NUI Galway Biomedical Engineering Student wins the prestigious Engineers Ireland Innovative Student Engineer Award for her final year project.

Fiona Griffin, an Undergraduate student in Biomedical Engineering at NUI Galway, has won first prize in the Innovative Student Engineer Awards 2011. This is an annual competition run by Engineers Ireland and sponsored by Siemens. This is an outstanding achievement for Fiona and for NUI Galway, as this prize is open to all Engineering undergraduates from all third level institutions in Ireland and Fiona was one of only 5 finalists chosen to compete at the national finals. Fiona’s project involved designing a realistic 3D model of a heart valve to facilitate testing of an interventional medical device known as the transcatheter valve prosthesis. Her project was supervised by Dr. Laoise McNamara of the Discipline of Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering, within the College of Engineering and Informatics, and was carried out in conjunction with Medtronic. Pictured are Dr. Laoise McNamara, Lecturer in Biomedical Engineering at NUI Galway, Fiona Griffin, winner of the Innovative Student Engineer Awards 2011, and Professor Peter McHugh, Professor of Biomedical Engineering at NUI Galway.

Prof. Peter McHugh - Member of the Royal Irish Academy

Professor Peter McHugh is one of three NUI Galway academics elected this year to membership of The Royal Irish Academy (RIA) in recognition of their academic achievement in education and research. Professor McHugh, of Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering, joins the ranks of Ernest Walton, Erwin Schrödinger, Seamus Heaney and Mary Robinson by becoming a Member of the RIA.

(Back row) NUI Galway’s Professor Colin O’Dowd, Professor Peter McHugh, and Professor Donal O’Regan, (front row) NUI Galway President Dr James J. Browne and President of the Royal Irish Academy, Professor Luke Drury. 

NUI Galway President, Dr James J. Browne, commented: “Research and academic excellence are the cornerstones of all that we do here at NUI Galway. My colleagues’ attainment of what is the highest academic honour in Ireland is testament to the calibre of our staff and research.”

Professor Peter McHugh is the Established Professor of Biomedical Engineering at NUI Galway. He is an internationally recognised expert in biomechanics, and works closely with clinicians and industry in order to develop mathematical models of human tissue and medical implants in an effort to understand their precise behaviour and to facilitate the design of new treatments and clinical procedures. Professor McHugh is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland and a recipient of the Silver Medal of the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland. His research is widely published and highly cited in high impact international journals.

The Royal Irish Academy, which was founded in 1785 and has now 455 members, is the principal learned society in Ireland.