Friday, 24 October 2008

Researchers at the Irish Centre for Gerontology, NUI Galway have co-published the results from the first Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE). The objective of the study is to identify the key issues for people aged 50 and over in Ireland which will help inform policy makers, particularly regarding the financial, health and social inclusion aspects for an ageing economy. According to Dr Brenda Gannon, Deputy Director of the Irish Centre for Social Gerontology at NUI Galway: "By 2021 the proportion of the total population aged 65 and over in Ireland will have grown significantly from the current level of 11 per cent to an estimated 15 per cent. The force of this demographic change will impact on all facets of society, particularly public pensions and the health service. This survey has provided up-to-date knowledge on the health care needs and financial position of older people in Ireland. For the first time, we now have data for Ireland on people aged 50 years and over to compare with other European countries". Key findings regarding healthcare use were that 80 per cent of people aged 50-59 had seen their GP at least once in the last 12 months, compared to 93 per cent of those aged 70 and over. One in five people aged 70-79 had one inpatient stay in hospital in the previous 12 months, with many more aged 80 and over have overnight hospital inpatient visits. Other key findings include: Physical Health: one third of individuals aged 50-59 have a long term illness, this increases to over 40 per cent for older age groups. Mental Health: one in three females aged 50-59 have felt sad or depressed in the last month, this proportion is higher among the older age groups. Financial worries: 11 per cent of women have great difficulty in making ends meet compared to 7 per cent of males. Care needs: over one third of people aged 70-79 felt that the care they received for daily activities did not meet their needs adequately. Children: 85 per cent of people aged 50 and over had children and of those, at least one in five children lived in the same household, one in ten lived nearby and 15 per cent lived abroad. The second part of the survey will begin in 2009, and will include interviews with the same individuals on similar aspects of their lifestyle. For further in formation on the research, which was carried out in conjunction with UCD, visit www.icsg.ie -ends-

Friday, 24 October 2008

Two first-year engineering students at NUI Galway have been presented with scholarships by Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Mary Coughlan T.D.. Emma Tarpey from Monaleen, Limerick and Máire Kane from Dangan, Galway, both received a Science Foundation Ireland/DELL Scholarship – Young Women in Engineering 2008. Emma Tarpey is studying Civil Engineering and Máire Kane is studying Undenominated Engineering. Both will benefit from an annual award of €2,000 for three years and a DELL notebook computer. In addition, to help develop their careers, they will have the assistance and support of an active researcher as a mentor, and one summer's research-internship in an academic research laboratory or an industry R&D laboratory. The Scholarship aims to attract and encourage more high-achieving young women into third-level education in engineering disciplines. Now in its third year, the scheme focuses on young women entering designated engineering degree programmes. NUI Galway has a long tradition of encouraging female engineers; Alice Perry graduated from the University in 1906, becoming the first woman with a degree in engineering in Ireland or Great Britain, if not the world. Professor Padraic O'Donoghue, Dean of the College of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway, said: "We are very proud of Máire and Emma and delighted that their success is recognised through the prestigious SFI/Dell awards. The engineering courses on offer at NUI Galway attract a very high caliber of student. The ethos of the College of Engineering and Informatics is to encourage students to develop their innovative and creative skills and also provides an environment which is internationally recognised as student centered with emphasis on the student as a partner in the learning process". Applications for this SFI scholarship were received from eligible candidates nationwide and were extremely competitive, with a total of ten awarded. Specific criteria for applications include the achievement of an A1 or A2 grade at Higher Level in the Leaving Certificate Examination in Mathematics or Applied Mathematics and Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Technical Drawing, Engineering or Construction Studies. -ends-

Thursday, 23 October 2008

A public lecture by Muslim women's rights scholar and activist, Dr Norani Othman, will mark the formal launch of the Global Women's Studies Programme at NUI Galway on Wednesday, 29 October. Guided by the ethics of international human rights, the Global Women's Studies Programme undertakes teaching and research to deepen understanding of the gender dimensions of global issues such as conflict and peace, global economic crisis, religious fundamentalism, human trafficking and disease pandemics. Dr Othman is Associate Professor and Senior Fellow at the Institute of Malaysian and International Studies, and her lecture will be entitled 'Muslim women's human rights: national and international dimensions'. A founding member of a highly regarded Muslim women's non-governmental organisation Sisters in Islam Forum Malaysia, Dr Othman is no stranger to controversy. Her book Muslim Women and the Challenge of Islamic Extremism was recently banned by the Malaysian authorities. According to Dr Nata Duvvury, who co-ordinates the Global Women's Studies Programme with Dr Niamh Reilly at NUI Galway: "We look forward to having such an internationally respected and renowned expert as Dr Othman officially launch the Global Women's Studies Programme at NUI Galway. The Programme is unique in Ireland because it focuses on exploring women's experiences of globalisation from a human rights perspective". Dr Niamh Reilly added: "For example, when states cut social spending women often bear the brunt by increasing their unpaid caring work; the vast majority of trafficked people are women and girls; worldwide, women are becoming HIV positive at a faster rate than men; in situations where fundamentalist politics take hold, the behaviour of women and girls is the first target of repressive action; women rarely initiate conflicts but bear the greatest cost of its catastrophic disruption to daily life, and are generally excluded from post-conflict decision making". Part of the School of Political Science and Sociology, The Global Women s Studies Programme builds on a long-established tradition of Women's Studies at NUI Galway. It currently has over 40 students, which include the first intake of new B.A. Connect with Women's Studies and the M.A. in Gender, Globalisation and Rights. There are also more than ten Ph.D. students researchers in its Gender Research Group. Dr Othman's visit is co-sponsored by the Development Education and Research Network at NUI Galway. For further information about the Launch of the Global Women's Studies Programme and the Public Lecture which takes place at 6pm on Wednesday, 29 October, in Áras Moyola at NUI Galway, contact Gillian Browne on 091 493450 or email gillian.browne@nuigalway.ie -ends-

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Over 4,000 students will graduate from NUI Galway during the Autumn Conferring Ceremonies which take place from 17-24 October. NUI Galway will also confer four Honorary Masters Degrees during the ceremonies on: Galway hurling legends, brothers Seán and Jimmy Duggan; University soccer supporter, Tony Corcoran; and Chemistry technician, John Muldoon. Seán and Jimmy Duggan will be recognised for their lifetime contribution to Galway hurling. Tony Corcoran will be honoured for his marvellous service over several decades to the University's Soccer Club. John Muldoon will be honoured for his contribution to Chemistry at NUI Galway and to community life. A further honourary degree will be given to Sarah Wairimu for her work with children in Kenya, many of whose parents died of AIDS. Speaking ahead of the ceremonies, NUI Galway President Dr James J. Browne, said: "On behalf of NUI Galway, I congratulate all our graduands and extend a warm welcome to their parents, families and friends. We are delighted to acknowledge their outstanding achievements and wish them continued success in the future. The University is also very pleased to be associated with the exceptional individuals on whom honorary Masters degrees will be conferred at these week-long ceremonies". The annual Autumn Conferring Ceremonies began at NUI Galway with the Adult and Continuing Education ceremonies, where awards were conferred on 892 students who completed their certificate, diploma and degree courses at many locations across the country. -ends-

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

The Community Education Centre, NUI Galway warmly congratulates all students awarded the Diploma in Arts: Community and Family Studies, following the successful completion of the first two years of a four year (part-time) degree programme in Community and Family Studies. This new BA programme is one of the first such programmes in Ireland to provide adult learners with the opportunity to study community and family work policy and practice through the medium of distance learning. The attainment of the Diploma in Arts: Community and Family Studies marks the mid point of this Degree cycle and is testament to the effort and commitment of the students who graduated on Friday, 17 October, 2008. Speaking at the conferring ceremony, President of NUI Galway, Dr James J. Browne, said: "This flexible blended-learning degree programme builds on the University's track record in Community Development and now provides a significant opportunity for all of you graduating tonight to progress into degree level studies in the Social Sciences." The Community Education Centre is a core component of Adult and Continuing Education at NUI Galway. Seamus O'Grady, Director of Adult and Continuing Education highlights the ever increasing significance of education in light of the fundamental challenges now facing both our economy and society, and more particularly the role of educational institutions in assisting communities to respond to these challenges. "Over the past 30 years Adult and Continuing Education has actively supported community development, this BA programme is designed to meet identified needs, and build on the University's track record of community engagement and the promotion of life-long learning. Global trends have a local effect and the research strengths of the University, particularly in the field of Political Science and Sociology, can assist families and communities to tackle new and existing challenges" he said. Focussing on key areas such as community development, family support, youth work, childcare, health and general political and socio-economic studies, the BA in Community and Family Studies seeks to respond to the requirements of our ever changing society, and also to the requirements of a broad spectrum of adult learners seeking recognised qualifications in formal education. -Ends-

Monday, 20 October 2008

NUI Galway alumni from the classes of 1978 and 1979 have been asked to upload their photos and memories to a new website ahead of a reunion on Saturday, 22 November. The reunion is being billed as an opportunity to meet up with old friends, listen to talks from favourite lecturers and alumni, and view a photo exhibition. In addition, the event will feature a buffet in the Student's Union Bar followed by a night of music from musicians popular in Galway in the late 1970s. The reunion is being led by former Student's Union President, Brendan Smith, who now works with the Digital Enterprise Research Institute at NUI Galway. According to Brendan: "We were part of the generation that finally benefited from third-level state grants and free post-primary education. With the arrival of the multi-national corporations, the introduction of new technologies, and fierce public debates on family planning other once taboo social issues, the country was experiencing unprecedented change. The students of this era were true pioneers being both recipients and initiators of this new Ireland". For more information on the reunion and submitting photos to the website http://www.ucggrads7879ers.blogspot.com/ contact Brendan (Speedie) Smith at bspeedie@eircom.net or the NUI Galway Alumni Office on 091 493750. -ends-

Monday, 20 October 2008

Cúig Mháistreacht Oinigh le Bronnadh, agus Céim á Bronnadh ar 4,000 Mac Léinn Bainfidh os cionn 4,000 mac léinn céim amach in OÉ Gaillimh sna Searmanais Bronnta Céime a bheidh ar bun idir 17-24 Deireadh Fómhair. Bronnfaidh OÉ Gaillimh Céim Mháistreachta Oinigh ar na daoine seo a leanas: Laochra iomána na Gaillimhe, na deartháireacha Seán agus Jimmy Duggan; Tacadóir de chuid fhoireann sacair na hOllscoile, Tony Corcoran; bunaitheoir árais leanaí sa Chéinia, Sarah Wairimu; agus an teicneoir Ceimice, John Muldoon. Tabharfar aitheantas do Sheán agus do Jimmy Duggan as a bhfuil déanta acu i rith a saoil ar son na hiomána i nGaillimh. Tabharfar onóir do Tony Corcoran as an tseirbhís iontach atá tugtha aige le blianta fada anuas do Chumann Sacair na hOllscoile. Táthar ag tabhairt aitheantais do Sarah Wairimu as a cuid oibre le leanaí sa Chéinia, leanaí ar bhásaigh go leor dá gcuid tuismitheoirí den ghalar SEIF. Tabharfar onóir do John Muldoon as a shaothar ar son na Ceimice in OÉ Gaillimh agus ar son an phobail. Ag labhairt dó sular thosaigh na searmanais, dúirt Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr James J. Browne: "Thar ceann OÉ Gaillimh, déanaim comhghairdeas lenár gcéimithe ar fad agus tá fearadh na fáilte roimh a dtuismitheoirí, a dteaghlaigh agus a gcairde. Tá ríméad orainn aitheantas a thabhairt dá gcuid éachtaí agus guímid gach rath orthu san am atá le teacht. Tá an Ollscoil thar a bheith sásta chomh maith go mbeidh sí luaite le cúigear eisceachtúil a mbronnfar céim Mháistreachta oinigh orthu ag na searmanais seo a mhairfidh go ceann seachtaine." Cuirfear tús le Searmanais bhliantúla Bronnta Céimeanna an Fhómhair in OÉ Gaillimh leis na searmanais Oideachais Aosaigh agus Leantaigh, áit a mbronnfar dámhachtainí ar 892 mac léinn a chríochnaigh a gcúrsaí céime, dioplóma agus teastais in ionaid éagsúla ar fud na tíre. - críoch -

Sunday, 19 October 2008

Beidh Aonach Earcaíochta Céimithe OÉ Gaillimh ar siúl i gceann coicíse ar an 29 Deireadh Fómhair, agus is léir ó shuirbhé a rinneadh go bhfuil éileamh leanúnach ar chéimithe na hOllscoile. Léiríonn figiúirí ó Shuirbhé na gCéimithe 2007 go bhfuil an céatadán de chéimithe a bhfuil bunchéimeanna faighte acu agus atá fós ag cuardach oibre cothrom le 2.1% - céatadán íseal go maith i gcomparáid le hollscoileanna eile sa tír. Beidh breis agus 60 cuideachta ón saol gnó agus ón tionscal i láthair ag Aonach Earcaíochta Céimithe OÉ Gaillimh a bheidh ar siúl in Áras na Mac Léinn, Dé Céadaoin, 29 Deireadh Fómhair, ó 12.30 - 4.30pm. Beidh deiseanna ag an imeacht seo do mhic léinn ó gach disciplín, lena n-áirítear innealtóireacht, seirbhísí airgeadais, cuntasaíocht, comhairleoireacht agus gairmeacha eile. Beidh ionadaithe ó na cuideachtaí is mó ó thionscal na bhfeistí leighis, Boston Scientific agus Medtronic, i láthair ar an lá freisin. Chomh maith leis sin, beidh ionadaithe ó na príomhbhainc in Éirinn i láthair – Banc Uladh, Bank of Scotland agus IIB Bank ina measc. Dóibh siúd ar spéis leo gairm sa réimse comhairliúcháin – beidh ionadaithe i láthair freisin ó cheann de na gnólachtaí comhairleoireachta is mó in Éirinn – Accenture. Beidh ionadaithe i láthair freisin ón earnáil TF agus innealtóireachta trí chuideachtaí áitiúla agus náisiúnta lena n-áirítear SIAC, SAP agus IBM. Dúirt John Hannon, Ceann Ionad Forbartha Gairmeacha OÉ Gaillimh go bhfuil "an-éileamh ar chéimithe OÉ Gaillimh go fóill, rud a léiríonn go bhfuil siad breá ábalta dul i mbun fostaíochta. Cé gur cinnte go gcruthaíonn an timpeallacht reatha gheilleagrach dúshláin dúinn, is eol dúinn go n-earcóidh os cionn 50% d'fhostóirí céimithe as disciplíní éagsúla mar gheall ar an taithí iomlánaíoch agus na scileanna inaistrithe atá acu. Tá scileanna inaistrithe éagsúla ann – modúil a ndearnadh staidéar orthu, socrúcháin oibre, obair dheonach, clubanna nó cumainn". Bunaithe ar an mbéim ar fad atá ar scileanna inaistrithe cheap OÉ Gaillimh Oifigeach Scileanna Inaistrithe san Ionad Forbartha Gairmeacha. Cabhróidh an tOifigeach seo le mic léinn cur lena gcumas fostaíocht a aimsiú dóibh féin trí chabhrú leo machnamh a dhéanamh ar na róil agus ar na hearnálacha fostaíochta a bhféadfadh spéis a bheith acu iontu. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag Louise Ryan, Oifigeach Fostaíochta in Ionad Forbartha Gairmeacha OÉ Gaillimh leo siúd a bheidh ag freastal ar an Aonach, "Beidh na céadta céimithe eile i láthair ag an Aonach agus is é an aidhm chéanna a bheidh acu ar fad – fostaíocht fheiliúnach a aimsiú – dá bhrí sin, ba cheart go mbeadh gach duine in ann dul i bhfeidhm orthu. Bí cinnte go mbeidh tú ann luath sa lá ionas go mbainfidh tú an méid tairbhe agus is féidir as na seirbhísí atá ar fáil agus ionas go bhfaighidh tú deis labhairt le hionadaithe ón oiread cuideachtaí agus is féidir". Tá liosta iomlán de na cuideachtaí a bheidh i láthair le fáil ag www.nuigalway.ie/careers - críoch -

Sunday, 19 October 2008

With just two weeks to go to the NUI Galway Graduate Recruitment Fair on 29 October, a survey has shown continued demand for graduates of the University. Figures from the NUI Galway 2007 Graduate Destinations Survey indicate that the proportion of primary degree graduates seeking employment, at only 2.1%, remained one of the best in Ireland. Over 60 major companies from business and industry will feature at the NUI Galway Graduate Recruitment Fair in Áras na Mac Léinn/Student Centre on Wednesday, 29 October, from 12.30 - 4.30pm. The event will showcase opportunities for students from all disciplines, with a diverse number of fields such as engineering, financial services, accountancy, consultancy and many other professions. Major players in the medical device industry will attend such as Boston Scientific and Medtronic. Ireland's main banks will also be present including Ulster Bank, Bank of Scotland and IIB. For those interested in a career in consultancy - one of Ireland's largest consultancy firms, Accenture will also be represented. The IT and engineering sectors will also have representation through local and national companies including SIAC, SAP and IBM. According to John Hannon, Head of NUI Galway's Career Development Centre: "Demand for NUI Galway graduates remains extremely high, reflecting their excellence in terms of employability. While the current economic climate does of course present challenges, we are finding that over 50% of employers will recruit graduates from across the disciplines because of the all round experience and transferable skills they have gained. Transferable skills can include modules studied and also time spent in work placement, volunteering roles and clubs or societies". This focus on transferable skills has seen NUI Galway appoint a Transferable Skills Officer at its Career Development Centre. The Officer will further enable students to enhance their employability by helping them envisage the many roles and sectors of employment which they might be suitable. Louise Ryan, Employment Officer at NUI Galway's Career Development Centre has some advice for those attending the Fair: "There will be hundreds of other graduates there with the same aim as you - to find meaningful employment - so be prepared to make a good impression. Make sure you are there early so you can make the most of all the services available and get to talk to as many companies as possible". A full list of exhibitors is available from www.nuigalway.ie/careers -ends-

Friday, 17 October 2008

An award-winning bilingual book celebrating the first ten years of the Irish language television station TG4 will be launched today (Friday, 17 October) at NUI Galway. TG4@10: Deich mBliana de TG4 - Ten Years of TG4 is the title of the book to be launched in Aras na Gaeilge, NUI Galway by Michael D. Higgins T.D. who, as Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, gave the go-ahead for TG4. The station first came on air as Teilifís na Gaeilge (TnaG) in 1996. The book is published by Cló Iar-Chonnachta and edited by Dr Eithne O'Connell of Dublin City University and Dr John Walsh and Professor Gearóid Denvir of NUI Galway. It is a collection of essays, complete with summaries in Irish, written by both academics and those working in the television industry. Topics under discussion include the historical and political background to the founding of the station, TG4's language policy, the social and economic impact of the station and the specific challenges of broadcasting in Irish as well as the use of immigrant languages and English. The authors are drawn for all parts of the island, from the Waterford Gaeltacht to Portstewart, and from Dublin to Connemara and the main dialects of Irish are all represented. "We felt sure that this book will make an impact", said one of the editors, NUI Galway lecturer, Dr John Walsh. Indeed just last week, the book was awarded an Oireachtas na Gaeilge literary prize of €1,000 for a substantial pioneering work in Irish. "The essays are based on a seminar at NUI Galway organised with DCU in 2006 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of TG4, and the book is likely to be appeal to anyone interested in the media or in language and broadcasting issues. We made a point of having full Irish/English interpreting services on offer at the seminar and have translated sections of the book into English as well so as to make it accessible to those who are interested but don't have great Irish language skills." The book launch will take place at 6pm today, Friday 17 October, in Aras na Gaeilge, NUI Galway. An award-winning bilingual book celebrating the first ten years of the Irish language television station TG4 will be launched today (Friday, 17 October) at NUI Galway. TG4@10: Deich mBliana de TG4 - Ten Years of TG4 is the title of the book to be launched in Aras na Gaeilge, NUI Galway by Michael D. Higgins T.D. who, as Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, gave the go-ahead for TG4. The station first came on air as Teilifís na Gaeilge (TnaG) in 1996. The book is published by Cló Iar-Chonnachta and edited by Dr Eithne O'Connell of Dublin City University and Dr John Walsh and Professor Gearóid Denvir of NUI Galway. It is a collection of essays, complete with summaries in Irish, written by both academics and those working in the television industry. Topics under discussion include the historical and political background to the founding of the station, TG4's language policy, the social and economic impact of the station and the specific challenges of broadcasting in Irish as well as the use of immigrant languages and English. The authors are drawn for all parts of the island, from the Waterford Gaeltacht to Portstewart, and from Dublin to Connemara and the main dialects of Irish are all represented. "We felt sure that this book will make an impact", said one of the editors, NUI Galway lecturer, Dr John Walsh. Indeed just last week, the book was awarded an Oireachtas na Gaeilge literary prize of €1,000 for a substantial pioneering work in Irish. "The essays are based on a seminar at NUI Galway organised with DCU in 2006 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of TG4, and the book is likely to be appeal to anyone interested in the media or in language and broadcasting issues. We made a point of having full Irish/English interpreting services on offer at the seminar and have translated sections of the book into English as well so as to make it accessible to those who are interested but don't have great Irish language skills." The book launch will take place at 6pm today, Friday 17 October, in Aras na Gaeilge, NUI Galway. -Ends-

Friday, 17 October 2008

- Deich mBliana de TG4 - Seolfar leabhar dátheangach inniú (Dé hAoine, 17ú Deireadh Fómhair) in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh i gcomóradh ar na chéad deich mbliana de TG4, an stáisiún teilifíse Gaeilge. TG4@10: Deich mBliana de TG4/Ten Years of TG4 is teideal don leabhar, atá á fhoilsiú ag Cló Iar-Chonnachta. Is iad an Dr Eithne O'Connell, Ollscoil Chathair Bhaile Átha Cliath, an Dr John Walsh, OÉ Gaillimh agus an tOllamh Gearóid Denvir, OÉ Gaillimh, eagarthóirí an leabhair. An Teachta Dála de chuid Pháirtí an Lucht Oibre i nGaillimh, Micheál D. Ó hUiginn, a sheolfaidh an leabhar ag ócáid in Áras na Gaeilge, OÉ Gaillimh. Ba é an Teachta Ó hUiginn, agus é ina Aire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta, Gaeltachta agus Oileán, a cheadaigh go mbunófaí Teilifís na Gaeilge i 1996. Bailiúchán aistí le daoine aitheanta, idir lucht léinn agus lucht thionscal na teilifíse, atá sa leabhar. Pléitear gnéithe de stair na teilifíse, polasaí teanga TG4, tionchar sóisialta agus eacnamaíoch an stáisiúin, na dúshláin a bhaineann le craoladh trí mheán na Gaeilge agus úsáid teangacha inimirceach. Baineann na húdair le gach cearn den tír, ó Ghaeltacht na Rinne i bPort Láirge go Port Stíobhairt agus ó Chonamara go Baile Átha Cliath. Foilsítear achoimrí dátheangacha de na haistí ar fad agus eolas eile i mBéarla. "Creidimid go mbeidh tábhacht ag baint leis an saothar seo", a dúirt an Dr John Walsh, duine d'eagarthóirí an leabhair, a ghnóthaigh ceann de dhuaiseanna liteartha Oireachtas na Gaeilge an mhí seo. "Bunaíodh é ar sheimineár a reáchtáil in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh i 2006 le Ollscoil Bhaile Átha Cliath chun 10 mbliana de TG4 a chéiliúradh agus bhí sé i gceist againn riamh go bhfoilseofaí na himeachtaí. Táimid cinnte go rachaidh an leabhar seo go mór chun tairbhe na ndaoine sin atá ag déanamh staidéir ar na meáin chumarsáide Ghaeilge, agus go mbainfidh lucht déanta polasaí craolacháin agus teanga tairbhe as chomh maith. Bhí cur chuige dátheangach againn le linn an tseimineáir féin trí chóras ateangaireachta a úsáid, agus is cúis áthais dúinn cuid den chur chuige céanna a úsáid sa leabhar", a dúirt an Dr Walsh. Seolfaidh Micheál D. Ó hUiginn an leabhar um thráthnóna (Dé hAoine, 17ú Deireadh Fómhair) in Áras na Gaeilge, Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh ag a 6.00i.n. Breis eolais: www.cic.ie -Críoch-

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Bronnfar scoláireachtaí ar fiú €119,000 ar an iomlán iad ar mhic léinn chéad bhliana in OÉ Gaillimh mar aitheantas ar na pointí arda a ghnóthaigh siad i Scrúdú na hArdteistiméireachta. Mar chuid de shearmanas bliantúil na hOllscoile Scoláireachtaí Iontrála a bhronnadh, bronnfar scoláireachtaí ar fiú €1,700 iad mar aon le scrolla speisialta ar 70 mac léinn. Bronnfar na scoláireachtaí seo ag searmanas speisialta Déardaoin, an 16 Deireadh Fómhair 2008. Beidh idir mhúinteoirí agus thuismitheoirí i láthair ag an searmanas. Is é atá mar aidhm leis na Scoláireachtaí Iontrála mic léinn ar ardchaighdeán a mhealladh chuig OÉ Gaillimh agus aitheantas a thabhairt don éacht acadúil atá déanta acu. D'fhéadfaí go mbeadh scoláireachtaí nó deontais eile á mbronnadh ag an searmanas céanna, Scéim Scoláireachtaí Spóirt na hOllscoile san áireamh. I mbliana, bronnfar Scoláireachtaí Iontrála ar mhic léinn as 38 scoil ar fud na tíre. Tá scoláireachtaí le bronnadh ar mhic léinn as na contaetha seo a leanas – An Clár, Corcaigh, Dún na nGall, Gaillimh, Ciarraí, Laois, Luimneach, An Longfort, Maigh Eo, Uíbh Fhailí, Ros Comáin, Sligeach, Tiobraid Árann agus An Iarmhí. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr James J. Browne, a bhronnfaidh na seiceanna agus na scrollaí ag an imeacht: "Cúis áthais dúinn a bheith in ann aitheantas a thabhairt d'éachtaí acadúla an 70 mac léinn seo as gach cearn den tír. Déanann OÉ Gaillimh iarracht i gcónaí tacú le feabhas acadúil i ngach uile dhisciplín agus é a spreagadh. Deis é Searmanas Bronnta na Scoláireachtaí Iontrála le haitheantas a thabhairt dár mic léinn chéad bhliana a bhfuil a gcumas acadúil cruthaithe acu cheana féin bunaithe ar na torthaí a fuair siad i Scrúdú na hArdteistiméireachta. Deis atá ann freisin le haitheantas a thabhairt don obair atá déanta ag a dtuimsitheoirí agus ag a múinteoirí. Cuirimid fáilte chroíúil rompu chuig OÉ Gaillimh agus táimid ag tnúth lena gcumas acadúil a fhorbairt amach anseo agus tacú lena n-iarrachtaí sna blianta amach romhainn". Bronntar Scoláireachtaí Iontrála gach bliain ar mhic léinn atá díreach tosaithe ag freastal ar OÉ Gaillimh agus a fuair 560 pointe, ar a laghad, i Scrúdú na hArdteistimérieachta (590 pointe do mhic léinn leighis). I mbliana d'éirigh le 18 mac léinn an t-uasmhéid 600 pointe a fháil. Chomh maith leis sin, bronnann OÉ Gaillimh 25 Sparánacht gach bliain. Is fiú €1,600 an ceann na sparánachtaí seo a bhfuil sé mar aidhm leo tacú le mic léinn a thugann faoi chéatadán suntasach dá gcúrsa staidéir trí mheán na Gaeilge. - críoch -

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

The politics of peace and conflict will be the theme of a Political Studies Association of Ireland conference at NUI Galway from 17-19 October. The event will feature discussions on the Irish peace process, peacekeeping, Latin American politics and Iraq. Other topical subjects at the conference, which is being organised by the University's School of Political Science and Sociology, will include the Lisbon Treaty and the Irish political party system. Speakers at the conference include Brendan Duddy who acted as an intermediary between the IRA leadership and the British government between 1973 and 1993. The existence of this channel of communication was a closely-guarded secret, causing major public controversy when it was finally revealed. The Secret Peacemaker, a documentary about Brendan's significant role through those turbulent times, will be screened and followed by a questions and answers session . The event will also feature Nuala O'Loan, who played a prominent and important role in the Northern peace process in recent years as Northern Ireland's first police ombudsman. She was at the centre of intense public debate and controversy, carrying out investigations into the Omagh bomb inquiry, and police collusion with paramilitaries. A UK House of Commons Committee report in 2005 praised her role and recommended that she be given wider powers, and she was appointed by the Irish government in February 2008 to serve as their special envoy in Timor-Leste (east Timor). Conference organiser and lecturer in Politics at NUI Galway, Dr Niall Ó Dochartaigh, said: "The persistence of war and political violence is one of the most important global political issues. Understanding the dynamics of violent conflict, and the approaches that can contribute to building and maintaining peace, is one of the most urgent tasks for academic research on politics. Violent conflicts are often much more embedded and complex than they appear to outside observers, but the experience of the peace process in Ireland demonstrates that negotiation and dialogue can contribute to narrowing the gap between parties that seem to be irreconcilable". Dr Ó Dochartaigh added: "Given Ireland's long history of contributing to United Nation's peacekeeping missions, and the Irish experience of the Troubles in recent decades, there are many people in Ireland with direct experience of these issues. One of the highlights of the conference for me will be the roundtable discussion on peacekeeping and the protection of civilians in peace support operations". An expert on Iraq who has also written extensively about conflict in Northern Ireland, Professor Brendan O Leary of the University of Pennsylvania, USA, will also speak at the event. His academic work played a significant role in shaping the new government and policing arrangements in Northern Ireland. Professor O'Leary is currently an international advisor to the Kurdistan National Assembly, responsible for advising on the constitutional reconstruction of Iraq and Kurdistan. Michael D. Higgins T.D., and Adjunct Professor with the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway, will deliver an after-dinner speech at the conference dinner, entitled 'From Political Studies to Political Practice'. Further information on the conference and a full programme is available at www.psai.ie. -ends-

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Republican Grant Lally to go head-to-head with Democrat Bruce Morrison Washington, DC comes to NUI Galway on Thursday, 30 October, when the University hosts a US Presidential Election Debate featuring senior representatives of the Democratic and Republican parties. Just days before the closely contested election, Grant Lally, national co-chairman of the Irish-American Republicans, will go head-to-head in a debate with Bruce Morrison, a former US Congressman from Connecticut and author of the Morrison Visa Program. The event, which is open to the public, will be hosted jointly by NUI Galway's Law Society and Literary and Debating Society and takes place in the University's Áras na Mac Léinn at 8pm. Grant Lally is former president of the Irish Lobby for Immigration Reform and McCain Delegate to the 2008 Republican National Convention. Recently he wrote that John McCain: "Is a responsible, experienced and respected leader who will strengthen America's relations with the world, raise the level of engagement with Ireland to cement the Irish peace process, and work more closely with America's friends and allies in Europe to build a more stable, prosperous and peaceful world". Bruce Morrison, described by the New York Times as a man of "intellect, compassion and vigour", has pledged his allegiance to Barack Obama's ambitions of ending the war in Iraq, increasing energy independence and providing universal health care. The moderator for the debate will be Larry Donnelly, a Boston native and NUI Galway Law Lecturer. According to Mr. Donnelly: "Over the past few months, we have seen the campaigns of the two main candidates evolve through the lens of unprecedented media interest in a US Presidential election. The 2008 election is set to be of major significance for Irish-American relations. McCain has an established history of personal involvement in the Irish peace process and Obama has recently appointed a "dream team" of high-profile Irish-American political advisors". One of the students organising the event is Peter Mannion, who is studying Law at NUI Galway and spent his summer working as an intern in the Washington, DC office of the Obama campaign. He is anticipating an exiting evening: "If the recently televised debates between the candidates themselves are anything to go by, there is no doubt that Lally and Morrison will succeed in replicating if not surpassing their controversial intensity". Tickets will go on sale on Wednesday, 15 October and will be available from Zhivago's on Shop Street, Galway, and from the NUI Galway Societies Box Office in Áras na Mac Léinn. Student tickets are €2 (valid student ID required) and non-student tickets are €10. For further information on the event please contact Louise Hamilton, Public Relations Officer of the Law Society, on 0860734033 or email nuiglawsociety@gmail.com -ends-

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

A select group of first-year students at NUI Galway will receive a total €119,000 in recognition of the high points they achieved in the recent Leaving Certificate. As part of the University's annual Entrance Scholarships, 70 students will receive €1,700 each, along with a specially designed scroll. The awards will be made at a special ceremony, to include teachers and parents, on Thursday, 16 October, 2008. The Entrance Scholarships are designed to attract the best students to NUI Galway and reward their academic excellence. The awards may be held with any other scholarships or grants, including the University's extensive Sports Scholarship Scheme. This year, the Entrance Scholarships will be awarded to students from 38 individual schools throughout the country. The winners represent 14 counties including, Clare, Cork, Donegal, Galway, Kerry, Laois, Limerick, Longford, Mayo, Offaly, Roscommon, Sligo, Tipperary and Westmeath. NUI Galway President Dr James J. Browne, who will present the cheques and a specially designed scroll at the event, said: "We are delighted to recognise the academic talent of these 70 outstanding individuals from all over Ireland. NUI Galway strives constantly to support and promote academic excellence across all disciplines. The Entrance Scholarships ceremony is an opportunity to give special recognition to our first year students who have already proved academic prowess through their Leaving Certificate results. It is also a chance to give due credit to their parents and teachers for their contribution to such success. We welcome them to NUI Galway and look forward to nurturing their academic talent and supporting them throughout their years of study". Entrance Scholarships are given annually to all NUI Galway new entrants who reached a minimum of 560 points in their Leaving Certificate examination (590 in Medicine). This year 18 of the winners reached the maximum 600 points. NUI Galway also awards 25 Bursaries annually, each worth €1,600, to support students who take a significant proportion of their course through Irish. -ends-

Monday, 13 October 2008

The Marconi Weekend, which takes place in Clifden, Co. Galway, from 17-19 October, will feature a lecture by Dr Edward Jones of NUI Galway's Electronic Engineering Department. The weekend festival commemorates the first commercial wireless transatlantic broadcast by Guglielmo Marconi in 1907, and Dr Jones will speak about how Marconi's legacy is influencing new ways of providing healthcare. Most people associate Marconi with inventing 'the wireless', and he is most often credited with enabling wireless communication as we know it today. While this has clearly had a huge impact on how people interact with each other, most tangibly these days through mobile phones, his work has also enabled the development of many other applications in the world of healthcare. Electronic and wireless technology is starting to enable new ways for patients with various conditions to be remotely monitored by their doctor. Systems are being developed which involve sensors attached to the patient monitoring vital signs like blood sugar level or heart rate, and using wireless technology to allow information about the patient's state to be relayed to their GP, e.g. through text messaging. According to Dr Jones, whose lecture will be entitled 'More than just The Wireless': Marconi's Contribution to Healthcare': "These new systems will, for example, enable ongoing post-operative monitoring, thus reducing the need for patients to visit their doctor or hospital for post-operative check-ups. Another possibility is that these systems can aid in detecting problems in at-risk groups, such as elderly patients living alone, and can assist groups like diabetics in managing their own treatment". A second use of the technology is in the area of medical imaging, as an alternative to traditional imaging methods such as x-rays. Dr Jones, along with Dr Martin Glavin and a group of electronic engineering researchers, is working on new wireless imaging technology for breast cancer detection that could form an effective alternative to traditional x-ray mammography. The technology is a form of radar that forms an image of the tissue, where tumours may be easier to detect. Dr Jones points out that this research is in the first stages: "It's early days yet, and the group is currently trying to get some idea of how effective this technology would be in practice. Discussions have already been held with clinicians as to how useful something like this might be in a clinical setting, and what practical patient-related issues really need to be considered, and it will be a number of years before the technology could be used in a trial with real patients". This technology could provide another useful tool for clinicians to add to the range of techniques they use in cancer detection. Furthermore, this application illustrates how fundamental discoveries like Marconi's from one hundred years ago, can be fused with sophisticated modern electronic engineering techniques (such as digital signal processing and digital computers), to address significant problems in healthcare. Dr Jones will speak at 5pm on Saturday 18 October at the Marconi Weekend in Clifden, for further information visit http://www.clifdenchamber.ie/events.aspx?id=87 -ends-

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Tugtar léiriú ar an éagothroime sláinte i measc leanaí in Éirinn i dtuarascáil a d'fhoilsigh an tIonad Taighde um Chothú Sláinte, OÉ Gaillimh inniu. Seo an dara tuarascáil náisiúnta ón Suirbhé ar Iompraíocht Sláinte i Leanaí ag Aois Scoile (HBSC) "Éagothroime Sláinte i measc Leanaí ag Aois Scoile in Éirinn". Den chéad uair tá scrúdú déanta ar phatrúin sláinte, ar iompraíocht sláinte agus ar fholláine i measc leanaí ón Lucht Siúil, leanaí inimirceacha, leanaí a bhfuil míchumas agus tinneas ainsealach orthu agus leanaí i scoileanna faoi mhíbhuntáiste, agus tá comparáid déanta idir iad agus leanaí eile. I measc phríomhthorthaí an tsuirbhé tá rátaí arda úsáidte alcóil i measc cailíní agus buachaillí ón Lucht Siúil, agus rátaí ísle meisce i measc buachaillí inimirceacha; thuairiscigh leanaí ó scoileanna faoi mhíbhuntáiste nach raibh aiste bia chomh scamhardach sin acu agus fuarthas amach go bhfuil leibhéil arda leatroma bulaíochta i measc cailíní ón Lucht Siúil, inimircigh agus leanaí a bhfuil míchumas nó tinneas ainsealach orthu. Is lú seans go mothódh daltaí ón Lucht Siúil, ó theaghlaigh inimirceacha agus daltaí a bhfuil míchumas nó tinneas ainsealach orthu go nglacann daltaí eile leo agus is lú seans go mbeadh triúr cairde nó níos mó ná sin ag cailíní sna grúpaí daltaí sin, go háirithe. Ba spéisiúil an rud é gur beag difríocht a aithníodh idir na grúpaí ó thaobh a gcaidrimh lena dtuismitheoirí. Dúirt an Dr Saoirse Nic Gabhainn ó Ionad Taighde um Chothú Sláinte OÉ Gaillimh: "Is tuarascáil cheannródaíoch í seo a thugann dúshlán na tuairime atá againn maidir le héagothroime agus le héagsúlacht in Éirinn. Bhí a fhios againn go raibh éagothroime sláinte ann i measc daoine fásta ach ceapadh go raibh níos mó comhionannais ann idir leanaí – ach ní hamhlaidh atá ar chor ar bith. Tá deacrachtaí níos mó ag grúpaí áirithe leanaí ná mar atá ag grúpaí eile, agus baineann an fhadhb seo linn uile". Díríodh ar leanaí scoile ó rang 5 go dtí an 5ú bliain, agus ba é an chéad uair é ar cuireadh na difríochtaí agus na cosúlachtaí maidir le sláinte ghinearálta agus folláine, úsáid substaintí, iompraíocht cothaithe agus bia, gníomhaíocht fhisiciúil, foréigean agus gortuithe, dearcadh i leith na scoile agus an caidreamh le tuismitheoirí agus le cairde ar taifead go córasach. Ag fáiltiú di roimh an tuarascáil, dúirt Mary Wallace T.D., An tAire Stáit sa Roinn Sláinte agus Leanaí a bhfuil freagracht ar leith uirthi maidir le Cothú Sláinte agus Sábháilteacht Bia: "Tá sé tábhachtach taifead a choinneáil ar an gcaoi a bhfuil ár gcuid leanaí. Cabhróidh sin linn tuiscint níos fearr a fháil ar na réimsí ar cheart dúinn ár n-iarrachtaí a bheith dírithe orthu. Táimid tiomanta d'fhianaise taighde a úsáid chun cur lenár gcur chuige i leith an chuimsithe shóisialta". Tá an suirbhé de chuid HBSC Éireann lonnaithe san Ionad Taighde um Chothú Sláinte, OÉ Gaillimh ó 1994 agus is féidir gach tuarascáil agus gach alt a íoslódáil ó www.nuigalway.ie/hbsc - críoch -

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

The extent of health inequalities among children in Ireland has been revealed by a report released today by the Health Promotion Research Centre, NUI Galway. This is the second national report from the Irish Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) Study "Inequalities in Health among School-aged Children in Ireland". For the first time, patterns in health, health behaviour and wellbeing among - children from the Travelling Community, immigrant children, children with disabilities and chronic illnesses, and children in disadvantaged schools - have been studied in comparison to other children. Key findings include elevated rates of alcohol use among girls and boys from the Travelling Community, and low rates of drunkenness among immigrant boys; children from disadvantaged schools reporting poorer diets and higher levels of bully victimisation among Traveller girls, immigrants and children with a disability or chronic illness. Students from the Travelling Community, from immigrant families and with a disability or chronic illness are less likely to feel accepted by other students and girls in particular are less likely to have three or more friends. Interestingly, very few differences are identified between groups in terms of their relationships with parents. Dr Saoirse Nic Gabhainn of NUI Galway's Health Promotion Research Centre, said: "This is a landmark report which challenges our assumptions in relation to inequality and diversity in Ireland. We knew there were inequalities in health among adults but it was thought that children were more equal - this is simply not the case. Some groups of children are having a more difficult time than others, and this is an issue for all of us". Focusing on children from 5th class to 5th year, all of whom are in school, this is the first time that differences and similarities in general health and well-being, substance use, diet and food behaviour, physical activity, violence and injuries, perceptions of school and relationships with parents and friends have been systematically documented. Welcoming the report, Ms Mary Wallace T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Health and Children with special responsibility for Health Promotion and Food Safety, said: "It is important to document how our children are doing. This will help us better understand where our efforts need to be focussed. We are committed to using research evidence to inform our approach to social inclusion". The HBSC Ireland study has been based at the Health Promotion Research Centre, NUI Galway since 1994 and all reports and articles are available for download from www.nuigalway.ie/hbsc -ends-

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

A new collaboration between the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at NUI Galway and Dr David Kent, Consultant Ophthalmologist, Aut Even Private Hospital, Kilkenny, aims to investigate the therapeutic potential of adult stem cells in combating the loss of vision in diseases such as Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD). "AMD is the leading cause of vision loss in the over 50s. It is estimated the condition affects over 60,000 adults here in Ireland. The WHO has stated that the instances of AMD will triple in the next 25 years as our population ages, however there is currently no cure for the condition and awareness remains low", said Avril Daly, Head of Public Affairs at Fighting Blindness. She added: "Irish researchers are making great inroads in discovering the causes and potential treatments for AMD and we at Fighting Blindness strongly support Dr Kent and REMEDI in this important project and wish them every success". Amy Lynch, a Ph.D. student in REMEDI, NUI Galway, will investigate the therapeutic potential of stem cells to regenerate retinal cells in the macula area of the eye. Amy's project will be based around the determination of efficacy in an in vivo model of macular degeneration, where she will avail of the in-house expertise in stem cells and delivery in REMEDI and will be supported with strong clinical and scientific guidance from both Dr Kent and Professor Frank Barry, Scientific Director, REMEDI. Des Kenny, CEO of the National Council for the Blind of Ireland (NCBI) said: "We are very excited about the contribution this project will make to supporting people with sight loss in this country. We were delighted many years ago to have been able to support David Kent's choice of specialisation into this very important aspect of significant sight loss". According to Professor Barry, "REMEDI is very focused on developing novel strategies for treating human disease using the stem cell and gene therapy technologies we have developed at NUI Galway. This project is very important to us because of the high incidence of this condition in Ireland and worldwide. We are delighted to initiate the project in collaboration with Dr Kent and will benefit greatly from his clinical and research expertise in AMD. We also welcome the input from Fighting Blindness and the NCBI, both of whom have done a great deal to promote the research effort in Ireland in diseases of the eye". Further details of AMD can be found at www.amd.ie. REMEDI is an SFI funded research institute at the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science located at NUI Galway www.remedi.ie. -ends-

Monday, 6 October 2008

The NUI Galway Open Day will take place from 9am to 3pm on Thursday, 9 October, 2008. Thousands of secondary school students from all over Ireland are expected to attend, along with their parents and teachers. Caroline Loughnane, NUI Galway's Director of Marketing and Communications and one of the organisers of the Open Day, says: "This is an excellent opportunity for anyone considering applying to NUI Galway to talk to staff and students, find out more about the course you are interested in, explore the campus and decide whether the University is right for you". "The Open Day also gives students the opportunity to experience university life first hand" she added. "Visitors can see our full range of subject specific exhibition stands in Áras na Mac Léinn, our student centre, and check out our programme of interactive taster sessions on a wide range of subjects that run throughout the day". Some of the newer programmes on offer at NUI Galway include: BEng/MEng in Engineering Innovation - Electronic. This programme aims to provide graduates with specialised multi-disciplinary skills to start their own business, centred on the development of innovative, niche, market-led, electronic products. BE (Hons) and MEngSc in Sports and Exercise Engineering. The first of its kind in Ireland, this programme will provide graduates with the skills and expertise to design systems and devices for the evaluation and execution of sport performance across a broad range of sports. BSC (Hons) in Podiatry. This course consists of the study and treatment of disorders of the foot, ankle, knee, leg and hip, the only such course available in the Republic of Ireland. The majority of study will be undertaken in the state of the art podiatry clinic which is to be developed by the HSE at the Merlin Park Hospital site. BA CONNECT Programme. With a radical departure from traditional Arts degrees, the BA CONNECT Programme offers seven four-year degrees designed to increase the employability of graduates by developing distinctive skills and creating connections with life beyond the campus. The degrees are: BA with Children's Studies; BA with Creative Writing; BA with Film Studies; BA with Human Rights; BA with Irish Studies; BA with Theatre and Performance; and BA with Women's Studies. Tours of the campus will give an insight in to university life, and the top class facilities offered at NUI Galway including the brand new €22 million Sports Complex located by the Quincentennial Bridge. The 6,500 sq.m. eco-friendly sports and leisure complex includes a 25 metre 6-lane swimming pool with moveable floor, squash and racquetball courts, a three-court basketball hall, multipurpose studios, a substantial gym and a high-tech climbing wall. Operators, the Kingfisher Fitness Group, who already run six successful leisure centres across the country, are offering NUI Galway students significant discounts for this state-of-the-art facility. Joe Cosgrove, Managing Director of Kingfisher Fitness Club, says: "Whether it's signing up for a year's gym membership, or popping by for a 'Splash and Dash', we have offers to suit everyone's sporting and fitness needs". With over 40 clubs and 85 societies at NUI Galway, there is something to suit all interests. Representatives from all clubs and societies will be available on the day in order for visitors to find out more. Representatives will also be at hand from the ALIVE Volunteering Programme, which aims to support and promote volunteering on campus, to talk about the wide range of volunteer opportunities available for students. Visitors can book a place at the Open Day and receive a programme in advance by logging on to www.nuigalway.ie/openday or you can just turn up on the day. For further information contact the Schools Liaison Office on 091 492814, email mary.coyle@nuigalway.ie or visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/openday/ -Ends-

Monday, 6 October 2008

- NUI Galway Extends Knowledge-Economy in Gaeltacht - A new high speed telecommunications network, which will result in high speed broadband services, is being brought to the Galway Gaeltacht as a result of a joint initiative undertaken by NUI Galway, HEAnet and Údarás na Gaeltachta. The new network, which will be operated by AirSpeed Telecom, will support in excess of 300Mb and will be made available at seven of NUI Galway's Gaeltacht centres* and available for business users within the Galway Gaeltacht region. These services, to be launched today (Monday, 6 October, 2008) by Minister Éamon Ó Cuív T.D., will strengthen the University and its academic partners in delivering their core teaching and research mission. The work of Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway's Irish language arm, will be facilitated, as the new services help it to 'collapse distance' and integrate its various units. Kieran Loftus, Director of Computer Services, NUI Galway, said: "High Speed Networking has featured in NUI Galway campus life for several years, but our presence also extends along the Western seaboard. Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge has centres in locations throughout the Gaeltacht. The marine science research activities of the Martin Ryan Institute at its Carna location will benefit as will those of the Environmental Change Institute at Mace Head in Connemara and Carron in the Burren, Co. Clare. NUI Galway's knowledge region partner GMIT will also benefit from provision at its sites in Castlebar and Letterfrack". Kieran Loftus added: "It is not just NUI Galway that will benefit from these new services. Our academic partners, in both teaching and research, will be able to access our resources. We hope that our presence will stimulate new and advanced activities in these communities. HEAnet services are being provided in a way which will make it easier to provide services locally, perhaps acting as a catalyst and an enabler for the provision of good broadband services to these rural communities". The new communications network should make a significant difference to companies and organisations operating in the Galway Gaeltacht region, according to Pádraig Ó hAoláin, CEO of Údarás na Gaeltachta, which part-funded the service. "Broadband is like air and water to any modern business nowadays. It is simply essential. Having high speed access available in these Gaeltacht areas can only help retain businesses, encourage growth and attract others to the region. This project was also a joint venture with NUI Galway, who needed high speed network to their Gaeltacht outreach campuses. The provision of third-level accredited courses in the Gaeltacht is central to the Údarás' strategy and part of the bigger picture to help enterprise promotion for the area. This new network also addresses the lack of broadband connectivity in the southwest Connemara area and this investment by an tÚdarás and HEAnet now means that a high speed service is available to businesses in the area", he said. John Boland, CEO, HEAnet, said in advance of the launch: "HEAnet is bringing the power of the national and international research networks to these remote but important sites. This opens up a very fast and very powerful two-way communication channel and globally connects these valuable resources, linking the Irish sites seamlessly to the other 3,000 research institutions across Europe". Liam O'Kelly, Managing Director, AirSpeed Telecom, says: "AirSpeed Telecom is delighted to extend its network infrastructure in the Galway, Mayo and Clare region. Our licensed radio network is ideally suited to solving the geographic and cost challenges of providing high bandwidth telecommunications services in the region". ENDS

Monday, 6 October 2008

Leathnaíonn Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh geilleagar eolasbhunaithe sa Ghaeltacht Tá líonra teileachumarsáide nua ardluais, a chuirfidh seirbhís leathanbanda ardluais ar fáil, á thabhairt chuig Gaeltacht Chonamara mar thoradh ar chomh-thionscnamh idir Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh, HEAnet agus Údarás na Gaeltachta. Beidh an líonra nua atá á sholáthar ag Airspeed Telecom agus a thacaíonn le breis agus 300Mb, ar fáil ag seacht gcinn d'ionaid Ghaeltachta de chuid OÉ Gaillimh, agus beidh fail ag lucht gnó laistigh de Ghaeltacht na Gaillimhe ar an tseirbhís chomh maith. Neartóidh na seirbhísí seo, atá á seoladh inniu (Dé Luain, 6 Deireadh Fómhair 2008) ag an Aire Éamon Ó Cuív, T.D., an Ollscoil agus na comhpháirtithe acadúla lena bpríomh mhisean teagaisc agus taighde a sheachadadh. Éascófar obair Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge mar go gcabhróidh na seirbhísí nua seo an fhadhb achair a réiteach agus na haonaid atá scaipthe amach go forleathan a chomhtháthú. Ag labhairt dó ag an seoladh, dúirt Kieran Loftus, Stiúrthóir ar Sheirbhísí Ríomhaireachta, Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh, "Tá líonrú ardluais ar fáil ar champas OÉ Gaillimh, le blianta, ach tá láithreacht againn chomh maith feadh chósta an Iarthair. Tá ionaid ag Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge i gceantair ar fud na Gaeltachta. Beidh buntáiste anseo chomh maith d'Institiúid Muireolaíochta Mháirtín Uí Riain i gCarna sna gníomhaíochtaí taighde ar eolaíocht mhuirí atá ar bun acu agus ag an Institiúid Athrú Comhshaoil ag Ceann Mhása i gConamara agus sa Charn, An Boirinn, Co. an Chláir. Beidh an soláthar nua leathanbhanda seo tairbheach freisin d'Institiúid Teicneolaíochta na Gaillimhe-Mhaigh Eo sna hionaid atá acu i gCaisleán an Bharraigh agus i Leitir Fraic." Ag cur leis an méid sin, dúirt An Dr. Loftus: "Ní ag OÉ Gaillimh amháin a bheidh buntáiste na seirbhíse nua seo. Beidh fáil ag ár gcomhpháirtithe acadúla, teagaisc agus taighde araon, ar ár n-acmhainní. Tá súil againn go spreagfaí ár láithreacht ard-ghníomhaíochtaí nua sna pobail seo. Tá seirbhísí HEAnet á gcur ar fáil ar shlí ina mbeidh sé níos furasta seirbhísí a sholáthar go háitiúil, b'fhéidir ag feidhmiú mar acmhainn agus mar éascaitheoir le seirbhísí maithe leathanbhanda a sholáthar do na pobail tuaithe seo." Ba cheart go ndéanfadh an líonra nua teileachumarsáide seo difríocht shuntasach do chomhlachtaí agus d'eagraíochtaí atá ag feidhmiú i nGaeltacht na Gaillimhe, a deir Pádraig Ó hAoláin, Príomhfheidhmeannach, Údarás na Gaeltachta, a rinne cómhaoiniú ar an tseirbhís seo. "Is ionann leathanbhanda le haer agus uisce d'aon ghnó nua-aimseartha sa lá atá inniu ann". Tá sé thar a bheith riachtanach. Cabhróidh an rochtain ardluais le gnóthaí a choimeád slán, fás a spreagadh agus gnóthaí nua a mhealladh chuig an réigiún. Is comhfhiontar a bhí sa togra seo freisin le OÉ Gaillimh, ar theastaigh líonra ardluais uathu chuig a n-ionaid for-rochtana Gaeltachta. Tá soláthar cúrsaí creidiúnaithe tríú leibhéal sa Ghaeltacht lárnach i straitéis an Údaráis agus mar pháirt den mhór-phictiúr chun cabhrú le fiontraíocht a chur chun cinn sa cheantar seo. Díreoidh an líonra nua seo freisin ar an easpa ceangal leathanbhanda in iardheisceart Chonamara agus ciallaíonn an infheistíocht seo atá déanta ag Údarás na Gaeltachta agus HEAnet anois go bhfuil fáil ag gnóthaí sa cheantar seo ar sheirbhís ardluais leathanbhanda", a dúirt sé. Agus é ag labhairt roimh an seoladh, dúirt John Boland, Príomhfheidhmeannach HEAnet, "Tá HEAnet ag tabhairt cumhacht na líonraí taighde náisiúnta agus idirnáisiúnta chuig na ceantair iargúlta seo. Osclaíonn sé seo suas cainéal cumarsáide dhá-threo agus ceanglaítear go domhanda na hacmhainní luachmhara seo, ag nascadh na suímh Éireannacha seo gan stró leis na 3,500 institiúidí taighde eile ar fud na hEorpa. Dúirt Liam O Kelly, Bainisteoir Stiúrtha Airspeed Telecom, "Tá áthas ar AirSpeed Telecom a n-infreastruchtúr líonra a leathnú i réigiún Ghaillimh, Mhaigh Eo agus an Chláir. Tá ár líonra raidió ceadúnaithe foirfe chun na dúshláin geografacha agus airgeadais a bhaineann le seirbhísí teileachumarsáide ard bhandaleithead a sholáthar sa cheantar. Críoch

Monday, 6 October 2008

Beidh Lá Oscailte OÉ Gaillimh ar siúl ó 9am go 3pm, Déardaoin, 9 Deireadh Fómhair, 2008. Táthar ag súil go dtabharfaidh na mílte mac léinn meánscoile ó cheann ceann na tíre cuairt ar an Ollscoil i dteannta a dtuismitheoirí agus múinteoirí. Dar le Caroline Loughnane, Stiúrthóir Margaíochta agus Cumarsáide, OÉ Gaillimh, agus duine de lucht eagraithe an Lae Oscailte gur "deis iontach é seo do dhuine ar bith atá ag smaoineamh teacht chun staidéir in OÉ Gaillimh labhairt le comhaltaí foirne agus le mic léinn, agus níos mó a fhoghlaim faoi na cúrsaí ar spéis leo iad, dul ag spaisteoireacht mórthimpeall an champais agus ansin cinneadh a dhéanamh an mian leo freastal ar OÉ Gaillimh amach anseo". "Chomh maith leis sin, tugann an Lá Oscailte seo deis do mhic léinn taithí a fháil ar shaol na hollscoile ar an láthair féin. Beidh deis ag cuairteoirí léargas a fháil ar an raon iomlán ábhar atá ar fáil anseo in OÉ Gaillimh ag na seastáin éagsúla a bheidh in Áras na Mac Léinn – ionad na mac léinn anseo – agus freastal ar chuid de na seisiúin tosaigh idirghníomhacha bunaithe ar ábhair éagsúla a bheidh ar siúl i gcaitheamh an lae". Cúrsaí éagsúla ar fáil ag OÉ Gaillimh le cúpla bliain anuas ná: Baitsiléir/Máistreacht Innealtóireachta i Nuálaíocht Innealtóireachta. Is é atá mar aidhm leis an gclár seo sainscileanna ildisciplíneacha a thabhairt do chéimithe le cur ar a gcumas tús a chur lena ngnó féin; gnóthaí a bheidh dírithe ar tháirgí nuálaíochta, nideoige, táirgí faoi chinnireacht an mhargaidh, agus táirgí leictreonacha a fhorbairt. Baitsiléir Innealtóireachta (Onór) & Máistreacht Eolaíochta in Innealtóireacht Spóirt agus Aclaíochta. Is é seo an chéad chlár dá leithéid in Éirinn, agus ar chríoch an chláir seo beidh na scileanna agus an saineolas ag na céimithe chun córais agus feistí a dhearadh chun gníomhaíocht spóirt a mheas agus a chur i bhfeidhm thar raon leathan spórt. Baitsiléir Eolaíochta (Onór) sa Chosliacht. Tá an cúrsa seo dírithe ar staidéar agus ar chóireáil neamhord a bhaineann leis an gcos, an rúitín, an ghlúin, géag na coise agus an chorróg, agus is é seo an t-aon chúrsa dá leithéid atá á thairiscint i bPoblacht na hÉireann. Beidh na mic léinn ag staidéar den chuid is mó sa chlinic cosliachta den chéad scoth atá le forbairt ag Feidhmeannacht na Seirbhíse Sláinte ag suíomh cóngarach d'Ospidéal Pháirc Mheirlinne. Baitsiléir Onóracha Dán (BA CONNECT): Tá athrú ag teacht ar na céimeanna traidisiúnta sna Dána agus tá seacht gcéim ceithre bliana á dtairiscint faoin gClár CONNECT - clár atá á reáchtáil ag Coláiste na nDán, na nEolaíochtaí Sláinte agus an Léinn Cheiltigh. Tá na cláir CONNECT deartha le cinntiú go n-éiríonn le céimithe poist a fháil trí scileanna ar leith a fhorbairt agus naisc a chruthú leis an saol lasmuigh den champas. Seo a leanas na seacht gcéim atá á dtairiscint trí chlár CONNECT: B.A. le Staidéar Leanaí; B.A. le Scríbhneoireacht Chruthaitheach; B.A. le Staidéar Scannán; B.A. le Staidéar ar Chearta Daonna; B.A. leis an Léann Éireannach; B.A. le Staidéar Amharclannaíochta agus Taibhithe; agus B.A. le Léann na mBan. Gheobhaidh mic léinn léargas ar shaol na hollscoile trí dhul ar thuras mórthimpeall an champais, mar aon le léargas ar na háiseanna atá ar fáil in OÉ Gaillimh lena n-áirítear an tIonad Spóirt a chosain €22 milliún atá lonnaithe in aice le Droichead na gCúig Chéad. Tá achar 6,500 sq.m. san ionad spóirt agus fóillíochta éiceabhách seo ina bhfuil linn snámha 6-lána 25 méadar ar féidir an t-urlár a ardú agus a ísliú inti, cúirteanna scuaise agus raicéadaíochta, halla ina bhfuil trí chúirt cispheile, stiúideonna ilchuspóireacha, giomáisiam an-mhór agus balla dreapadóireachta chomh maith. Tá lascaine shuntasach le fáil ag mic léinn OÉ Gaillimh ón Kingfisher Fitness Group, cuideachta atá i gceannas ar shé ionad fóillíochta eile ar fud na tíre. Deir Joe Cosgrove, Stiúrthóir Bainistíochta, Kingfisher Fitness Club, "go bhfreastalóidh an t-ionad seo ar riachtanais spóirt agus aclaíochta an uile dhuine, is cuma más ag iarraidh ballraíocht bliana atá tú nó más fearr leat leas a bhaint as tairiscintí éagsúla cosúil le 'Splash and Dash', cuirtear gach duine san áireamh." Tá os cionn 40 club agus 85 cumann in OÉ Gaillimh, rud a chiallaíonn go bhfuil rud éigin ann don uile dhuine. Beidh ionadaithe ó na clubanna agus ó na cumainn go léir i láthair ar an Lá Oscailte le labhairt le cuairteoirí. Chomh maith leis sin, beidh ionadaithe ó Chlár Oibre Deonaí ALIVE i láthair, clár a bhfuil sé mar aidhm leis tacú le hobair dheonach agus lena cur chun cinn ar an gcampas, chun labhairt faoin raon leathan deiseanna oibre deonaí atá ar fáil do mhic léinn. Féadfaidh cuairteoirí áit a chur in áirithe don Lá Oscailte agus clár a fháil roimh ré trí logáil ar www.nuigalway.ie/openday nó go deimhin féadfaidh tú cuairt a thabhairt orainn ar an lá más mian leat. Tá tuilleadh eolais le fáil ón Oifig um Idirchaidreamh le Scoileanna ag 091 492814, nó trí ríomhphost a sheoladh chuig mary.coyle@nuigalway.ie nó trí chuairt a thabhairt ar http://www.nuigalway.ie/openday/ CRÍOCH

Friday, 3 October 2008

Fifteen projects from Ireland, including two from NUI Galway, have been awarded the European Award for Languages - the Language Label for innovative ways of teaching and learning languages. The awards are coordinated by the European Commission and managed locally by the Irish coordinating body Léargas. The European Award for Languages - the Language Label, which is simultaneously run in over 20 European countries, has been a major event in the languages calendar since 1998. This year's winners were selected on the basis of excellence, innovation, intercultural dialogue and their ability to serve as a model for others. The award-winning projects from NUI Galway are: L Italia in Diretta, NUI Galway: This project is aimed at secondary school students and features an interactive website, www.italianliving.org. The website was created by students undertaking the Bachelor of Commerce International (Italian) Degree. Blogs and forums encourage secondary school students to embrace the Italian language and culture through participation in forum discussions and interactive games. The award was presented to Dr Laura Incalcaterra McLoughlin and Dott. Francesca Magnoni of the Department of Italian, NUI Galway. According to Dr McLoughlin: "We are thrilled to receive the prestigious European Award for Languages. The Award is an important recognition of the work and the level of commitment of students and lecturers in the Department of Italian. Our undergraduate students designed the website, chose the topics, researched and created all the material, and now they keep the site regularly updated. This is an on-going project which will be expanded in future years. We are particularly grateful to the Istituto Italiano di Cultura for their continuing sponsorship and support". The National Digital Learning Repository Modern Languages Community of Practice Blog as a Community Building Medium: This blog is a one-stop-shop online space for anyone involved in teaching languages, including literature and culture, in the Irish higher education sector. The project aims to encourage a sense of community and peer support to facilitate the sharing of information and resources by providing an easy to use, dynamic and accessible web space which highlights a range of community news and activity. The website can be found at www.ndlr.ie/modlang/blog The Award was presented to Project Coordinators Paul Gormley and Michelle Tooher, Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT), NUI Galway. Dr Tooher explained the usefulness of the project: "The blog provides a valuable service to the language community, helping to build and enhance community spirit across all language sectors. Guest editors from across the higher education sector drive the content and focus of the blog, and our regular podcasting series provides a platform to highlight and celebrate the incredible language initiatives being undertaken throughout Ireland. The blog also provides a gateway to the National Digital Learning Repository – an online database of free-to-use resources for all Irish higher education practitioners". Both NUI Galway projects were supported by the University's An Teanglann – Language Laboratories, a part of CELT which primarily supports the teaching and learning of modern languages; specifically French, German, Italian and Spanish. The awards were made by Simon Coveney, T.D. at a special celebration to mark the European Day of Languages on 26 September. -ends-

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

NUI Galway students of the M.A. in Production and Direction at the Huston School of Film & Digital Media have won the Best Short Documentary prize at the Radharc Awards in Dublin. Producer Richard Walsh from Ballybunion, County Kerry, and Director Julian Ulrichs from Galway City, received the award for their short documentary 'F.G.M. – No Way Home'. The documentary deals with the issue of female genital mutilation in relation to African refugees in Ireland. The documentary team travelled to Africa to film some of the footage and the resulting piece is a hard-hitting yet sensitive exploration of the cultural and legal aspects surrounding the issue of female genital mutilation, a subject which was has hit the headlines in Ireland during the last year. The short documentary was based on a brief proposed by students of the M.A. in Public Advocacy, who collaborate with Production and Direction students every year to deliver incisive films addressing societal issues. Commenting on the win, James Finlan, coordinator of the M.A. in Production and Direction said: "This was the first year we had students shooting outside of Ireland which was an exciting development. This project was ideally suited to the competition as many of the original Radharc films dealt with African issues. Winning the award vindicates the collaboration between the Production and Public Advocacy students, which is a unique aspect of these courses". The Radharc Awards honour the memory of the late Fr Joe Dunn, co-founder of Radharc Films. The awards are presented to the producers of documentaries of outstanding quality, which address national or international topics of social justice, morality or faith. Huston School of Film & Digital Media runs a number of M.A. courses including Production/Direction, Screenwriting, Film Studies, Digital Media and Public Advocacy. Earlier this year, another Huston graduate Brian Deane won the Babelgum online film festival prize which was presented by Spike Lee at the Cannes Film Festival. Huston Screenwriting graduates have also won three out of four Stella Artois Pitching Awards at the Galway Film Fleadh. Further information available from: www.filmschool.ie -ends-

Sunday, 30 November 2008

NUI Galway President, Dr James J. Browne has signed a memorandum of understanding with the University of Maryland in the United States. The arrangement has been made to create future study and research ties between the two universities. President Browne, said: "This agreement of cooperation between NUI Galway and the University of Maryland is the product of a culture which is collaborative and where individuals are willing to work together for a common purpose. This collaboration represents an important step in shaping our futures as we share and build on our respective educational and research strengths. I look forward to fostering our relationship with the University of Maryland for our mutual benefit". Governor of Maryland, Martin O Malley also met with President Browne and President of the University of Maryland, Dan Mote Jr.. Governor O Malley visited NUI Galway in June of this year, when he received an honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws from the University. The memorandum signing coincided with the NUI Galway University Foundation Gala event which hosted former President Bill Clinton, Founder, William J. Clinton Foundation and Loretta Brennan Glucksman, Chairman of the American Ireland Fund, in honour of their contributions to delivering peace and prosperity on the island of Ireland over the past two decades. The event was held at the Metropolitan Club in New York City and was attended by NUI Galway alumni and friends including Druid Theatre Director, Garry Hynes; Niall Burgess, Consul General of Ireland in New York; and RTÉ broadcaster Seán O Rourke, who was MC for the night. Loretta Glucksman spoke of her first visit to Galway and recalled when she met then President Colm Ó hEocha, subsequently she interacted with Pat Fottrell and Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh as Presidents, and she and the American Ireland Fund now looked forward to working with Dr Browne in his presidency role. President Clinton in his opening remarks spoke of when his wife Hilary was conferred with an Honorary Doctorate at NUI Galway some ten years ago and of his own Irish connection through his mother with Roslea, Co. Fermanagh. President Clinton also spoke of his involvement with the peace process and how the people were ahead of the politicians in their desire for peace. He emphasised that research in Universities should focus on alternative energy notwithstanding the fact that oil prices had once again fallen to a low level. In his remarks, President Browne referred to President Clinton's achievements since he left office particularly in relation to the William J. Clinton Foundation, which seeks to strengthen the capacity of people throughout the world to meet the challenges of global interdependence. The President went on to praise the outstanding work of philanthropist Loretta Glucksman for her contribution to Ireland though the American Ireland Fund. He said "The goodwill generated by this event will leave a favourable and lasting impression of NUI Galway on all who attended". The fundraising event was attended by over 300 people including alumni and friends of the University and all proceeds will go towards the development of the Research Library at NUI Galway. Ends

Saturday, 29 November 2008

The Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), NUI Galway has assembled a distinguished panel of speakers to partake in a free public forum meeting on the subject of Osteoarthritis. The 2008 REMEDI public forum entitled 'Osteoarthritis - current treatments and future therapies' will be held on Tuesday, 9 December, from 7:30pm in The G Hotel Conference Centre, Galway. Osteoarthritis is a major disease focus of the research effort at REMEDI. The annual public forum provides the public with an opportunity to participate in discussions on all sides of the intensive research effort to combat human diseases and to improve the lives of patients. Participating panel members are: Mr. Philip Gleeson, Arthritis Ireland – a patient battling early-onset arthritis. Dr Drew Burdon, Smith & Nephew, UK – a global medical technology company specialist who will highlight several new treatments for Osteoarthritis. Professor Frank Barry, REMEDI, NUI Galway – is an adult stem cell expert with a research focus on cellular therapy for Osteoarthritis. Mr. Bill Curtin, Galway University Hospital - an orthopaedic surgeon with significant international experience. The forum has also been endorsed by leading Irish sporting personalities Pat Spillane and Gary O'Toole. Spillane, the former Kerry GAA great, is currently suffering from severe Osteoarthritis. O'Toole, the former Irish Olympic swimmer is now a consultant orthopaedic surgeon in The Beacon Clinic, Dublin. Both have given extraordinary interviews about their respective experiences with Osteoarthritis and both interviews will be exclusively screened during the REMEDI forum. The forum is free and open to all members of the public. Further information can be obtained by contacting 091-495726, info@remedi.ie or by visiting www.remedi.ie. ENDS

Friday, 28 November 2008

Dr Jimmy Devins T.D., Minister for Science, Technology and Innovation, yesterday presented Enterprise Ireland's Industrial Technologies Commercialisation Awards. Two out of ten awards went to NUI Galway for its work in developing technologies in the fields of renewable energy and waste management. Since 2005, the Industrial Technologies Commercialisation Awards have recognised those researchers who successfully commercialised their research via a licence deal with an industrial partner or through the realisation of a successful spin-off. The award winners from NUI Galway were: Professor Gerard Hurley of the Electronic Engineering Department and Director of the Power Electronics Research Centre on campus. His project, in partnership with Convertec, is called 'Battery Condition Monitoring and Control'. Dr Michael Rodgers, a senior lecturer with the Department of Engineering, and researchers Edmond O'Reilly and Eoghan Clifford. The team licensed a technology to Bord na Móna called 'Horizontal-flow biofilm systems for small scale wastewater treatment'. NUI Galway has a strong reputation in technology transfer activities, as measured by license agreements, spin-out companies, new invention disclosures, patent applications, collaborative projects with industry and support to campus company formation. -ends-

Friday, 28 November 2008

One of the major writers of contemporary Irish fiction, John Banville, is the subject of a new book by NUI Galway's Dr John Kenny. Entitled John Banville, the book is an accessible yet detailed study that brings to the surface many of the hidden depths of the Man-Booker Prize-winning novelist. With a close eye on chronology, the book begins by establishing the intellectual and cultural contexts of Banville's writing and its reception among readers. It then provides insights into Banville's Irish themes, his crucial theories of the imagination, his preoccupation with morality and immorality, and his idiosyncratic devotion to a self-reflexive art. The book touches on all of Banville's work, from his first book, Long Lankin (1970) to his Man-Booker winning novel, The Sea (2005), and his recent popular fiction written under the pseudonym Benjamin Black. A native of Glenamaddy, Co. Galway, Dr John Kenny lectures in the English Department at NUI Galway where he is Director of the new BA with Creative Writing. For Dr Kenny, Banville is a rich source of insight into creative writing: "For anyone who has read the words 'They departed, the gods, on the day of the strange tide' and then delved further into The Sea, they know the lyrical and emotive strength of Banville's writing". He added: "For this book, I have researched his literary archive and it is a model lesson in the creative process. In the multiple drafts of his novels we can see the way discipline and inventiveness are combined in one of Ireland's great exponents of the imagination. His work is testament to the powerful ways in which dedicated artists of the word can make created worlds come vividly alive on the page". Dr Kenny is also an Academic Director of the John McGahern International Seminar and Summer School and founding editor of The John McGahern Yearbook. He is currently working on a second book on Banville and on a study of Patrick McCabe's fiction. John Banville is published as part of a major new series on Irish writers from Irish Academic Press. -ends-

Friday, 28 November 2008

NUI Galway students were among the winners at the 7th Media and Multicultural Awards (MAMA) yesterday. Richard Walsh and Julian Ulrichs, students of the M.A. in Production and Direction at the Huston School of Film & Digital Media, won an award for their short documentary 'F.G.M. - No Way Home'. Dealing with the issue of female genital mutilation, the film tells the story of Pamela Izevbekhai, a Nigerian woman currently seeking asylum with her daughters in Ireland. The MAMAs were established by the newspaper Metro Éireann, to recognise people, groups, companies, institutions and media platforms that promote diversity and multiculturalism in Ireland. In September, F.G.M. - No Way Home was also awarded the Best Short Documentary prize at the Radharc Awards. For their short film, producer Richard Walsh, from Ballybunion, County Kerry, and Director Julian Ulrichs, from Galway City, travelled to Nigeria to film footage for the documentary. The resulting piece is a hard-hitting yet sensitive exploration of the cultural and legal aspects surrounding the issue of female genital mutilation. The short documentary was based on a brief proposed by students of the M.A. in Public Advocacy, who collaborate with Production and Direction students every year to deliver incisive films addressing societal issues. Commenting on the most recent win, James Finlan, coordinator of the M.A. in Production and Direction said: "This was the first year we had students filming outside of Ireland, which was an exciting development. It's important to note the input from NUI Galway's Public Advocacy students Elisa Allen and Jayme Street, who came up with the initial brief on which the film was based. Winning the award vindicates the collaboration between the Production and Public Advocacy students, which is a unique aspect of these courses". Earlier this year, another Huston graduate Brian Deane won the Babelgum online film festival prize which was presented by Spike Lee at the Cannes Film Festival. Huston Screenwriting graduates have also won three out of four Stella Artois Pitching Awards at recent Galway Film Fleadhs. Huston School of Film & Digital Media runs a number of M.A. courses including Production/Direction, Screenwriting, Film Studies, Arts Policy, Digital Media and Public Advocacy. Further information available from: www.filmschool.ie -ends-