir ceol, amhránaíocht agus damhsa traidisiúnta na hÉireann le féiniúlacht mhuintir na hÉireann ar oileán na hÉireann agus thar lear. Gheobhaidh mic léinn ar an Diploma in Irish Music Studies an deis staidéar a dhéanamh ar cheol agus ar dhamhsa na hÉireann sa seomra ranga. I measc na dtopaicí a bheidh ar bun beidh: ceol traidisiúnta na hÉireann á sheinm; an diaspóra agus ceol na hÉireann, amhránaíocht agus damhsa; féiniúlacht a aimsiú trí cheol traidisiúnta na hÉireann; agus ceol traidisiúnta na hÉireann agus tráchtearrú, anseo scrúdaítear léiriú agus úsáid cheol na hÉireann agus an chaoi a bhfeidhmíonn ní atá ‘sean' agus ‘traidisiúnta' chomh maith sin san 21ú haois. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag an Dr Louis de Paor, Stiúrthóir Ionad an Léinn Éireannaigh in OÉ Gaillimh: “Ó tharla go bhfuil an dioplóma seo praiticiúil is iomaí leas atá le baint ag na rannpháirtithe as. Bíonn fáil éasca ar lucht comhaimseartha sean-nóis agus bíonn an deis ag na mic léinn páirt a ghlacadh ina gceird agus foghlaim ó na modhanna oideachais. Ar an gcúrsa seo beidh na mic léinn in ann tarraingt as tobar an chultúir thraidisiúnta i gConamara, ar leic an dorais ag OÉ Gaillimh.” Tá gné phraiticiúil ag an Diploma in Irish Music Studies chomh maith. Faigheann na mic léinn an deis ceardlanna a dhéanamh le ‘máistrí’ an damhsa agus na hamhránaíochta ar an sean-nós. I gcomhar le Scéim an Cheoltóra/Damhsóra Chónaithigh ar an Sean-nós agus le Comhrá Ceoil in Ionad an Léinn Éireannaigh, léiríonn an ghné phraiticiúil seo tiomantas na hOllscoile don cheol, don amhránaíocht agus don damhsa traidisiúnta. Cúrsa páirtaimseartha é seo a mhaireann dhá bhliain, agus bíonn sé ar siúl oíche amháin sa tseachtain. Cuirfear tús leis an gcúrsa i Meán Fómhair 2012 agus is é an spriocdháta le clárú Dé hAoine, an 13 Iúil. Tá eolas breise le fáil ar www.nuigalway.ie/adulteducation nó téigh i dteagmháil le Samantha Williams in Ionad an Léinn Éireannaigh ag 091 492051 nó samantha.williams@nuigalway.ie CRÍOCH

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NUI Galway’s Computing Summer Camp

NUI Galway’s Computing Summer Camp -image

Monday, 25 June 2012

NUI Galway recently held their third annual Computing Summer Camp. Due to the high demand for places, this year the Computing Summer Camp ran over a two-week period with 80 students participating. Students ranged in age from 13 to 17, and came from secondary schools across Galway City and County, as well as from Clare and Donegal. Throughout the camp students participated in a number of activities including writing computer games, creating web animations, building and programming autonomous robots, and making 3D computer models. Students were also awarded prizes for their work throughout the camp. For the robotics competition, students have to design and program a robot to shoot or knock over paper aliens as quickly as possible. Dr Michael Madden, Head of the Information Technology Discipline at NUI Galway, said: “We are very impressed with the high quality of students’ projects at the Computing Summer Camp this year, and the speed at which they are able to pick up new technologies. It appears that recent initiatives such as CoderDojo are having a positive effect on young people’s digital literacy. 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.” Dr Madden is also involved in an initiative to introduce computer science as a secondary school subject, through a pilot programme for short courses in the Junior Cycle that being run by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment. Several schools, led by Gairmscoil Mhuire Vocational School in Athenry, are preparing to offer for a Short Course in Computer Science, to begin in September 2012. -ENDS-

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NUI Galway MBA Wins Prestigious National Competition

NUI Galway MBA Wins Prestigious National Competition-image

Monday, 25 June 2012

A team from the NUI Galway Executive MBA class were announced All-Ireland Champions of the MBA Association of Ireland National Strategy Competition 2012, held at the weekend. Organised by the MBA Association of Ireland, the competition is open to all MBA programmes across Ireland. The win follows NUI Galway’s success in 2010, when it last entered the competition.  The winning team included: Myles McHugh and Suzanne Ryan from Galway City; Mike Parkinson from Ardrahan, Co. Galway; Ashwin Kher from Balla, Co. Mayo; and Roger Sweetman from Galway City. “This excellent achievement is testament to the quality of teaching on the programme and I would like to congratulate all involved in teaching the 2010-2012 MBA class”, said Dr Emer Mulligan, Head of the J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway.  Many of the best business schools across Ireland took part in the competition including UCC and the Smurfit Graduate School at UCD. The competition required the team to prepare a strategic analysis and presentation on a Harvard Business Case (eBay, Inc and Amazon.com) over four hours and then present to a panel of judges.  Commenting on the win Dr Alma McCarthy, MBA Programme Director at NUI Galway, said: “The NUI Galway Executive MBA curriculum has a very strong focus on strategy and prepares students to excel as business and strategy analysts. Winning the MBAAI National Strategy Forum Competition 2012 reinforces the excellent teaching and learning standards provided to students on our programme.” Further information on the Executive MBA at NUI Galway is available at http://www.cairnes.nuigalway.ie/mba/. ENDS

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NUI Galway's DERI Launches the Official Volvo Ocean Race Festival Galway App

NUI Galway's DERI Launches the Official Volvo Ocean Race Festival Galway App -image

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

While the Quadrangle is relocated for the nine-day festival The official ‘Volvo Ocean Race Festival Galway’ App is now available for download. The free app is a must for all visitors to Galway during the festival which begins on 30 June, providing maps, a full festival programme and lots of visitor information about Galway City. The app has been created by a team of experts based at the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) in NUI Galway. The app also includes a number of DERI’s research technologies; ‘Connect and Chat’ allows users to connect with other app users and chat, ‘Galway Compass’ provides users with the locations of key amenities and services near them, ‘Tweet Cliques’ analyses the twittersphere and presents the user with a list of the most relevant tweets relating to the festival. Also, there is a list of live webcams from around Galway that can let the user check for themselves where is busy around the city and docks. With tens of thousands of visitors expected over the nine-day festival, the app will allow individuals to make the most of the experience, while able to track their friends and network with groups. Professor Manfred Hauswirth, Vice-Director of DERI at NUI Galway, said: “This app demonstrates the leading role of DERI in cyber-physical systems. DERI technology makes real-world sensor input easy to use in any application.” With over 140 researchers, DERI is the largest web science institute of its kind in the world, but were thrilled to get behind this local project as Professor Hauswirth explains: “We really embraced the whole concept of ‘get onboard’ for the festival, so developed this unique app which is a must for every visitor.” The app is available for free from the Apple App Store and from the Google Play Android store. The app will be updated and improved as new information becomes available so please check for updates during the festival. NUI Galway is also the official education partner of Volvo Ocean Race Galway’s volunteering programme, and will bring its considerable experience in the field of volunteering and community engagement to the event to recruit the ‘small army’ of volunteers needed to support the overall festival. NUI Galway Quadrangle Relocated to the Global Village NUI Galway has also created a partial replica of its iconic Quadrangle building, which will be a feature of the Global Village at the Volvo Ocean Race. The Global Village is a free exhibition arena, open for the duration of the festival, located in South Park. The NUI Galway pavilion will be a central attraction, recreating a sense of the University’s iconic Quadrangle building, which dates back to 1845. Inside, the NUI Galway pavilion will look to the future, with interactive demonstrations and exhibitions showcasing the cutting-edge innovation and research for which the University has a world-wide reputation. “This is the largest sporting event in Ireland this year, and a wonderful opportunity to promote all that is great about Galway”, said NUI Galway President, Dr Jim Browne. “The event had almost 100,000 visitors to the City last time round, over half of whom came from abroad, with significant international media reach also. Our whole-hearted involvement, in the volunteering aspects of this event and in the exhibitions, is a reflection of the importance of reaching such a world-wide audience.” The NUI Galway pavilion will feature four zones and an ideas lab, highlights will include: Ideas Lab: This self-contained room within the pavilion will feature a daily 3D Tour of the Universe at 11am, 1pm, 3pm and 5pm. Also a series of short talks will cover: Goal-line Technology; Wind and Ocean Energy; Car Technology; Breast Cancer Detection Techniques; Smartphone Technology; and Computer Modelling of Coastal Waters. Exploration Zone: Interactive demos and exhibitions including footage from underwater expeditions, marine creatures in touch tanks, a fun seaweed exploration station and a display of oceanographic equipment. Innovation Zone: Exhibits and displays on the latest Medical Technologies; Information Technology; Energy and the Environment; and Engineering the Future. Creativity Zone: Fun creativity exhibits including film sets and films from the Huston Film School; archive exhibits and drama. Go Global Zone: Try the Global Business Simulation Game; Navigate your way around our Interactive Volvo Ocean Race map; see fun Business and Law exhibits; Explore our 3D Campus Map simulator and more. Activities also include an Alumni Family Day to which all NUI Galway graduates are invited on 8 July. Innovation and Marine Pavilions NUI Galway will also have a presence in the Innovation and Marine Pillars at the Global Village, while a separate Speaker Session pavilion in the Global Village will feature some of NUI Galway’s experts. The Innovation Hub will feature the ‘Computer and Communications Museum of Ireland’ which is being re-located from DERI at NUI Galway to the Global Village. This unique science heritage facility tells the fascinating story of key moments in the development of communications and computing technology from ancient hieroglyphics to today’s Internet. The array of electronic artefacts on display includes such iconic computers as the DEC PDP11, Apple II, Macintosh, IBM PC, ZX81 & Commodore Vic-20. There are also exhibits dedicated to Youth & Innovation, Women in Technology, Radio, Irish Computing & a vintage video games section that  includes the legendary ‘Pacman’, ‘Space Invaders’ and ‘Asteroids’. The hub will also have an array of science and engineering activities that should appeal to all ages including K’nex modelling, CoderDojo workshops and the local 091Labs electronic makers club. It will also be a starting point for the Galway Simon Treasure Hunt.  In addition, the Inmarsat Film Lecture in association with NUI Galway’s Huston School of Film & Digital Media takes place on Thursday, 5 July in the Galway Race Village, and will present a unique sense of what is required of an extreme sports reporter onboard a multi-million dollar round the world racing yacht. Find out more about the University’s involvement at http://www.nuigalway.ie/volvo-ocean-race-2012/ -ends-   Seolann DERI in OÉ Gaillimh Aip Oifigiúil Fhéile Rás Aigéin Volvo na Gaillimhe  Fad is a bheidh an Chearnóg á hathlonnú ar feadh 9 lá na féile   Tá Aip oifigiúil Fhéile Rás Aigéin Volvo na Gaillimhe ar fáil anois le híoslódáil. Tá an aip seo saor in aisce agus beidh sé thar a bheith úsáideach do chuairteoirí a bheidh i nGaillimh don fhéile a thosóidh an 30 Meitheamh. Tá léarscáileanna, clár iomlán na féile agus neart eolais faoi chathair na Gaillimhe ar fáil ann. Foireann saineolaithe atá lonnaithe san Institiúid Taighde um Fhiontraíocht Dhigiteach (DERI) in OÉ Gaillimh a chruthaigh an aip. Tá cuid de theicneolaíochtaí taighde DERI ar an aip seo chomh maith; tugann ‘Connect and Chat’ deis d’úsáideoirí ceangal le húsáideoirí eile na haipe agus comhrá a dhéanamh leo, tugann ‘Galway Compass’ eolas d’úsáideoirí ar na hionaid ina bhfuil seirbhísí agus áiseanna tábhachtacha i ngar dóibh, déanann ‘Tweet Cliques’ anailís ar a bhfuil ag tarlú i ndomhan Twitter agus taispeánann sé na tuíteanna is ábhartha a bhaineann leis an bhféile don úsáideoir. Ina theannta sin, tá liosta de na ceamaraí beo gréasáin atá ar fud na Gaillimhe san aip agus bíonn an t-úsáideoir in ann eolas a bheith acu cén áit a bhfuil gnóthach ar fud na cathrach agus na nduganna. Táthar ag súil leis na mílte cuairteoir ag an bhféile naoi lá, agus tabharfaidh an aip deis do dhaoine an méid is mó a dhéanamh den fhéile, agus iad ag seiceáil céard atá ar siúl ag a gcuid cairde agus ceangal a dhéanamh le grúpaí eile. Deir an tOllamh Manfred Hauswirth, Leas-Stiúrthóir DERI: “Léiríonn an aip seo ról ceannródaíoch DERI i gcórais chibear-fhisiciúla. Le cúnamh ó theicneolaíocht DERI tá ionchur réadach braiteora éasca le húsáid in aon fheidhmchlár.” Tá os cionn 140 taighdeoir ag obair le DERI agus tá sí ar an institiúid eolaíocht ghréasáin is mó ar domhan, ach bhí an-áthas orthu a bheith bainteach leis an tionscadal áitiúil seo mar a mhíníonn an tOllamh Hauswirth:  “Bhíomar go láidir taobh thiar den mhanna ‘tar ar bord’ don fhéile, agus d’fhorbraíomar an aip uathúil seo agus beidh gach cuairteoir ag iarraidh go mbeidh sí acu.” Tá an aip ar fáil saor in aisce ón Apple App Store agus ón Google Play Android Store. Déanfar an aip a nuashonrú agus a fheabhsú de réir mar a thagann eolas nua chugainn, bí ag faire amach do na nuashonrúcháin seo le linn na féile. Is í OÉ Gaillimh an comhpháirtí oifigiúil oideachais do chlár oibrithe deonacha Rás Aigéin Volvo, agus roinnfidh sí a taithí ar leith ó thaobh imeachtaí deonacha agus rannpháirtíocht pobail de chun oibrithe deonacha a earcú chun tacú leis an bhféile trí chéile. Cearnóg OÉ Gaillimh á hAthlonnú chuig an Sráidbhaile Domhanda Tá páirt-mhacasamhail cruthaithe ag OÉ Gaillimh d’fhoirgneamh cáiliúil na Cearnóige, agus beidh sé le feiceáil sa Sráidbhaile Domhanda ag Rás Aigéin Volvo. Is áit taispeántais saor in aisce atá sa Sráidbhaile Domhanda, agus beidh sé oscailte fad is a bheidh Féile Rás Aigéin Volvo ar siúl. Tá sé suite ar an bPáirc Theas. Beidh puball OÉ Gaillimh i lár an aonaigh, agus foirgneamh íocónach na hOllscoille, An Chearnóg, mar chroílár den taispeántas, foirgneamh a tógadh i 1845. Laistigh de phuball OÉ Gaillimh beifear ag breathnú ar an todhchaí, agus beidh cur i láthair agus taispeántais idirghníomhacha ar siúl ag léiriú nuálaíocht agus taighde ceannródaíoch a bhfuil cáil idirnáisiúnta bainte amach ag an Ollscoil ina leith. “Is é seo an imeacht spóirt is mó in Éirinn i mbliana, agus is deis iontach atá ann gach a bhfuil go maith faoi Ghaillimh a chur chun cinn”, a deir Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr Jim Browne. “Tháinig beagnach 100,000 cuairteoir chun na Cathrach an uair dheiridh a raibh Rás Aigéin Volvo anseo, bhí os cionn leath acu sin a tháinig as thar lear, agus bhí go leor de na meáin idirnáisiúnta anseo chomh maith. Léiríonn an rannpháirtíocht ollmhór atá againn sna gnéithe deonacha den imeacht agus sna taispeántais, an tábhacht a bhaineann le dul i gcion ar an lucht féachana domhanda a bheidh againn.” Beidh ceithre zón i bpuball OÉ Gaillimh chomh maith le saotharlann na smaointe, áit a mbeidh: Saotharlann na Smaointe:  Seomra as féin sa phuball é seo áit a mbeidh an seó 3D View of the Universe ar siúl gach lá ag 11am, 1pm, 3pm agus 5pm.  Beidh sraith cainteanna gearra ar siúl a bhaineann le: Teicneolaíocht Chúl-líne; Fuinneamh Gaoithe agus Aigéin; Teicneolaíocht Carranna; Teicnící chun Ailse Brollaigh a aimsiú; Teicneolaíocht an Fhóin Chliste; agus Múnlú Ríomhaireachta ar Uiscí an Chósta. An Zón Taiscéalaíochta: Beidh taispeántais idirghníomhacha ar siúl anseo lena n-áirítear, píosaí scannáin ó thurais faoi uisce; ainmhithe mara agus a gcuid tancanna; stáisiún feamainne; taispeántas ar threalamh aigéaneolaíochta. An Zón Nuálaíochta: Beidh taispeántais anseo ar na Teicneolaíochtaí Leighis is nuaí; Teicneolaíocht na Faisnéise; Fuinneamh agus Comhshaol; agus Innealtóireacht na Todhchaí. An Zón Cruthaitheachta: Beidh taispeántais chruthaitheacha, spraíúla anseo lena n-áirítear seiteanna scannáin agus scannáin ó Scoil Scannáin Huston; taispeántais agus drámaí ón gcartlann. An Zón Domhanda: Bain triail as an gCluiche Domhanda Dearbhshamhlach Gnó; Déan do bhealach thart ar an léarscáil Idirghníomhach de Rás Aigéin Volvo; féach ar thaispeántais mhaithe a bhaineann le Gnó agus le Dlí; Bain sult as an dearbhshamhail de Léarscáil 3D an Champais agus neart eile nach hiad. Beidh Lá Teaghlaigh an Alumni ar siúl an 8 Iúil, agus tá cuireadh ag gach céimí de chuid OÉ Gaillimh a bheith i láthair. An Puball Nuálaíochta, Mara agus Glas Beidh OÉ Gaillimh i láthair i gColún na Nuálaíochta agus i gColún na Mara sa Sráidbhaile Domhanda, agus chomh maith leis sin beidh saineolaithe as OÉ Gaillimh le cloisteáil i bpuball na gCainteoirí atá lonnaithe sa Sráidbhaile Domhanda. Beidh Músaem Ríomhairí agus Cumarsáide na hÉireann á aistriú ó DERI in OÉ Gaillimh chuig an Mol Nuálaíochta sa Sráidbhaile Domhanda. Is áis oidhreachta eolaíochta í seo ina bhfeictear an t-iontas a bhaineann le forbairt na teicneolaíochta cumarsáide agus ríomhaireachta ag dul siar go dtí iairiglifí seanda ar aghaidh go dtí Idirlíon an lae inniu. I measc na nithe leictreonacha ar taispeáint tá ríomhairí íocónacha cosúil leis an DEC PDP11, Apple II, Macintosh, IBM PC, ZX81 & Commodore Vic-20. Tá taispeántais ann chomh maith dírithe ar an Óige & an Nuálaíocht, Mná sa Teicneolaíocht, Raidió, Ríomhaireacht Éireannach & limistéar dírithe ar sheanchluichí físeáin lena n-áirítear ‘Pacman’, ‘Space Invaders’ agus ‘Asteroids’. Beidh réimse gníomhaíochtaí eolaíochta agus innealtóireachta ar siúl sa mhol chomh maith a mbainfidh daoine as gach aoisghrúpa tairbhe astu. Ina measc beidh múnlú K’nex, ceardlanna CoderDojo agus club áitiúil na ndéantóirí leictreonacha 091Labs. Is sa mhol a chuirfear tús chomh maith le Tóraíocht Taisce Chlann Shíomóin na Gaillimhe.  Chomh maith leis sin beidh Léacht Scannán Inmarsat i gcomhar le Scoil Scannán & Meán Digiteach Huston OÉ Gaillimh ar siúl Déardaoin, an 5 Iúil i Sráidbhaile an Rása, áit a dtabharfar léargas ar a bhfuil i gceist le bheith i do thuairisceoir spórt guaisbheartaíochta ar bord luamh rásaíochta ar fiú na milliúin dollar é. Faigh tuilleadh eolais faoi rannpháirtíocht na hOllscoile ag http://www.nuigalway.ie/volvo-ocean-race-2012/   -críoch-

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Finance Ministers from Ireland and Canada Address Financial Forum at NUI Galway

Finance Ministers from Ireland and Canada Address Financial Forum at NUI Galway-image

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Financial Crisis: International and National Perspectives Today at NUI Galway (Thursday, 28 June) Irish Minister for Finance Michael Noonan TD, and Canadian Minister for Finance Jim Flaherty MP, addressed a forum entitled ‘Financial Crisis: International and National Perspectives’. The forum was also addressed by Dr Alan Ahearne of NUI Galway and moderated by Professor John McHale. The event coincides with the awarding of an honorary degree on Minster Flaherty on Friday, 29 June, as well as a meeting of the Irish Fiscal Advisory Council on campus. This event is being held at a critical time in the financial crisis in Europe, with markets focused on new proposals for a revamped eurozone to be discussed at the EU Summit in Brussels. This forum brings expert opinion into the public domain on where the global financial system and the euro currently stand and on what it all means for the Irish economy.  The event also marks the establishment of the Centre for the Study of Irish Economic Policy at NUI Galway. On speaking about the crisis in the euro and implications for the Irish economy, Dr Ahearne, Director of the new Centre said: “The US is a proper fully-fledged monetary union, as is Canada. But the eurozone is not; it is a collection of distinct sovereign political and financial systems that share a common currency and a crucial underlying cause of the crisis in the euro is the lack a banking union in Europe, which has resulted in a toxic interrelationship between State finances and the banking sector.” Dr Ahearne added: "EU leaders need to put an end to this terrible game of dominos that has gone from Greece to Ireland to Portugal to Spain and this week to Cyprus. The euro area as a whole is currently solvent, but unless growth resumes then the euro area is heading toward insolvency." Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan TD: “The Centre for the Study of Irish Economic Policy at NUI Galway is very welcome addition to the Irish academic landscape and I have no doubt that the Centre will play an important role in informing the policy debate in key policy areas for Ireland. The Irish Economy has returned to growth in 2011 with continued growth forecast for 2012, our public finances are under control and our banks are recapitalized and restructured to focus on lending into the real economy. The financial crisis has severely impacted on Ireland and the Irish people have made huge sacrifices to bring our public finances under control and return the economy to growth. We must continue to take the necessary steps to position the economy so that we can take advantage of global recovery as it emerges.” The Minister added: “However, significant challenges remain and the ongoing uncertainty in the eurozone is weighing heavily on Ireland’s economic recovery. Decisive action is needed to solve the current crisis and to restore stability and investor confidence in Europe.” Speaking on the Irish economy, Dr Ahearne, said: “The Government is right to argue that not all the proceeds from the sale of state assets should go to paying down debt. A judicious use of some of these proceeds to incentivise private investment in certain sectors and regions of the country will help boost the domestic economy.” In his remarks, Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty noted Ireland and Canada share the same constituency at the IMF and World Bank so the two countries work together closely and look forward to continuing to do so. He highlighted Canada's record and the long term Economic Action Plan it continues to implement to create jobs, growth and long term prosperity. He noted, however, that Canada is part of the world economy, and many obstacles to global recovery remain. “I am convinced that the countries of the eurozone understand fully the kind of measures that need to be taken, and I urge them to adopt these as quickly as possible,” he said. “In spite of serious challenges, however, I believe that, given the political will, the necessary decisions will be made, the major difficulties will be resolved and the global recovery will strengthen.” ENDS

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New DNA Test to Help in Global Effort to Control TB

New DNA Test to Help in Global Effort to Control TB-image

Friday, 29 June 2012

A new diagnostic DNA test has been developed by a team at the National University of Ireland Galway to help in the global effort to control tuberculosis (TB). The rapid laboratory test allows for the identification of the exact bacteria causing a patient’s TB which will give valuable information for their treatment. According to World Health Organisation data, tuberculosis (TB) is second only to HIV/AIDS as the greatest killer worldwide due to a single infectious agent. In 2010, 8.8 million people fell ill with TB and 1.4 million died from TB, with over 95% of cases and deaths in developing countries. In humans, TB is caused by a group of eight bacteria collectively known as the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTC). National University of Ireland Galway’s Molecular Diagnostics Research Group has developed and validated a new assay or laboratory test called SeekTB to identify all members of the MTC. Dr Thomas Barry at the University, along with his colleagues Dr Justin O’Grady and Dr Kate Reddington, realised there was a need to rapidly and accurately detect and identify each member of the MTC for better treatment of TB. “The optimal patient treatment can be different, depending which of the eight bacteria are causing the TB, as some of these bacteria are naturally resistant to a commonly used anti-TB drugs”, explains Dr Barry. The new test, called SeekTB, could also prove useful to centralised clinical reference labs for the purposes of tracking and conducting epidemiological studies on the various mycobacterium species comprising the complex. “Identifying the specific member of the MTC is currently not routinely performed in testing laboratories and therefore it is unknown what the true impact each member of the MTC has on the global TB epidemic,” says Dr Barry, who lectures in Microbiology at National University of Ireland Galway. The advance in what is a global battle against TB, is the result of international co-operation. The novel technology was initially validated by testing a large number of previously isolated MTC bacteria provided by Professor Dick van Soolingen,  Bilthoven in the Netherlands and Dr Stefan Niemann, Borstel in Germany. Subsequently, through collaborations with Professor Alimuddin Zumla and Dr Matthew Bates at University College London, SeekTB was used to successfully analyse patient samples from Lusaka in Zambia to demonstrate the technology’s suitability. The results of this analysis demonstrated the rapidity, the test only takes 1.5-3 hours to perform, validity and robustness of SeekTB. In its current format, SeekTB is likely to be predominantly used in central testing laboratories, in Africa for example, on culture positive TB patient samples to guide appropriate treatment and control measures. “Ideally, in the future, SeekTB could be used directly on patient samples with the test configured onto a handheld machine for use at point-of-care in resource poor settings. This could be a huge benefit to medical care provision in remote areas, however, it will likely take years of research and development to achieve such a goal,” concluded Dr Barry who acknowledged National University of Ireland Galway and the Thomas Crawford Hayes award for funding this work. The research has recently been published in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology and PLoS ONE. -ends-

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NUI Galway Honours Four Outstanding Individuals with Honorary Degrees

NUI Galway Honours Four Outstanding Individuals with Honorary Degrees-image

Friday, 29 June 2012

Four outstanding individuals were conferred with honorary degrees from NUI Galway today (Friday, 29 June). Those honoured were playwright and novelist, Sebastian Barry; The New York Times opinion columnist, Maureen Dowd; Executive Vice President, The Coca-Cola Company, Irial Finan; and Canadian Finance Minister,  Jim Flaherty MP. Speaking on the announcement, NUI Galway President, Dr Jim Browne said:  “NUI Galway is fortunate to be associated with many outstanding honorary graduates throughout its history and those being honoured this year form a particularly distinguished group. Each one has made an outstanding and distinctive contribution to the diverse fields of literature, journalism, business, public administration and government. NUI Galway is very pleased to be in a position to recognise these exceptional individuals.” Sebastian Barry was conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Literature (honoris causa). Born in Dublin in 1955, he began to write in 1977, publishing a number of books of fiction and poetry, and in 1986 became increasingly involved in theatre work. He published a novel The Whereabouts of Eneas McNulty (1998), followed by Annie Dunne (2002) and then two Man Booker Prize shortlisted books – A Long Long Way (2005) and The Secret Scripture (2008). The latter earned him the Costa Book of the Year award, the Independent Booksellers’ Prize, and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, among others. Barry’s most recent novel, On Canaan’s Side, was also longlisted for the Booker, and shortlisted for the Walter Scott Prize, the Irish Book Awards and the Galaxy International Author of the Year. He has written twelve plays, among them the award-winning The Steward of Christendom (1995), Our Lady of Sligo (1998), and The Pride of Parnell Street (2007). He won the Ireland Fund Literary Award in 1997. He has been Writer in Association at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin and was Heimbold Visiting Professor at Villanova University in 2006. He received an honorary doctorate from the University of East Anglia in 2010, and was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. His work is translated into more than thirty-five languages. Maureen Dowd was conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Literature (honoris causa). She is a 1999 Pulitzer Prize winner, in the commentary category, for her “unsparing columns on the hypocrisies involved in the Lewinsky affair and the effort to impeach President Clinton”. She was appointed a columnist of The New York Times’s Op-Ed page in January 1995 (where she joined in 1983). Previously, she served as a correspondent in its Washington bureau since August 1986. There, she covered two Presidential campaigns and served as White House correspondent, gaining a wide following of admirers and imitators for her witty, incisive and acerbic portraits of the powerful. She also wrote a column, "On Washington”, for The New York Times Magazine. She began her career in 1974 as an editorial assistant for the Washington Star where she later became a sports columnist, metropolitan reporter, and feature writer. A Pulitzer Prize finalist for national reporting in 1992, Ms Dowd received the Breakthrough Award from ‘Women, Men and Media’ at Columbia University in 1991 and a Matrix Award from New York Women in Communications in 1994. She was named one of Glamour’s Women of the Year for 1996 and won the Damon Runyon award in 2000 for outstanding contributions to journalism. Dowd is the author of two bestselling books Bushworld:  Enter at Your Own Risk (2004) and Are Men Necessary? When Sexes Collide (2005) Born in Washington, D.C., on 14 January, 1952, Miss Dowd received a BA degree in English from Catholic University (Washington) in 1973. Irian Finan was conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa). He is Executive Vice President, The Coca-Cola Company and President of Bottling Investments responsible for managing a multi-billion dollar bottling business, Bottling Investments Group (BIG), which has operations on four continents (South America, Europe, Africa and Asia), with revenues of over $8 billion and employs over 85,000 people. Additionally, he is responsible for stewarding The Company’s Equity Investments and leading Global Supply Chain. Irial has over 29 years experience in The Coca-Cola System. From 2001 to 2003, he served as Chief Executive Officer of Coca-Cola HBC, during which time he managed the merger integration of Coca-Cola Beverages plc and Hellenic Bottling SA, and led the combined company's operations in 26 countries. Irial joined the Coca-Cola Company in 2004 as President, Bottling Investments and Supply Chain and was named Executive Vice President of the Company in October 2004. From 1995 to 1999, he was managing director of Molino Beverages, with responsibility for expanding markets, including the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Romania, Moldova, Russia and Nigeria. Prior to that role, Irial worked in several markets across Europe. From 1991 to 1993 he served as managing director of Coca-Cola Bottlers Ulster, Ltd., based in Belfast. He was finance director, Coca-Cola Bottlers Ireland, Ltd., based in Dublin from 1984 to 1990. Irial serves on the board of directors of Coca-Cola FEMSA, Coca-Cola HBC, Coca-Cola Central Japan, the Supervisory Board of CCE AG (Germany), Smurfit Kappa Group, and the American Ireland Fund. He also serves as a non-executive director for Co-operation Ireland and NUI Galway Foundation. Irial holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from NUI Galway and is an Associate (later Fellow) of the Institute of Chartered Management Accountants. Minister Jim Flaherty MP was conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa). He is a third-term Member of Parliament for Whitby–Oshawa (Ontario). He serves as Canada’s Minister of Finance and Minister Responsible for the Greater Toronto Area. He is a Governor of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. As Minister of Finance he is an ex-officio member of all Cabinet Committees. Minister Flaherty was recently awarded Euromoney Magazine’s Finance Minister of the Year award. Euromoney credited him with enhancing Canada’s reputation for sound fiscal policy while taking full account of social justice and overseeing a strong regulatory regime that has kept the financial sector out of chaos. He has also been described as a pillar in both the G-7 and the G-20. In 2010, Minister Flaherty was chair of the G-7 Finance Ministers and chair of the annual Commonwealth Finance Ministers Meeting. Previously, for more than 10 years, he served as the Member of Provincial Parliament for Whitby–Ajax (Ontario). He served as Deputy Premier and Minister of Finance, Attorney General and Minister of Labour. He graduated from Princeton University cum laude and then graduated from Osgoode Hall Law School. He was called to the Bar in Ontario with honours and practised law for more than 20 years before being elected to public office. These four graduands join the ranks of previous honorary alumni which include, among many others, Nelson Mandela, Hilary Clinton, Christy O’Connor Snr and Jnr, Enya, Anjelica Huston, Fionnuala Flanagan and Margaret Atwood. For more information and a video on the Honorary Conferrings click -ends-

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Immortal Marine Invertebrate Helps Stem Cell Scientist

Immortal Marine Invertebrate Helps Stem Cell Scientist-image

Friday, 29 June 2012

Dr Uri Frank announced as a recipient of SFI Principal Investigator Programme Award A leading stem cell scientist at NUI Galway, Dr Uri Frank, was today announced as a recipient of an SFI Principal Investigator Programme Award by Richard Bruton, TD, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation. A native Irish marine invertebrate, with amazing powers of regeneration, is the focus of Dr Frank’s research with NUI Galway’s Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI). Hydractinia echinata has the power to regenerate any lost body part throughout its life, can clone itself, does not age biologically, and in theory – lives forever. A relative of jellyfish, sea anemones and corals, this tiny creature is perfect for understanding the role of stem cells in development, ageing and disease. “Hydractinia has some stem cells which remain at an embryonic-like stage throughout its life, so the potential for research is immense”, explains Dr Frank. “Not only that, but it is small and translucent and so enables the observation of experimentally labelled stem cells in the living animal.” Dr Frank and his team have already made a discovery which may have important implications in understanding normal development, congenital defects and cancer biology. “Recently, we have been able to demonstrate a hitherto unknown link between heat shock proteins and Wnt signalling in Hydractinia stem cells. These two cellular signalling mechanisms are known to play important roles in development and disease, so they have been widely, though separately, studied. We have shown that they talk to each other, providing a new perspective for all scientists in this field,” says Dr Frank. Also of interest to Dr Frank’s research team is the evolution of animals and humankind. Scientists believe that all animals living today, including invertebrates and humans, are the descendants of a single common ancestor that lived hundreds of millions of years before the times of the dinosaurs. Therefore, invertebrate stem cells should be very similar to their human counterparts and studying them may provide information on human stem cells. “It sounds gruesome, but if Hydractina has its head bitten off, it simply grows another one within a few days using its embryonic or ‘pluripotent’ stem cells. So why don’t humans keep their pluripotent cells as adults? Why do we lose them when we age?”, asks Dr Frank. Dr Frank’s SFI-funded project is an example of how basic research on model organisms can contribute to human health. By discovering things that are difficult to study in more complex animals, it complements work done on mammals, is informative, cheap and free of ethical considerations. ENDS   Photo by Dr Yuki Katsukura

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