Thursday, 11 September 2014

Dr Manus Biggs, a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Investigator at the Network of Excellence for Functional Biomaterials (NFB) at NUI Galway has won the Larry Hench Young Investigator Award. The award was presented at the United Kingdom Society for Biomaterials (UKSB) division of the 26th Annual Conference for the European Society for Biomaterials, held in Liverpool, UK from 31 August–3 September 2014. The prize is awarded to a promising young research scientist in recognition of outstanding and innovative contributions in a selected field of biomaterials research. The judging criteria includes evidence of peer reviewed publications, outstanding contribution and demonstrable research in the field of biomaterials. Additionally, the researcher must be at an early stage of his career having no more than seven years of experience after his PhD was awarded. Dr Biggs’s research focuses on developing electrically active polymers for musculoskeletal and neural applications. His research group creates nanoscale fibres from piezoelectric polymers and incorporates them into a mesh-like scaffold that mimics the natural bone matrix. The scaffold materials can be utilised for the regeneration of large bone defects, which do not undergo spontaneous regeneration normally. Also, his group is improving long-term function of implanted microelectrodes being used for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders by using conducting polymers to coat the implanted electrodes. The aim of the coating is to reduce the inflammatory response around the electrode interface to prevent neural loss and instability of the electrodes at the implantation site. Seven researchers from the NFB presented at the European Society for Biomaterials conference. The conference brought together experts and scientists from academia and industry, and also those involved in funding regulatory and commercial enterprises related to biomaterials science, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Professor Abhay Pandit, Director of the NFB at NUI Galway, commented: “The award is further indication of the competitiveness of the NFB’s research at an international level.” -ends-

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

NUI Galway has again increased its position in the QS World University Rankings 2014/2015. Rising 4 places to 280th in this year’s ranking, NUI Galway is the only Irish universities to improve their standing in this year’s league table. Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway, said of the achievement: “This is good news for NUI Galway and further acknowledgement of the developments in teaching and research that have taken place at this University in recent years. Although all ranking systems have their limitations in that they seek to measure performance across a narrow range of criteria, the QS World University Rankings is one of the best regarded evaluations of higher education in the world.” The global emphasis on high-impact scientific and technological research is the key driver of leadership in the QS World University Rankings. The rankings are, for the third year, led by MIT with Imperial College London the biggest climber in the top 10, leapfrogging Harvard, UCL and Oxford to rank second equal in the world, tied with University of Cambridge. QS Head of Research Ben Sowter said: “In the wake of the recession, both governments and private sector funding source are placing greater emphasis on high-impact STEM research, much of which takes place in specialist institutions, Tech-focused institutions are increasingly the focal point of a global race for innovation. With budgets from public sources increasingly coming under strain, institutions seem more focused than ever on potentially lucrative research in science, technology and medicine.” The QS World University Rankings have been running since 2004 and are amongst the highest profile global evaluations of comparative university quality. The World University Rankings were conceived to present a multi-faceted view of the relative strengths of the world’s leading universities. The calculations leading to the QS World University Rankings are based on data gathered in the following categories: Academic Peer Review, Employer Review, International Faculty Ratio, International Student Ratio, Student Faculty Ratio, and Citations per Faculty (citation data supplied by Scopus). ENDS

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Guest Speakers include Tipperary Senior Hurling Team Manager Eamon O’Shea NUI Galway invites all CAO applicants, fourth and fifth year students, parents/guardians, mature students teachers and Guidance Counsellors to its annual Autumn Open Days on Friday, 3 October and Saturday, 4 October. Friday's Open Day will run from 9am to 3pm and is aimed at school groups, although individuals are also welcome to attend. Running from 10am to 3pm, Saturday's Open Day is for students thinking about university and their parents and families. Open Day is an opportunity for students, along with their parents and families, to explore NUI Galway’s campus and to learn more about the over 60 degree courses that NUI Galway offers. The Open Days are expected to attract some 8,000 visitors. Lecturers and current students will be on hand to talk to students and parents at the main exhibition area in the Bailey Allen Hall, with over 80 subject-specific exhibition stands to answer questions on courses, CAO points, employability, and career progression routes. The ‘Parents Programme’ on Saturday, 4 October will provide parents and students with information on important issues such as fees and funding, careers, accommodation, career destinations and support services for students. This year NUI Galway will host an Alumni event for its graduates. Taking place on Saturday, 4 October at 2pm, the event will include a series of short talks from the University’s leading experts including Professor Alan Ahearne, Head of Economics and Professor Hubert McDermott, Department of English to mention but a few. The Open Days will feature a mix of taster sessions and short lectures to provide a feel for university life. Events will include hands-on science workshops and interactive sessions with IT systems and robotics. To get the most out of the Open Days visitors are encouraged to view the timetable of talks at www.nuigalway.ie/opendays and plan your day. Talk highlights include: New Scholarship Schemes for 2014 including CAO Performance Points Scholarships in Sports and Arts and Excellence Scholarships. A guest appearance and talk about Sports at the University with Eamon O’Shea, Professor of Economics at NUI Galway and Manager of the Tipperary Senior Hurling Team. Career talks - “Where are the jobs? What are my employment prospects after University?” Taster sessions designed to give a real insight into studying at NUI Galway will include: Physics - A brilliant career from lasers to the Universe. Take a 3D tour of the Universe with The Centre for Astronomy, which will take visitors on a trip from the earth to nearby starts, across our Galaxy to groups of stars, and finally through the whole Universe. Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences – Introduction to the Healthcare Programmes. Arts – BA Connect Programme in Drama, Theatre and Performance studies. Caroline Loughnane, Director of Marketing and Communications at NUI Galway, said: “Choosing a university is one of the most important decisions a student will ever make. The Autumn Open Days is the perfect opportunity for students and parents to get a taste of university life and to gain access to all of the information they need to make that important decision. We are encouraging anyone with an interest in studying at NUI Galway to come along, talk to our lecturers and current students, find out about the courses, explore the campus and decide for yourselves whether NUI Galway is the right university for you.” Tours of the campus will feature the state-of the-art sports complex and gym, and the new Engineering Building. Tours of student accommodation will also be available to visitors on the day, with the tour shuttle bus departing. Guided walking tours of the main campus will also take place throughout the afternoon. To plan your day in advance and receive a programme on Open Day 2014 visit www.nuigalway.ie/opendays, or contact 091 494145 or visit@nuigalway.ie. -Ends- Laethanta Oscailte an Fhómhair in OÉ Gaillimh I measc na n-aoichainteoirí tá Bainisteoir Fhoireann Sinsir Iománaíochta Thiobraid Árann Eamon O’Shea Ba mhaith le OÉ Gaillimh cuireadh a thabhairt do gach iarrthóir CAO, do dhaltaí sa cheathrú agus sa chúigiú bliain, do thuismitheoirí/do chaomhnóirí, do mhic léinn aibí, do mhúinteoirí agus do threoirchomhairleoirí teacht chuig Laethanta Oscailte an Fhómhair Dé hAoine, an 3 Deireadh Fómhair agus Dé Sathairn, an 4 Deireadh Fómhair. Dírithe ar ghrúpaí scoile atá an Lá Oscailte a bheidh ar siúl idir 9am agus 3pm Dé hAoine, cé go mbeidh fáilte roimh dhuine ar bith cuairt a thabhairt ar an Ollscoil an lá sin chomh maith. Is do mhic léinn atá ag smaoineamh ar aghaidh a thabhairt ar an Ollscoil, dá dtuismitheoirí agus dá dteaghlach an Lá Oscailte, a bheidh ar siúl idir 10am agus 3pm Dé Sathairn. Deis atá sa Lá Oscailte do mhic léinn, dá dtuismitheoirí agus dá dteaghlaigh aithne a chur ar champas OÉ Gaillimh agus foghlaim faoin mbreis is 60 cúrsa céime atá ar fáil san Ollscoil.  Meastar go bhfreastalóidh timpeall 8,000 duine ar na Laethanta Oscailte. Beidh léachtóirí agus mic léinn reatha ar láimh le labhairt le daltaí agus le tuismitheoirí i Halla Bailey Allen, áit a mbeidh os cionn 80 seastán ábhair ar taispeáint chun ceisteanna faoi chúrsaí, pointí CAO, fostaíocht, agus bealaí chun cinn i ngairmeacha a fhreagairt. Beidh eolas le fáil ag tuismitheoirí agus ag daltaí i ‘gClár na dTuismitheoirí’ Dé Sathairn, an 4 Deireadh Fómhair faoi cheisteanna móra cosúil le táillí agus maoiniú, gairmeacha, lóistín, cinn scríbe gairmeacha agus seirbhísí tacaíochta do mhic léinn. Beidh ócáid Alumni ar siúl ag OÉ Gaillimh i mbliana dá céimithe. Dé Sathairn, an 4 Deireadh Fómhair ag 2pm, tabharfaidh saineolaithe na hOllscoile cosúil leis an Ollamh Alan Ahearne, Ceann na hEacnamaíochta agus an tOllamh Hubert McDermott, as Roinn an Bhéarla, sraith cainteanna gairide. Beidh idir sheisiúin agus léachtaí gairide ar siúl i rith na Laethanta Oscailte le blaiseadh a thabhairt do chách ar an gcineál saoil a chaitheann mic léinn in OÉ Gaillimh. I measc na n-imeachtaí beidh ceardlanna praiticiúla eolaíochta agus seisiúin idirghníomhacha le córais IT agus róbataic. Chun an tairbhe is fearr a bhaint as na Laethanta Oscailte moltar do chuairteoirí breathnú ar amchlár na gcainteanna ag www.nuigalway.ie/opendays agus an lá a phleanáil dóibh féin. Ar na cainteanna is suimiúla tá siad seo a leanas: Scéimeanna Nua Scoláireachta 2014 cosúil le Scoláireachtaí na bPointí Breise CAO sa Spórt agus sna hEalaíona agus na Scoláireachtaí Sármhaitheasa. Labhróidh Eamon O’Shea, Ollamh le hEacnamaíocht in OÉ Gaillimh agus Bainisteoir ar Fhoireann Sinsir Iománaíochta Thiobraid Árann, faoi Spórt san Ollscoil. Léacht na nGairmeacha - “Cá bhfuil na poist? Cén rogha gairmeacha atá agam i ndiaidh na hOllscoile?” I measc na léachtaí gairide a bheas ar siúl chun blaiseadh a thabhairt duit don staidéar in OÉ Gaillimh tá siad seo a leanas: An Fhisic - Gairm den scoth ó léasair go dtí an chruinne. Téigh ar thuras 3D den Chruinne le hIonad na Réalteolaíochta. Tabharfaidh an tIonad cuairteoirí ar aistear ón domhan seo timpeall an réaltra chuig grúpaí réalta, agus timpeall na cruinne ar fad. Leigheas, Altranas agus na hEolaíochtaí Sláinte – Blaiseadh de na Cláir sa Chúram Sláinte. Na Dána – An Clár BA Connect sa Drámaíocht, i Léann na hAmharclannaíochta agus sa Taibhiú. Dúirt Caroline Loughnane, an Stiúrthóir Margaíochta agus Cumarsáide in OÉ Gaillimh: “Ceann de na cinntí is tábhachtaí a dhéanfaidh mac léinn go brách an ollscoil a bhfreastalóidh sé/sí uirthi a roghnú. Deis iontach iad Laethanta Oscailte an Fhómhair do mhic léinn agus do thuismitheoirí blaiseadh a fháil de shaol na hollscoile agus an t-eolas ar fad atá uathu a bhailiú a chuirfidh ar a gcumas an cinneadh tábhachtach sin a dhéanamh. Molaimid do dhuine ar bith ar spéis leo staidéar in OÉ Gaillimh teacht chuig an Lá Oscailte, labhairt leis na léachtóirí agus leis na mic léinn reatha, eolas a fháil faoi chúrsaí, aithne a chur ar an gcampas agus a fháil amach duit féin an bhfeileann OÉ Gaillimh duitse.” Ar thurais den champas, taispeánfar an t-ionad spóirt le giomnáisiam den scoth mar aon leis an bhFoirgneamh nua Innealtóireachta. Beidh turais de lóistín na mac léinn ar fáil do chuairteoirí ar an lá chomh maith agus beidh seirbhís bus ar fáil chuige seo. Beidh turais treoraithe siúil den champas ar siúl ar feadh an tráthnóna chomh maith. Chun do lá a leagan amach agus clár a fháil do Laethanta Oscailte 2014 féach www.nuigalway.ie/opendays, nó déan teagmháil le 091 494145 nó visit@nuigalway.ie. -Críoch-

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

As part of Culture Night 2014, which takes place on Friday, 19 September, NUI Galway will launch a new Cultural Campus Trail (brochure and map), at 4.30pm in the Atrium of the Orbsen Building. This follows the official start of the night's events in the City and County by the Mayor of Galway, Councillor Donal Lyons, also in the Orbsen Building. Dr Chris Coughlan of Hewlett Packard will launch the University’s Cultural Campus Trail, which heralds a new vision for an open campus at NUI Galway, promoting the sights on offer to the public at the University. The Trail brochure is a first template for a comprehensive visitor guide to the wealth of treasures to be explored on campus in the areas of art, sculpture, heritage, science and technology, and environment, including the sections of the river walk and Greenway. The star attractions include the permanent displays in Zoology, Geology, The James Hardiman Research Building and DERI with details of how tours can be arranged by appointment. ConTempo Quartet, Galway Ensemble in Residence, will play a tribute to mark the Trail and refreshments will be served. NUI Galway is hosting several events that evening across campus and all of the exhibitions are open to the public until 10pm including a new exhibition in the Art Gallery by Vincent Godfrey-Glynn and a pop-up sculpture by Donnacha Cahill. For more information visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/culturenight2014/ or www.galwayculturenight.com. -Ends-  

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Today marks the 25th UN International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, commemorating the date of the signing of the Montreal Protocol which brought about a global initiative to ban Ozone Depleting Substances. Two Irish scientific atmospheric monitoring stations have played a significant role assessing the planet’s success in saving the ozone layer. Over the last 25 years, atmospheric observations from NUI Galway’s Mace Head Station in Connemara and Met Éireann’s Valentia Observatory in Co. Kerry, have charted the success of international actions relating to man-made Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS). The world was shocked 30 years ago to hear of the major threat posed by the hole in ozone layer. World governments responded by developing and eventually agreeing in 1987 the Montreal Protocol .The protocol phased out the use of man-made ODS, of which, the primary culprits where CFCs or chlorofluorocarbons used as refrigerants. CFCs provided a source of reactive chlorine in the upper atmosphere which destroyed ozone. Combined observations from Mace Head and Valentia, supported by satellite data, illustrate that it took 15 years for the destructive chlorine trend to peak-out and turn into decline. As the destructive chlorine declined, stratospheric ozone concentrations slowly started to recover. The data are unique in Europe as they represent observations in Europe’s cleanest air and they demonstrate a gradually recovering ozone layer over the last 10 years. Globally, the impact of CFCs is still evident. According to the IPCC AR5 Report, Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis, it is certain that global stratospheric ozone has declined from pre-1980 values. Most of the decline occurred prior to the mid-1990s. Since then ozone has remained nearly constant at about 3.5% below the 1964–1980 level. Ireland is strategically located to monitor the change in ODS and stratospheric ozone in the cleanest northern hemispheric air and at mid-latitudes which are heavily populated and susceptible to most impacts from the ozone hole. Professor Colin O’Dowd, Director of NUI Galway’s Centre for Climate and Air Pollution Research, which operates Mace Head highlighted the importance of such observing and research infrastructures stating that: “Without these key long-term observations in strategic locations emerging environmental dangers, solutions, and response to interventions would be very difficult to identify, enable and quantify. It is essential that stakeholder support of such research and observation infrastructures is sustained and even expanded on into the future in order to improve environmental security and better inform response-policy development.”   Eoin Moran, Assistant Director of Met Éireann, added: “The location of Valentia Observatory and Mace Head, are strategically important, nationally and internationally, providing important climate and environmental data at the interface between Europe and the Northeast Atlantic. The measurements at both stations are complimentary forming a very important component of the Global Atmosphere Watch programme – this work represents an excellent example of Ireland’s contribution to international scientific research – brought about through successful and sustained collaboration between world class research and operational scientists.” Monitoring Ozone Recovery The accumulation of CFCs in the atmosphere has been monitored at NUI Galway’s Mace Head Atmospheric Research Station since the early 1980’s. This globally important record was one of the first to demonstrate the reduction in CFCs a few years after the protocol for the most reactive CFCs. Mace Head operates with a World Meteorological Organisation ‘Global Atmosphere Watch’ (GAW) status in tandem with Met Éireann’s GAW station at Valentia Observatory where complementary stratospheric Ozone measurements are conducted. The ozone measurements at Valentia contributed to the identification of the extent of ozone loss and eventually the initial beginnings of the expected recovery using special balloon-borne ozone detecting instruments (called ozonesondes) and a sophisticated ground based ozone sensor (called a Brewer Spectrophotometer). The research by NUI Galway is conducted in cooperation with the Advanced Global Atmospheric Gas Experiment (AGAGE). More information on the observatories can be found on www.macehead.org and www.met.ie. -ends-

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

On Monday, 13 October, the Network of Excellence for Functional Biomaterials (NFB) at NUI Galway will host a free seminar on the regulatory elements that need to be considered when developing medical devices involving a combination of advanced materials and biomolecules. The European Regulation of Medical Devices (EROMed) Seminar will take place in the Seminar Room of the Biosciences Building from 9.30am to 5.30pm. This free event is organised as part of the EU-funded NeuroGraft project and will be of interest to local medical device industries and researchers. The seminar is coordinated by Obelis, a regulatory company, and the NFB, a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) funded research group. The event is designed to provide information about the higher regulatory aspects involved when using human cells in medical devices. The speakers include experts in compliance with EU legislation of products, as well as experts from industry and research. Topics that will be covered include combined tissue engineering products, clinical investigations, and classification of combination products in the EU. Injuries and degenerative diseases of the central nervous system (CNS) constitute a bottleneck in medical and surgical practice for which no therapy currently exists. The aim of the NeuroGraft project is to develop a novel multichannel conduit system to aid regeneration following spinal cord injury. The NeuroGraft consortium consists of one academic and four industrial partners across four countries. Professor Abhay Pandit, Director of the NFB, stated “Our continued collaboration with Irish and European industries, such as in the case of the NeuroGraft project, is an indication of the relevance of NFB’s research within Europe. We will continue to initiate collaborative research with partners from outside of Ireland and look towards funding opportunities within Horizon 2020.” For further details of the event contact sharon.s.kelly@nuigalway.ie. 091 494233 -ends-

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

NUI Galway has launched the 2014/2015 Arts in Action Programme, which invites students to engage with the creative arts during their studies. Aimed at students across the campus, Arts in Action offers access to a variety of international-standard arts events throughout the academic year. The Arts in Action programme is packed with rich and diverse performances focusing on emerging artists from the Western sea board of Ireland, focusing on counties Clare, Limerick, Cork and Kerry and also on performances by international names from the world of theatre, literature and traditional music. Among the legendary performers showcasing in this year’s series are: Olwen Fouéré, Mick Moloney, Peadar O’Ríada, the Mulcahy Family and Dolores Keane. This year also sees a commemoration of Maud Gonne, the 150th anniversary of the birth of WB Yeats and two new collaborations with NUI Galway’s Moore Institute and the James Hardiman Library. The Dean of the College of Arts Social Sciences and Celtic Studies, Dr Edward Herring said: “The performers in this year’s series come from Ireland’s entire Atlantic coast, from Donegal to Kerry. Just like the ocean constantly shapes and reinvigorates the coastline, so the indigenous tradition sustains and inspires the creative artists and communities of the West of Ireland.” Launching the new programme, Vincent Woods, poet, RTÉ Arts broadcaster and journalist, said: “The Arts in Action programme at NUI Galway is a rare and very impressive example of a university incorporating creative performance into its academic calendar, a blueprint for all third-level colleges in Ireland. I commend it for its vitality, diversity, relevance and richness.” Arts in Action has been building over three years to support specific undergraduate and post-graduate modules as well as having a significant input into the programmes for International Students. The content of the programme is designed in such a way that it is now aligned to a teaching theory component within a two-hour seminar and is a credit bearing module for both Irish and International students. Mary Mc Partlan, Traditional Artist-in-Residence at the Centre for Theatre and Performance and Artistic Director of Arts in Action at NUI Galway, said: “This year’s programme marks the ultimate goal and objective of embedding the creative arts into academic modules, creating a full programme in such a sustained and significant way that fulfils all the aims and outcomes for credit bearing modules, available to all students across the campus, with structured, bespoke space opportunities for visiting students to immerse in Irish Traditional Culture.” All events are free to attend and will take place mostly at The Cube and Bailey Allen Hall in Áras Na Mac Léinn, NUI Galway. The programme will commence on Thursday, 25 September and run until the end of March 2015. For programme details please see http://www.nuigalway.ie/arts/artsinaction.html, or visit the Arts in Action Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ArtsinActionNUIGalway. -Ends-

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

NUI Galway’s 13th annual Volunteering Fair will take place on Wednesday, 24 September in the Bailey Allen Hall, from 11am-5pm. With over 2,000 students, staff and members of the general public expected to attend, the Fair will be officially opened by Mayor of Galway City, Councillor Donal Lyons, and is part of a week-long celebration of volunteering at NUI Galway. Over 80 campus, local, national, and international NGOs, school and hospital programmes, charities and community/voluntary groups will be showcasing the depth and breadth of their work with a particular focus on their current volunteering opportunities.   Lorraine Tansey, Student Volunteer Coordinator at NUI Galway, said: “The amazing response from community and voluntary groups to attending the Fair is a real testament to the rich and engaged civic life of the city. There are a wide variety of volunteering opportunities that students are eager to apply for in order to earn much needed experience and skills.” Exhibitors at the Volunteering Fair will include: Enable Ireland, Galway Community Circus, Foróige, Blue Teapot Theatre Company, Galway Rape Crisis Centre, SERVE In Solidarity, Music for Galway, Youth Work Ireland – Westside. ALIVE - A Learning Initiative and the Volunteering Experience – was established at NUI Galway to build links between community groups and students. This has been achieved through community partnerships, events like the Volunteering Fair, and an online website of volunteer opportunities. At the end of the academic year students can apply for an ALIVE Certificate in acknowledgment of their voluntary commitment which is awarded by NUI Galway President, Dr Jim Browne. To date over 10,000 students have been recognised for their volunteering commitment to the Galway city community, the NUI Galway campus community and with international communities. To book a stand or for further information visit www.nuigalway.ie/alive, or contact the ALIVE office on 091 495346 or email alive@nuigalway.ie -Ends-

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

NUI Galway’s Alumni Association has organised a Croke Park skyline tour and museum visit for graduate and friends of the University. The event will take place on Saturday, 20 September at 2pm. The rooftop tour will include panoramic views of Dublin City, 17 storeys high over five viewing platforms. Visitors will be given a brief history of the area and of Croke Park. Following the tour, the Association has arranged a special visit to the Croke Park museum. All alumni and friends are welcome to attend but tickets are limited so early booking is advised. The cost per ticket is €15. In keeping with the GAA theme, NUI Galway has also organised a Donegal V Kerry All-Ireland Final breakfast brunch and panel discussion on Sunday, 21 September. The brunch will take place at 11am in the Gresham Hotel, Dublin. Guest panellists include TV GAA analyst Martin Carney and former Kerry footballer Eoin Liston, with MC by Gavin Jennings from RTÉ. Booking for the breakfast brunch is essential and tickets cost €15 or a table of ten for €150. To book tickets for the events, contact the Alumni Office on 091 493750 or tickets can be purchased online at http://www.nuigalway.ie/alumni-friends/. The closing date for tickets is Friday, 19 September. -Ends-

Thursday, 18 September 2014

NUI Galway Computer Science and Information Technology students will hold a new unique networking and workshop event, bringing major technological companies and employers to campus. ‘Synapse//a Tech Carnival’, a one-day free event, will take place on Friday, 26 September in the Bailey Allen Hall, and is for students and people interested in technology to meet with key Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) stakeholders in a fun and informative exchange of ideas. Major employers will be demonstrating their latest technologies and explaining their ongoing training and employment opportunities. The emphasis is all around having a fun and interesting event for people new to ICT to learn how to engage and become successful in the booming software industry. Speakers and panel discussions will offer key insights into the current trends that are being experienced for tech graduates in Ireland. Keynote speakers include: Mark Gantly, Hewlett Packard; Stephen Howell, Microsoft; and Eugene Garvin, Avaya. David Renton, event organiser and NUI Galway student, said: “Students of Computer Science and Information Technology have seen the success of tech events internationally and want to showcase that the West of Ireland is just as exciting for tech people to come together in a dynamic and fun environment. NUI Galway has such a unique balance of energy, youth and talent which lends itself to hosting an event such as this, while Galway itself is one of the best cities in Ireland for ICT companies to attract new talent, as it is one of the most desirable places to live and work for all ages. This will be an unmissable opportunity for those at any stage of their career, from a potential computing student to an experienced pro wanting to network.” David continues: “We have employers such as Microsoft, LinkedIn and Havok coming to the event as they see the energy that has built up around the idea. Galway companies such as HP, Avaya and Cisco/SAP are offering great support as they see this as an opportunity to showcase their Galway operations. Equally NUI Galway are spearheading the event as they offer a range of programmes that can provide training and education opportunities for all ages for a career in ICT.” The networking arena demos and main stage presentations will provide attendees with all the latest information on all of the companies involved while the Workshop Heaven area will provide a more in depth and interactive view of the technologies involved. Exhibitors and presenters include: Microsoft, Accenture, Riot Games, Cloud Consulting, Silicon Republic, ThoughtBox, EY, Avaya, First Derivatives, KBC Bank, Havok, Tribal City Interactive, 091Labs, Hewlett Packard, RealSim, ITAG, Pocket Anatomy, Element Wave, amongst others. Dr Michael Madden, Head of the Information Technology discipline at NUI Galway, said: “I am very proud that our third year Computer Science and Information Technology students are showing the immense energy and enthusiasm they have for the software industry by making this event a reality. They are showcasing the kind of drive and determination that is characteristic of NUI Galway graduates, which has been so hugely valued by major employers for many decades. The response of so many Tech Leaders is testament to the hunger for more graduates and talented professionals in the Galway area.” NUI Galway President, Dr Jim Browne, said: “This is a wonderful student-led event. I commend the students involved in Synapse//a Tech Carnival for their initiative in linking students and industry in such a dynamic and innovative way. I look forward to participating in the event and to seeing at firsthand the synergy developing between NUI Galway technology students and industry leaders.” For more information on ‘Synapse//a Tech Carnival’ visit www.synapsegalway.com. -Ends-

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Collaboration will focus on stem cell therapy, gene therapy, biomaterials and biomedical engineering The National University Ireland Galway has signed an agreement to formalise collaborative ties with the Mayo Clinic Centre for Regenerative Medicine in the US. The agreement follows many years of close cooperation, and paves the way for joint collaborations in clinical trials using regenerative therapies. Collaborative research projects will focus on a number of key strategic areas of importance for both institutes, including adult stem cell therapy, gene therapy, biomaterials and biomedical engineering. Furthermore, the agreement facilitates ongoing student and staff exchange between Galway and the US.   The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) puts the emphasis on regulatory science to facilitate global translation of regenerative medicine therapies to the clinic. Both the National University Ireland Galway and the Mayo Clinic Centre for Regenerative Medicine have GMP cell manufacturing facilities, licensed for use by the respective national medical authorities. National University of Ireland Galway’s President, Dr Jim Browne, welcoming the signing of the MOU, said: “Formalising our longstanding links paves the way for advancing our common agenda which is to realize the potential of regenerative medicine. Here in Galway we have Ireland’s only facility licenced to produce stem cells for human use, while the new clinical and translational research facility for conducting clinical trials with patients will be complete in early 2015.” NUI Galway’s Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) and the Network of Excellence for Functional Biomaterials (NFB), both of which are supported by Science Foundation Ireland, are working together specifically to develop joint clinical trial programmes in the area of regenerative medicine. Professor Tony Windebank, Deputy Director for Discovery of the Centre for Regenerative Medicine at Mayo Clinic said: “Mayo Clinic and NUI Galway have an established track record and commitment to regenerative medicine over the last decade. The Mayo Clinic has prioritized the development of new regenerative medicine clinical applications as a critical strategy for meeting the needs of patients in the future, which was evidenced in the formation of our Centre for Regenerative Medicine in 2012.” The signing of the MOU comes on top of the recent announcement of a new $16 million agreement between Mayo Clinic and Enterprise Ireland where up to 20 novel medical technologies will be commercialised in Ireland over the next five years with the aim of creating several high value medical technology spin-out companies. Video featuring Professor Tony Windebank, Deputy Director for Discovery of the Centre for Regenerative Medicine at Mayo Clinic https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B98ci3iAknE  

Monday, 22 September 2014

In conjunction with NUI Galway Autumn Open Days, the University will hold a special event for its graduates on Saturday, 4 October. The Open Days will feature tours of the campus, facility tours, and taster sessions of what is involved in attending NUI Galway today and graduates are invited to participate. As well as the rest of the activities associated with the Open Day, a special series of lectures for Alumni will take place in the Aula Maxima from 2pm. These will include contributions from Professor Hubert McDermott from the Department of English, Professor Alan Ahearne from the School of Economics, amongst others. The Literary and Debating Society have also organised a ball for society members past and present. As well as some familiar faces, there will be a four-course meal, debating and entertainment. For booking details visit www.literaryanddebating.com. For Dublin Alumni, a special evening of Druid's production of Tom Murphy's double bill Brigit and Bailgangaire will take place in the Olymypia Theatre on Saturday, 4 October. To book tickets visit www.nuigalway.ie/alumniday. Sean O'Rourke, Chair of the NUI Galway Alumni Board, said: “NUI Galway Day is an ideal opportunity to celebrate the links that all Galway graduates share with their alma mater. There are over 80,000 NUI Galway graduates worldwide and I would encourage all of them to celebrate their shared Galway heritage.” A special new online graduate worldwide alumni contact map will be live soon at www.nuigalway.ie/alumni. There will be live online links on the day and graduates can also contact each other via our Linkedin and Facebook sites. For more information contact the Alumni Office at alumni@nuigalway.ie or 091 493750. -Ends-

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

The Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation, Mr Damien English T.D., and Professor Orla Feely, Chairperson of the Irish Research Council, recently presented NUI Galway researcher Dr Aideen Ryan with an award in recognition of her selection and participation in the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings. Since 1951, the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings have been bringing together the most esteemed scientists of their times with outstanding young scientists from all over the world. This year, 600 young researchers representing almost 80 countries took part in the Meeting. Dr Ryan was one of four young Irish researchers who were chosen in a competitive process to attend the 64th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting dedicated to Physiology and Medicine. The select group of scientists had the opportunity to present and discuss their research in master classes hosted by 37 Nobel Laureates. Dr Ryan works within the Immunology group of the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at NUI Galway with Professor Laurence Egan, Dr Thomas Ritter and Professor Matthew Griffin and her research, which looks specifically at colon cancer, is supported by an Irish Cancer Society Research Fellowship. Colon cancer is one of the most common causes of cancer-related deaths in Ireland and represents a significant health problem. Dr Ryan’s research is taking a fresh approach by focusing on the cancer cells interaction with the immune system. Dr Ryan, who is originally from Ballinasloe in Co. Galway, explains her work: “What fascinates me is the interaction of cancer cells with our immune cells. Understanding how our immune system allows the cancer to spread may allow us to develop ways to stop the process.” The aim of her research is to find ways to help the body’s immune system detect and destroy cancer cells. “Our work in the lab has shown that we can target some of the signals coming from tumours and that this could help our immune cells to flourish.” Dr Ryan’s recent research work, published in the journal Oncogene, has provided new insights into how the body’s immune system affects the spread of colon cancer cells and it is hoped that this work will inform the development of new drugs that could be used to strengthen our immune system’s response to cancer. This novel approach to cancer treatment could potentially result in better treatments and consequently a better prognosis and quality of life for patients with colon cancer. -ends-

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Research & Innovation Links on Agenda for Inaugural Visit to Galway Today on the NUI Galway campus, the recently-elected Mayor of Boston, Martin J. (“Marty”) Walsh will be hosted by the University President, Dr Jim Browne at an event that will include NUI Galway research leaders, colleagues from IDA Ireland as well as high-level representatives from IDA and EI client companies with strong Boston-Galway connections. This occasion will focus on the opportunities for further collaboration between Boston and Galway in the context of the global knowledge-based economy, specifically on the development of research and innovation links between Galway’s University and organisations in the Boston area. In advance of the Mayor’s visit, President of NUI Galway, Dr Jim Browne said: “Galway and Boston share many strong links in culture, in education and in business life. I am delighted to welcome Mayor Walsh to NUI Galway and I look forward to working with him to build on our regions’ shared heritage to create stronger, more dynamic research and academic links between Boston and Galway.” Elected in November 2013, this is the first official visit of Mr Marty J. Walsh as Mayor of Boston to the home of his emigrant parents. The ten-day trip will see the Mayor attend meetings with representatives of government, business and industry throughout the country. Mayor Walsh's parents, both from Connemara in County Galway, emigrated from Ireland in the 1950s and went to Boston. Having met in a dance hall, John and Mary Walsh married and settled in St. Margaret’s Parish, Dorchester where he and his brother Johnny grew up, and where his mother still lives. Catherina Blewitt, West Regional Manager for the IDA, said: “On behalf of IDA Ireland I am delighted to welcome Mayor Walsh to Galway and to introduce him to client companies of IDA Ireland and to indigenous companies with strong Boston connections. There has been significant two-way activity between Greater Boston and Galway and we look forward to working with Mayor Walsh to strengthen our ties, forge new ones and encourage further investment activity for the mutual benefit of both locations” The meeting at NUI Galway included senior representatives from the University, IDA Ireland as well as representatives from the American Chamber of Commerce West Branch and companies such as Boston Scientific, Fidelity, SmartBear Software, Aspect Software, Marvao Medical Devices, Covidien, Wayfair. Earlier in the day the Mayor will have been the guest of Galway County Council at their meeting also on the NUI Galway campus. ENDS   Cuairt Mhéara Bhostúin ar OÉ Gaillimh Ceangal Taighde & Nuálaíochta ar an gClár Oibre don Chéad Chuairt ar Ghaillimh Ar champas OÉ Gaillimh inniu chuir Uachtarán na hOllscoile, an Dr Jim Browne fáilte roimh Mhéara nua Bhostúin, Martin J. (“Marty”) Walsh ag ócáid ina raibh láithreacht ag ceannairí taighde OÉ Gaillimh, comhghleacaithe ó IDA Éireann mar aon le hionadaithe ardleibhéil ó chliantchuideachtaí IDA agus EI a bhfuil ceangal láidir acu le Bostún agus le Gaillimh. Díreoidh an ócáid seo ar dheiseanna chun an comhoibriú idir Bostún agus Gaillimh a láidriú i gcomhthéacs an gheilleagair dhomhanda eolas-bhunaithe, go háirithe ar cheangal taighde agus nuálaíochta a fhorbairt idir an Ollscoil agus eagraíochtaí i réigiún Bhostúin. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr Jim Browne, faoi thábhacht na cuairte: “Is iomaí ceangal láidir atá idir Gaillimh agus Bostún maidir le cultúr, oideachas agus gnó. Tá an-áthas orm fáilte a chur roimh an Méara Walsh chuig OÉ Gaillimh agus táim ag súil le hoibriú leis chun tógáil ar an oidhreacht roinnte atá idir an dá réigiún chun ceangal taighde agus acadúil níos láidre agus níos dinimiciúla a chruthú idir Bostún agus Gaillimh.” Toghadh an tUasal Marty J. Walsh ina Mhéara ar Bhostún i mí na Samhna 2013, agus is í seo an chéad chuairt oifigiúil aige ar áit dúchais a thuismitheoirí a chuaigh ar imirce go Meiriceá. I gcaitheamh na tréimhse deich lá a bheidh sé anseo freastalóidh an Méara ar chruinnithe le hionadaithe rialtais, gnó agus tionscail ar fud na tíre. Ba de bhunú Chonamara i gContae na Gaillimhe iad tuismitheoirí Marty, agus d'fhág siad Éire sna 1950idí le dul go Bostún. Chas John agus Mary Walsh ar a chéile i halla damhsa agus phós siad i bParóiste St. Margaret, Dorchester, áit ar rugadh agus ar tógadh Marty agus a dheartháir Johnny. Tá a mháthair Mary fós ina cónaí ann. Dúirt Catherina Blewitt, Bainisteoir Réigiúnach an Iarthair leis an IDA: “Thar ceann IDA Éireann tá fíoráthas orm fáilte a chur roimh an Méara Walsh go Gaillimh agus é a chur in aithne do chliantchuideachtaí de chuid IDA Éireann agus do chuideachtaí na tíre seo a bhfuil ceangal láidir acu le Bostún. Bhí gníomhaíocht shuntasach sa dá threo idir Mórcheantar Bhostúin agus Gaillimh agus táimid ag súil le hoibriú leis an Méara Walsh chun an ceangal atá againn cheana a neartú, chun naisc nua a chruthú agus chun breis infheistíochta a spreagadh amach anseo a rachaidh chun tairbhe don dá cheantar.” I láthair ag an gcruinniú a bhí ar siúl in OÉ Gaillimh bhí ionadaithe sinsearacha ón Ollscoil, ó IDA Éireann chomh maith le hionadaithe ó Bhrainse an Iarthair de Chumann Lucht Tráchtála Mheiriceá agus cuideachtaí cosúil le Boston Scientific, Fidelity, SmartBear Software, Aspect Software, Marvao Medical Devices, Covidien, Wayfair. Níos túisce sa lá d'fhreastail an Méara ar chruinniú de chuid Chomhairle Contae na Gaillimhe a bhí ar siúl ar champas OÉ Gaillimh chomh maith. CRÍOCH

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Over 30 alumni who graduated from the very first Masters of Business Administration (MBA) and the Masters of Industrial Engineering (MIE) at NUI Galway recently celebrated a 40 year reunion in Galway. The occasion enabled the former classmates to reconnect and reflect on their journeys since completing the MBA in what was then UCG. “It is testament to the vision and foresight of the team at NUI Galway in the early 1970s to lead the way in management development by introducing the first MBA outside of Dublin. Over 40 years later, there are over 530 MBA alumni, with many achieving significant career success nationally and internationally. The programme recently attained AMBA accreditation which is the global mark of excellence for MBA education and places NUI Galway’s programme in the top tier of MBA programmes worldwide,” said Dr Alma McCarthy, Executive MBA Director. Helen Ryan, former CEO of Creganna Tactx, was the keynote speaker at the event and Helen recounted the success story behind the global medical device company based in Parkmore in Galway. A clear strategy and vision, sound financial management, recruiting and investing in the right people, and being brave and ambitious in business planning are the key success factors identified by Helen learned from her time with Creganna, which saw it grow from having less than 100 staff when she joined to being a global business today with over 1200 employees. The alumni group was also addressed by the inaugural NUI Galway MBA Director, Professor Jim Doolan, a Harvard MBA graduate himself, who reflected on the need for management education in the western region of Ireland in the 1970s and how NUI Galway was one of the first in Europe to offer the MBA programme at that time. The 1974-1976 MBA drew students from across the country and had a significant impact on management education in the region at the time and one which continues today. Commenting on the changing landscape of management education and the MBA in particular, Dr Emer Mulligan, Head of the School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway, said: “MBA programmes have proliferated across the world since NUI Galway introduced the MBA in 1972. Obviously much has changed in terms of the curriculum since then and yet some key management principles are still as relevant today as they were 40 years ago. One of the biggest differences now is the diversity of typical MBA class groups where there is greater gender, age and international diversity and a much greater focus on globalisation in the curriculum compared to 40 years ago.” ENDS

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Dr Michel Dugon, from NUI Galway’s discipline of Zoology, and his creepy-crawly friends will tour schools around Ireland to teach kids about bugs, biodiversity and ecology. Dr Dugon is also the presenter of Bug Hunters, an educational TV series in 30 episodes currently airing on RTÉ2 and RTÉJr. In each episode, Michel and three young naturalists explore parts of the Irish wilderness to unearth some of the most fascinating, colourful and strange-looking creepy-crawlies. A specialist of venomous and poisonous animals, Dr Dugon is also a fervent advocate of Irish wildlife: Dr Dugon said: “Ireland is home to over 12,000 species of bugs, including 400 species of spiders, 100 species of bees and over 2,000 species of beetles. Contrary to common belief, Irish ecosystems are very rich and divers and very accessible as well.” Bug Hunters features some of the most prominent and species-rich ecosystems in Ireland, from the mountains of Wicklow to the streams of Connemara and the rock formations of the Burren. To promote knowledge about local ecosystems, Dr Dugon has created Eco EXPLORERS, an NUI Galway-backed science outreach initiative. Last year alone, he visited 44 schools in six counties and over 7,000 pupils followed his workshops and holiday camps on ecology and biodiversity. Dr Dugon also uses live exotic animals in his workshops and said: “Exotic bugs are fantastic models to teach kids about important concepts like biodiversity, ecology, and evolution. People don’t forget their first encounter with a tarantula or a giant millipede. It is also an excellent occasion to re-establish the truth about misunderstood critters.” The second season of Bug Hunters is being aired simultaneously on RTÉ2 and RTÉJr. Episodes are available online on the RTÉ player at http://www.rte.ie/player/ie/show/10324438/. For more information on Bug Hunters contact Dr Dugon at Michel.dugon@nuigalway.ie or visit the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/thebughunters. -Ends-

Thursday, 25 September 2014

There is a formula for happiness after all. The equation has been described by Professor Ray Dolan, Professor of Neuropsychiatry and Director of the Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging at University College London. Professor Dolan presented some of his latest research findings on Tuesday, 23 September, at NUI Galway in a lecture jointly hosted by the University’s School of Psychology, the Discipline of Psychiatry, and the Galway Neuroscience Centre. In a talk entitled ‘Value Encoding in the Human Brain’, Professor Dolan explained how he and his team of researchers believe that happiness is governed primarily by expectation and surprise, work which they have published recently in the prestigious international journal The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Professor Dolan and his team used a combination of behavioral neuroscience, computational modeling and neuroimaging approaches to study emotional reactivity in the form of momentary happiness in response to reward. He also presented results from other work that may help to explain why some people have a propensity to gamble and take risks, while others avoid risk. He explained how the chemical transmitter dopamine in the brain is likely to play a key role in determining whether and how someone will gamble. Furthermore, dopamine’s actions in the brain also appear to play a critical role in learning. Professor Dolan demonstrated how a decline in dopamine levels with ageing can result in impaired learning. In turn, drugs that elevate levels of dopamine in the brain can act as cognitive enhancers. Professor Dolan, who is a native of Monivea in Galway and a graduate of NUI Galway (known then as University College Galway), is a clinician scientist with a primary interest in the neurobiology of emotion and how emotion impacts on cognition, including decision making.  He has published over 500 peer reviewed papers in scientific journals and is consistently ranked among the top five most cited neuroscientists in the world in the field of neuroscience and behaviour. He has received numerous awards including the Alexander Von Humboldt Research Award (2004), the Golden Brain Award from the Minerva Foundation (2006), the International Max Planck Research Award (2007). In 2011 he was made a Visiting Einstein Fellow to the Humboldt University, Berlin. He was elected Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences (FMedSci) in 2000 and Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 2010. Recently, he received an NUI Galway Alumni Award. NUI Galway’s Professor David Finn, Leader of the Galway Neuroscience Centre, said, “We were honored to welcome Professor Dolan back to NUI Galway to talk to us about his very exciting recent research findings. Neuroscience research and teaching is currently very vibrant at NUI Galway and we aim to train the next generation of leaders in brain research.” -ends-

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

The Insight Centre for Data Analytics is delighted to announce the appointment of Oliver Daniels as CEO. Oliver Daniels will lead the €75 million SFI Research Centre as it firmly positions Ireland at the heart of global data analytics research. He joins Insight from Avaya, where he has served as R&D Leader of Research & Development for Contact Center Applications at Avaya for the last five years. Oliver Daniels was responsible for leading the software engineering teams as they developed innovative applications for both cloud and on premise solutions. At Avaya, he has leveraged his 27 years of enterprise software experience with Avaya, and Nortel, to create industry-leading contact centre solutions and drive innovation in customer experience technology. Prior to Avaya, Oliver Daniels served as R&D Leader for Nortel, and has also served as CEO of Accendo Technologies, an Irish start-up. Oliver has held a wide variety of senior roles in technology and management, serving Nortel, ADC, and Saville Systems, based in Ireland, the UK, and France. Oliver Daniels is credited as a co-inventor in several contact centre patent applications, he holds a B. Comm from NUI Galway. Insight is a joint initiative between researchers at DCU, NUI Galway, UCC and UCD, and other partner institutions. Established in July 2013, it has brought together a critical mass of more than 200 researchers to develop a new generation of data analytics technologies in a number of key application areas. Data analytics – the study of ‘Big Data’ - is a global challenge that involves turning vast quantities of ubiquitous raw data into knowledge that will inform people and improve society, business, and health. The sector is growing by an estimated 30% annually and Insight is playing a key role in developing the research strengths and specialised skills needed for Ireland to remain globally competitive. Through dynamic partnerships with some 30 industry partners, the multi-location research centre aims to leverage further investment from Europe, help create high value jobs in Ireland, and deliver economic and societal impact. Speaking about the appointment, John Tracey, Chairman of the Insight Governance Board, said: “We are delighted with the appointment of Oliver Daniels as Insight’s new CEO. As the largest publicly funded research project in Ireland, Insight’s success critically depends on further deepening the close co-operation between industry and the universities. Oliver’s extensive industry and R&D experience, at the highest level, will allow Insight to achieve further success.”   John Tracey also thanked Professor Barry Smyth who has held the role of CEO since Insight’s inception: “Barry led the university groups that successfully established Insight and has led the centre since it commenced in mid-2013. I want to thank him sincerely for the major contribution he has made to Insight to date and will continue to make in the future.” Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Irish Government said: “SFI-funded research centres, like Insight, were established to further Ireland’s competitive advantage in specific research areas. As big data continues to grow exponentially, there is a real opportunity for Ireland to compete and win. Under the stewardship of a leader of Oliver’s calibre, I have no doubt that Insight will be positioned to capitalise on this growth, deliver cutting-edge research and develop opportunities for industry collaboration and commercialisation. I also want to thank Professor Barry Smyth who led the Insight bid, established the Insight Centre and contributed significantly to its scientific and commercial success to date. I am confident that Barry and his colleagues in Insight will continue to research, innovate and keep Ireland to the fore in the rapidly growing field of big data analytics.” Oliver Daniels takes up the role from 21 October, 2014, and will be based at Insight NUI Galway. -ends- Oliver Daniels Ceaptha ina Phríomhfheidhmeannach ar Ionad Anailísíochta Sonraí Insight Tá an-áthas ar Ionad Anailísíochta Sonraí Insight a fhógairt go bhfuil Oliver Daniels ceaptha ina Phríomhfheidhmeannach ar an ionad. Beidh Oliver Daniels i gceannas ar an Ionad Taighde de chuid Fhondúireacht Eolaíochta na hÉireann ar fiú €75 milliún é agus é mar aidhm aige Éire a dhaingniú mar chroílár domhanda an taighde anailísíochta sonraí. Sular ceapadh sa phost seo in Insight é bhí sé ag obair in Avaya le cúig bliana anuas mar Cheannaire Taighde agus Forbartha d'Fheidhmchláir Ionaid Teagmhála. Bhí Oliver Daniels freagrach as na foirne innealtóireachta bogearraí a stiúradh agus iad i mbun feidhmchláir nuálacha a fhorbairt do réitigh néil agus ar an láthair araon. In Avaya, d'úsáid sé an taithí i mbogearraí fiontraíochta a fuair sé thar 27 bliain le Avaya, agus le Nortel, chun réitigh ionaid teagmhála ar thús cadhnaíochta a chruthú agus chun nuálaíocht a chur chun cinn i dteicneolaíocht eispéiris an chustaiméara. Sula ndeachaigh sé ag obair in Avaya, d'oibrigh Oliver Daniels mar Cheannaire Taighde agus Forbartha le Nortel, agus bhí sé freisin ina Phríomhfheidhmeannach ar Accendo Technologies, gnólacht nuathionscanta Éireannach. Is iomaí ról sinsearach sa teicneolaíocht agus sa bhainistíocht a bhí ag Oliver, agus é ag obair in Nortel, ADC, agus Saville Systems, bunaithe in Éirinn, sa Ríocht Aontaithe agus sa Fhrainc. Is comhchumadóir é Oliver Daniels i roinnt feidhmchlár paitinne ionaid teagmhála, agus tá B. Comm aige ó OÉ Gaillimh. Is comhthionscnamh é Insight idir taighdeoirí in DCU, OÉ Gaillimh, UCC agus UCD, agus institiúidí comhpháirtíochta eile. Bunaíodh é i mí Iúil 2013, agus tá tairseach chriticiúil de bhreis is 200 taighdeoir tugtha le chéile aige chun glúin nua teicneolaíochtaí anailísíochta sonraí a fhorbairt i roinnt príomhréimsí feidhmchláir. Is dúshlán domhanda é anailísíocht sonraí - staidéar ar ‘Olltiomsú Sonraí’- a bhaineann le méideanna ollmhóra sonraí loma uileláithreach a athrú go heolas a rachaidh i bhfeidhm ar dhaoine agus a fheabhsóidh cúrsaí sochaí, gnó agus sláinte.  Tá fás 30% ag teacht go bliantúil ar an earnáil agus tá ról lárnach ag Insight i bhforbairt na láidreachtaí taighde agus na sainscileanna a theastaíonn chun go bhfanfaidh Éire iomaíoch ar bhonn domhanda. Trí chomhpháirtíochtaí dinimiciúla le 30 comhpháirtí tionscail, tá sé d'aidhm leis an ionad taighde ilsuímh tuilleadh infheistíochta a fháil ón Eoraip, poist ardluacha a chruthú in ‏Éirinn, agus tionchar geilleagrach agus sochaí a chur i bhfeidhm. Ag labhairt dó faoin gceapachán, dúirt John Tracey, Cathaoirleach Bhord Rialachais Insight: “Táimid thar a bheith sásta le ceapachán Oliver Daniels mar Phríomhfheidhmeannach nua Insight. Tá Insight ar an tionscadal taighde is mó a fhaigheann maoiniú poiblí in Éirinn, agus tá a rath ag brath go géar ar níos mó forbairt a dhéanamh ar an dlúth-chomhoibriú idir an tionscal agus na hollscoileanna.  Tabharfaidh taithí fhairsing Oliver ar an tionscal agus ar thaighde agus ar fhorbairt deis do Insight níos mó rath a bhaint amach.”   Ghlac John Tracey buíochas chomh maith leis an Ollamh Barry Smyth a bhí ina Phríomhfheidhmeannach ar Insight ó bunaíodh é: “Threoraigh Barry na grúpaí ollscoile a bhunaigh Insight agus bhí sé i mbun an t-ionad a stiúradh ó lár 2013.  Ba mhaith liom buíochas ó chroí a ghlacadh leis as an obair mhór atá déanta aige le Insight go dtí seo agus as an obair a dhéanfaidh sé leis amach anseo.” Dúirt an tOllamh Mark Ferguson, Ard-Stiúrthóir Fhondúireacht Eolaíochta Éireann agus Príomhchomhairleoir Eolaíochta don Rialtas: “Bunaíodh ionaid taighde maoinithe ag SFI, cosúil le Insight, chun cur le buntáiste iomaíoch na hÉireann i réimsí taighde ar leith. De réir mar atá fás as cuimse ag teacht ar olltiomsú sonraí, tá an-deis ag Éirinn a bheith san iomaíocht agus an ceann is fearr a fháil. Faoi cheannas duine de mhianach Oliver, níl aon amhras orm ach go mbeidh deis ag Insight teacht i dtír ar an bhfás seo, taighde ceannródaíoch a chur ar fáil agus deiseanna a fhorbairt do chomhoibriú agus do thráchtálú tionscail. Ba mhaith liom chomh maith buíochas a ghlacadh leis an Ollamh Barry Smyth a bhí ina cheann feadhna ar thairiscint Insight, a bhunaigh Ionad Insight agus a chuir go mór lena rath eolaíoch agus tráchtála go dtí seo. Tá mé muiníneach go leanfaidh Barry agus a chomhghleacaithe in Insight ar aghaidh i mbun taighde, nuála agus go gcoinneoidh siad Éire chun tosaigh i réimse na hanailísíochta olltiomsaithe sonraí, réimse atá ag fás go tréan.” Cuirfidh Oliver Daniels tús lena phost an 21 Deireadh Fómhair 2014, agus beidh sé lonnaithe in Insight OÉ Gaillimh. -críoch-

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Dilip Thomas, a final year PhD student with the Network of Excellence for Functional Biomaterials (NFB) at the National University of Ireland Galway, has been awarded the best poster prize at the prestigious Gordon Research Conference. The conference titled ‘Signal Transduction in Engineered Extracellular Matrices’ was held 6-11 July in Waltham, Massachusetts, USA. Thomas received a competitive travel bursary to present his work at the conference. The bursary was awarded by the British Society of Matrix Biology (BSMB) and is given to researchers at an early stage of their career. The award supports members of the society who have been accepted as a presenting author at an international meeting with a matrix biology theme. Dilip’s research work is a collaborative project between the NFB and the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at the National University of Ireland Galway. The project is funded by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) under the supervision of Professor Abhay Pandit (NFB) and Professor Timothy O’Brien (REMEDI). The project involves novel methods of treating hind limb ischemia which occurs when the blood supply is lost to a limb. Delayed treatment of the condition leads to morbidity, amputation and even death, with around 50,000 cases in the US annually. Dilip’s work entails promoting new blood vessel growth to the limb using cell transplantation and biomaterials. Dilip received his Bachelor of Science degree in Biotechnology from the University of Mumbai, India. He went on to receive a Master of Engineering degree in Biochemical Engineering from University College London (UCL) in the UK. Prior to his academic achievements, he worked at Sharon Biomedicine Ltd, India as a Research and Development assistant in the Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) manufacturing and testing division. Professor Pandit commented on the award: “The scientific sessions of this conference are extremely contextual, informative and will help Dilip to interact with leading international experts working in the field of regenerative medicine.” -ends-

Thursday, 7 August 2014

The College of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway has announced details of a special entrance maths examination to give students a second chance to pursue a career in engineering. The exam, which takes place on Wednesday, 20 August, is for students who achieve the CAO points for an undergraduate engineering degree course at NUI Galway but who have not met the obligatory maths requirement. This year, NUI Galway will hold an intensive preparatory course for applicants intending to sit the exam. This free course will run from 14-19 August. For more than 20 years NUI Galway has provided this special entrance exam to help applicants who did not achieve the required grade C3 or better in higher level mathematics. Those who took lower level maths in the Leaving Cert may also apply for the exam. Students who pass this examination will be deemed to have satisfied the maths requirement and, providing they have the necessary points, will receive an additional CAO offer at Round Two. From 14-19 August, in addition to preparing students for the special entrance examination, lecturers will demonstrate the relevance and application of mathematics to engineering. The aim of the preparatory course is to bridge the gap between the Leaving Certificate lower level and that required to be successful in the entrance exam. This will be achieved by tackling a variety of problems of increasing difficulty. Learning how to approach a problem and apply the knowledge available will be emphasised. “The nature of engineering programmes is that they are focused on the development of analytical and problem solving skills, and thus require significant use of mathematics and applied mathematics,” said Professor Gerry Lyons, Dean of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway. “Every year we see a number of promising students who perform poorly on the day of the Leaving Cert exam. Our Special Entrance Maths Examination provides these students with a second opportunity to demonstrate that they have reached the necessary standard in maths. Over the years, we have had some exceptionally talented students graduate and pursue successful careers in engineering because they were given the second chance which this exam represents.” “Demand for engineering programmes at NUI Galway continues to rise year on year and the College of Engineering has expanded its degree programmes to meet requirements. NUI Galway realises its role in providing world-class graduates to meet the needs of industry and the economy”, continued Professor Lyons. NUI Galway offers students an undenominated entry to engineering. This course is specifically designed for students who are interested in becoming an engineer, but uncertain as to which field they want to specialise in. This course offers students the option of studying engineering in a general way for one year before going on to specialise in their chosen field in year two. To apply for the special maths exam please visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/engineering-informatics/prospectivestudents/specialentrancemathsexamination/. Those interested in the revision maths course and the examination should call 091 492 101 or visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/engineering-informatics/prospectivestudents/specialentrancemathspreparatorycourse/ for further details. -Ends- Seans Eile á thabhairt ag OÉ Gaillimh do Mhic Léinn na hArdteistiméireachta trí Scrúdú Speisialta Matamaitice a Reáchtáil Tá Coláiste na hInnealtóireachta agus na hIonformaitice in OÉ Gaillimh i ndiaidh sonraí a chur ar fáil faoi scrúdú speisialta iontrála matamaitice, scrúdú a thugann seans eile do mhic léinn tabhairt faoi ghairm na hinnealtóireachta. Beidh an scrúdú ar siúl Dé Céadaoin, an 20 Lúnasa, agus tá sé dírithe ar mhic léinn a bhaineann na pointí cuí don CAO amach chun cúrsa céime san innealtóireacht a dhéanamh in OÉ Gaillimh ach nach bhfuil an marc riachtanach acu sa mhatamaitic. I mbliana, beidh dianchúrsa ullmhúcháin ar siúl in OÉ Gaillimh roimh ré dóibh siúd ar mian leo an scrúdú a dhéanamh. Beidh an cúrsa saor in aisce seo ar siúl ón 14-19 Lúnasa. Le breis agus scór bliain anuas, tá an scrúdú speisialta iontrála seo á reáchtáil ag OÉ Gaillimh chun cabhrú le hiarratasóirí nár éirigh leo an grád riachtanach C3 nó os a chionn a bhaint amach sa pháipéar matamaitice ardleibhéil. Féadfaidh daoine nach ndearna ardleibhéal matamaitice san Ardteistiméireacht cur isteach ar an scrúdú chomh maith. Má fhaigheann mac léinn pas sa scrúdú seo beidh an riachtanas matamaitice sásaithe aige/aici agus gheobhaidh sé/sí tairiscint eile ón CAO i mBabhta 2, chomh fada is go bhfuil na pointí riachtanacha aige/aici. Ní hamháin go n-ullmhófar daltaí don scrúdú speisialta iontrála, ach léireoidh léachtóirí an tábhacht a bhaineann leis an matamaitic san innealtóireacht agus an úsáid is féidir a bhaint aisti. Is é an aidhm atá leis an gcúrsa ullmhúcháin seo cur lena mbíonn foghlamtha ag daltaí ag an ngnáthleibhéal san Ardteistiméireacht, le go n-éireoidh leo sa scrúdú iontrála matamaitice. Cuirfear é seo i gcrích trí dhul i ngleic le fadhbanna éagsúla ag leibhéil éagsúla deacrachta. Cuirfear béim ar conas tabhairt faoi fhadhb agus an t-eolas atá ar fáil a chur i bhfeidhm. “Is é mianach na gclár innealtóireachta go bhfuil siad dírithe ar fhorbairt a dhéanamh ar scileanna anailíseacha agus ar  scileanna chun fadhbanna a réiteach, agus dá bhrí sin caithfear úsáid shuntasach a bhaint as matamaitic agus as matamaitic fheidhmeach,” a deir an tOllamh Gerry Lyons, Déan na hInnealtóireachta agus na hIonformaitice in OÉ Gaillimh. “Gach bliain feicimid daltaí cumasacha nach ndéanann chomh maith agus a d’fhéadfaidís ar lá an scrúdaithe Ardteiste. Tugann an Scrúdú Speisialta Iontrála Matamaitice deis eile do na daltaí seo léiriú go bhfuil an caighdeán riachtanach sa mhatamaitic bainte amach acu. Thar na blianta, d’éirigh le roinnt mac léinn a raibh cumas eisceachtúil iontu, céim a bhaint amach agus dul sa tóir ar shlí bheatha dóibh féin san innealtóireacht mar go bhfuair siad an dara deis leis an scrúdú speisialta iontrála seo.” “Tá an t-éileamh ar chláir innealtóireachta in OÉ Gaillimh ag dul i méid ó bhliain go bliain agus tá Coláiste na hInnealtóireachta tar éis na cláir chéime a leathnú chun freastal ar na riachtanais seo. Tuigeann OÉ Gaillimh a ról maidir le céimithe den scoth a chur ar fáil chun freastal ar riachtanais an tionscail”, a dúirt an tOllamh Lyons. Tá cúrsa neamhainmnithe san innealtóireacht ar tairiscint do mhic léinn in OÉ Gaillimh. Tá an cúrsa seo dírithe go háirithe ar mhic léinn a bhfuil suim acu a bheith ina n-innealtóirí ach nach bhfuil cinnte cén réimse ar mhaith leo díriú air. Tugann an cúrsa seo deis do mhic léinn staidéar ginearálta a dhéanamh ar an innealtóireacht ar feadh bliana sula roghnaíonn siad a réimse speisialtóireachta i mbliain a dó. Chun iarratas a dhéanamh ar an scrúdú speisialta matamaitice téigh chuig: http://www.nuigalway.ie/engineering-informatics/prospectivestudents/specialentrancemathsexamination/. Ba chóir dóibh siúd ar spéis leo an cúrsa ullmhúcháin matamaitice agus an scrúdú glao a chur ar 091 091 492 101 nó féachaint ar http://www.nuigalway.ie/engineering-informatics/prospectivestudents/specialentrancemathspreparatorycourse/ chun eolas breise a fháil. -Críoch-

Monday, 11 August 2014

Researchers at the National University of Ireland Galway have identified an enzyme that has a key role in the spread and survival of blood cancer cells. The discovery, which focussed on the cancer multiple myeloma, has just been published by the internationally acclaimed journal, Blood. Multiple myeloma is a cancer of the blood which results from an overproduction of plasma cells, the white blood cells that produce antibodies. It leads to problems such as anaemia, bone damage, kidney failure and elevated calcium levels. There are about 240 new cases of multiple myeloma diagnosed each year in Ireland. The research team was led by Health Research Board (HRB) Clinician Scientist, Professor Michael O’Dwyer and Professor Lokesh Joshi of the University’s Glycoscience Group, which is supported by Science Foundation Ireland. The group studies the complex sugars which cover all cells in the human body, and many of the proteins in the bloodstream. Dr Siobhan Glavey, a medical doctor funded by the HRB, also had a key role lead in the study and was lead author on the paper. HRB Clinician Scientist, Michael O Dwyer, Professor of Haematology at the National University of Ireland Galway says; “While treatments for multiple myeloma have improved over the last decade, and most patients are living longer, there is no cure. Our research is crucial because it sheds new light on the biology of multiple myeloma which could lead to new strategies to overcome resistance to treatment.” “Working in close cooperation with Dr Irene Ghobrial from the Dana Farber Cancer Institute at Harvard in the US and colleagues from the Institute of Cancer Research in the UK, we focused on alterations in a process called glycosylation, a process whereby proteins and lipids are modified by specific sugars, because of its role in cell-cell interactions and the spread of cancer cells in the blood.” “In essence, we have linked the overproduction of a specific enzyme called sialyltransferase to disease progression and worse outcomes in multiple myeloma. The increase in this enzyme activity causes a series of knock on effects; increasing glycosylation, which in turn increases the interaction of the cancer cells with receptors on the walls of blood vessels called selectins which then encourages their circulation, spread and retention in the bone marrow.” “Our aim now is to prevent these interactions that cause the spread using specific enzyme and selectin inhibitors”. Dr Graham Love, CEO of the HRB, commented on the importance of the research: “Understanding what causes multiple myeloma to progress, or generate worse outcomes, is the first step towards improving treatment. This discovery reinforces the transformational role our Clinician Scientists have in bringing real clinical questions to a research environment and delivering results back to the bedside.” -ends-

Monday, 11 August 2014

NUI Galway launches online service to compliment telephone hotline for incoming students NUI Galway will launch a dedicated Online Question and Answer service to compliment the first year student telephone hotline on Wednesday, 14 August. This online initiative will facilitate students and their parents with the option to ask questions on a dedicated forum, while the hotline service team will be available to answer caller queries. With NUI Galway anticipating an intake of over 3,000 new students in September, a team of specially-trained team of staff and students will be on hand to answer any questions students and parents may have. The hotline will be available from Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm, and on Saturday 16 and 23 August, 10am to 1pm. The availability of these services coincides with the period of frantic activity and decision making that immediately follows the release of the Leaving Certificate results.  Both the hotline and the online service will be active throughout first year orientation week commencing on September 1, and both will remain in service for two weeks after lectures begin on September 8, providing students with two options to direct any conceivable query they encounter as they embark on their journey to NUI Galway.  The team will provide an efficient, responsive service and are expected to deal with numerous issues that are of concern to incoming first year students. Anticipated queries include: points requirements for courses; first round offers; registering as a student of the University; start dates; fees and accommodation options.  A designated website for first years will also update on a daily basis detailing the information sought and fed through the hotline. It will be a portal of specific information aimed at demystifying the first few weeks of university life.  Stephen O’Dea, Admissions Officer at NUI Galway, says: “The next few weeks is a very exciting time for all Leaving Certificate students as the culmination of years’ of hard work come to fruition. The next step for many is the transition into third-level education which is a significant milestone, not only for the students themselves, but also for their families, and we at NUI Galway understand the impact of this change, especially for those entering into university for the first time. In order to help those who are deciding to embark upon a university degree programme, we will provide support, information and guidance through our First-Year Student Hotline, to answer any questions that individuals might have about any aspect of university life. We invite all students, parents and advisors to avail of this service to make the passage to NUI Galway as smooth as possible.” Students, parents and advisers can contact the First Year Student Hotline at 091 493999, ask a question Online at http://www.nuigalway.ie/askus or visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/new-students/ -Ends- Seirbhís nua Ceisteanna & Freagraí ar líne ar fáil do Mhic Léinn Nua OÉ Gaillimh Seolann OÉ Gaillimh Seirbhís Ar Líne mar thaca leis an mBeolíne do Mhic Léinn na Chéad Bhliana Seolfaidh OÉ Gaillimh seirbhís Ceisteanna agus Freagraí ar líne chun cuidiú leis an mBeolíne do Mhic Léinn na Chéad Bhliana Dé Céadaoin, an 14 Lúnasa. Cuideoidh an togra ar líne seo le mic léinn agus lena dtuismitheoirí trí cheisteanna a fhreagairt ar fhóram ar leith, agus beidh foireann na beolíne ar fáil le glaonna a fhreagairt. Beidh os cionn 3,000 mac léinn nua ag tosú in OÉ Gaillimh i Meán Fómhair agus beidh foireann oilte comhaltaí foirne agus mac léinn ar fáil le ceist ar bith a d'fhéadfadh a bheith ag na mic léinn ná ag a gcuid tuismitheoirí a fhreagairt. Beidh an bheolíne ar fáil ó Luan go hAoine, ó 9am go 6pm, agus Dé Sathairn, an 16 agus an 23 Lúnasa, ó 10am go 1pm. Beidh na seirbhísí seo ar fáil sa tréimhse chorraitheach sin ina mbíonn ar dhaltaí cinneadh a dhéanamh i ndiaidh dóibh torthaí na hArdteistiméireachta a fháil.  Beidh an bheolíne agus an tseirbhís ar líne ar oscailt i rith thréimhse na seisiún eolais do mhic léinn na chéad bhliana, ag tosú an 1 Meán Fómhair, agus beidh siad ag feidhmiú ar feadh coicíse i ndiaidh an dáta a gcuirfear tús leis na léachtaí, an 8 Meán Fómhair. Beifear in ann a rá le mic léinn gur cheart dóibh glao a chur ar an mbeolíne nó úsáid a bhaint as an tseirbhís ar líne má bhíonn ceist ar bith acu agus iad ag tabhairt faoina saol in OÉ Gaillimh.  Cuirfidh an fhoireann seirbhís éifeachtach ar fáil dóibh sin a éilíonn í agus meastar go mbeifear ag plé le hábhair go leor a bhíonn ag déanamh imní do mhic léinn na chéad bhliana. Meastar go mbeidh ceisteanna á gcur faoi na hábhair seo a leanas, i measc ábhair eile: na pointí atá riachtanach do chúrsaí ar leith; tairiscintí sa chéad bhabhta; clárú mar mhac léinn san Ollscoil; dátaí tosaithe; táillí agus roghanna lóistín.  Tabharfar láithreán gréasáin ar leith atá ann do mhic léinn na chéad bhliana cothrom le dáta gach lá chomh maith. Beidh eolas le fáil ann faoi na ceisteanna a bhí ag na daoine a ghlaoigh ar an mbeolíne nua. Is tairseach eolais ar leith a bheidh sa láithreán gréasáin agus beidh sé de chuspóir aige cuid den cheo a bhaineann leis an gcéad chúpla seachtain ar an ollscoil a scaipeadh.  Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag Stephen O’Dea, Oifigeach Iontrála in OÉ Gaillimh: “Is athrú mór saoil atá i ndán do dhaltaí na hArdteistiméireachta agus luach a gcuid saothair amach rompu anois i ndiaidh na blianta a bheith caite acu ag obair go crua. Is é an chéad choiscéim eile don chuid is mó acu anois an t-athrú ón dara leibhéal go dtí an tríú leibhéal. Is athrú suntasach é seo ní hamháin dóibh féin ach dá dteaghlaigh chomh maith agus tuigimid in OÉ Gaillimh an tionchar a bhíonn aige seo orthu go háirithe orthu siúd atá ag tabhairt aghaidhe ar an ollscoil den chéad uair riamh. Chun cuidiú leo siúd a bheas ag tabhairt faoi chéim ollscoile, cuirtear tacaíocht, eolas agus treoir ar fáil trí Bheolíne do Mhic Léinn na Chéad Bhliana, chun aon cheist faoi aon ghné de shaol na hollscoile a fhreagairt dóibh. Tá fáilte roimh gach mac léinn, tuismitheoirí agus a lucht comhairlithe úsáid a bhaint as an tseirbhís chun cuidiú leis an aistear chuig OÉ Gaillimh.” Féadfaidh mic léinn, tuismitheoirí agus lucht comhairlithe teagmháil a dhéanamh le Beolíne Mhic Léinn na Chéad Bhliana ar 091 493999, ceist a chur ar líne ag http://www.nuigalway.ie/askus nó cuairt a thabhairt ar http://www.nuigalway.ie/new-students/ -Críoch-

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

NUI Galway’s award winning app,the first official third-level app designed for students to calculate Leaving Certificate points, is available for students and parents to download.  The app, iPoints, is a must for all Leaving Certificate students expecting their results on Wednesday, 13 August and is available to download for free through iTunes. Since launching the app last year it has been downloaded over 8,000 times, with an average of 200 downloads every month. NUI Galway, in partnership with former Information Technology student Paul Herron, developed the iPhone app. The app will allow Leaving Certificate students to quickly and easily calculate their points when they receive their exam results. Paul, originally from Letterkenny, Co. Donegal, explained: “This app aims to simplify the point calculation process for students to relieve some of the stress of Leaving Cert’ results day.” CAO points are calculated based on a student’s six highest results in one sitting of the Leaving Certificate. Students using the app will simply enter their results for each subject, indicating whether it is higher or ordinary level. The app calculates the number of points attained in each subject, and indicates the total. The app calculates 25 additional points to be added for Higher Maths if relevant, and allows for Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme (LCVP) scores to be included. The app also gives students the option to share their results by text message, or through social media channels, such as Facebook and Twitter, if they wish. Commenting on the app, Stephen O’Dea, Admissions Officer at NUI Galway said: “Technology is continually shaping the way we live and manage our lives and the iPoints points calculator is another useful tool in our increasingly busy lives, and as every Leaving Cert’ student knows, results day is very hectic indeed. As NUI Galway has a well established reputation in software development, the app’s benefits to all Leaving Cert’ students, is a compelling indicator of what can be achieved in third level education.” The iPoints app won two major online marketing awards since launching last year, one at the prestigious Digital Media Awards, in the hotly contested ‘Best Use of Mobile’ category and one at the Appy Awards. NUI Galway is the only third-level institution to offer a points calculator app to students. The NUI Galway iPoints app is available for all iPhone users on the iTunes store now www.tinyurl.com/NUIGalwayApp  -Ends-

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

The Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway has welcomed the appointment of its Honorary Chairman, Professor William Schabas, to a new UN Commission of Inquiry.  The independent Commission of Inquiry will investigate purported violations of international humanitarian and human rights laws in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and particularly in the Gaza Strip since the conflict began on 13 June. Professor Schabas will head up the three-person commission, details of which were announced last night (11 August). The Canadian is renowned for his work on international criminal and human rights law, and was Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway from 2000 to 2009 prior to the appointment of Professor Michael O’Flaherty to the post. He served on the Sierra Leone Truth and Reconciliation Commission until 2004, and was also a member of the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Technical Cooperation in Human Rights. The Commission aims to establish the facts and circumstances of violations and crimes perpetrated and to identify those responsible. It will also make recommendations, in particular on accountability measures, all with a view to avoiding and ending impunity and ensuring that those responsible are held accountable, and on ways to protect civilians against any further assaults. Commenting on the appointment, Professor Ray Murphy of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway, who recently returned from the region, said: “I cannot think of a more qualified person to lead this Inquiry. The Inquiry will play a vital role in establishing the facts and identifying those responsible for violations of international humanitarian law and human rights. This is a most important step in ensuring all those responsible for violations are held accountable.” -ends-

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Too little and too much are both harmful, researchers find Results from the largest study of its kind ever conducted -- involving 18 countries and more than 100,000 people -- indicate that the current recommended maximum sodium intake for the population is actually too low and may even be unsafe. However, high sodium is also harmful, so an ‘optimal’ range is the best target. Two reports from a global collaborative study involving hundreds of investigators from 18 countries, published today in the New England Journal of Medicine, are shaking up conventional wisdom around salt consumption. NUI Galway’s Professor Martin O’Donnell played a lead role in the study, and is first author on one of the reports. The Prospective Urban and Rural Epidemiological (PURE) study, led by investigators from the Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences, followed more than 100,000 people for nearly four years. The study assessed sodium and potassium intake and related them to blood pressure as well as to deaths, heart disease and strokes. The salt debate Professor Martin O’Donnell, formerly of McMaster University, is now Professor of Translational Medicine at NUI Galway and Associate Director of the HRB Clinical Research Facility Galway. An expert in cardiovascular health, he explained the debate around salt intake: “A much debated question is how low should we go with our salt intake? Most of the current guidelines recommend very low salt intake, which the vast majority of people don’t achieve.” While too much salt has long been recognised as a serious health risk, the researchers have also found that there may be a risk from eating too little. In fact, Professor O’Donnell suggests that what is now generally recommended as a healthy daily ceiling for salt consumption appears to be set too low. “Low sodium intake does reduce blood pressure modestly, compared to moderate (or average) intake, but low sodium intake also has other effects, including elevations of certain hormones that are associated with an increase in risk of death and cardiovascular diseases. The key question is whether these competing physiologic effects result in net clinical benefit or not,” O’Donnell said. Current intake of sodium is typically between 3.5 and 4 grams per day and some guidelines have recommended that the entire population lower its sodium intake to below 2.3 grams per day, a level that fewer than 5 per cent of people now consume. Professor O’Donnell continued: “In the PURE study, we found the lowest risk of death and cardiovascular events in those who consumed moderate amounts of sodium intake (3 to 6 grams per day), with an increased risk above and below that range. While this finding has been reported in previous smaller studies, PURE is the largest international study to study sodium intake and health outcomes, and adds considerable strength to the contention that moderate sodium intake is optimal.” However, he also emphasised: “Our findings do not mean that people should become complacent about salt intake, high salt intake is a health risk especially in those with high blood pressure. People should avoid adding salt to their foods, as many foods already contain salt, and should reduce or avoid processed foods that contain high salt. Moderate salt intake is only one part of a healthy diet, other aspects of a balanced diet are important, such as increasing fruit and vegetable intake.” The blood pressure effect The researchers showed that the effects of increasing sodium intake on raising blood pressure – a risk factor for heart attack, heart failure, stroke and other problems – become most apparent as intake rises above 5 grams per day, especially among people who already have high blood pressure, or who are older than 55, or both. “But the blood-pressure effects are more modest at average levels of sodium consumption (3 to 5 grams per day) and not evident at low levels of intake below 3 grams of sodium per day (a level that is higher than the maximum currently recommended by many guidelines), says Andrew Mente, Assistant Professor in the Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics at McMaster University, and lead author of one of the new reports. The study also found an association between increasing potassium intake and lower blood pressure.  “While there has been much focus on reducing salt in the diet, an important and ignored approach to lowering blood pressure is increasing the amount of potassium consumed. A balanced approach is what is likely to have the greatest benefit in lowering blood pressure,” says Mente. “This can be achieved by moderation in salt intake, combined with eating lots of fruits and vegetables.” The studies were funded from more than 50 sources, including the PHRI, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario and Canada and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. “The findings of both studies are robust, globally applicable and collectively question established dogma and recommended policies. This also means that salt reduction should be primarily targeted at those who have high blood pressure and those who consume a lot of salt,” says Salim Yusuf, the Principal Investigator of the global PURE study, senior author of both reports, and Director of the Population Health Research Institute, which designed and coordinated the study. Sweet Spot Taken together, the papers show there is a ‘sweet spot’ for sodium consumption, where too much or too little can be damaging, while a moderate amount between 3 and 6 grams is optimal for the general population The good news is that most people in the world consume an amount in the optimal range, the researchers found. In an accompanying editorial in the NEJM, Professor Suzanne Oparil from the University of Birmingham, Alabama, urged reconsideration of current guidelines and recommended randomized trials comparing clinical outcomes in people who consume usual salt intake to low intake. -ends-

Friday, 15 August 2014

The J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway is delighted to host the 11th Irish Society of New Economists Conference on 4-5 September, 2014. The Irish Society for New Economists was formed to encourage research, information and social links among new economists in Ireland and Europe. The conference will feature more than 74 economists presenting their research from 33 universities and research organisations throughout Ireland, the UK, continental Europe and the United States. Topics covered will range from banking, financial markets, and economic growth to health economics, education, employment, crime and energy and marine economics. Research findings will be of considerable importance to assist in addressing public policy issues such as enhancing future regional growth, inequality, unemployment, energy systems and obesity related policy issues. The conference will be opened by Professor Alan Ahearne, Head of Economics at NUI Galway. “We are delighted to host the 11th Irish Society of New Economists Conference in Galway this year and look forward to hearing about the exciting research results of so many outstanding new economists from all around the world.” Two distinguished keynote speakers of note will include: Professor Ciaran O’Neill of NUI Galway and Professor John FitzGerald from the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI). A unique feature of the conference will be a networking session between some of the sponsors and the presenters. The conference is sponsored by the IDA, National Treasury Management Agency, McNamara Economic Research, SSIS, Hays Recruitment, Teagasc, NUI Galway’s Department of Economics, Whitaker Research Institute, and J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics, Irish Economics Association, Bluebird Care, AbbiVie, Irish Government Economic and Evaluation Service, Allergan, PMCA Economic Consulting. The members of the local organising committee of this year’s conference at the University are Michelle Queally, Aine Roddy, Patricia Carney and Aoife Callan.   ENDS

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

The continuing popularity of NUI Galway was reflected by CAO offers issued today, with the vast majority of courses maintaining or increasing points from 2013. Across all five colleges, points have risen. Medicine, Biomedical Science, Arts (Psychology), Occupational Therapy, Biopharmaceutical Chemistry and Speech and Language Therapy all requiring greater than 500 points for entry with Mathematical Science and Commerce (International) with French in the high 400s. Courses on the rise Prospective students have shown particular interest in Commerce, especially those with an international language, reflecting awareness of the need for language mobility in a global jobs market. Commerce (International) with German and Commerce (International) with Spanish both rose by ten points, to 460 and 470 points respectively. Meanwhile NUI Galway’s new degree programme, Commerce with Irish, opened with 420 points in its first year, while the more traditional Commerce (Accounting) programme also rose 10 points to 470. Business Information Systems increased by 20 points, while Corporate Law and Civil Law also saw significant increases for the second consecutive year. Changes to the HPAT exam have resulted in a reduction in points nationally for entry onto medical programmes. This trend is reflected in a points decrease for medicine to 721, including HPAT*. Nursing remains at 450 points, while Midwifery rose 5 points to 455.  In Arts, the degree programme Arts (Mathematics and Education), which delivers two qualifications in one, rose 40 points to 405. Other Arts degrees enjoying points increases this year include Arts with Irish Studies up 10 points, Arts (Public and Social Policy) up 35 points, and Arts with Latin American Studies up 25 points and the Irish-language degree, Na Dána (Cumarsáid) which rose 60 points to 360. In Engineering, Mechanical Engineering rose 25 points to 425, while Biomedical Engineering rose 15 points to 420, and Civil Engineering rose 15 points to 415. Project and Construction Management also saw in increase in points. Science courses, equally, show increased demand. Recognising NUI Galway’s national and international leadership in biomedical science programmes, Biomedical Science remained the course with the second highest points for the University, at 540. Biopharmaceutical Chemistry increased 5 points to 510 while Biotechnology maintained 465 points. In the field of Science, Physics also rose 20 points to 420. NUI Galway’s Admission Officer, Stephen O’Dea, said: ‘For the second year running, NUI Galway’s courses in Commerce and Law have seen a steady increase in their points indicating a continued growth in interest in these areas. International Commerce programmes remain popular and this year, our new course, Commerce with Gaeilge, has performed particularly well (420 points), offering students a unique pathway into business and teaching. Science courses are also on an upward trend. NUI Galway’s strength and reputation in Biosciences is also reflected with Biomedical Science (540) continuing to perform well and Biopharmaceutical Chemistry increasing to 510 points. Physics also increased by 20 points this year to 420. Engineering courses continue to perform well with NUI Galway’s market focused Biomedical Engineering increasing to 420 points. The BA Connect suite of courses provides an attractive learning experience for students as recognised by an increase in the points for Irish Studies, with Film Studies and Children’s Studies maintaining their points level year on year. Psychology also finished at a high 525 points. Occupational Therapy and Speech & Language Therapy maintain their popularity with students, both courses requiring more than 500 points." He concluded, “Incoming students will be well placed to benefit from NUI Galway’s significant capital investment programme in embracing innovation, entrepreneurship and research.” With NUI Galway anticipating an intake of over 3,200 new students in September, a hotline is in place for students, parents and teachers. The First Year Student Hotline number is 091 493999 or visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/new-students/. A team of specially-trained students will service the hotline Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm, and also on 23 August, 10am to 1pm. -ENDS- An-tóir ar OÉ Gaillimh de réir thairiscintí an CAO Is léir ó thairiscintí an CAO inniu go bhfuil tóir i gcónaí ar OÉ Gaillimh. D’fhan na pointí do go leor cúrsaí mar a chéile nó, go deimhin, d’ardaigh siad ó 2013. Tháinig ardú ar na pointí sna cúig choláiste. Teastaíonn os cionn 500 pointe chun Leigheas, Eolaíocht Bhithleighis, Na Dána (Síceolaíocht), Teiripe Shaothair, Ceimic Bhithchógaisíochta agus Teiripe Urlabhra agus Theanga a dhéanamh agus teastaíonn os cionn 400 go láidir chun Eolaíocht Mhatamaiticiúil agus Tráchtáil (Idirnáisiúnta) a dhéanamh le Fraincis. Pointí ag ardú Tá suim ar leith curtha ag na mic léinn sa Tráchtáil, go háirithe na cúrsaí a bhfuil teanga idirnáisiúnta i gceist leo, rud a léiríonn go dtuigeann siad an riachtanas a bhaineann le teangacha sa mhargadh domhanda. Chuaigh Tráchtáil (Idirnáisiúnta) le Gearmáinis agus Tráchtáil (Idirnáisiúnta) le Spáinnis suas deich bpointe, go 460 agus 470 pointe faoi seach. Tá Tráchtáil le Gaeilge á tairiscint den chéad uair i mbliana agus teastaíonn 420 pointe chun é a dhéanamh agus d’ardaigh an clár traidisiúnta Tráchtála (Cuntasaíocht) 10 bpointe chomh maith go 470. Chuaigh Córais Faisnéise Gnó suas 20 pointe, agus tháinig ardú suntasach ar Dhlí Corparáideach agus ar Dhlí Sibhialta chomh maith don dara bliain as a chéile. Leis na hathruithe ar an scrúdú HPAT tá laghdú tagtha ar líon na bpointí a theastaíonn chun clár leighis a dhéanamh ar fud na tíre. Tá sé seo le sonrú sa laghdú atá tagtha ar na pointí chun leigheas a dhéanamh go 721, HPAT* san áireamh. Tá Altranas fanta ag 450 pointe, agus chuaigh Cnáimhseachas suas 5 phointe go 455.  Sna Dána, d’ardaigh an clár céime sna Dána (Matamaitic agus Oideachas), a chuireann dhá cháilíocht ar fáil in aon chlár amháin, 40 pointe go 405. I measc na gcéimeanna eile sna Dána ar ardaigh na pointí dóibh i mbliana tá na Dána le Léann Éireannach a chuaigh suas 10 bpointe, na Dána (Beartas Poiblí agus Sóisialta) a chuaigh suas 35 pointe, agus na Dána le Staidéar ar Mheiriceá Laidineach a chuaigh suas 25 pointe agus an chéim trí Ghaeilge, na Dána (Cumarsáid) a chuaigh suas 60 pointe go 360. San Innealtóireacht, chuaigh Innealtóireacht Mheicniúil suas 25 pointe go 425, agus chuaigh Innealtóireacht Bhithleighis suas 15 phointe go 420, agus chuaigh Innealtóireacht Shibhialta suas 15 phointe go 415. Tháinig ardú ar na pointí do Bhainistíocht Tionscadail agus Foirgníochta chomh maith. Tá méadú tagtha chomh maith ar an éileamh ar chúrsaí Eolaíochta. Mar aitheantas ar cheannródaíocht OÉ Gaillimh sna cláir Eolaíochta Bithleighis, is é an cúrsa san Eolaíocht Bhithleighis an cúrsa leis na dara pointí is airde san Ollscoil, ag 540 pointe. Chuaigh na pointí in airde 5 phointe do Cheimic Bhithchógaisíochta go 510 agus d’fhan an Bhiteicneolaíocht ag 465 pointe. Maidir leis an Eolaíocht, d’ardaigh na pointí d’Fhisic 20 pointe go 420. Dúirt Oifigeach Iontrála OÉ Gaillimh, Stephen O’Dea: ‘Don dara bliain as a chéile, tá ardú seasta tagtha ar líon na bpointí a theastaíonn do chúrsaí OÉ Gaillimh sa Tráchtáil agus sa Dlí rud a léiríonn go bhfuil tóir i gcónaí ar na réimsí sin. Tá an-tóir ar an Tráchtáil Idirnáisiúnta agus i mbliana, d’éirigh thar barr leis an gcúrsa nua, Tráchtáil leGaeilge (420 pointe), clár a thabharfaidh deis ar leith do mhic léinn aghaidh a thabhairt ar ghairmeacha le gnó agus le teagasc. Tá níos mó tóir anois ar chúrsaí Eolaíochta freisin. Tá láidreacht agus cáil OÉ Gaillimh sna hEolaíochtaí Bitheacha le sonrú sa tóir atá i gcónaí ar an Eolaíocht Bhithleighis (540) agus méadú go 510 pointe tagtha ar an gCeimic Bhithchógaisíochta. Chuaigh na pointí d’Fhisic suas 20 pointe i mbliana chomh maith go 420. D’éirigh go maith leis na cúrsaí Innealtóireachta agus d’ardaigh Innealtóireacht Bhithleighis, atá dírithe ag OÉ Gaillimh ar an margadh, go 420 pointe. Tá an-tóir ag mic léinn ar an taithí foghlama a chuireann cúrsaí an BA Connect ar fáil, rud atá le sonrú ón ardú sna pointí don Léann Éireannach, agus Staidéar Scannán agus Staidéar Leanaí ag fanacht mar a chéile bliain i ndiaidh bliana. Tá na pointí don tSíceolaíocht ard i mbliana chomh maith ag 525 pointe. Tá tóir i gcónaí ag mic léinn ar Theiripe Shaothair agus ar Theiripe Urlabhra agus Theanga, agus os cionn 500 pointe ag teastáil don dá chúrsa seo. Dúirt sé freisin, “Bainfidh mic léinn tairbhe as an gclár suntasach infheistíochta caipitil in OÉ Gaillimh a chuireann ar a gcumas aghaidh a thabhairt ar nuálaíocht, ar fhiontraíocht agus ar thaighde.” Tá OÉ Gaillimh ag súil le níos mó ná 3,200 mac léinn nua i Meán Fómhair, agus tá beolíne socraithe anois do mhic léinn, do thuismitheoirí agus do mhúinteoirí. Is é uimhir na Beolíne do Mhic Léinn na Chéad Bhliana 091 493999 nó téigh chuig http://www.nuigalway.ie/new-students/. Beidh foireann de mhic léinn oilte i mbun na beolíne ó Luan go hAoine, 9am go 6pm, agus beidh siad ar dualgas an 24 Lúnasa freisin, 10am go 1pm. -CRÍOCH-

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

On Tuesday, 9 September NUI Galway will host a public forum on Diabetes, delving into what research is doing to help advance treatments for complications of Type 2 diabetes. ‘Diabetes- It’s Complicated’ will take place in Room 243, Áras Moyola from 6.30-8.30pm.   This free event is organised as part of the EU-funded project Repair of Diabetic Damage by Stromal Cell Administration (REDDSTAR), and co-ordinated by Professor Tim O’Brien, Dean of the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at NUI Galway and Consultant Endocrinologist at Galway University Hospital. During the forum REDDSTAR's partners will discuss their current research projects investigating diabetic retinopathy, bone fracture repair and wound healing. Participants will also learn about stem cells and why they are therapeutically interesting. NUI Galway's Discipline of Podiatry will explain the current standard of care for diabetes-related foot ulcers, and DEXLIFE will be investigating ways to prevent the progression from pre-diabetes to Type 2 diabetes. Speakers include: NUI Galway’s Professor Tim O’ Brien, Dr Cynthia Coleman and Professor Caroline McIntosh; Dr Steve Elliman, Head of Research at Orbsen Therapeutics; Dr Donal O’Gorman, Centre for Preventative Medicine at Dublin City University and DEXLIFE; and Professor Noemi Lois of Queen’s University Belfast’s Centre for Experimental Medicine. In conjunction with this event, a free foot screening will be offered from 3-5.30pm in the NUI Galway Podiatry Skills Laboratory on the third floor of Áras Moyola on campus. To schedule a 20 minute foot screening, please email REDDSTAR Dissemination Officer, Danielle Nicholson at danielle.nicholson@orbsentherapeutics.com or 091 528778.  Pre-register for your place at the event at http://www.eventbrite.com/e/diabetes-its-complicated-tickets-11763379585?aff=efblike -Ends-

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Laoise Breathnach, Principal of Scoil Iognáid, recently came up with an idea to start a project with NUI Galway student teachers to provide a series of enrichment workshops that would serve the needs of gifted pupils as Gaeilge. Laoise teamed up with Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir from NUI Galway’s School of Education to undertake an EXPLORE innovative project. This EXPLORE project set out to challenge student teachers on the Dioplóma Gairmiúil san Oideachas in NUI Galway to design and deliver a series of resources, lessons and workshops for a group of gifted pupils. Almost 12 months on and as a result of the great work of Daltaí Tréitheacha exceptional pupils can now avail of relevant courses and workshops as Gaeilge. This is the first time NUI Galway student teachers provided a series of enrichment workshops in a Gaelscoil in Galway city, serving the needs of gifted pupils in the language they use daily, Gaeilge. The student teachers proposed a series of workshops over a number of weeks in Forensic Science, Code Breaking, Language Acquisition, Cultural Studies, Music and Dance, and the response from all involved was very enthusiastic.  The preservice student teachers benefited greatly from the experience, one declaring the EXPLORE project was one of best opportunities he had as a student at the University, and another saying that the whole experience taught her the importance of differentiating and addressing the needs of all pupils in the class. Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir added: “The project was a huge success, it was a unique and rich learning experience for the student teachers, so much so that they recommended it should be an integral part of the Initial Teacher Education Programme. And indeed, with funding, it could be included on a core module on the Máistir Gairmiúil san Oideachas.  All students will be able to benefit from the experience.”  Following the success of the EXPLORE project, the Máistir Gairmiúil san Oideachas programme is interested in expanding the scheme to more schools throughout Galway.  For further information contact Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir, Scoil an Oideachais, NUI Galway at sinead.nighuidhir@nuigalway.ie, 091 492861 or visit www.su.nuigalway.ie/explore. A video about the project can be viewed at http://vimeo.com/94993436. -Ends- Daltaí Tréitheacha. An bhfuil aithne agatsa ar pháiste cumasach, ildánach? An féidir breis a dhéanamh le freastal ar a gcuid riachtanais? Ba ag Laoise Breathnach, Príomhoide Scoil Iognáid,  a bhí an smaoineamh an chéad lá, le tionscadal a bhunú i gcomhar le múinteoirí faoi oiliuint ó Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh, chun ceardlanna saibhriúcháin a sholáthar as Gaeilge do dhaltaí tréitheacha. In éineacht le Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir ó Scoil an Oideachais, OÉ Gaillimh, thug Laoise agus na mic léinn ar an Dioplóma Gairmiúil san Oideachas faoi thionscadal EXPLORE. An aidhm a bhí ag an tionscadal comhoibritheach, núálach seo ná dúshlán a chur faoi bhráid na muúinteoirí faoi oiliúint, le ceachtanna, ceardlanna agus áiseanna a chruthú agus a dhearadh do dhaltaí le cumas eisceachtúil. Beagnach bliain ar aghaidh anois, agus de thoradh an tionscadail seo, cuireadh ceardlanna trí Ghaeilge ar fáil do Dhaltaí Tréitheacha. Den chéad uair i mbliana, chuir múinteoirí faoi oiliúint ó Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh, ceardlanna saibhriúcháin ar bun i nGaelscoil i gCathair na Gaillimhe, ag freastal ar riachtanais na ndaltaí le cumas eisceachtúil sa scoil sin, ina ngnáth-theanga foghlama, an Ghaeilge. Eolaíocht Fhoiréinseach, Briseadh Cóid, Sealbhú Teanga, Oideachas Cultúrtha, Ceol agus Damhsa a bhí mar ábhar do na ceardlanna agus bhí an-rath ar an sraith. Bhain na mic léinn féin an-tairbhe as an taithí freisin, duine amháin a dúirt go raibh an tionscnamh Explore ar ceann de na deiseanna ab fhearr dá bhfuair sé mar mhac léinn ollscoile, agus duine eile a d’aithin go mbíonn dúshláin bhreise ag teastáil ó na daltaí tréitheacha chun iad a spreagadh agus nach leor é freastal ar an meán. Dúirt Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir: "Bhí an-rath ar an tionscadal, thug sé taithí dhomhain, shaibhir ar leith do na mic léinn, agus mhol siad gur cheart go mbeadh sé mar chroí chuid den chúrsa Oiliúint Tosaigh do Mhúinteoirí. Go deimhin, le maoiniú, d'fhéadfaí é a chur mar lár chuid de mhodúl ar an Máistir Gairmiúil san Oideachas, agus beidh buntáiste agus tairbhe ann do gach mac léinn." Ag leanúint ón rath a bhí ar an tionscadal EXPLORE seo, tá súil an scéim a leathnú go níos mó scoileanna ar fud na Gaillimhe. Chun tuilleadh eolais a fháil, déan teagmháil le Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir, Scoil an Oideachais ag sinead.nighuidhir@nuigalway.ie, 091 492861, nó www.su.nuigalway.ie/explore. -Críoch-

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

         Distinguished Political Scientist to speak on "Power-sharing in deeply divided places with special reference to                            Iraq and Northern Ireland" as part of the President of Ireland’s Ethics Initiative Distinguished Irish political scientist Professor Brendan O’Leary of the University of Pennsylvania, Visiting Fellow at the Moore Institute,will give a public lecture on ‘Power-sharing in deeply divided places with special reference to Iraq and Northern Ireland’ in NUI Galway at 4pm on Wednesday 27 August, 2014. This talk is part of the President of Ireland’s ‘Ethics Initiative’, and is organised by the Conflict, Rights and Security Research Cluster of NUI Galway’s Whitaker Institute in association with the Moore Institute. Brendan O'Leary is Lauder Professor of Political Science at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the author of numerous highly regarded books and articles on conflict and peacemaking and has been deeply and directly involved in efforts to secure peace and design new structures of government in Northern Ireland and Iraq. He was born in Cork, Ireland, and his childhood and teenage years were mostly spent in Nigeria, Sudan, and Northern Ireland. Before going to University of Pennsylvania, O' Leary was on the faculty of the London School of Economics and Political Science between 1983 and 2003, where he had been Professor of Political Science, Head of its Government Department, and an elected Academic Governor. Between 2012 and 2014 he was also Professor of Political Science at Queen's University Belfast. O'Leary's professorial career has been combined with political advisory work. He was a political advisor to the British Labour Shadow Cabinet on Northern Ireland between 1987-8 and 1996-7, advising Kevin McNamara and the late Marjorie ("Mo") Mowlam. He advised Irish, British, and American ministers and officials and the Irish-American Morrison delegation during the Northern Ireland peace process, appearing as an expert witness before the US Congress, and being a guest at the White House. His ideas on power-sharing are said to have been extremely influential, and his work with Professor John McGarry on police reform was singled out in the press for influencing the commission on police reform which reported in 1999. O'Leary has also worked as a constitutional advisor for the European Union and the United Nations in the promotion of confederal and federal re-building of Somalia, and for the United Kingdom's Department of International Development in constitutional consultancies on power-sharing in coalition governments in Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa, and in Nepal.  Between 2003 and 2009 he was regularly an international constitutional advisor to the Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq, assisting in the negotiation of the Transitional Administrative Law (2004); electoral systems design (2004-5); the Constitution of Iraq (2005), and the Constitution of the Kurdistan Region (2005-). He has been an expert witness on Iraq to branches of the US Government, and to the United Kingdom's Iraq Commission. For the UN he contributed to its 2004 United Nations Human Development Report on Culture and Liberty. In 2009-2010 O'Leary was seconded to the UN as the Senior Advisor on Power-Sharing in the Standby Team of the Mediation Support Unit of the Department of Political Affairs. Dr Niall O Dochartaigh of the School of Political Science and Sociology at NUI Galway, commented: “The topic could hardly be more urgent – how do we deal with the political fractures in deeply divided societies that are one of the main sources of violent conflict in the twenty first century? As perhaps the single most influential and internationally-respected Irish political scientist Brendan O’Leary has taken his work far beyond the walls of academia and directly influenced the design of stable structures of government for divided societies. His work is ground-breaking, original, and intensely engaged with public debate. It is often provocative and challenging and always illuminating. We are delighted that such an active and distinguished scholar of deeply divided societies will give this public lecture in NUI Galway on such an important and timely topic. We are also proud to make a contribution to the excellent work being done across all of the universities on behalf of President Higgins’ ‘Ethics Initiative’. Events such as this, the academic and political contribution of engaged scholars such as Professor O’Leary and initiatives such as President Higgins’ all make vital contributions toward the cultivation of an informed and critically engaged citizenry.” The lecture is open to the public, but early attendance is advised. It will begin at 4 pm (sharp) on Wednesday, 27 August in the Aula Maxima, NUI Galway. Ends