NUI Galway Academic Receives National Excellence in Teaching Award

NUI Galway Academic Receives National Excellence in Teaching Award-image

Monday, 15 November 2010

NUI Galway Academic Dr Dagmar Stengel recently received a 2010 National Academy for Integration of Research Teaching and Learning (NAIRTL) Annual Award for Excellence in Teaching. This is the third year in a row that an NUI Galway academic took an award, something that no other Higher Education institution has achieved. Five awards were presented nationally this year by Hon. Mrs Justice Catherine McGuinness who noted the outstanding contribution of the award recipients to both teaching and research in Higher Education. Dr Dagmar Stengel, Lecturer in Botany and Plant Science in the School of Natural Sciences NUI Galway and a researcher in the Ryan Institute for Environment, Marine and Energy at the University received specific praise for her approachable and empathetic manner with students, which encourages them to strive for her high standards of excellence. Her inclusion of new research in lectures and her ability to relate marine botany and plant science to the local area was also noted particularly as this enables the students to investigate the topics for themselves and greatly enhances their own learning and their interest in the subject. Dr Stengel says "I am absolutely delighted to receive the award and am overwhelmed by the support from staff and students at NUI Galway that I have received. It is great that teaching is recognised within Higher Education besides research. It is essential to integrate research into undergraduate teaching at an early stage. It takes personal and institutional investment, but is essential if a research community is to be built up, i.e. to train future researchers but also develop students' problem solving skills." The winners of the Awards were nominated by their institutions and selected by a committee which included international representatives as well as representatives of the Irish University Association, the Institutes of Technology Ireland and the Union of Students in Ireland. The award winners come from diverse disciplinary backgrounds but display a shared commitment to and passion for teaching while also being innovative researchers. These Awards testify to the fact that excellence in teaching and in creative and scholarly work go hand in hand. Dr Gerry Morgan, former Dean of Science and former Acting Head of Botany at NUI Galway says: "Dr Dagmar Stengel represents all that is best in a student-centred, research-intensive University. She has a natural ability to integrate her excellence in research with her teaching. She enthuses students to achieve while interacting empathetically with them. It is always a pleasure to discuss science and science teaching with Dagmar." In the three years since the introduction of the National Academy Annual Awards for Excellence in Teaching, awarded to staff from any of Ireland's 37 recognised institutions of Higher Education, NUI Galway has won a disproportionate number of honours. Previous winners of the award are Dr Aisling McCluskey (Mathematics), Dr Ray Murphy (Human Rights) and Dr Peter Cantillon (General Practice). -Ends-

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Maths Week- A Great Success at NUI Galway

Maths Week- A Great Success at NUI Galway-image

Monday, 15 November 2010

The School of Mathematics, Statistics and Applied Mathematics at NUI Galway hosted a number of very successful events as part of the 5th Maths Week Ireland. Several workshops were held during Maths Week with the key aim of promoting awareness, appreciation and understanding of maths amongst the general public as well as school audiences. During Maths Week, Dr Fernando Blasco, author of several books, television personality and one of Spain s best known mathematicians gave a workshop on Maths and Magic . This workshop entertained, explored and explained the mathematics behind many well known and not so well known magic tricks. Blasco again performed his "magic" to a primary and a secondary school audience on the following day. It was a huge success with well over 400 students attending from several primary and secondary schools. Dr David O Keeffe, chief organiser of Maths Week in Galway says: "The key idea of maths week is to promote awareness and to illustrate the usefulness of maths. It is especially important to highlight the crucial role maths plays within society at large." Workshops that explored how blind people read and do maths took place. The primary schools that took part in Maths week were Bushy Park National School, Scoil an Croi Ro Naofa, Belclare National School, Tuam, and Scoil Íde, Salthill while the secondary schools were represented by Colaiste Mhuire Tourmakeady, Co Mayo, Oranmore Secondary school, St Joseph s College (The Bish), Colaiste Iognaid (The Jes), and the Mercy Convent Tuam, and Dominican College Taylor's Hill. Dr O Keeffe continues: "Maths week could not have reached the audiences it did reach if it was not for the support, interest and endeavour shown by the participating schools. I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and praise each of them for their invaluable support and interest. I would also like to thank the public and students for generating such a fun and memorable atmosphere during the week." ENDS

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NUI Galway Graduate Wins RTÉ's Reality Volunteering Show

NUI Galway Graduate Wins RTÉ's Reality Volunteering Show-image

Friday, 12 November 2010

NUI Galway graduate, Carol Leonard from Cloghan, Co. Offaly, was announced the co-winner of RTÉ's reality show Do the Right Thing. Carol, who graduated from NUI Galway with a Bachelor of Arts in 2006, was awarded a unique fully paid one-year package volunteering in Ghana, India and Thailand. From over a thousand applicants, fifty were shortlisted for an assessment weekend in Barretstown Camp in County Kildare, where, following a series of tests and monitoring, sixteen (eight men, eight women) were chosen as the final contestants. The finalists had to prove they have what it takes to make the grade in the tough, challenging world of international volunteering. Over the course of the show the contestants were trained and tested in all areas of volunteering including: initiative, leadership, emotional strength and supportiveness. Following each episode the contestants had the opportunity to choose a man and woman to leave the group until Carol, along with fellow contestant, Johnny Finegan Jr., were left as 'Ireland's Ultimate Volunteers'. Last year over 3,000 Irish people went overseas as short-term volunteers where they built houses and schools, taught children, planted rain forests and administered healthcare. It can be quite difficult to be selected as a volunteer. Large aid organisations like Goal, Concern and VSO seek highly skilled graduates, the building charities like Haven, Niall Mellon and Habitat for Humanity requires you to raise money to pay your way, and even the independent volunteering agencies like USIT have a very tough application procedure to prevent the wrong people being sent into difficult and delicate environments. As a student at NUI Galway, Carol volunteered through the university's volunteer programme, ALIVE, with Youth Work Ireland's Le Chéile and Rahoon Youth Project. NUI Galway's strategic plan through ALIVE seeks to engender students with a sense of active citizenship. Congratulating Carol on her success, Lorraine Tansey, Student Volunteer Coordinator at NUI Galway, said "Carol is an inspiration to current student volunteers to strive for the opportunities volunteering has to offer. We are so proud of Carol and her achievement as she demonstrates a true civic graduate who is engaged with their community creating positive social change." -Ends-

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NUI Galway Undergraduate Receives Hamilton Award

NUI Galway Undergraduate Receives Hamilton Award -image

Thursday, 11 November 2010

NUI Galway undergraduate student in Financial Mathematics and Economics, Gerard Moran was recently awarded a 2010 Hamilton Award in Mathematics by the Royal Irish Academy (RIA). Awards were presented to students of Mathematics in nine of the Higher Education Institutions in Ireland. This year the focus of the awards was on financial mathematics. Gerard Moran from Castlebar in Co Mayo is currently in his final year of study for the BSc in Financial Mathematics and Economics. This is a four-year programme that covers a broad selection of courses in mathematics, economics, statistics, finance and computer science. Graduates go on to a wide range of careers including banking and finance, mathematical research, and professional careers as actuaries, economists, statisticians, accountants and management consultants. Financial mathematics is quite a specialised area, but the Financial Mathematics and Economics degree programme is quite multidisciplinary as it has contributions from four separate disciplines at NUI Galway. Gerard was assessed along with all students in their penultimate year of study in all the mathematical degrees taught in NUI Galway. He was judged to be the most outstanding candidate, based on his examination results in his mathematics courses. The recipients of the Hamilton Award in Mathematics receive a scroll and €1000 cheque, generously sponsored by Invest Northern Ireland, Northern Ireland's regional economic development agency. The announcement of the awards formed part of Hamilton Day activities at the RIA which celebrate Hamilton's life and contribution to mathematics. Cian Twomey, Lecturer in Financial Economics and Programme Director, BSc Financial Mathematics and Economics at NUI Galway says: "On behalf of everyone involved in the BSc. in Financial Mathematics and Economics, we would like to congratulate Gerard Moran on his outstanding achievement. This degree programme has now been running for over a decade and continues to attract students of the highest calibre. In awarding the Hamilton Prize to Gerard, the RIA has recognised the commitment to academic excellence fostered on the Financial Mathematics and Economics programme. "Despite the economic downturn in Ireland, the demand for well-qualified students such as Gerard who know how to use quantitative techniques to make informed financial and investment decisions is substantial. We wish Gerard the best of luck in his future endeavours," Mr Twomey added. -Ends-

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NUI Galway Postgraduate Student Awarded Irish Times Internship

NUI Galway Postgraduate Student Awarded Irish Times Internship-image

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Postgraduate student, Cian Nihill, who is due to graduate from the MA in Journalism at NUI Galway this month, was recently awarded a twelve-month inaugural editorial internship with The Irish Times. Two internships were awarded nationally and there were over 600 applications received by the daily newspaper. The editorial internship which Cian is undertaking is intended to give participants an opportunity to secure training and experience in journalism, and to allow the newspaper and the website to benefit from their ideas, energy and all-round contribution. The scheme is designed to introduce newcomers to journalism and is aimed primarily at recent third level graduates and postgraduates in any discipline. An individual programme will be developed for each intern throughout their year of invaluable experience, to take account of their particular skills and interests, whether these lie in news reporting, feature writing, sub-editing, digital media or some other aspect of journalism. Cian will have the opportunity to rotate around the different departments in the Irish Times throughout the year, allowing him to gain a broad range of skills and insights into the workings of the Newspaper. Cian from Moycullen Co Galway, applied for the internship after completing the MA Journalism Course at NUI Galway. He also completed his undergraduate BA in History and Sociology and Political Science and is a keen sportsman who is currently a member of the Irish Senior Men's Basketball Squad as well as playing for Moycullen in the Irish Superleague. The MA in Journalism at NUI Galway, is a twelve-month taught Masters programme, offering students a varied range of subjects in the realm of journalism including: Broadcasting, Feature Writing, News Writing and Reporting, Politics, Media Law, and Media Ethics. Students also undertake a work placement and are exposed to professionals within the media industry throughout the year through a series of guest lectures. Bernadette O Sullivan, Director of the MA Journalism says: "Many journalism graduates are still passionate about traditional print journalism, in spite of the difficulties the newspaper industry is facing due to competition with other media. It's encouraging to see newspapers like the Irish Times taking positive action to give opportunities to young people like Cian Nihill, who have a lot to offer, and on whom the future of the industry depends." -Ends-

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NUI Galway Based Company Wins at the Irish Web Awards

NUI Galway Based Company Wins at the Irish Web Awards-image

Thursday, 11 November 2010

An NUI Galway Business Innovation Centre client company which was developed in the Centre at the University, recently received a prestigious Irish Web Award for Best New Web Application or Service. The website won the award for their online sales/customer relationship management (CRM) application. has also been accepted into the Enterprise Ireland Internet Growth Acceleration Programme (iGAP), an intensive management development programme aimed exclusively at high potential internet companies. was developed to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of a company's sales process, helping businesses to significantly increase sales. Winning the award for Best New Web Application or Service means that is recognised as one of the best new applications in Ireland. The application was developed after NUI Galway graduate Michael FitzGerald, the CEO and founder of OnePageCRM, got frustrated with the products available on the customer relationship management market. The application drives sales by focusing the user on that 'Next Action' required to move a sale closer to success. A soon to-be-released new iPhone application will help businesses stay on top of their sales tasks wherever they are furthering the usability of Speaking on the recent successful developments for OnePageCRM, Michael FitzGerald says, "The vital difference between our award-winning application and other sales software is that it is action-based. While it has the ability to collect sales prospects information, it is more motivational, encouraging the user in achieving efficiency to increase sales." Fiona Neary of NUI Galway Technology Transfer Office says: "NUI Galway strongly supports the value a Business Innovation Centre on campus brings to the region and working with such a high calibre company like OnePageCRM.COM clearly illustrates this value. Michael's innovativeness and creativity is an inspiration to all entrepreneurs of exactly what can be achieved with dedication, vision and action. NUI Galway would like to congratulate Michael on winning this prestigious award." The Irish Web Awards is an annual event that acknowledges people who achieve great things through using the web. This year's nominations were judged by over 150 independent judges worldwide. -Ends-

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Former CEO and Chairman of Intel, Craig Barrett to Speak at NUI Galway

Former CEO and Chairman of Intel, Craig Barrett to Speak at NUI Galway-image

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Former CEO and Chairman of the Board of Intel Corporation Craig R. Barrett will give a keynote address on 'Education for Innovation' at NUI Galway on Tuesday, 16 November as part of the Irish Technology Leadership Group's (ITLG) third annual 'Silicon Valley Comes to Ireland Event'. The NUI Galway address will be held on Tuesday at 11am in Áras Moyola, North Campus. Following the address, a panel discussion will take place, moderated by Dr James Cunningham of NUI Galway s Centre for Innovation & Structural Change. Confirmed panellists include Irish American entrepreneur, John Ryan, co-founder of Macrovision; Tom McDermott, Director of Research, Georgia Tech Research Institute; and others. A showcase of projects highlighting 'Education for Innovation' is planned – with stands from NUI Galway s leading research institutes, REMEDI and DERI; key University of Limerick research centres LERO and MSSI; as well as Georgia Tech Ireland. Each year the ITLG leads a delegation of Silicon Valley technologists and venture capitalists to Ireland to support high potential emerging technology companies from the island of Ireland. This year's events from 15 to 17 November are held in partnership with University of Limerick, Shannon Development and NUI Galway. Full details at Craig R. Barrett was Chairman of the Board of Intel Corporation from May 2005 to May 2009. He became Intel's fourth President in May of 1997 and Chief Executive Officer in 1998. He was elected to Intel's Board of Directors in 1992 and served as Chief Operating Officer from 1993 to 1997. A limited number of places are available, email clare.walsh@nuigalway to reserve a place. -Ends-

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NUI Galway Receives Two Undergraduate Awards at the 2010 Ceremony

NUI Galway Receives Two Undergraduate Awards at the 2010 Ceremony-image

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Two NUI Galway students have won prizes at this year's Undergraduate Awards of Ireland and Northern Ireland Awards at the Royal Irish Academy. Rachel Carey from Headford, Co Galway and Anne Molloy from Ballynacally, Co Clare were presented with prizes in the Life Sciences and Language and Linguistics categories. Former President of Ireland Mary Robinson was guest of honour on the night. Rachel, a final-year BA International in Psychology student, was awarded the prize in the Life Sciences category for her essay entitled How should we treat time in our investigation of coordinated movement? Rachel's essay was one of over 1600 essays submitted to the awards this year. Speaking about Rachel's achievement, Dr Mark Elliott, Lecturer with the School of Psychology at NUI Galway, said: "Rachel is an exceptionally capable student who has researched a difficult assignment thoroughly and with excellence. In this respect she exemplifies the very high quality of psychology graduates from NUI Galway." Anne, a Bachelor of Arts graduate from NUI Galway, was announced the winner of the Languages and Linguistics category for her essay La langue bretonne: passage de la langue vernaculaire à la langue condamnée which deals with the changing sociological status of the Breton language. On congratulating Anne on her award, Dr Máire Áine Ní Mhainnín, supervisor of Anne's essay, said: "Anne is a gifted linguist and produced an excellent and thought-provoking essay on the decline of the Breton language." Founded in 2008, the Undergraduate Awards of Ireland and Northern Ireland aim to recognise and reward the island of Ireland's most innovative young knowledge creators, to catalyse the development of the brightest undergraduates, and to inspire all undergraduates to achieve. The awards are open to all final and penultimate year students enrolled in a degree course in any third level institution on the island of Ireland. -Ends-

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NUI Galway host 1960 Sigerson Cup Champions Reunion

NUI Galway host 1960 Sigerson Cup Champions Reunion-image

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

NUI Galway Gaelic Games will celebrate the 50th anniversary reunion of the 1960 NUI Galway Sigerson Cup Champions at a special event in the University on 19 November. This group of men, who captured the coveted crown, possessed a large number of players who later went on to become household names in the GAA world of the 1960s. This reunion aims to honour those men who in their tenure within the college brought honour and distinction to the college jersey. In the 1960 final UCG, as it was known at that time, defeated the stern challenge of UCD as Galway native George Glynn, who later captured All Ireland honours with his adopted Down in 1968, lifted the famed Sigerson Cup. This UCG side was littered with some famous names none more so than Pat Donnellan, who won three in a row All Ireland s with Galway alongside another three in a row team mate Martin Newell. Martin later became one of the leading Professors of Mathematics in Ireland and lectured for many years in NUI Galway. Hugh McGonigle (Sligo), Mike Laide (Kerry and Galway), John S Kelly (Roscommon), Des Feely (Roscommon), Joe Langan (Mayo), Sean Donnelly (Longford), and Tony Kenny (Roscommon) were others who starred with UCG and later at inter-county level. The Chairman of the Club who did much to develop Gaelic games in the college and was involved in preparing this team was Professor Owen McKenna who was father to the late actress Siobhan McKenna. Gaelic Games Officer at NUI Galway Michael O Connor says "It is an honour for the football club of the college and the GAA organisation with the university to honour these legends of the game who in their tenure within the college brought honour and distinction to the college jersey and continued to do so in sport and their professional lives over the last 50 years. We welcome them back to their Alma Mater and we hope the happy memories garnered around the college quad and the fields of Galway and beyond preparing for Sigerson 1960 will be rekindled. "These men along with many other successful football and hurling sides in this period helped lay the template for future successes that the college enjoyed in the 60s and 70s and NUI Galway GAA would like to welcome them back for this deserved reunion." The reunion will be held in the boardroom in the Quadrangle, NUI Galway on 19 November followed by lunch in the college bar. -Ends-

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NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Sligo

NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Sligo-image

Monday, 8 November 2010

NUI Galway, in conjunction with partner college St. Angela's College, Sligo, will hold an Information Evening from 7-9pm on Thursday, 11 November, in the Sligo Park Hotel, Pearse Road, Sligo. This event is for students who are considering applying to NUI Galway and St. Angela's College, Sligo, and for their parents or guardians. The Information Evening will commence with a series of short talks about NUI Galway and St. Angela's College and the courses on offer. Current students and representatives from the five colleges of the University will be on hand at information stands to answer any questions visitors may have. "This is an excellent opportunity to talk to representatives from all of NUI Galway's Colleges and St. Angela's College, Sligo about the subjects of interest. It is also a chance to find out about practical issues like accommodation, fees, scholarships, and new programmes on offer at both institutes", said Caroline Loughnane, Director of Marketing and Communications at NUI Galway. Ms Loughnane added: "Choosing a University is one of the most important decisions in a young person's life, and we offer a University with a strong reputation for top quality teaching and a proven track record in producing graduates with the right mix of skills and knowledge to succeed in an increasingly uncertain job market." NUI Galway continues to increase its number of undergraduate applications with an increase in the order of 18% in CAO first preference applications over the last two years. NUI Galway's increased popularity is in part due to a whole suite of innovative new programmes, developed in response to the changing needs of the employment market, including an Energy Engineering degree, eight BA CONNECT programmes and a Math and Education degree aimed at training Maths teachers. To find out more about the Information Evening in Sligo, contact NUI Galway's Schools Liaison Officer, Gráinne Dunne at: or 087- 2440858. -Ends-

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