Friday, 25 September 2020

NUI Galway Youth Academy for High Ability Children Commencing in October

One in four places awarded on a scholarship basis  The NUI Galway Youth Academy, an outreach programme aimed at high ability 9-12 year olds, is taking its courses online and is currently accepting applications for the October 2020 intake. The Youth Academy offers a unique opportunity for primary school children to get their first taste of university life by studying a fun but high level course in a college subject area.   Normally delivered on campus, the courses have been redesigned for virtual delivery in line with current public health guidelines. The courses on offer are outside of the primary school curriculum which allows children the opportunity to make new discoveries in different areas of study, in a fun and interactive way. There are 16 courses available this October including ‘Geographers: the world’s explorers!’, ‘A world we cannot see: the secret life of mircobes’, ‘the mysterious mind’ and ‘DNA: the data inside us’. A student choses one course for the duration of the programe with classes taking place virtually every Saturday for six weeks.    Geraldine Marley, Youth Academy Coordinator, Student Recruitment and Outreach, NUI Galway, said: “We had the opportunity to trial online courses with the Youth Academy Summer Camp in July and received very positive feedback from students and parents. Although we would love to host the children on campus, we have prepared a very exciting six week course which will include sending packs to the homes of participants, instruction and demo videos and a live virtual class each week.”   Eligibility is based on achievement in a pupil’s most recent English or Maths standardised tests (Drumcondra, Sigma or Micra T) carried out in schools. The cost of participation is €110 and in every intake, 25% of places are made available as scholarships for students to attend the Youth Academy free of charge, based on economic circumstances.   Classes will take place virtually every Saturday for six weeks starting on 17 October.  Further information on entry requirements and applications is available at http://www.nuigalway.ie/youthacademy/Applications are made online and remain open until 5pm on Sunday, 27September.  -Ends-  


News Archive

Tuesday, 22 September 2020

On Monday the 28th of September, at 12pm, it will be exactly 25 years since Flirt FM, Galway’s Campus, and Community of Interest Radio Station based at NUI Galway went live on fm. For our 20th anniversary, we had a silent disco, gala dinner, photo exhibition and afternoon of broadcast and a childrens’ arts and crafts table. All very hands-on. This year, we'll have to do it differently: so we’re organising a 25hr live, extremely socially distanced broadcast marathon from noon on Monday the 28th to 1pm on Tuesday the 29th. We'll be linking station alumni to the studio live over Zoom from locations as varied as Paris, California, Vietnam and… Mayo. The contributors that have already signed up are keen to quiz, reminisce, entertain and surprise you. Normally broadcasting from our Áras na MacLéinn studios in NUI Galway, the move to remote working in March took us all by surprise. The team didn’t miss a beat however, and instead of shutting down, applied to extend the station’s broadcast hours and continued to broadcast from bedrooms, kitchens and living rooms around Ireland and further afield. Off air for some much needed rest and research time in August, staff and volunteers alike are excited to head into an unprecedented and challenging new academic year. Station Manager Paula Healy; “The year ahead is going to be strangest the station has had in its history, but we're a great team - we’ve proven that with our determination to keep broadcasting through all the obstacles so far, and we're going to make it work. A quarter of a century is huge; it’s a testament to the thousands of people involved over the years, from volunteers to guests to staff that the station is here and thriving.” Flirt FM 101.3 is Galway City's award winning Student, Community & Alternative Station, based in NUI Galway since September 1995. We're part of the 20+ member Community Radio Ireland network. With one full-time and two part-time paid staff looking after operations and compliance, the station is home to up to 120 volunteers and many more contributors annually. https://www.flirtfm.ie/articles/2020/9/flirt-fm-is-25/ https://www.flirtfm.ie/20years/

Monday, 21 September 2020

Active* Consent Toolkit includes eLearning module to close gaps in students’ understanding of sexual violence and harassment, including the legal definition of rape, sexual assault, and sexual harassment, and how to access support services  The comprehensive Toolkit for consent education will be rolled out across 22 Higher Education Institutions featuring new resources and research released led by NUI Galway’s Active* Consent Programme Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris TD, has today (21 September 2020) launched the Active* Consent Toolkit: Developing a Consent Strategy for your Higher Education Institution, produced by NUI Galway’s Active* Consent Programme. The Active* Consent Toolkit: Offers guidance to Higher Education Institutions in developing an Action Plan on consent, sexual violence and harassment, as well as addressing consent education through a sustainable and joined up strategy across each campus community. Provides resources and research from NUI Galway’s new online Active* Consent Programme designed to meet the call for consent education for all students in 2020-2021. Is aimed at Higher Education staff and administrators, including managers, academic, and support staff; Student representatives working with their Students’ Unions, Societies and Sports Clubs, or on behalf of their academic disciplines; and the wider community including external stakeholders such as the rape crisis movement, advocacy groups, and post-primary education.  This toolkit on practical resources, research, and strategy development comes at a time when all Higher Education institutions have been requested by Minister Harris to devise Action Plans to address consent, sexual violence and harassment in third level education, including making consent workshops, developed by NUI Galway, available to all students. Minister Simon Harris, said: “The Sexual Experiences Survey clearly shows us there is so much work to be done. We have to do more to raise awareness and support students, and the Active Consent Toolkit will greatly assist institutions in a really practical way. I want to see all of our higher education institutions further embed the Consent Framework into their policies and procedures so as to ensure a deep and lasting impact. All institutions have now been asked to develop and publish, by February next, specific institutional action plans on tackling sexual violence and harassment and provide an annual report on their progress in implementing the Framework. I believe the higher education sector to take on a leadership role in our societal response to sexual violence and harassment, and these are important steps forward to advance that aim.”  President of NUI Galway, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, said: “I'd like to thank Minister Harris for attending today’s virtual launch of this very important Toolkit and welcome his prioritisation of this critical issue by making consent workshops mandatory and available to all students. I would also like to congratulate the Active* Consent team at NUI Galway for the excellent work and leadership they have shown throughout the ongoing development of this programme and the workshops that have been openly shared and sustainably scaled up to the 22 Higher Education Institutions to date. “Respect for our students and staff is one of our University’s core values which we take very seriously. Education and support around the subject of consent for our student community is a critical learning component that should be made available to everyone during their university journey. Supporting the safety, health and wellbeing of our students and staff is our top priority.” Taking into account the impact of Covid-19, the Toolkit features a new three-stage Higher Education Institution consent education programme for 2020-2021 that can be delivered fully online – and which makes direct use of the findings from the Active* Consent/Union of Students in Ireland ‘Sexual Experiences Survey’ released in June 2020. Stage One of this new programme, the Active* Consent Online Workshop, will be rolled out to First Year students across 22 Irish Higher Education Institutions and counting in autumn 2020. As part of the toolkit, Active* Consent is also launching an eLearning module, Sexual Violence and Harassment: How to Support Yourself and Your Peers, available for use from 15, October 2020. This Active* Consent eLearning module helps to close gaps in students’ understanding of sexual violence and harassment as reported in the ‘Sexual Experiences Survey’, including the legal definition of rape, sexual assault, and sexual harassment, and how to access support services. Students will be active participants, taking part in quizzes, polls, and activities to support learning about consent, sexual violence and harassment, and responding to case studies to find out how to support peers with empathic communication and by taking action to intervene when they see something that is harmful. Dr Padraig MacNeela, Active* Consent Programme Co-Lead, NUI Galway, said: “Our latest research shows that teenagers in schools and young adults in colleges strongly support the idea that consent means having the right to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’, and having their partners hear and respect these preferences. But the research also shows that the confidence to act on this understanding can be undermined by embarrassment and shame, including misperceptions of what your peers actually think. There is also now evidence to show that a number of young people either agree with or do not actively reject misinformed and potentially harmful rape myths.” Key new research findings included in the Active* Consent Toolkit This complex picture of consent is demonstrated by findings from NUI Galway’s ‘Sexual Experiences Survey’ last June that have not been released before that include: 37% of female college students and 53% of male college students gave a ‘neutral’ or ‘agree’ response when asked whether asking for consent is awkward. 63% of female college students and 37% of male college students said they were ‘very likely’ to say something to intervene if a friend was taking a drunk person back to their room at a party. 26% of female college students and 51% of male college students gave a ‘neutral’ or ‘agree’ response to the rape myth that, if a girl initiates kissing or hooking up, she should not be surprised if a guy assumes she wants to have sex. Dr Charlotte McIvor, Active* Consent Programme Co-Lead and Editor of the Active* Consent Toolkit, NUI Galway said: “The Toolkit offers significant opportunities for learning, culture and behaviour change in the area of sexual violence and harassment in higher education, not only doubling down on the Active* Consent Programme’s key message that Consent is OMFG (ongoing, mutual and freely-given) through an accessible and comprehensive usable toolkit format but also providing a new fresh vision of how to work together sustainably within and across Higher Education Institutions to achieve lasting change in these areas.” Dr Pádraig MacNeela, concluded: “Schools and colleges are important settings for education on positive, active consent that in turn works against tolerance of sexual violence and harassment. The Consent Framework for colleges is one of the best strategies available internationally for enabling the Higher Education sector to seize the opportunity to achieve this potential – and in providing support for colleges to meet the challenges faced while developing the capacity to do so. By providing supports like the Consent Toolkit, we are asking our colleges to embrace change on all levels, to work together to meet the needs of those affected by sexual violence and harassment, and to promote a culture of positive, active consent consistent with healthy development.” To receive a toolkit please email activeconsent@nuigalway.ie and for further information about the Active* Consent Programme, visit: http://www.nuigalway.ie/student-life/student-support/active-consent/ or on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/activeconsent/ -Ends-

Monday, 21 September 2020

Online event to discuss research on the future of regenerative medicine NUI Galway is today hosting an online forum for the inaugural meeting of 17 Confucius Institutes around the world which are dedicated to the study of Chinese Medicine. The newly established Global Alliance of Confucius Institutes of Chinese Medicine (GACICM) is for the first time bringing together academics, healthcare specialists and researchers from 17 institutes in 13 countries. The Alliance is being led by the Confucius Institute of Chinese and Regenerative Medicine at NUI Galway, which was established in 2019, with a distinct focus on researching the potential benefits of Chinese herbal products in developing new therapies. Professor Timothy O’Brien, Dean of NUI Galway’s College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Director of the Confucius Institute at the University, said: “The Global Alliance of Confucius Institutes for Chinese Medicine is a unique opportunity – for NUI Galway, for our patients, for science and for research and discovery with colleagues across the globe. “It opens doors to study potential therapies for conditions for which we currently don’t have good treatments. It is phenomenally exciting to be leading an ambitious team to see if we can discover new drugs from herbal products used in Chinese Medicine and whether they can be used in the treatment of conditions of unmet medical need, for which we have stem cell models at our flagship lab in NUI Galway.” “Researchers at NUI Galway have been paving the way in regenerative medicine research for over 16 years. Now we are charting a new and ambitious path, with the goal of analysing Chinese Medicine herbal products in a bid to discover molecules which have regenerative capabilities.” In advance of attending the meeting, NUI Galway President Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh said: “We are delighted to virtually host the inaugural Global Alliance of Confucius Institutes of Chinese Medicine. We are honoured to be joined by esteemed colleagues from China, Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine and representatives from across the globe. NUI Galway has committed itself to fostering such partnerships. “As set out in our strategy, Shared Vision, Shaped by Values, we are here for the public good. We look forward to research in Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Therapy leading to the development of innovative treatments to improve healthcare for all.”  NUI Galway’s Confucius Institute involves a partnership between clinicians and scientists at the University’s Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), where Professor O’Brien is Director, and the Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine. NUI Galway’s partnership with Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine is the only link-up of its kind focusing on the interface between Chinese and Regenerative Medicine. It also creates an international link between research teams and the Centre for Cell Manufacturing Ireland in NUI Galway and the only facility in Ireland licensed to produce Mesenchymal Stem Cells for human administration in regulated clinical trials. The online meeting is being chaired by Prof O’Brien. Among those attending will be Mr Lingshan Zhao, the Vice President and Secretary-General of Chinese International Education Foundation; representatives from Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine including Professor Zhiguang Sun, Vice President International; Confucius Institute Directors and University Presidents from the 17 institutes including Ireland, UK, Australia, Japan, Hungary, Portugal, Korea, Thailand, South Africa, USA, Cuba, Brazil and Slovakia. -Ends-


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