Friday, 10 November 2006

Olive Braiden, Chair of the Arts Council, is to be special guest at the NUI Galway launch of the 'Jerome Hynes Best One Act Play Award' on Friday 24 November at 6pm in the Aula Maxima at NUI Galway. The award, which will be presented to the best Director/Writer of a one-act play, will be an annual event and is in honour of NUI Galway alumnus, the late Jerome Hynes, for his contribution to the arts. The launch will be hosted by the NUI Galway Alumni Association who also commissioned John Coll to design the sculpture being unveiled at the launch. The sculpture will be permanently showcased in the Bank of Ireland Theatre at the University. Catherine Hickey-O'Maoláin, Vice Chairperson of the NUI Galway Alumni Association, said "We are tremendously proud of Jerome as one of our own, one who contributed so much to this country's cultural life. Before his untimely death, Jerome was in line to be honoured with a prestigious Alumni Award and we thought it fitting that we pay tribute to him in another way – a way in which we hope he would approve." Jerome was a native of Galway and his sister is the theatre Director Gary Hynes. In 1981 he was appointed administrator, and later General Manager, of the Druid Theatre Company. He managed that organisation during its development into a major company, notably through its international touring. In 1988, he was appointed the first Managing Director, and later Chief Executive, of Wexford Festival Opera. In 2003, he was appointed by the Government as a member of The Arts Council and as Deputy Chair. He was also on the Board of the National concert hall as well as appointed by the Arts Minister John O Donoghue to chair a special committee on the traditional arts in 2005. A dramatic tribute performed by acclaimed actress Marie Mullen and members of NUI Galway DramSoc will also take place on the night. Further information is available from the Alumni Office on 091 493 750 or email alumni@nuigalway.ie -Ends-

Tuesday, 7 November 2006

07 November 2006: A new agreement has been put in place to support growth in the already significant medical devices industry in both the Border Midland and Western Region, Ireland and in the West Midlands, UK. The cooperation agreement, signed at NUI Galway, will involve the identification of areas for inter-regional working, particularly in the areas of collaborative research proposals, mobility of researchers and exchange of best practice in technology transfer from research labs and centres to the medical devices firms. The Centre for Innovation and Structural Change at NUI Galway, facilitated by the Border Midland and Western Regional Assembly, worked with the West Midlands Regional Development Agency - Advantage West Midlands - to set out the terms of the Inter-Regional Scientific and Technological Cooperation Agreement. This lays down a framework in which research and technological development activities of mutual benefit can be developed between institutions of higher education, research institutions, regional development organisations, business support agencies and companies in the regions. The Agreement is a result of an EU funded Interreg IIIB initiative to support the development of networks amongst regions in Europe. The President of NUI Galway, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, welcomed the initiative, stating that, "This is an exciting opportunity for the research insitutions, technology transfer offices and medical devices firms in the regions to identify areas for joint activites, reducing duplication of effort and promoting effective responses to the needs of medical devices companies in both regions". The Project Director, Professor Michael Cuddy, commented that the signing of the Agreement represented a success story for European funded initiatives: "In developing the Agreement with colleagues in the regional development agency and the University of Coventry, the BMW Region is well placed to transfer and exploit best practice in research to support the medical devices industry as a key sector in the EU". The Agreement outlines five specific areas in which inter-regional Cooperation can take place: 1. Support for reciprocal exchanges of scientists, researchers, technicians and trainees for visits, study tours and advanced studies (and in particular the promotion of the Marie Curie Fellowships between Higher Education Instutions in the BMW and West Midlands regions) 2. Promoting and developing joint research on projects and programmes of mutual interest, with a particular focus on medical and health technologies 3. The organisation of bilateral scientific meetings and participation in conferences, symposia and inter-regional seminars; 4. Collaboration and participation in the submission of proposals and other actions requesting funding and other support from the European Commission and other sources; and 5. Direct support to the development of partnerships among SMEs and between SMEs and Higher Education, through collaboration and co-operation with regional business support agencies such as the Chambers of Commerce and Business Links. The Agreement will be for one year initially and will be reviewed by the institutions involved at the end of that period. Key stakeholders in both regions will be involved over the course of its implementation. This initiative, undertaken by the BMW region, supports the goals of the Irish Strategy for Science, Technology and Innovation (2006-2013) which addresses what it sees as 'vital' international dimensions of research and innovation in securing Ireland's position, by 2013, as a country that is internationally renowned for the excellence of its research, and to the forefront in generating and using new knowledge for economic and social progress, within an innovation driven culture. -ends- Contact: Professor Michael Cuddy, Project Director / Dr Lorna Ryan, Project Manager +353 91 524411 Notes to Editors The Centre for Innovation and Structural Change (CISC) is an interdisciplinary research centre at the National University of Ireland, Galway partnered by University College Dublin and Dublin City University Business School. CISC was formally launched at NUI, Galway by An Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern T.D. on 1st March 2002. The key objective of CISC is to build an internationally recognised programme of research and research training on the innovation processes and policies that are fundamental to the development of a knowledge-based economy. CISC has been awarded competitive funding of Euro 2.8 million under the Irish Government s Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (PRTLI) of the Higher Education Authority. NUI Galway, Centre for Innovation and Structural Change, www.nuigalway.ie/cisc The Border, Midlands and Western Regional Assembly was established by the Government on 21st July, 1999 and consists of 29 elected members from the constituent local authorities, within the B.M.W. Region. The Border, Midland and Western Region consists of the following 13 counties: Cavan, Donegal, Galway, Laois, Leitrim, Longford, Louth, Mayo, Monaghan, Offaly, Roscommon, Sligo, Westmeath. The Role of the B.M.W. Assembly is to: Manage the B.M.W. Regional Operational Programme under the National Development Plan. Monitor the impact of the EU programme under the National Development Plan/Community Support Framework framework within the BMW Region Promote the co-ordination of public services within the Region Advantage West Midlands is one of nine Regional Development Agencies in England whose role is to provide leadership and action to create more, better jobs and an improved quality of life in the West Midlands.

Monday, 6 November 2006

06 November 2006: NUI Galway's Atlantic Laser and Optics Forum (LightForum) holds its first annual meeting on 8 November in the Westwood House Hotel, Galway. The theme of the meeting is the expanding role of photonics (light and laser technology) in manufacturing, and will feature a number of invited international speakers, addressing important topics related to photonics in industry and society in general. The event will include strategic perspectives from the European Commission, international photonics research and the European manufacturing industry. Attendees will also be updated on recent developments in the Forum and in the Photonics community at NUI Galway, as well as new initiatives designed to make the interaction between industry and the photonics research community simpler and more effective. Tony Flaherty of the National Centre for Laser Applications, NUI Galway, explained, "Although we may not all realise, photonics has long been a fundamental technology for manufacturing such as telecommunications and information technology. More recently, photonics has become mainstream in areas such as medicine, where poor eyesight is being remedied by laser treatment, and in manufacturing, where laser processing is rapidly becoming the industry standard for many applications. As the use of photonics across industry expands and the Irish economy adapts to become a high-tech knowledge economy, the strength of our photonics research and expertise will be critical". The Atlantic Laser and Optics Forum provides a framework in which scientists and professionals in industry and the University can explore and develop interactions of mutual interest. The forum was launched last year and has had a busy year hosting courses, workshops and round-table discussions on topics as diverse as Adaptive Optics and Fiber-Laser Applications in Micro-machining. The Forum is the ideal way to join the laser users community in Ireland and meet professionals in other companies who have had similar issues or experiences relating to laser and optics innovation. The Forum is free to professionals in Irish industry and more information is available at http://www.nuigalway.ie/lighthouse/news3.html -ends-

Monday, 6 November 2006

06 November 2006: The European Commission has announced a grant of €2.8 million for an international research project which will take place at NUI Galway on bio-powered bio-electrochemical sensing systems. The Research Project, which is being run in collaboration with research groups across international universities, will be headed up by Dr. Dónal Leech of NUI Galway's Chemistry Department. The Specific Targeted Research Project (STREP) titled BIO-MEDNANO, aims to investigate technologies for the development of biocatalytic fuel cells and biosensors. For example, 21st century medicine will increasingly demand the monitoring and control of a range of medical conditions by sophisticated, miniaturised and integrated implantable devices. Current battery technology uses highly reactive lithium making miniaturisation expensive and difficult, and thus biocatalytic fuel cells will be of significant importance in medical devices of the future. Commenting on the announcement, Dr. Dónal Leech said: "Biocatalytic fuel cells represent a realistic opportunity for the provision of implantable power and there is enormous scope for the wider application of biosensors in the area of medical diagnostics, in environmental monitoring and in food quality. We are delighted to have secured this funding which will allow us to make important strides forward over the next number of years and look forward to leading the way in research in this field". The Biomolecular Electronics Research Laboratory of NUI Galway's Chemistry Department will co-ordinate the research project. It is a collaboration between NUI Galway and research groups at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the University of Southampton, the University of Rome, Czech Republic company BVT Technologies, and Finish organisations Abo Akademi and VTT Biotechnology. -ends- Note to editors: The major innovation of this project is related to an optimised combination of enzyme, mediator, and molecular bridges on novel electrodes to ensure efficient and sustainable electron transfer in order to power devices such as biosensors. Biocatalytic fuel cells are fuel cells which rely upon biocatalytic reactions at the electrodes to convert chemicals into electrical power. These fuel cells represent a realistic opportunity for provision of implantable power, given the exquisite selectivity of enzyme catalysts, their activity under physiological conditions, and the relative ease of immobilisation of isolated enzymes. Implantable biocatalytic fuel calls have thus been proposed, where the body's own chemicals are used to produce power in-viro. It is anticipated that the implanted biofuel cells could use body fluids, particularly blood, as the fuel source for the generation of electrical power, which may then be used to activate pacemakers, insulin pumps, prosthetic elements, or biosensing systems. Biofuel cells have also been suggested in military or security fields for detection of explosives.

Monday, 6 November 2006

06 November 2006: The Irish Studies Online Programme from NUI Galway's Centre for Irish Studies, is set to make its mark in Japan. Thursday last, at a function in Tokyo, His Excellency Brendan Scannell, Irish Ambassador to Japan, formally launched an exciting new development which will allow Japanese students the opportunity to be taught the online diploma in Irish Studies in their own language. The programme, developed in partnership between NUI Galway and Regis University, Denver, Colorado, provides an introduction to Irish life and culture through the disciplines of Archaeology, History, English, Irish Political Science and Sociology. All of the seminars and group discussions will be in Japanese. NUI Galway's Centre for Irish Studies, which has pioneered the development of online courses in Irish Studies, has appointed two highly qualified Japanese facilitators to teach the programme and provide tuition and guidance to students in Japanese. The online diploma, the first of its kind in the world, provides an overview of Irish history from the pagan Celtic world and the coming of Christianity, through to the cataclysmic famines of the 1840s, the establishment of an independent state in 1922, and Ireland's integration into the European community that has been ongoing since the 1970s. Students are introduced to Irish literature in both the Irish (Gaelic) and English languages, from the Old-Irish sagas and early Irish lyrics through the emergence of Anglo-Irish literature in the eighteenth century, to the twentieth-century revival of writing in Irish. Ambassador Scannell described this initiative as further evidence of commitment on the part of the Irish Education sector to consolidate its efforts in Japan. NUI Galway was represented in Tokyo by Prof Ger Hurley, Vice-President for External Affairs, Anna Cunningham, Director of International Affairs and Chinatsu Hakamada, a PhD student at Scoil na Gaeilge. Miss Hakamada addressed the gathering of 150 guests in fluent Irish and English. She has recently been appointed by the Centre for Irish Studies to teach the online programme and provide tuition and guidance to students in Japanese. Many of the guests at the reception availed of the opportunity to view a demonstration of the online programme. Given that 2007 marks the fiftieth anniversary of diplomatic relations between Ireland and Japan, this is an opportune time to launch such an initiative in Japan. While students will require a considerable degree of competence in English as most of the learning materials are in English, the online instruction will be provided through the medium of Japanese. "This is particularly important on an online programme," according to Dr Louis de Paor, Director of the Centre for Irish Studies, "as the level of interaction between students and their teachers online is greater than in traditional on-campus programmes. All of the seminars and group discussions will be in Japanese, as will all interaction between the students and their online tutor, and among the students themselves. This is a very exciting development for us, as it allows us, for the first time, to offer courses in Irish Studies to Japanese students in their own language." In order to celebrate this new initiative, the Centre for Irish Studies is offering a number of scholarships to the first intake of Japanese students on its online programme. -ends-

Monday, 6 November 2006

'Civic Republicanism and Public Morality' 06 November2006 – Dr. Garret FitzGerald, former Taoiseach and current Chancellor of the National University of Ireland, will deliver a seminar entitled 'Civic Republicanism and Public Morality,' at NUI Galway at 3pm on Tuesday, 14 November. Dr. Fitzgerald's talk will draw on a chapter from his recent book, 'Ireland in the World: Further Reflections', and on his recent address to the Annual Conference of National Principals and Deputy Principals of Second-Level Schools. Dr. Garret FitzGerald will speak as part of a keynote seminar series hosted and sponsored by the Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI) at NUI Galway. Focusing on themes related to civic engagement and active citizenship, this keynote series is being offered as a response to the increased alienation and declining social commitment that is common in today's communities, and will host a number of high profile people who are knowledgeable in these areas. Dr. Garret FitzGerald is a former Foreign Minister and Taoiseach and is currently the Chancellor of the National University of Ireland and presides over its Senate. He has been a weekly columnist in the Irish Times for the last 50 years, is Chairman of the Future of Europe Committee of the Institute of European Affairs, as well as President of the Institute, and is also a Director of the Irish Chapter of Transparency International, Age Action Ireland and the Greater European Fund. The Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI) is a project at NUI Galway that promotes partnership with communities and endeavours to enhance social commitment within communities. Funded by philanthropic donations, the CKI hopes to reinvigorate the civic mission of higher education in Ireland, putting communities at the centre of debate. "We are delighted to have Dr. FitzGerald speak with us and hope it will be an educational and informative event for people of the Galway community," said Lorraine McIlrath, CKI Project Coordinator. Those interested in attending this keynote address should email mary.bernard@nuigalway.ie or call contact Mary Bernard on 091 493823 for a free ticket. For further information, please contact Lorraine McIlrath, CKI Project Coordinator at 091 495234 or email lorraine.mcilrath@nuigalway.ie or Christina McDonald Legg, christina.legg@nuigalway.ie -ends-

Thursday, 2 November 2006

Stem Cell Sciences plc (AIM:STEM), the global biotechnology company focused on the commercialisation of stem cells and stem cell technologies in research and novel cell-based therapies, is pleased to announce that the Group s Neural Stem Cells (NS cells) will enter preclinical testing for spinal cord injury in a groundbreaking collaboration with the world-renowned Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at NUI Galway. The initial study will examine the ability of the NS cells to provide functional improvements in models of spinal cord injury at REMEDI. Spinal cord injury affects more than 25 million people worldwide, with 130,000 new cases reported each year. It represents a considerable social and economic cost to both families and countries. "It's a really exciting opportunity for us to test our NS cells in preclinical models of spinal cord injury", said SCS's Chief Scientific Officer, Dr Tim Allsopp. "We will examine how the cells remain viable, engraft and support natural repair processes. We are really pleased to be collaborating with NUI Galway's Regenerative Medicine Institute". Stem Cell Sciences' NS cells are unique in that they can be grown in serum-free and feeder-free cell culture conditions. Potentially, this makes them very effective when used in a variety of cell-based therapeutics. Professor Frank Barry, REMEDI's Scientific Director and a world-leading scientist in stem cell therapy, said: "For REMEDI to be able to evaluate a 'best in class' neural stem cell in conjunction with a world-leading company is a great opportunity for us, and underscores the efforts we are making in Ireland in finding novel therapeutic solutions for currently incurable conditions." Initial study results are expected in the first quarter of 2007. If this study proves successful, Stem Cell Sciences and REMEDI plan to expand the collaboration with more extensive testing. "It would be a great step forward if we demonstrate efficacy for our NS cells in this model" said Dr Peter Mountford, Chief Executive Officer of SCS. "With our capabilities in novel cell culture media development and stem cell uses in drug discovery, our next step was always to move into pre-clinical trials of illness and disease, using the NS cells." Dr Daniel O'Mahony, Director of Technology Transfer at NUI Galway said, "We are bringing together two technology leaders in their respective fields in the development of new treatments for spinal cord injury. This collaboration between REMEDI and SCS reinforces our commitment to industrial collaborations and to progressing technologies from the laboratory to the market place." -ends – For further information, please contact: Stem Cell Sciences plc 01316629829 Hugh Ilyine, Chief Operating Officer Sue Furber, Director of Finance & Company Secretary Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) +353 091 495198 Ita Murphy MSc, Communications and Outreach Manager Weber Shandwick|Square Mile 020 7067 0700 James White Notes to Editors Stem Cell Sciences plc (SCS, AIM: STEM) is a global biotechnology company, established in Melbourne, Australia in 1994, providing products in the burgeoning stem cell research and drug discovery markets, in addition to the targeted development of cell-based therapies for neurodegenerative disease and injury. The Company has established a leading intellectual property (IP) and technology portfolio that enables the commercial application of stem cells in drug discovery, providing the Company with early-stage revenue streams and technology development for at scale cell production of SCS cell-based therapeutics. SCS principal focus is in neurological disease. Revenues in the neurotech market, including pharmaceuticals, devices and diagnostics, grew 10% in 2005 to US$110 billion*. SCS operates as a group of independent operations with laboratories in Scotland, Japan and Australia, each of which is affiliated with an academic centre of excellence. These include the Institute of Stem Cell Research (ISCR), Edinburgh, UK, RIKEN Centre for Development Biology, Kobe, Japan and the Australian Stem Cell Centre, Melbourne, Australia. SCS has four business units focused on key sustainable business strategies. SC Proven® provides cell culture media (liquid formulations) and reagents that enable the growth and differentiation of stem cells. The first commercially available product, a novel, serum free, stem cell growth medium, has been exclusively licensed for manufacture and marketing to Chemicon, part of Millipore Corporation. SC Licensing licenses SCS proprietary technologies, such as Internal Ribosome Entry Site (IRES) and Stem Cell Selection, for application in laboratory-based research and discovery. SCS has licensed technology to major pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies including Pfizer, Sanofi Aventis, GSK, Deltagen Inc and Lexicon Genetics Inc. SC Services provides specialised stem cell production for basic research and drug discovery, including high-throughput applications. SC Therapies' goal is to develop safe and effective cell-based therapies for currently incurable diseases. SCS is conducting preclinical evaluations of its neural stem cell lines in a number of therapeutic applications. The first preclinical programme is being undertaken by SCS' Japanese affiliate, which recently announced the exclusive licensing of human multi-potent adipose-derived stem (hMADS) cells for therapeutic purposes. SCS KK will conduct preclinical studies for the treatment of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy in 2006. For further information on the company please visit www.stemcellsciences.com

Thursday, 2 November 2006

02 Samhain 2006: Seolfaidh Peadar Mac an Iomaire, Príomhfheidhmeannach Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, an DVD Claíocha Arda, ina bhfuil cur síos ar shaol agus ar shaothar Mháirtín Uí Chadhain ag Oireachtas na Gaeilge i nDoire ar an Satharn, 4 Samhain 2006 ag 2.30 i.n. sa Millennium Forum. Tugann Claíocha Arda spléachadh ar an bhfís gheal ar chaith Máirtín Ó Cadhain a shaol léi. Tá an DVD Claíocha Arda eisithe ag Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh mar chuid den chomóradh 100 bliain ar bhreith Mháirtín Uí Chadhain. Mhair Máirtín Ó Cadhain le linn don chéad naoi mbliana don craoladh teilifíse in Éirinn. Dá réir níl an oiread taifead físe dó ar fáil. Tugann an DVD seo an chuid is fearr de chartlann RTÉ le chéile. Tugtar deis cainte don Chadhnach féin cur síos ar a óige, a scolaíocht, poblachtánachas, tús na scríbhneoireachta, litríocht, agus síol na scéalaíochta - an grá! "Silim gan an grá níl aon scéalaíocht" a dúirt Máirtín. Úsáidtear ceol le Shostakovich, fear eile a bhfuil comóradh 100 bliain a bhreithe i mbliana, coinséartó cáiliúil uimhir a trí de chuid Rachmaninov, agus píosa le Stravinsky, d'fhonn atmaisféar a chruthú leis na pictiúir dhubha agus bhána. Bhí teanga na Rúise ag Ó Cadhain agus chuir sé spéis in obair na mórscríbhneoirí Rúiseacha ar nós Dostoevsky, Chekhov agus Maxim Gorki. Léirítear sliocht as pièce de résistance Uí Chadhain Cré na Cille agus déantar trácht ar fhoinse an úrscéil agus a charachtair sa DVD. Threabh Máirtín Ó Cadhain iomaire na litríochta Gaeilge san aois seo caite. D'fhág sé oeuvre atá i gcroílár litríocht na hÉireann. Is é Claíocha Arda a scéal is a dhán. Dúirt Peadar Mac an Iomaire "is inspioráid an scannán seo do dhaoine óga agus do dhaoine nach bhfuil chomh hóg le léiriú a fháil ar dhílseacht agus ar dhúthracht an fhir seo ar son a mhuintire féin. Ag an am céanna, ní raibh na hacmhainní faoina lámh lena linn a thabharfadh an deis dó féin agus don mhuintir sin a bhí gar dá chroí iad féin a chumasú mar ba mhian leis". Tá líon teoranta cóipeanna den DVD (500 cóip) le díol ón 7 Samhain 2006 ar aghaidh ach teagmháil a dhéanamh le hAcadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge 091 492428 nó caitriona.nichoirbhin@oegaillimh.ie CRÍOCH

Thursday, 2 November 2006

02 November 2006: Geraldine Kennedy, editor of the Irish Times, will officially open the Moore Institute for Research in the Humanities and Social Studies at NUI Galway on Tuesday 7 November. The institute provides scholars an opportunity to engage in research and innovative thinking to promote the better appreciation of human cultural and social achievements in past centuries, and the enrichment and improvement of our world today. It is called after the Moore family of Moore Hall in County Mayo whose members, in successive generations, sponsored such change in the west of Ireland over the course of four centuries. The official opening will be followed by the inaugural lecture at the Institute entitled 'The Natural History of the Atlantic World'. This is a free event to which the general public are invited. In this illustrated lecture Professor Nicholas Canny, Academic Director of the Moore Institute, will investigate how, between the 1560s and the1720s, scientific writers in Northern Europe absorbed new knowledge about the peoples and resources of the Americas that had come within their reach through the process of discovery and exploration. Speaking about the new Institute, President of NUI Galway, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh commented, "Research in the humanities is more important than ever in our Irish society which has changed so rapidly over the last number of years and continues to evolve on many levels. The social sciences allow us to understand not only our own culture, but also our responsibilities as citizens of the global village. The Moore Institute will develop the best scholars from around the world and imbue them with the knowledge and skills necessary to contribute to Ireland's social and economic fabric." The opening of the Institute will also be marked by seminars on the morning of the 7 November at NUI Galway on topics such as Connacht Landed Estates 1700-1920; Thomas Moore Hypermedia Archive and TEXTE - Transfer of Expertise in Technologies of Editing. -ends- Information for Editors : The Natural History of the Atlantic World. In this illustrated lecture Professor Nicholas Canny, Academic Director of the Moore Institute, NUI Galway, will investigate how, between the 1560s and the 1720s, scientific writers in Northern Europe absorbed new knowledge about the peoples and resources of the Americas that had come within their reach through the process of discovery and exploration. He will also consider how successive authors of texts suggested how more efficient use might be made of these resources for the betterment of all humanity. He will commence by explaining that the terms Natural History and Cosmography, which were in common use during these centuries, corresponded roughly with the terms Anthropology and Ethnography as these are used today meaning the study of human beings in relation to their natural environments. The lecture will commence with the attempts made by French, English and Dutch adventurers to establish settlements in Brazil, Florida, and on Roanoke Island (off the coast of North Carolina) during the late sixteenth century and on how these were reported upon both individually by participants and compositely in the illustrated 4 volume America by Theodore de Bry published from Frankfurt and translated into most major European vernaculars as well as in Latin during the early decades of the seventeenth century. From there it will proceed to discuss how for a brief interlude after 1604, a year that marked the cessation of military hostilities between Spain and several of the Northern European powers, adventurers from these countries first began to spill over into the Americas and then to take account of earlier Natural Histories of the Americas that had been written by Spanish authors. This will lead to a discussion of Natural Histories composed by a sequence of French and English authors who emulated these Spanish model texts. These more recent authors wrote principally of the peoples and resources of the islands of the West Indies and of the coastal areas of Canada. Special attention will be given to the writings of the French Dominican priests J.B. Du Tertre and J.B. Labat but the lecture will culminate with a consideration of the contribution to Natural History, and particularly that of the island of Jamaica, made by Sir Hans Sloane at the outset of the eighteenth century. This will show how he absorbed everything that had been written by his predecessors of whatever nationality, and it will make the case for Sloane being considered the first modern scientist. The lecture will be organized around the appraisals made by these authors of the resources that America offered to Europe, and around the illustrations they provided of plants, animals, and peoples in the places with which they had become familiar. It will take account both those that were native to the areas and those that had been introduced by Europeans and Africans from other parts of the globe. Attention will also be given to the descriptions and illustrations successive authors supplied of the production and processing of marketable commodities notably tobacco, cotton, cassava, sugar, fish and furs.

Wednesday, 1 November 2006

01 November 2006: World renowned entrepreneur and business leader Stephen Allott is to give a seminar at NUI Galway entitled, "From Science to Growth: Why Technology Transfer is Not Enough?" Stephen Allott is Chairman of Trinamo Limited, a management consultancy and security software reseller, which he co-founded in 2004, and former President of IT company Micromuse. The seminar, which is being run by the University's Centre for Innovation and Structural Change, will take place on Tuesday 7 November at 6.00pm in room BS118 at the J.E. Cairnes Graduate School of Business & Public Policy, NUI Galway. At the event, Stephen will also launch Strategic Management of Technology Transfer: The New Challenge on Campus written by Dr. James Cunningham and Mr. Brian Harney published by Oak Tree Press. The seminar will address the correlation between investment in scientific research and economic growth. Traditionally, more science does lead to more growth but Allott will question the exact mechanisms by which one leads to the other. He will investigate the relative impact of 'People Centric' mechanisms (entrepreneurs, recruitment by businesses of bachelor graduates and applied development work undertaken by PhDs employed in industry) compared to "Idea Centric" mechanisms (technology transfer via licensing and spin-outs). Allott, who also serves as City Fellow at Cambridge University, suggests that the economic impact of academic research could be substantially increased by using a focused range of People Centric initiatives to complement technology transfer programmes. For business people, the talk will outline how to obtain value from university interactions. Those wishing to attend the event should email Dr. Willie Golden, (willie.golden@nuigalway.ie) Director, Centre for Innovation and Structural Change or telephone 091 492817. -ends- Notes to Editors: Stephen Allott is both a business and a non-profit entrepreneur. After graduating from Trinity College, Cambridge with a degree in law, he practised at the Bar in private practice and then as in-house counsel with Babcock, Rank Xerox and Sun Microsystems. He then worked for McKinsey as a strategy consultant in telecoms and technology before joining Micromuse in 1995. At Micromuse he was President, CFO and a main board director, leading the NASDAQ flotation. From 2001 to 2004 he was a full time Visitor at the Cambridge University Computer Laboratory where he founded the Computer Laboratory Graduate Association (www.camring.ucam.org). In 2004 he co-founded Trinamo Ltd., which has two divisions, a management consultancy for software companies and a security software reseller (www.trinamo.com)

Wednesday, 1 November 2006

01 November 2006 - The fourth annual VOLT conference will be held at NUI Galway on 6 November, giving Irish volunteer coordinators a place to find peer support and share their knowledge and experience about good practice. VOLT (Volunteer Organisers Linking Together) is the Irish network of volunteer coordinators, and is facilitated and administered by Volunteering Ireland. This conference, Paving the Way: Leadership in Volunteer Management, will feature international speaker Susan J. Ellis, world renowned expert on volunteer management on her first ever visit to Ireland. Sr. Stanislaus Kennedy, Life President of Focus Ireland will open the conference and Sean Kelly, representing the Taskforce on Active Citizenship, will provide an update on the work of the Taskforce. The annual VOLT conference gives Irish volunteer managers the opportunity to explore issues related to coordinating volunteer programmes. This conference will look at the issue of leadership in volunteer management, the concepts of leadership and what this means to those involved in managing volunteer programmes. Sr. Stanislaus Kennedy says "Leadership is about enabling people to realise their worth, their value and their potential". This conference will give volunteer managers the opportunity to reflect on their own leadership style, how they lead volunteers within their own organisation and how they harness leadership qualities in their volunteers. The conference is kindly sponsored by the Community Knowledge Initiative and the National Irish Bank and will take place in the Arts Millennium Building, NUI Galway. -ends- For more information visit www.volunteeringireland.ie or contact: Nancy Nuñez, VOLT Chairperson, Tel: 01 8722622, Mobile: 087 9258112, Email: volt@volunteeringireland.ie

Tuesday, 19 December 2006

19 December 2006: A leading lecturer in history at NUI Galway has praised a book of short stories and poems by Galway-based senior writers as a "precious collection of stories about bygone times and a wonderful Christmas gift". The book 21 - An Anthology, comes from the Salthill/Knocknacarra Active Retirement Writers Group, and is edited by well-known Irish author Michael Gorman. Many of the stories retrieve a rich written heritage, reflecting a world that has long passed with stories of childhoods in Ireland in the 1940s and 1950s. According to Dr. Caitriona Clear, Lecturer in History, NUI Galway, "The recent past is often farther away from us than the distant past, a time that seems only slightly different but belongs to a different culture, a different way of looking at the world. These stories bring back memories of only cold water in the tap, ice on the inside of bedroom windows, the Rosary in the evening in every house, and boxes of biscuits strapped onto the backs of bikes brought to cousins' houses in the days coming up to Christmas. 21 - An Anthology captures the texture of life we would otherwise forget about". Michael Gorman, a Programme Director at NUI Galway's International Summer School for Writers, who facilitated and compiled the book, comments "My instinct in preparing this collection was to preserve what is most easily endangered, that which is close to hand. I have always been drawn to reticent people rather than those who shout loudest. So, here, in their own words, are twenty-one individuals from all over Ireland who have lived, worked in or retired to Galway". In a poignant twist, the book is dedicated to some of the 21 authors who have passed away since the time of writing, making 21 - An Anthology an even more precious collection of writing. NUI Galway's Adult and Continuing Education Centre has been involved in working with and supporting Active Retirement groups in Galway city and county for the past ten years. 21 - Anthology is published by NUI Galway and can be purchased for just €10 from Áras Fáilte, the information centre on campus. -ends-

Tuesday, 19 December 2006

19 December 2006: The U.S. Board of Galway University Foundation was formally launched by the Irish Consul General in New York, Mr. Tim O'Connor, at a reception hosted recently at the Irish Consul's residence in New York. Galway University Foundation generates financial support for NUI Galway's programmes and activities from a range of private individuals and institutions. The new board will help nurture lasting relationships with donors in the U.S. who share NUI Galway s vision for the future. The U.S. Board will be chaired by NUI Galway graduate Declan Kelly who is CEO of Financial Dynamics US. He will work to raise awareness of the University and assist with the monumental capital campaign that the University has initiated to improve the physical resources offered to its growing student body of 15,000. The development programme will include planned new buildings and enhancements of current facilities, all financed by University resources and a combination of government and private, philanthropic funding. Following the inaugural meeting of the Board in the US, the new members were introduced to a gathering of 150 prominent New York Irish Americans together with University Alumni and Friends. At the meeting, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President, NUI Galway outlined his ambitions for the University "NUI Galway's Governing Authority recently authorised a visionary Capital Development plan, amounting to a €400 million investment in new buildings and enhancements to current facilities. This vision for our 'Campus of the Future' will ensure that we provide the platform from which the young people of today will make their contribution to ensuring that Ireland continues to hold it's place and to play it's part in the knowledge society of the future". The full list of the Galway University Foundation board members in the US are as follows: Declan Kelly, (Chairman), C.E.O Financial Dynamics (Graduate) Mike Higgins, M.D. Real Estate Finance & CIBC World Bank (Graduate) Aedhmar Hynes-McGovern, CEO, Text 100 Public Relations (Graduate) Frank Mooney, Partner, Dunnington, Bartholow & Miller Irial Finan, President - Bottling Investments, Coca-Cola Worldwide (Graduate) Dómhnal Slattery, Chairman & Managing Partner, Claret Capital (Graduate) John MacNamara, Chairman, Galway University Foundation Tom Joyce, Executive Director, Galway University Foundation Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President, NUI Galway The Board appointments are for three years. -ends-

Monday, 18 December 2006

18 December 2006: Environmental researchers from the Civil Engineering Department and Environmental Change Institute at NUI Galway have been awarded a three-year research grant to develop, commission and assess innovative environmental technologies for treating wastewaters from small towns and large villages. The research is seen as a major initiative in developing sustainable environmental products and services for the domestic and export markets, as well as meeting the requirements of EU directives on water quality. According to Dr. Michael Rodgers, Civil Engineering, NUI Galway, who heads up the research, "This project is a strategic step towards developing the knowledge, skills and products Ireland will need in order to command a strong stake-hold in the burgeoning environmental technology industry. It is one of the fastest growing sectors in the EU, supplying €183 billion worth of goods and services a year, and is also highlighted in the Government's recent Strategy Document for Science, Technology and Innovation". The grant is co-funded by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the EU Environmental Technologies Action Plan (ETAP), and the National Council for Forest Research and Development (COFORD) under the National Development Plan. Dr. Rodgers will carry out the research work with members of his twenty–person team of engineers and scientists from Ireland, China, Denmark, Spain and Poland. The present value of the team's contracts on such national and international environmental research projects is in excess of € 2.2 million. On location at a local authority site, the NUI Galway team will design and develop technologies to clean wastewater for discharge to any surface or groundwater body. Innovative environmental technologies will be developed to remove a range of contaminants from the wastewater, including organic carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, microorganisms, odours and solids. Nutrients from the wastewater will fertilise willow trees and the chipped willows will be used as biofuel. The performance of the technologies will be monitored by on-line analysers and sensors, and will be interrogated and controlled from NUI Galway's campus, while computer models will be built and calibrated to provide designs for a range of population sizes. Capital and running costs of different technologies will be evaluated and compared to provide design guidelines for consultants, architects, local authorities, developers, agriculture, industry and planners. The research will provide the basis for a unique Irish water and waste facility for leading edge research, knowledge creation, graduate training, and the development and commercialisation of eco-innovative environmental technologies. There is also scope for education, public information and policy planning. Dr. Rodgers continued "There is great support for the NUI Galway project from environmental technology stakeholders as they have also identified the industry's potential for market growth at home and abroad. All stakeholders will be invited to take part in the research project. It is expected that new commercial environmental products will be developed from this and other industry/higher education projects part-financed through national agencies that include EPA, COFORD, Enterprise Ireland, HEA, IRCSET, Marine Institute, SFI, and Teagasc". -ends -

Monday, 18 December 2006

18 December 2006: The first ever conferring of the Master of Science in Software and Information Systems (MScSIS) took place recently at NUI Galway. The MScSIS is a collaborative programme between NUI Galway and Regis University in Denver, USA. It was created in response to the rapid pace of change in the techniques and technologies employed within the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) industry and the need for employee skills to remain up-to-date with these changes. Twenty-four students graduated in total with a further graduation taking place in Regis University. Commenting on the graduation, Seamus O'Grady, Director of Adult Education, NUI Galway said, "The class of 2006 represents a 100 per cent retention rate of those who started the course in August 2004. It is a wonderful testament to the work which NUI Galway and Regis have done to make this course a success". The two-year, part-time programme is delivered entirely on-line and is open to honours degree graduates in Science, Engineering or other relevant disciplines, and to other degree graduates with three or more years of relevant experience. "The programme is designed for people wishing to update their ICT skills with a specific emphasis on software development and/or databases, and who require the flexibility offered by online learning", explained Dr. Sam Redfern, Programme Academic Director. "It also suits professionals working in the ICT area who wish to formalise and gain accreditation for their skills". Course materials are written in self-instructional format, are easy to follow and are accompanied by continuous assessment exercises, research questions and a recommended course textbook. Each module is delivered over an eight-week period with specific topics outlined for study during each of these eight weeks. "Establishing a set timetable of study which guides the students as they undertake each module, ensures that they keep up to speed with the recommended programme schedule", according to Nuala McGuinn, Course Co-ordinator. "This is particularly important with distance learning programmes where students may fall behind in course work as they are not attending class on a regular basis". While there are no seminars or tutorials as part of this programme, the students are not alone. An e-tutor is assigned to each module and is available during each eight-week period to answer queries that they may have regarding course content and to provide individualised feedback on the weekly continuous assessment exercises. By combining the strengths of both Universities and the power of the internet, the MScSIS has become truly global with over 120 people currently studying for the MScSIS across Ireland, Europe, Australia and the US. -ends- Notes to Editors For further details please visit the programme website at www.it.nuigalway.ie/onlineITMSc

Monday, 11 December 2006

11 December, 2006: Details have been announced of NUI Galway's eighth annual Gala Banquet, which will take place at the Radisson SAS Hotel on Saturday 3rd March 2007, and will focus on volunteerism. The 2007 Gala Banquet will celebrate the ALIVE (A Learning Initiative & Volunteering Experience) programme that enables students to register for volunteering opportunities. ALIVE was established in 2003 to harness, acknowledge and support the contribution that NUI Galway students make by volunteering. Professor Ger Hurley, Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and External Affairs, NUI Galway, said, "NUI Galway is leading the way in integrating civic engagement with practical skills learned in the classroom (service learning). The ALIVE programme was established to support the contribution that our students and staff make by volunteering. The programme has to date offered over 700 NUI Galway students and staff volunteers the opportunity to help develop partnerships between the University and the community while advocating active citizenship". Income from the Gala Banquet itself will also contribute to this initiative. One of the highlights of the evening, which has established itself as a premier national event and one of the key social occasions in the West of Ireland, is the presentation of seven annual Alumni Awards. These awards celebrate the life-long value of an NUI Galway education and recognise individual excellence and achievements among the University's more than 60,000 graduates worldwide. The Alumni Awards are; Medtronic Vascular Award for Health Care and Medical Science; Seavite Award for Natural Science; Bank of Ireland Award for Business and Commerce; AIB Award for Literature, Communications and the Arts; TBD Award for Engineering, IT and Mathematics; Duais Hewlett-Packard don Ghaeilge and the NUI Galway Award for Law, Public Service and Government. Tickets for the banquet cost €150 each and €1,500 for a table of 10. For further information, please telephone 091 495266 or email: gala@nuigalway.ie -ENDS- Notes to Editors: Contact: Michelle Ní Chróinín, Press & Information Officer, NUI Galway 091-493361 or michelle.nichroinin@nuigalway.ie Biographies Seán O'Rourke, Winner of the AIB Award in the area of Literature, Communication and the Arts, graduated with a BA in 1977. He is one of Ireland's leading broadcasters and a stalwart of current affairs programming. After University, he joined the Irish Press Group, as a sports reporter, feature writer and political correspondent. Since 1989, he has been a programme presenter-editor with RTÉ, working on This Week, Morning Ireland, Today Tonight, Prime Time and Family Matters. He has been presenter of the News at One on Radio Once since 1994. Mr O'Rourke also presents The Week in Politics on RTÉ. Irial Finan, Winner of the Bank of Ireland Award for Business & Commerce, Irial Finan is EVP, The Coca-Cola Company and President of Bottling Investments and Supply Chain. The Bottling Investments Group is creating a totally new model for managing our consolidated bottling investments by creating what is essentially an internal bottler that will interact with our concentrate business in the same way as our independent bottlers. Irial has spent 25 years in the Coca-Cola bottling system, most recently as chief executive officer of Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company SA, our third largest anchor bottler, with operations in 26 countries. Irial has been part of the Coca-Cola system since 1981. From 2001 to 2003, he served as chief executive officer of Coca-Cola HBC, during which time he managed the merger integration of Coca-Cola Beverages plc and Hellenic Bottling SA, and led the combined company s operations in 26 countries. From 1995 to 1999, he was managing director of Molino Beverages, with responsibility for expanding markets, including the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Romania, Moldova, Russia and Nigeria. Prior to that role, Irial worked in several markets across Europe. From 1991 to 1993 he served as managing director of Coca-Cola Bottlers Ulster, Ltd., based in Belfast. He was finance director, Coca-Cola Bottlers Ireland, Ltd., based in Dublin from 1984 to 1990. Irial serves on the boards of directors of Coca-Cola Amatil, Coca-Cola Enterprises, Coca-Cola FEMSA, Coca-Cola HBC, and the Supervisory Board of CCE AG. He will also coordinate the Company's board representation with other boards. The general managers of the Company-owned bottlers report to Irial. He is also a non-executive director of Alltracel Pharmaceuticals and chairman of their Audit Committee. He also serves as a non-executive director for Co-operation Ireland. Irial holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from National University of Ireland in Galway and an Associate (later Fellow) of the Institute of Chartered Management Accountants. Mairéad Ní Nuadháin, Duais Hewlett Packard Gaeilge. Is í Mairéad eagarthóir coimisiúnaithe ar chláir Ghaeilge, oideachasúla agus ilchultúir in RTÉ. Is í a bhunaigh "Léargas" agus bhí sí ina léiritheoir sraithe ar an tsraith fáisnéise Ghaeilge sin, a cheiliúir deich mbliana ar an aer i mbliana. Tá cláir shiamsaíochta agus cláir eile fáisnéise léirithe aici chomh maith i mBéarla agus i nGaeilge. Mar chuid dá cúram cláir a sholáthar gach bliain do TG4, tá sraitheanna ar nós "An Tuath Nua," "Bean an Ti," "Bia 's Bóthar," "Ardán" agus go leor clár eile curtha ar fáil, lena n-áirítear cúrsaí reatha, cláir spóirt, cláir irise agus cláir do leanaí. Ba í freisin a choimisúnaigh cláir ilchultúir faoi Éireannaigh nua agus cláir oideachais do RTÉ, mar shampla "Turas Teanga," "Families in Trouble," "Mono," "Who's Afraid of Islam?" agus "No Place Like Home." Is as Bealach an Doirín, Co. Ros Comáin í ó thús agus bhí cónaí uirthi tar éis na hollsoile i nGaillimh, áit a raibh sí ina comhalta de lucht bunaithe an Druid Theatre agus ina haisteoir leis an Taibhdhearc. Nuair a bhí sí in OÉ Gaillimh (Coláiste na hOllscoile, Gaillimh ag an am), bhí sí ar dhuine de na chéad reachtairí mná ar an gCumann Liteartha agus Díospóireachta (Lit and Deb). I mBaile Átha Cliath atá sí anois ach choinnigh sí an tsnaidhm leis na healaíona i nGaillimh, trína ballraíocht i mBord Macnas, agus tá sí ina ball freisin de Bhord Feidhmiúcháin an Celtic Film and Television Company. Professor Patrick Gullane, Medtronic Award for Healthcare and Medical Science. Upon graduating from NUI Galway in 1970, Dr. Patrick J. Gullane embarked on a career in otolaryngology - head and neck surgery - and in 1989 he was appointed as Otolaryngologist-in-Chief at the University Health Network in Toronto. In 1997 he was appointed as Wharton Chair in Head and Neck Surgery, Princess Margaret Hospital, and in 2002 as Professor and Chair to the Department of Otolaryngology, University of Toronto. Dr Gullane is recognised globally as a leader in the field of head and neck surgery and his professional achievements has been celebrated by, amongst others: The Harris P. Mosher Award, Triological Society, 1990; Millennium Society Award, American Academy of Otolaryngology, 2004; Distinguished Service Award, American Academy of Otolaryngology 2005; George Davey Howells Memorial Prize in Otolaryngology", University of London, 2005; Royal Australasian College of Surgeons Honorary Fellowship, 2006. Most recently Princess Margaret Hospital, Toronto, recognized Dr Patrick Gullane's leadership and contribution to his field with a "Tribute Event and Gala Evening" and an endowed Fellowship Chair. Dr Gullane is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a Diplomat of the American Board of Otolaryngology. He has served as the President of the American Head and Neck Society and the President of the North American Skull Base Society, and is the current Vice-President of the Triological Society. He has published 210 papers in peer-reviewed journals and 56 chapters in textbooks and published 8 books on Head and Neck Surgery. He serves on the editorial boards of 10 professional journals. Dr Gullane has lectured as a visiting professor in 42 countries. He has facilitated the establishment of four University Chairs in Head and Neck Oncology and Reconstruction, from private funding donations in excess of $12.5 million. Brian O'Donnell, NUI Galway Award for Law, Public Service & Government Brian O'Donnell graduated from NUI Galway with a BA (Leg.Sci) (Hons) and LLB (Hons), 1974 and 1976. He was admitted to the Role of Solicitors in 1976. Having interned in general practice in Galway for two years Brian O'Donnell was appointed in-house counsel to IDA Ireland. In 1980 Brian O'Donnell was head hunted by William Fry, one of Ireland's largest law firms as a corporate law specialist. He was one of the youngest equity partners ever appointed at the age of 28. During the course of his career Brian O'Donnell acted for Irish Life plc in its privatisation; for Waterford Wedgwood plc in its acquisition of Wedgwood; represented Chevron's mining interests in Ireland; B.T. and BP's in its energy interests in Ireland. He has acted in many healthcare projects and hospital projects particularly the Mater Private Hospital. He advised Doyle Hotels, in its acquisition by Jurys plc and acted for the Irish Press Group for many years and had the task of chairing the liquidation meeting of Irish Press Newspapers Limited. He has also acted in the mergers of a number of regional newspaper groups and radio stations. Brian O'Donnell has acted as legal adviser in large family corporate mediation cases such as Doyle Hotels Group, Blarney Woolen Mills/Meadows & Byrne, Williams Group etc. Pro bono cases have been many, the best known of which was the Blaise Gallagher case where a quadraplegic boy received the then largest damages ever achieved in Ireland. Brian O'Donnell was the managing partner of William Fry on a number of occasions culminating in 1999 in its most successful period in its then 150 year history. In 1999 Brian O'Donnell surprised the legal establishment in Ireland by resigning from William Fry having decided to establish Brian O'Donnell & Partners, a specialist corporate law firm to concentrate on banking, finance, private equity, healthcare and acquisitions of both companies and assets. Shortly after establishing Brian O'Donnell & Partners the practice formed the first ever exclusive association between an Irish and a worldwide international law firm, US based Squire, Sanders & Dempsey LLP. Jointly both firms have worked on significant cross border transactions in the telecoms, technology and energy areas. In 2005 Brian O'Donnell and Dr Mary Patricia O'Beirn-O'Donnell (MB, M.MED SCI. NUI Galway 1977, MRC PSYCH) established Vico Capital. Vico Capital has become one of the most successful Irish based privately owned property investors abroad particularly in the City of London. During the last 18 months Vico Capital has acquired €650 million approximately of grade A offices blocks in Canary Wharf and in the City. Its tenants include Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse and the British Government. Recently Vico Capital completed the acquisition of Sanctuary Buildings (a 230,000 sq ft grade A office block let to the British Government as the headquarters of the Dept of Education & Skills). Brian O'Donnell has been one of only a handfull of Irish lawyers included in the International Who's Who of mergers and acquisition lawyers and has been named in Global Counsel 3000 as Ireland's leading corporate and commercial lawyer. Dr. Reg Shaw, Seavite Award for Natural Science,graduated with a BSc in 1971 and subsequently with a PhD in 1974. He is currently Managing Director of the Wyeth BioPharma Campus in Dublin. Wyeth BioPharma Campus is one of the largest integrated biopharmaceutical facilities in the world with. It was officially opened in Dublin in September 2005. The facility produces Wyeth's best known drugs – Enbrel, a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis, and Prevenar, a vaccine for preventing pneumococcal disease in infants. The product cycle - from cell culturing in a test tube through to bulk manufacturing, packaging and distribution – is, unusually for the industry, carried out on site. This model employed by the Campus is considered a frontier-type investment. Dr Shaw is heading the project to extend the product manufacturing cycle from basic product development right through to the finished product. Patrick & Thomas Coffey, TBD Award for Engineering, IT and Mathematics. Paddy Coffey established Coffey Construction in 1974, a building construction and engineering firm with brother Tom Coffey joining a few years later. The company is now one of the leading companies in the building, civil, environmental and specialist engineering industry in Ireland with such recognisable projects as the Dublin Outer Ring Road and the Leixlip-Ballycoolin Water Supply Scheme. It is also active in the Greater London area with projects such as the renovation of the Royal Albert Hall and the Slough S.T.W. In recent years, the Coffey Group have become involved in the Design, Construction and Operation of Waste Water and Potable Water Treatment Works, Directional Drilling, Trenchless Technology, Wind Farms and Asphalt Production. Great emphasis is placed on continuous professional development for both employer and employees and on quality, health and safety and sound environmental management. The Group considers these matters a primary responsibility and imperative for good business management. The Coffey Group will realise a turnover of €100m this year. The brother's company is a stalwart supporter of NUI Galway graduates and is well known as a nurturing ground for the University's engineering professionals and entrepreneurs. It employs students on placement (PEP) more than any other company since the initiation of the Civil Engineering placement programme and sponsors graduate students in Civil Engineering at NUI Galway.

Monday, 11 December 2006

11 December 2006: The Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at NUI Galway has announced the winners of the Schools' Science Essay Competition 2006, sponsored by Medtronic. First prize went to Leaving Certificate student, Paul Kelliher, who studies at Killorglin's Intermediate School, Co. Kerry. Runner-up was Sarah Grace of the Loreto Abbey Secondary School in Dalkey, and honourable mentions were achieved by Caoilfhionn Ni Chonghaile of the Sacred Heart School in Westport and Saraid McCarrick of St Attracta's Community School, Tubbercurry, Co. Sligo. With prizes including laptops, iPODs and school science bursaries, hundreds of essay entries came from sixty schools across the country. Competition was steep, with a particularly high standard of writing amongst the students who reached the "Top 11 short-list" reviewed by a high profile panel of scientists and journalists. Commenting on the winning essay, competition judge and freelance science journalist Cormac Sheridan said, "Paul's essay crackles with ideas that are expressed with great verve. He is a writer with real intellectual energy and genuine potential". The competition, for which students wrote essays on the topic 'The Quest for Immortality: Who Wants to Live Forever?', was co-ordinated by REMEDI, a Science Foundation Ireland funded research centre at NUI Galway, and was sponsored by REMEDI industrial partner Medtronic. The competition aims to challenge young people to think about and express their views on recent advances in the science and technology field, a view eloquently expressed by Tom Kennedy, a member of the judging panel and editor of Science Spin magazine: "I like the competition because it gets participants thinking about science yet it has nothing to do with the points race. It is relatively easy to repeat given facts in a report or exam paper, but to write well about any subject it is necessary to understand it first." Organised as part of a joint REMEDI and National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science secondary school outreach programme called GRO (Galway Regional Outreach), the competition will run annually. REMEDI also runs additional school and general public awareness initiatives throughout the year which are designed to facilitate dialogue in the areas of stem cell and gene therapy research. The winning essays were selected by a high profile panel of judges which included: Prof Frank Barry (Scientific Director of REMEDI), Mr Leo Enright (Chair of the Discover Science & Engineering Steering Committee), Mr Tom Kennedy (Editor of Spin Science Magazine) and Mr Cormac Sheridan (Freelance Science Journalist). For additional information on REMEDI outreach programmes, visit www.remedi.ie -ends-

Monday, 4 December 2006

A major €400 million development project, announced today at NUI Galway, will put the campus firmly on the international stage in terms of facilities and research. The capital investment project will see almost 20 large infrastructural projects undertaken on the 260-acre campus, continuing the dramatic re-orientation of the campus to face the River Corrib. The planned development marks a significant investment in the future of education and research at NUI Galway that will bring huge benefits to the Western Region as a whole. Commenting on the plan, President of NUI Galway, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, who unveiled the 'Campus of the Future' exhibition today, said: "This ambitious development plan responds not only to a growth of 40% in student numbers over the last six years but also to our role in supporting indigenous, high-value industries in Ireland. Already, we are home to the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science and the Digital Enterprise Research Institute, which are world-class facilities. We also have the Moore Institute which is undertaking pioneering research in the Humanities and Social Sciences. Our plans will build on this success and take every facet of the University to the highest class in terms of services, facilities and research, making us comparable to the best internationally." The €400 million investment package will be financed by University resources and a combination of government and private philanthropic funding. Flagship projects will include a new Sports Centre; a Cultural Centre; a state of the art Engineering building; a Human Biology building and an expansion of the Clinical Sciences Institute; and a Law School which will be linked to jury rooms and a court room to be developed by the courts as part of a pioneering strategic collaboration. Work on some of the new infrastructure projects has already begun with plans for further development to commence on other buildings next year. The 'Campus of the Future' programme commits to enhancing the University's physical infrastructure, while at the same time preserving and nurturing all that is excellent in the current campus. Development will harmonise the natural and built environments, preserving – and where possible adding to – existing walkways and open spaces. The aim is to create a riverside amenity which will be of enormous benefit not only to students and staff, but also to the broader community of the city and region. Dr Ó Muircheartaigh continued: "In charting the future direction for NUI Galway, we have set out a vision in which the continual enhancement of 'the student experience' is enshrined as a core principle. Students are at the very heart of what the University is about and these planned developments are designed to further that ethos. Although the campus is currently home to 15,000 students, the atmosphere remains one of friendliness, inclusion and acceptance of diversity. With the support of students, staff, alumni and the local community, we aim to retain all that is unique and wonderful about our campus and embrace the future with confidence." Commenting on the impact of investment of this scale on Galway City, Dr Ó Muircheartaigh said: "The plans reflect the importance of a strong university to the region as a whole and NUI Galway is central to ongoing development as our high quality students attract and retain national and multi-national investment. This programme is great news for Galway City. Dramatic changes are underway and we will be consulting and including the public on individual projects at every appropriate stage." Highlights of the proposed developments fall into two broad categories of student facilities and teaching facilities: Services and Facilities A €21 million 6,500sqm Sports Centre Complex which will include a 25m swimming pool, gym, weights room, handball and squash courts, climbing wall, sports hall with three basketball courts, an aerobics/dance studio and multi-purpose activity spaces. The Cultural Centre which will consist of a multipurpose hall, a dance studio, a rehearsal and performance space, recording facilities, an exhibition room, a photographic studio and a new space for the University's Flirt FM Radio Station. Major improvements in infrastructure and mobility management including the building of a new entrance on Newcastle Road, internal roads and services, parking and transport initiatives, and a new crèche. Teaching and Research The development of a 14,000sqm Engineering Building which will house the University's five Engineering Departments in one location. The building is scheduled to open in 2009 and will be the largest single capital project undertaken in the University's history, at a cost in excess of €50 million. A new Human Biology Building, which will incorporate the Pharmacology & Therapeutics, Anatomy and Physiology Departments. In a central location, it will build on the established relationship between NUI Galway and UCHG Hospital allowing further collaborative research projects. Given the envisaged increases in the number of medical places required at NUI Galway, there is a proposal to increase significantly the size of the existing Clinical Sciences Institute to provide sufficient teaching, laboratory, library and staff accommodation space. The Law School will have 8,000sqm of accommodation and will be a pioneering strategic collaboration with the courts. It is intended to include lecture theatres, law libraries, jury rooms and a court room in the overall complex. The development of a 5,000sqm building for Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, consisting of a mix of offices, language laboratories, seminar rooms, lecture halls, libraries, Irish language archives, recording facilities and general exhibition space. The 'Campus of the Future' exhibition is open to members of the general public, as well as staff and students, at the Orbsen Building in NUI Galway, 10am-4pm, Mon-Fri, until 15 December. Thorough local consultation will take place on a project by project basis. Information is also available at http://www.nuigalway.ie/campusofthefuture/ - ends -

Monday, 4 December 2006

04 Nollaig 2006: Cinnteoidh mórthionscadal forbartha ar fiú €400 milliún é, tionscadal a d'fhógair OÉ Gaillimh inniu, go mbeidh clú agus cáil ar champas na hOllscoile ar fud na cruinne i dtéarmaí áiseanna agus taighde. Tabharfar faoi os cionn 20 mórthionscadal infrastruchtúir ar an gcampas 260 acra mar chuid den tionscadal infheistíochta caipitil seo, ag leanúint leis an athrú treo atá ag tarlú ar an gcampas, is é sin ag iompú i dtreo Abhainn na Gaillimhe. Infheistíocht shuntasach i dtodhchaí an oideachais agus an taighde in OÉ Gaillimh í an fhorbairt ar fad atá beartaithe, infheistíocht a chruthóidh buntáistí suntasacha don Iarthar trí chéile. Le linn dó a bheith ag labhairt faoin bplean, dúirt Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, a sheol taispeántas 'Campas na Todhchaí' inniu: "Is ann don phlean forbartha uaillmhianaí seo d fhonn freastal ar mhéadú 40% sa líon mac léinn atá againn le sé bliana anuas agus an ról atá againn féin tacú le tionscail dhúchasacha, ardluacha in Éirinn. Cheana féin tá an tIonad Náisiúnta um Eolaíocht Innealtóireachta Bithmhíochaine mar aon le hInstitiúid Taighde na Fiontraíochta Digití tógtha againn, agus is cinnte gur áiseanna den scoth atá iontu. Chomh maith leis sin tá Institiúid de Móra againn, institiúid atá i mbun taighde ceannródaíoch a dhéanamh sna Dána agus sna hEolaíochtaí Sóisialta. Cuirfidh ár bpleananna le rath den chineál sin agus cinnteofar go mbeidh gach uile ghné den Ollscoil ar an gcaighdeán is airde i dtéarmaí seirbhísí, áiseanna agus taighde, ionas go mbeimid ar chomhchéim leis na caighdeáin idirnáisiúnta is fearr. " Acmhainní na hOllscoile agus meascán de mhaoiniú rialtais agus de mhaoiniú daonchairdis, príobháideach a sholáthróidh an pacáiste infheistíochta €400 milliún. I measc na dtionscadal mór atá beartaithe tá Ionad Spóirt nua; Ionad Cultúir; foirgneamh Innealtóireachta nua-aimseartha; foirgneamh Bitheolaíochta Daonna agus leathnú ar an Institiúid Eolaíochta Cliniciúla; agus Scoil Dlí a bheidh nasctha le seomraí giúiré agus seomra cúirte atá le forbairt ag na cúirteanna mar chuid de chomhoibriú straitéiseach ceannródaíoch. Tá tús curtha le hobair cheana féin ar chuid de na tionscadail nua infrastruchtúir agus tá sé beartaithe tús a chur le hobair ar fhoirgnimh eile an bhliain seo chugainn. Tá clár 'Campas na Todhchaí' tiomanta d infrastruchtúr fisiceach na hOllscoile a fheabhsú, agus gach scoth-thréith de chuid an champais reatha a chaomhnú agus a chothú. Tabharfaidh an fhorbairt an timpeallacht nádúrtha agus na foirgnimh uile le chéile, agus áit ar féidir caomhnófar na bealaí siúlóide agus spásanna nádúrtha atá ann. Is é atá mar aidhm leis an tionscadal seo áiseanna cois abhann a chruthú, áiseanna do mhic léinn agus do chomhaltaí foirne, ach freisin do phobal na cathrach agus go deimhin an ceantar mórthimpeall ar an ollscoil. Chomh maith leis sin, dúirt an Dr Ó Muircheartaigh, "Le linn dúinn cinntí a dhéanamh maidir le treo OÉ Gaillimh sa todhchaí, shocraíomar an fhís a bheadh againn, is é sin fís ina dtugtar tús áite 'd'eispéireas na mac léinn'. Gan mic léinn ní bheadh Ollscoil againn agus tá na forbairtí ar fad atá le déanamh deartha le cur leis an éiteas sin. Cé go bhfuil 15,000 mac léinn ag freastal ar an gcampas faoi láthair, is léir fós gur campas cairdiúil atá againn, agus áirimid agus glacaimid le héagsúlacht ar an gcampas seo. Le tacaíocht ó mhic léinn, comhaltaí foirne, alumni agus an pobal áitiúil, tá sé mar aidhm againn na nithe sainiúla agus iontacha a bhaineann lenár gcampas a choinneáil agus aghaidh a thabhairt ar an todhchaí go muiníneach. " Bhí an méid seo le rá ag an Dr Ó Muircheartaigh nuair a labhair sé faoin tionchar a bheadh ag infheistíocht chomh mór leis seo ar Chathair na Gaillimhe: "Tugann na pleananna léargas ar an tábhacht a bhaineann le hollscoil rafar a bheith againn sa cheantar seo trí chéile agus tá ról lárnach ag OÉ Gaillimh i bhforbairt leanúnach mar go meallann agus go gcoimeádann ár sármhic léinn infheistíocht náisiúnta agus ilnáisiúnta. Is cinnte gur dea-scéal atá sa chlár seo do Chathair na Gaillimhe. Tá athruithe suntasacha á ndéanamh agus beimid ag dul i gcomhairle leis an bpobal agus ag lorg tuairimí ón bpobal faoi thionscadail ar leith nuair a bheidh sé sin feiliúnach". Tá idir áiseanna do mhic léinn agus áiseanna teagaisc san áireamh sna forbairtí atá beartaithe againn: Seirbhísí agus Áiseanna Ionad Spóirt 6,500 méadar cearnach ar luach €21 milliún. San áireamh san Ionad Spóirt seo beidh linn snámha 25 méadar, giomnáisiam, seomra meáchan, cúirteanna liathróid láimhe agus scuaise, balla dreapadóireachta, halla spóirt le trí chúirt leadóige, stiúideo aeróbaice/damhsa agus spásanna gníomhaíochta ilchuspóireacha. San áireamh san Ionad Cultúir beidh halla ilchuspóireach, stiúideo damhsa, spás do réamhchleachtadh agus taibhiú, áiseanna taifeadta, seomra taispeántais, stiúideo grianghraf agus spás nua do Flirt FM, Stáisiún Raidió na hOllscoile. I measc na bhfeabhsuithe móra atá beartaithe in infrastruchtúr agus bainistíocht gluaiseachta tá bealach isteach nua a thógáil ar Bhóthar an Chaisleáin Nua, bóithre agus seirbhísí inmheánacha a fheabhsú, tús a chur le tionscnaimh pháirceála agus iompair, mar aon le crèche nua a thógáil. Teagasc agus Taighde Tá Foirgneamh Innealtóireachta 14,000 méadar cearnach le tógáil, foirgneamh ina mbeidh cúig Roinn Innealtóireachta na hOllscoile. Tá an foirgneamh seo le hoscailt in 2009 agus beidh sé seo ar an tionscadal caipitil is mó riamh san Ollscoil, foirgneamh a chosnóidh sa bhreis ar €50 milliún. Tá Foirgneamh Bitheolaíochta Daonna nua le tógáil ina mbeidh an Roinn Cógaseolaíochta & Teiripice, Roinn na hAnatamaíochta agus Roinn na Fiseolaíochta. Tá an foirgneamh seo le tógáil in ionad lárnach agus cuirfidh sé leis an ngaol atá bunaithe le fada an lá idir OÉ Gaillimh agus Ospidéal na hOllscoile, Gaillimh, rud a chinnteoidh go mbeidh níos mó tionscadal taighde ar siúl eadrainn. Bunaithe ar an méadú a bhfuil súil leis sa líon áiteanna do mhic léinn leighis atá ag teastáil in OÉ Gaillimh, tá moladh déanta cur go mór le méid na hInstitiúide Eolaíochta Cliniciúla chun a dóthain spáis a chur ar fáil do theagasc, saotharlanna, leabharlann agus comhaltaí foirne. Beidh 8,000 méadar cearnach de chóiríocht sa Scoil Dlí agus comhoibriú straitéiseach ceannródaíoch a bheidh ann i gcomhar leis na cúirteanna. Táthar ag súil go mbeidh léachtlanna, leabharlanna dlí, seomraí don ghiúire agus seomra cúirte san fhoirgneamh nua seo. Tá foirgneamh 5,000 méadar cearnach le tógáil d'Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge. San áireamh san fhoirgneamh seo beidh oifigí, saotharlanna teanga, seomraí seimineár, léachtlanna, leabharlanna, cartlanna Gaeilge, áiseanna taifeadta agus spás ginearálta do thaispeántais. Tá tuilleadh faisnéise faoin bhforbairt atá beartaithe ar fáil don phobal in Áras Oirbsean in OÉ Gaillimh, ó 10am-4pm, gach lá as seo go ceann coicíse. Beimid ag dul i gcomhairle leis an bpobal áitiúil faoi na tionscadail éagsúla de réir a chéile. Tá faisnéis le fáil ar http://www.nuigalway.ie/campusofthefuture/ freisin - críoch - Chun tuilleadh faisnéise a fháil, déan teagmháil le: Michelle Ní Chróinín, Oifigeach Preasa & Faisnéise, OÉ Gaillimh 091-493361 nó 086-8168268 Nótaí do na hEagarthóirí Tionscadal Méadair chearnacha Foirgneamh Innealtóireachta 14,000 Scoil Dlí 8,000 Ionad Spóirt na hOllscoile 6,500 Tionscadail na hInstitiúide Eolaíochta Cliniciúla 6,000 Foirgneamh na Bitheolaíochta Daonna 6,000 Leathnú na Leabharlainne 6,000 Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge 5,000 Ionad Tráchtála 3,500 Ionad Cultúir 2,760 Leathnú Áras Dán na Mílaoise 2,500 Eolaíochtaí Matamaiticiúla 1,600 Domhaneolaíocht & Aigéaneolaíocht 1,565 Cothú Sláinte 1,400 Oideachas 1,300 Oideachas Aosach 1,000

Monday, 17 January 2005

The annual NUI Galway Alumni Awards will be presented at the University's sixth annual Gala Banquet, which will take place at the Radisson SAS Hotel on Saturday 5th March 2005. The theme of this year's Banquet is the University's mission in international education and the event will focus on NUI Galway's role as an international force for change in improving educational opportunities for students from developing countries. The centrepiece of the Gala Banquet is the presentation of the Alumni Awards, which celebrate the life-long value of an NUI Galway education and recognise individual excellence and achievements among the more than 50,000 graduates worldwide. "The awards reflect the outstanding success of our graduates across diverse areas of activity from business and the arts to science, law and medicine", says Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of NUI Galway. "Our global community of graduates are excellent ambassadors for their Alma Mater and the recipients of the Alumni Awards are a particular inspiration for our current students. The Alumni Awards programme is a wonderful opportunity to recognise the standard of excellence achieved by our graduates worldwide." Alumni Awards will be presented to the following: NUI Galway Award for Law, Public Service and Government: Cardinal Wilfrid Napier, South Africa (BA 1964) Bank of Ireland Award for Business and Commerce: Declan Kelly (BA 1989), President & CEO of Financial Dynamics – USA Hewlett-Packard Award for Literature, Communications and the Arts: John Coll, (BSc 1979), Sculptor Medtronic Vascular Award for Healthcare and Medical Science: Prof Orla Conneely, BSc 1977, MSc 1981, PhD 1983. Professor, Molecular and Cellular Biology, Baylor College of Medicine Seavite Award for Natural Science: Prof Frank Imbusch, BSc 1956, MSc 1958 Duais Hewlett-Packard don Ghaeilge (Hewlett-Packard Award for Irish): Daithí Mac Cárthaigh BA/MA/LLB 1989/1995/1997; called to the Bar in 1998 TBD Award for Engineering, IT and Mathematics: Anne Butler BE 1976, Senior Consultant with TES Consulting Engineers Tickets for the Gala Banquet on the 5th March cost €150 each or a table of 10 for €1,500. For further information, please telephone 091 495266 or Email: gala@nuigalway.ie Ends

Thursday, 6 January 2005

The Galway branch of Soroptimist International has inaugurated an international scholarship in NUI Galway. The scholarship, valued at €1,250 was presented today (6 January) to BA International student Ms Elaine Scahill, Scoil na Gaeilge. The bursary will be presented annually to a student entering the third year (Year Abroad) of the University's BA International programme. Elaine, from An Cheathrú, Rua, Connemara. is spending her study abroad year in the University of Brest, Brittany. In this first year of the bursary, Erasmus Students in the Faculty of Celtic Studies were invited to apply for the scholarship and to submit a 400-word personal statement in either Irish or English on the theme of 'Joy of Achievement,' this being one of the Soroptimists ideals. Speaking at the presentation of the Scholarship, Professor John Marshall, Dean of the Faculty of Arts said: "We are delighted to acknowledge this enlightened initiative by Soroptimist International of Galway and look forward to developing a strong partnership with this organisation whose ideals are the advancement of international understanding, goodwill and peace." At the end of her Erasmus period abroad when she returns to Ireland and as part of the conditions of the Scholarship, Elaine Scahill will write and present a 1,000-word essay on Women Survivors of War . Ann Mitchell of the Galway branch of Soroptimist International explains that this topic was chosen because the current Soroptimist International project is Project Independence: Women Survivors of War. "The project aims to help women who have suffered the traumas of war, genocide and other horrors to reclaim their lives," she said. "The project aims to raise more than $1.2 million over the next four years to assist women survivors of war in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Rwanda". Ends

Monday, 28 February 2005

Engineering students at NUI Galway have shown that there's more to the life of a student than passing exams and having a good time. As part of the new Engineering in Society module offered to third-year Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering students, participants developed devices for the physically impaired, provided assistance with mathematics to school children and helped out in voluntary organisations, including Oxfam, Amnesty International and Enable Ireland. A poster exhibition entitled Engineering in Society and Community Outreach, describing their work takes place this week in the Arts Millennium Building. The Engineering in Society module is an intrinsic part of the academic programme taken by all 60 students in the third-year Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering programme. It is designed to encourage students to commit some of their time and energy to the benefit of local communities and individuals outside the family. This module is also supported by Lorraine McIlrath, Staff Developer, Centre for Excellence in Learning and Training (CELT),who described the work undertaken by the Engineering students "as a massive achievement and a great inspiration to staff and students locally and nationally". "This is a wonderful opportunity for the students to put something back into their communities", said Professor Abhay Pandit, co-ordinator of the initiative. " 'Service Learning,' where students use their skills to improve the lives of others is commonplace in American universities but is a relatively new concept in Ireland. In our programme, students were asked to identify a need in their locality and volunteer twenty hours of assistance towards assisting with that need." The students used their engineering skills directly in two of the projects. In one, a simple can-opening device was designed for people suffering from severe arthritis, which made many every-day tasks including opening cans extremely difficult. "By making life a little easier for arthritis sufferers, we felt that we had put something back into the community by using our practical engineering skills," said student Rory Duggan. Niamh Mahony and Ciaran Costello designed a device to help people who suffer from arthritis or broken bones, to put on their shoes. "It's a simple device," said Niamh, "but it helps to relieve the pain of putting on a shoe and it also provides an element of independence the sufferer hitherto did not enjoy." Ends

Friday, 25 February 2005

-Stem cell treatments to be performed in Ireland in less than ten years- Researchers at NUI Galway have commenced research into adult stem cell therapies for heart disease, arthritis and spinal cord injury at a new €19 million Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) which was officially opened today (Friday) by the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Minister Micheál Martin, TD. REMEDI is the leading centre in Ireland doing stem cell research and one of a limited number of centres in Europe combining the technologies of stem cell and gene therapy to regenerate and repair tissue. Researchers at NUI Galway have said that stem cell therapy has enormous potential for the treatment of many incurable diseases including heart disease, arthritis and neurological disorders such as spinal cord, Parkinsons Disease and Alzheimer's. Early data suggests that delivery of stem cells to the heart following heart attack enables regeneration of the damaged tissue and some restoration of function. Dr. Frank Barry, REMEDI scientific director and stem cell expert explains, "Adult stem cell treatment is likely to have a dramatic effect on patient recovery and provides us with the potential of treating previously incurable diseases. We are very excited about early data which suggests that stem cell therapy will be potentially effective in repairing heart tissues. Other research into arthritis also underpins the case for stem cell therapy. Stem cell delivery into arthritic joints stimulates a significant amount of repair of damaged tissues and prevents the sort of degenerative changes that you see associated with arthritis. There is still a great deal of work to be done before these therapies become widely available but I believe that stem cell treatments will be performed in Ireland in less than ten years." REMEDI was established in 2004 through a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Centre for Science Engineering and Technology (CSET) award and industry funding totalling €19 million. REMEDI is supported by industry partners Medtronic and Charles River Laboratories. REMEDI is initially employing 36 researchers in the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science at NUI Galway, the only centre in the country that contains a state of the art facility for generation of products for human gene therapy research. Referring to the strong links NUI Galway has forged with industry, Minister Martin said: "Ireland remains at the forefront of the medical devices sector in Europe. This sector will continue to be a major employer and economic contributor in this country but it is a challenge for the Irish government, industry and other stakeholders to increase the level of research being carried out in both indigenous and multinational companies. We must continue to forge the links between academia and industry. NUI Galway has played an important role in forging these links in the West of Ireland and providing industry in this region with access to a pool of highly qualified graduates". A total of €4 million has been contributed to the research programme by REMEDI partners in particular Medtronic, the world's largest medical devices company and Charles River Laboratories. Commenting on the importance of academic links and the West of Ireland as a location, Gerry Kilcommins, Vice President of Operations & General Manager of the Medtronic Galway site, added, "Medical technology has become one of the country s largest industry sectors and Ireland is recognised as a global centre of excellence for the development and manufacture of medical devices. Medtronic s location in the West of Ireland, amongst a cluster of the world s leading medical technology companies, provides us with access to highly trained research and development experts and third level institutions, like NUI Galway, allowing Medtronic to increase our level of R&D activity with highly commendable results." Professor Tim O'Brien, Director of REMEDI, Professor of Medicine at NUI Galway and a clinician at University College Hospital Galway with expertise in gene therapy research, added: "What we are talking about here is translational research – bringing the discoveries made in the lab to the clinic and the patient. This is a complicated process in which the interest of patients and the public must always be central. Our research will lead to new methods of clinical practice in the future, less dependent on invasive procedures, with the potential of curing currently intractable diseases." In welcoming the opening of REMEDI, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of NUI Galway said that continued funding of world-class research programmes was vital for Irish universities to remain internationally competitive and also central to sustaining Ireland's economic progress. He said that NUI Galway was committed to furthering its reputation as a research centre of excellence and that REMEDI, through its partnership involving scientists, clinicians and engineers working together in academic centres and industry, exemplified this commitment. Ends

Tuesday, 22 February 2005

Students from Presentation College, Galway will be the first secondary school pupils in the west of Ireland to receive courses in web design. These courses are taught as part of the DERI Science Research Online Education Programme. The Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) is based in NUI Galway. The students, with their science teacher Bernie Crawford, recently presented their interim report on Urban Foxes to Councillor Niall O Brolchain at City Hall recently where their project was used at the launch of the Inventory of Wildlife Habitats in Galway city . The research was carried out in conjunction with Dr. Colin Lawton of the Department of Zoology NUI Galway. Councilor O Brolcháin is Chairperson of the Galway City Development Board s Natural Environment & Waterways committee. Once the report is finalised, the students will undertake a web-design course with DERI staff in order to create their own website and tell the world about the urban environment of Galway. Two other schools will also undertake web design courses as part of this programme. They are Scoil Phobail Mhic Dara, Carna, Co. Galway and Galway Community College, Galway city. Scoil Phobail Mhic Dara s website will be on the Geology of Connemara, while Galway Community College will host a website on "Weaponry and Tactics 1805 - 1918. The students were assisted in their projects by Ronan Hennessey, Department of Geology, NUI Galway and Sgt. Brian Smyth, Defence Forces, Renmore Barracks, Galway. Students and their mentors were only allowed to communicate over the internet. All this activity is just one part of DERI s comprehensive education outreach programmes which are designed to encourage the next generation of scientists and technologists who will be key to Ireland s future economic well being. Ends

Wednesday, 16 March 2005

Today (16th March) the Royal Irish Academy elected Professor Jim Browne as a Member of the Royal Irish Academy. Election to membership of the Academy is the highest academic honour in Ireland. Those elected are entitled to use the designation MRIA (Member of the Royal Irish Academy) after their name. The Royal Irish Academy is an all-Ireland, independent, academic body that promotes study and excellence in the sciences, humanities, and social sciences. It is the principal learned society in Ireland and has approximately 412 Members elected in recognition of their academic achievement. Professor Jim Browne is Registrar and Deputy President of the National University of Ireland, Galway. A chartered engineer he holds Bachelor and Master s degrees from NUI Galway and Ph.D. and D.Sc. degrees from the University of Manchester. His research focuses on the modelling, analysis and design of advanced manufacturing systems. He has been particularly active on industrially based research, supported by the EU Framework Programme, national and industrial sources. He has published over 200 papers, 11 books, three in second editions, one translated into French, one into Chinese. He is a Fellow of the Irish Academy of Engineering. For further information, please contact Pauric Dempsey, RIA. 087-6386651 Ends

Monday, 14 March 2005

National University of Ireland Galway will celebrate the achievements of four outstanding individuals by conferring them with honorary degrees at a formal ceremony in Los Angeles on the 6 May 2005. It is the first time that the University has awarded honorary degrees at a ceremony held outside of Ireland. Degrees will be conferred on the following individuals: Anjelica Huston, for her contribution to cinematic arts, as an actress and director Ray Bradbury, for his outstanding achievements as a novelist, short story writer, essayist, playwright, screenwriter and poet Dolores Hope, as a philanthropist and humanitarian, who has devoted much of her life to the service of others Merv Griffin, for his contribution to American entertainment and popular culture The Honorary Degree ceremony will take place in the presence of Chancellor of the National University of Ireland and former Taoiseach, Dr Garrett Fitzgerald and President of NUI Galway, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh. The conferring ceremony will be followed by the Huston Gala at the Beverly Hilton hotel, Los Angeles. This will be the culmination of a programme of business, cultural and academic events during the first week of May 2005 to mark the continued growth and influence of the NUI Galway-based Huston School of Film & Digital Media. Dr Ó Muircheartaigh, NUI Galway President said: By hosting this unique Conferring Ceremony and Gala in Los Angeles, we are celebrating both the Huston Film School and the strong links between Ireland and Southern California. The four outstanding individuals who we will honour, all of whom enjoy strong Galway connections, have demonstrated exemplary standards of artistic creativity and humanitarian service and their influence is felt and admired across the world. Rod Stoneman, Director of the Huston School of Film & Digital Media said: Since its launch in 2003, the Film School has been very successful and now attracts graduate students from Ireland and abroad to participate in a range of programmes in our screen writing, film studies and arts administration programmes. These graduates will play a significant role in the film and television industries in the future at regional, national and international levels. The Los Angeles events will bring together celebrities from the world of film and television along with leaders from business and political life and the many graduates of NUI Galway who are living in California. Proceeds from the Huston Gala, which will have a strong entertainment programme with a distinctive Celtic flavour, including a performance from ConTempo, Galway's ensemble-in-residence, will contribute toward the continued development of the Huston Film School. The Huston Film School is named after John Huston, one of the twentieth century's greatest film directors and celebrates the Huston family's links to the west of Ireland and St. Cleran's, the family home in Galway, which is now operated as an exclusive hotel. Ends

Tuesday, 8 March 2005

-first year of programme secures €250,000 in support from a range of Irish donors NUI Galway today (March 8th 2005) announced that it is to commence a new International Scholarship programme to forge links with developing countries across the globe. The programme, which is the first of its kind in an Irish university, will commence in September 2005 and will enable talented and deserving students from developing countries to pursue their graduate studies at NUI Galway. The announcement of funding for the new programme was made at the University's annual gala banquet at which Cardinal Wilfrid Napier of South Africa was guest of honour. The purpose of the programme is to realise NUI Galway's strategic objective of forging links with a range of the world's developing countries, thus increasing international participation at the University. To date, a total of €250,000 has been raised with support from a range of donors to enable the first 10 international students from South Africa and Sri Lanka, to undertake postgraduate degrees at NUI Galway. The University hopes that continued philanthropic support will sustain further development of the programme at this level over the next five years. As the programme progresses, it will be extended to other developing countries. The International Scholarships will be targeted to developing the capacity of outstanding individuals who can assume leadership roles in their fields of study and whose work will enhance the development of their own society. Announcing the scholarships, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh said: "It is my belief that in assisting talented students, whose limited resources might prevent them from fulfilling their educational potential, we will be helping to build the infrastructure and human capital of their own countries. During a time when we, as a University, compete for resources ourselves, we must realise that we are essentially a wealthy society, and that as an institution it behoves us to extend the benefits of a post-graduate education to those who might not otherwise have such an opportunity." Ms Anna Cunningham, Director of International Affairs, NUI Galway, whose office will manage the International Scholarship programme said: "NUI Galway has forged strong links with a number of developing countries and by assisting talented students from these countries, who will return to their native lands on completion of their studies at NUI Galway, we will be contributing in a very meaningful way to the development of those countries." The NUI Galway International Scholarships are being funded by philanthropic support secured by Galway University Foundation. Emphasis will be placed on selecting candidates from communities that lack access to higher education preventing them from reaching their full potential. Ends

Tuesday, 1 March 2005

Are you interested in networking with professionals from around Galway city and gaining valuable transferable skills in the process? Do you want to bridge the gap between your academic degree and the world of work? If so, the new NUI Galway Mentoring Programme, "Career Connect," could be of enormous assistance to you. The mentoring programme has many elements such as work shadowing, career talks, workshops, face-to-face and email mentoring. The first part of the programme is a pilot initiative between NUI Galway Careers Service, Alumni and Junior Chamber International (JCI) Galway. The aim is to provide students and experienced professionals from the city with an opportunity to meet, discuss career goals, network, have fun in a social setting and help students in enhancing their professional skills outside the lecture hall. "Communication with mentors can provide useful information about career options, employment conditions, job prospects and responsibilities," says John Hannon, Careers Advisor NUI Galway. "This kind of first-hand advice and support from those already established in their chosen field or profession will be invaluable to undergraduate and postgraduate students setting out on their own career paths. The mentors and their organisations will also benefit from participating in the programme as it will provide them with opportunities to have direct contact with students and potential employees as well as illustrating the mentor's ability to help others." The programme will be structured around a number of events, starting today (Tuesday) and running throughout March/April, to support the mentoring relationship. The events have been selected to provide students with a variety of business experiences outside the classroom including networking, a company job shadow day, training on leadership skills, team work and personal development. Interested? Whether a student or a graduate, find out more by contacting Una McDermott, NUI Galway Student Services, Tel. (091) 495282; Email: una.mcdermott@nuigalway.ie and request an application form. Places on this programme are limited, so sign up now! Ends

Friday, 29 April 2005

- New developments to enhance bilingual campus - NUI Galway today (Friday 29th April 2005,) announced that a new €35 million Irish language institute Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge is to be developed on campus at the University and at a number of Gaeltacht centres. The national institute was launched by the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, Éamon Ó Cúiv. The institute will pioneer the provision of third level education through the medium of Irish and will provide a range of courses through Irish including many of the disciplines provided in the Arts and Science Faculties. The launch of Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge is central to NUI Galway's strategy of creating an exemplary bilingual campus at the University and is in line with the priorities outlined in the University's Strategic Plan (2003-2008). The creation of the institute reconfirms NUI Galway's commitment to the promotion of the Irish language. Funding to support this initiative will be raised through a range of sources. The national institute, the first of its kind in Ireland, will provide university programmes, engage in research, provide consultancy and be a centre of excellence for Irish language research and planning, in co-operation with other institutions. In addition to its centre on campus at NUI Galway, the University will further develop its three outreach Gaeltacht centres, two in the Galway Gaeltacht (Carna and An Cheathrú Rua) and one in Donegal (Gaoth Dobhair). Commenting on the initiative, the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht affairs, Éamon Ó Cúiv TD. said, "NUI Galway is to be congratulated for its strategic and innovative approach to the provision of third-level education through the medium of Irish. The creation of the Institute is vital for the continued promotion of the Irish language in Ireland. Equally, NUI Galway has played a key role in bringing Irish to the regions, through its outreach centres in Gaeltacht areas, it is bringing the University to the people and empowering those communities in a sustainable and meaningful way." Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of NUI Galway added: "This University has a long and proud tradition of supporting Gaeltacht and Irish language communities and the Acadamh will strengthen and invigorate our commitment to provide sustainable development of the Irish language. The creation of an exemplary bilingual campus ensures our ongoing commitment to the Irish language over the longer term. Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge will contribute to the social, economic, cultural and linguistic life of the communities in which it is based at a local level while broadening and enriching education provision at National and International levels. As it expands, the range of courses developed into areas such as information technology, communications, education and translation studies, will be extended." At present, an tAcadamh provides Masters and Higher Diploma programmes in Translation Studies and Applied Communications, as well as part-time and full-time courses in information technology, radio and television skills. An tAcadamh provides a Diploma in Irish in 22 centres throughout the country, attended by more than 850 students this year. Peadar Mac an Iomaire, Príomhfheidhmeannach (CEO) of an tAcadamh announced that a range of new programmes would be developed over the coming years and that over 1,500 students are expected to participate in courses at the Institute. He thanked Minister Ó Cuív for the financial backing received by the University from the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs for the promotion of university education through Irish as well as the maintenance of Irish in Gaeltacht areas. He also paid tribute to Údarás na Gaeltachta and FÁS for their assistance in the work of the University's Gaeltacht Centres over the years. -Ends

Friday, 29 April 2005

- Forbairtí nua chun campas dátheangach OÉ, Gaillimh a láidriú - D'fhógair OÉ, Gaillimh inniu (Dé hAoine an 29 Aibreán 2005) go bhfuil institiúid nua teanga ar chostas €35 milliún, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, le forbairt ar champas na hOllscoile agus i roinnt ionad sa Ghaeltacht. Ba é Éamon Ó Cuív TD, an tAire Gnóthaí Pobail, Tuaithe agus Gaeltachta a sheol an institiúid náisiúnta. Glacfaidh an institiúid nua ceannródaíocht maidir le soláthar an oideachais tríú leibhéal trí Ghaeilge agus cuirfidh sí raon cúrsaí ar fáil trí Ghaeilge lena n-áirítear go leor de na disciplíní a chuimsítear i nDámha na nDán agus na hEolaíochta. Tá seoladh Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge i gcroílár straitéis OÉ, Gaillimh maidir le campas eiseamláireach dátheangach a chruthú san Ollscoil agus tagann sé leis na tosaíochtaí a leagtar amach i bPlean Straitéiseach na hOllscoile (2003-2008). Dearbhaíonn cruthú na hinstitiúide arís eile díocas OÉ, Gaillimh i dtaobh chothú na Gaeilge. Déanfar maoiniú chun tacú leis an tionscnamh seo a fháil ó fhoinsí éagsúla. Cuirfidh an institiúid náisiúnta, an chéad institiúid dá sórt in Éirinn, cláir ollscoile ar fáil, rachaidh sí i mbun taighde, cuirfidh sí comhairleoireacht ar fáil agus beidh sí ina hionad ardchaighdeáin don taighde agus don phleanáil Ghaeilge, i gcomhar le hinstitiúidí eile. I dteannta an ionaid ar champas OÉ, Gaillimh, déanfaidh an Ollscoil tuilleadh forbartha ar na trí ionad sheachtracha atá aici sa Ghaeltacht; tá dhá ionad acu sin suite i nGaeltacht na Gaillimhe (Carna agus an Cheathrú Rua) agus ionad eile suite i nDún na nGall (Gaoth Dobhair). Ag labhairt faoin tionscnamh seo dó, is é a dúirt an tAire Gnóthaí Pobail, Tuaithe agus Gaeltachta, Éamon Ó Cúiv TD., "Ní mór ardaitheantas a thabhairt do OÉ, Gaillimh as an gcur chuige straitéiseach agus nuálaíoch atá glactha aici i leith sholáthar an oideachais tríú leibhéal trí Ghaeilge. Tá bunú na hinstitiúide seo ríthábhachtach do chothú leanúnach na Gaeilge in Éirinn. Bhí ról lárnach ag OÉ, Gaillimh freisin maidir leis an nGaeilge a thabhairt i measc na réigiún trí na hionaid sheachtracha atá aici sna ceantair Ghaeltachta; tá an ollscolaíocht á tabhairt i measc na ndaoine aici agus tá na pobail sin á gcumasú ar bhealach inmharthana a mbaineann idir bhrí agus tábhacht leis." Dúirt an Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, Uachtarán OÉ, Gaillimh, an méid seo: "Tá sé de thraidisiún ag an Ollscoil le fada an lá tacaíocht a thabhairt do phobal na Gaeltachta agus na Gaeilge agus déanfaidh an tAcadamh an díocas atá againn maidir le forbairt inmharthana na Gaeilge a threisiú agus a bheochan. Ach campas eiseamláireach dátheangach a chruthú, léireofar cúram na hOllscoile seo i leith na Gaeilge san fhadtréimhse. Cuirfidh Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge le saol sóisialta, eacnamaíoch, cultúir agus teanga na bpobal ina bhfuil sé lonnaithe ag leibhéal áitiúil agus ag an am céanna déanfaidh sé soláthar an oideachais ag leibhéil Náisiúnta agus Idirnáisiúnta a shaibhriú agus a leathnú. De réir mar atá sé ag fás, táthar ag forbairt raon na gcúrsaí i réimsí cosúil le teicneolaíocht faisnéise, cumarsáid, oideachas agus staidéar an aistriúcháin." Faoi láthair, cuireann an tAcadamh cláir Mháistreachta agus Ard-Dioplóma ar fáil i Staidéar an Aistriúcháin agus i gCumarsáid Fheidhmeach, mar aon le cúrsaí páirtaimseartha agus lánaimseartha i scileanna ríomhaireachta, raidió agus teilifíse. Cuireann an tAcadamh Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge ar fáil in 22 ionad ar fud na tíre, agus d'fhreastail os cionn 850 mac léinn ar an gcúrsa sin i mbliana. D'fhógair Peadar Mac an Iomaire, Príomhfheidhmeannach an Acadaimh, go ndéanfar raon clár nua a fhorbairt i rith na mblianta amach romhainn agus go bhfuiltear ag súil leis go mbeidh os cionn 1,500 mac léinn rannpháirteach i gcúrsaí na hInstitiúide. Ghlac sé buíochas leis an Aire Ó Cuív as an tacaíocht atá tugtha ag a roinn don ollscolaíocht trí Ghaeilge go dtí seo. Ghlac sé buíochas chomh maith le hÚdarás na Gaeltachta agus le FÁS as a dtacaíocht ag páirt mhaoiniú cuid de chúrsaí an Acadaimh sna hIonaid Ghaeltachta. - Críoch -