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Tuesday, 17 December 2013
The €2m European Research Council (ERC) Grant will fund five postdoctoral researchers for five years Dr Marie-Louise Coolahan, Lecturer in English at NUI Galway, has been awarded the highly prestigious Consolidator Grant by the European Research Council. It is the first such award ever made to an Irish researcher in any field of literature, and the only award made in Ireland this year in the Social Sciences and Humanities. The award, of just under €2m, will fund Dr Coolahan and a team of five postdoctoral researchers for a five-year period on her project ‘RECIRC: The Reception and Circulation of Early Modern Women’s Writing, 1550-1700’. Dr Coolahan’s project will produce a new, large-scale understanding of how women’s writing circulated in the early modern English-speaking world, using the results to analyse how texts, ideas and reputations gained traction. Dr Coolahan says “While there has been an increasing number of case studies on individual women writers in recent years, we have lacked an understanding of how and where women’s writing made an impact on a broader scale. “ The period in question, from 1550-1700, is particularly challenging because writing continued to circulate in manuscript, via handwritten copies, as well as in print. For women, in particular, manuscript circulation was more attractive as it offered a means to circumvent social anxieties about female authorship. NUI Galway President Dr Jim Browne congratulated Dr Coolahan and said “This is only the second time ever that a researcher in humanities in an Irish University has secured an ERC award. It is, as such, a remarkable achievement, not only for Dr Marie-Louise Coolahan but for the Discipline of English and for NUI Galway as whole.” Although focused on the English-speaking world, RECIRC will attend to the international context by including writers who were read in Ireland and Britain as well as women who were born and resident in those countries. Dr Coolahan said “RECIRC will provide a comprehensive view of how texts were used and re-used, and of how gender shaped ideas about authorship. The methodologies we develop are designed to be transferable to other languages and geographies, enabling future work on an even larger European scale.” -Ends-
Tuesday, 17 December 2013
NUI Galway’s Professor Robert Lahue receives Pharmaceutical Laboratory of the Year award The inaugural Irish Laboratory Awardstook place before an audience of almost 400 scientists drawn from industry, State and education sectors. The awards were supported by Science Foundation Ireland, Teagasc, IDA and media-partnered with the Irish Independent. NUI Galway’s Professor Robert Lahue Pharmaceutical Laboratory of the Year Award for The Lahue Lab, Centre for Chromosome Biology, NUI Galway. The need for the awards was signalled through the volume and diversity of entries. Judging Co-ordinator, Dr Catherine Dempsey, said “These awards were sorely needed. We know from the hugely successful Young Scientists Competition that recognition is a key enabler of fund raising and career progress. With over 100 entries in year one, the size and scope of the Lab Awards took us all a little by surprise. 2014 is going to be even bigger.” The judges said, “The Immune Regulation Group was a very strong collection of fantastic researchers, and was highly rated in one of Ireland’s most competitive areas of research. The group has secured more than €25 million of research grants and has published 155 peer- reviewed papers in the last 20 years.” Full a full review of the winners and to view the awards night video visit www.labawards.ie the official website for the Irish Laboratory Awards 2013. The awards were judged by: Dr Catherine Dempsey- Judging Co-Ordinator Dr Aoife McLysaght, Smurfit Institute of Genetics Dr Barry Heavey, IDA Ireland Dr Kevin Kavanagh, NUIM Dr Fionnuala Hickey, Trinity Health Kidney Centre Leonard Hobbs, Intel Ireland Dr Paul Simmons, Enfer Group Professor Declan McLoughlin, St. Patrick’s University Hospital & TCD Dr Kaye Burgess, Teagasc Food Research Centre Professor John Cryan, UCC Dr Paul Duffy, Pfizer Pharmaceuticals Professor Brian Glennon, UCD Mary Mullaghy, ISTA Dr Andrew Roche, ICON Central Laboratories Dr Marie Coggins, NUI Galway Dr Keith O Neill, Enterprise Ireland Dr Graeme Horley, SFI -Ends-
Monday, 16 December 2013
Winning research included work on effect of speed on foetal development and using human skin cells to help heal brain injuries NUI Galway Neuroscience Centre, based within the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science (NCBES) at NUI Galway, held its sixth Annual Research Day recently. This meeting showcased the very best of neuroscience research in the University with presentations from undergraduate and postgraduate students as well as post-doctoral research scientists from a number of different disciplines and research centres within the University. The award for the best oral presentation at the meeting was presented by Dr David Finn, Leader of the Galway Neuroscience Centre, to Ms Kate McDonnell-Dowling (Pharmacology & Therapeutics, NUI Galway) whose work detailed the impact on foetal development of pregnant mothers taking the illicit drug, amphetamine (speed). Mr Martin Madill (Regenerative Medicine Institute, NUI Galway) won the poster presentation prize for presenting his work on the conversion of human skin cells into brain cells to use in repairing the brain after injury. Dr Honorata Kraśkiewicz (Network of Excellence for Functional Biomaterials) and Sinéad Healy (National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science) won the runner-up prizes for their work on the development of novel drug delivery systems for spinal cord repair and the development of novel systems to study the impact of iron on the pathology of multiple sclerosis. Dr Declan McKernan, organiser of the event, said “The quality and variety of presentations featured here today highlights the promising future that neuroscience research has at NUI Galway”. The presentations included the development of relevant models to study pain, depression and autism, the use of stem cell to treat amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease, and investigations into the underlying changes in the brains of patients with schizophrenia or multiple sclerosis. The meeting also featured keynote presentations from Professor Artur Swiergiel from the University of Gdansk in Poland on the brain’s response to chronic stress, as well as presentations from NUI Galway research scientists, Professor Gary Donohoe and Dr Derek Morris, on the psychiatry and genetics of schizophrenia. The meeting coincided with Galway Neuroscience Centre member, Prof. Bob Lahue, winning the Medical Laboratory of the Year and the Pharmaceutical Laboratory of the Year in the Irish Laboratory Awards which were held in the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Dublin. The mission of the Galway Neuroscience Centre is to develop Neuroscience in Galway through research, education and community initiatives. The Centre is truly multidisciplinary in membership, bringing together researchers from a range of clinical and preclinical disciplines, which enable the investigation of nervous system disease at a number of levels. The Galway Neuroscience Centre gained the status of Centre of Excellence in Neurodegeneration (COEN) after a national and international review process last year. ENDS
Thursday, 12 December 2013
Insight, the Centre for Data Analytics, will position Ireland at the heart of global Data Analytics research The largest investment in a single research centre in the history of the state Uniting 4 universities, 30 industry partners, and 200 researchers in one multi-location research centre Creating 300 direct jobs through 12 funded spin outs, as well as creating indirectly thousands of other job opportunities The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mr Richard Bruton T.D. and Minister for Research and Innovation, Mr Sean Sherlock T.D. officially launched Insight, a new Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Research Centre for Data Analytics. In a joint initiative between NUI Galway, UCC, DCU and UCD, Insight brings together more than 200 researchers from these and other Higher Education institutions, with 30 industry partners, to position Ireland at the heart of global data analytics research. The Centre will receive funding of €58 million from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through SFI’s Research Centres Programme, along with a further contribution of €30 million from 30 industry partners. Insight represents a new approach to research and development in Ireland, by connecting the scientific research of Ireland’s leading data analytics researchers with the needs of industry and enterprise. Insight will work with more than 30 industry partners, including many Galway partners, and ranging from small Irish startups to established SMEs and large multinationals, on a range of projects to advance data analytics technologies in Ireland. Industry partners include RTÉ, The Irish Times, Cisco, Microsoft, Alcatel-Lucent , Santry Sports Clinic, the IRFU, Avaya, TE Labs, TreeMetrics, NitroSell, Avego, UTRC , Shimmer and many more. Big data is a sector targeted as part of the Disruptive Reforms in Action Plan for Jobs 2013, and today’s announcement marks delivery of a key action contained in the Plan. Speaking at the launch of Insight, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mr Richard Bruton T.D. said:“Big data is a sector growing globally at 40% per annum, and we have targeted it as part of the Disruptive Reforms contained in Action Plan for Jobs 2013. This is a sector where Ireland has the potential to gain competitive advantage and attract significant numbers of investments and jobs, and we are putting in place measures to ensure that we can deliver on that potential. The establishment of this world-class SFI research centre in data analytics, with a total investment of €88million supported by my Department, is a strong signal of our ambition in this area. Today’s announcement, in combination with the other measures we have put in place in this sector, will help attract the investment, support the business ideas and create the jobs in Ireland that we need.” Also speaking at the launch, Minister for Research and Innovation, Mr Sean Sherlock T.D. said: “The launch of Insight is an important step forward in the development of the skills base necessary for Ireland to harness and channel the current and future potential of Big Data. Insight is a major national investment in this new area of research and one that is essential for Ireland’s future success in the technology sector.” In today’s society, an increasing torrent of data is being created every second in the world around us. Insight will play a leading role in developing next generation technologies to capture and transform the raw data being generated into valuable concepts and ideas that can inform better decisions about society, the economy, healthcare and government. At the launch today, President of NUI Galway, Dr Jim Browne said: "NUI Galway has an international reputation in the field of data analytics and the semantic web, so we are delighted to be part of such a significant national research centre in a rapidly expanding field. In bringing together so many talented researchers, across four locations, Insight will put Ireland on the map for Data Analytics globally and will bring tremendous benefits to both the University and our ICT industry partners in Galway and beyond." Insight will lead to the creation of 300 direct jobs, as well as to the training of the next generation of data analytics experts. Over the next six years, Insight research is expected to result in 12 new spin out companies, approximately 50 patent filings, and over 50 technology licenses, leading to thousands of indirect jobs in the data analytics sector. Data Analytics is big business as Ireland stands to benefit significantly from the scale of the global analytics market. The global market for business analytics is estimated to be worth in excess of $34 billion, with Big Data driving a 60% increase in the operating margins of retailers, while the annual value of data analytics for the US healthcare system is valued at $300 billion. Commenting on the potential for data analytics research in Ireland, Professor Stefan Decker, a Director of Insight, said: "Data Analytics offers enormous potential for Ireland's economy. Data by itself is meaningless but with the technologies and understanding to extract meaning from data, its potential is limitless. As a technology, Data Analytics transcends boundaries, bringing benefits to sectors as diverse as healthcare, government, the economy and the media. Insight is a unique partnership between research and industry, enabling us to transition our technologies into practise for the benefit of society.” Commenting on the potential for the data analytics market in Ireland, CEO of Insight, Professor Barry Smyth, said: “Data analytics represents a huge growth opportunity for Ireland and we are perfectly positioned to take advantage of it. Spending on Big Data technologies is growing at 30% per annum as demand for data analytics skills continues to outstrip supply. In Insight we have brought together the country’s leading data analytics researchers to meet this demand and create new opportunities for Ireland and our industry partners.” Speaking at the announcement, Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of SFI and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government said: “Insight will provide Ireland with a new flagship national research resource in information and communications technology (ICT) and underlines Ireland’s focused investment in excellent research with impact. Insight is one of seven world-class SFI Research Centres of scale and excellence that involve significant co-investment by industry partners. Insight will be undertaking research that is fundamental to Ireland’s enhanced competitive positioning in the area of data analytics as well as our international standing in the overall ICT sector.” Ends OÉ Gaillimh páirteach in ionad nua €88 milliún na hAnailísíochta Sonraí a sheol an tAire Bruton Cuirfidh Insight, Ionad na hAnailísíochta Sonraí, Éire i gcroílár an taighde dhomhanda ar Anailísíocht Sonraí An infheistíocht is mó in aon ionad taighde amháin ó bunaíodh an stát Ag cónascadh 4 ollscoil, 30 comhpháirtí tionscail, agus 200 taighdeoir in aon ionad taighde amháin scaipthe thar réigiúin éagsúla Cruthófar 300 post go díreach trí 12 sheach-chuideachta maoinithe agus cruthófar na mílte post eile go hindíreach. Sheol an tAire Post, Fiontar agus Nuálaíochta, Richard Bruton T.D. agus an tAire Taighde agus Nuálaíochta, Sean Sherlock T.D. Insight go hoifigiúil. Is Ionad Taighde nua de chuid Fhondúireacht Eolaíochta Éireann (SFI) don Anailísíocht Sonraí é Insight. I gcomhthionscadal idir OÉ Gaillimh, UCC, DCU agus UCD, tugann Insight níos mó ná 200 taighdeoir as na hinstitiúidí seo agus as institiúidí Ardoideachais eile, le chéile le 30 comhpháirtí tionscail chun a chinntiú go mbeidh Éire ina ceannródaí sa taighde domhanda ar anailísíocht sonraí. Gheobhaidh an tIonad maoiniú €58 milliún ón Roinn Post, Fiontar agus Nuálaíochta trí Chlár Ionad Taighde SFI, mar aon le €30 milliún breise ón 30 comhpháirtí tionscail. Léiríonn Insight cur chuige nua taighde agus forbartha in Éirinn; trí nasc a chothú idir taighde eolaíoch na dtaighdeoirí anailísíochta sonraí is fearr in Éirinn agus riachtanais tionscail agus fiontraíochta. Oibreoidh Insight le níos mó ná 30 comhpháirtí tionscail, go leor acu sin bunaithe i nGaillimh, idir gnólachtaí beaga nuathionscanta, gnóthais bheaga agus mheánmhéide sheanbhunaithe agus gnólachtaí móra ilnáisiúnta, ar réimse tionscadal chun teinceolaíochtaí anailísíochta sonraí a chur chun cinn in Éirinn. Is measc na gcomhpháirtithe tionscail tá RTÉ, The Irish Times, Cisco, Microsoft, Alcatel-Lucent, Santry Sports Clinic, Cumann Rugbaí na hÉireann, Avaya, TE Labs, TreeMetrics, NitroSell, Avego, UTRC , Shimmer agus go leor eile. Is earnáil é an t-olltiomsú sonraí a bhfuiltear ag díriú air mar chuid den Athchóiriú ar Phlean Gníomhaíochta na bPost 2013, agus is fianaise é fógra an lae inniu go bhfuil plean gníomhaíochta amháin as an bPlean sin curtha i gcrích. Ag labhairt dó ag seoladh Insight, dúirt an tAire Post, Fiontar agus Nuálaíochta, Richard Bruton T.D.:“Is earnáil é an t-olltiomsú sonraí atá ag fás ag ráta 40 sa bhliain agus táimid ag díriú ar an earnáil mar chuid den Athchóiriú atá i bPlean Gníomhaíochta na bPost 2013. Earnáil í seo a bhfuil an deis ag Éirinn buntáiste iomaíoch a bhaint amach inti agus infheistíochtaí móra agus poist a mhealladh, agus tá céimeanna á nglacadh againn chun a chinntiú go mbainfimid ár spriocanna amach. Is cruthúnas láidir é an t-ionad taighde SFI den scoth seo in anailísíocht sonraí a bhfuil infheistíocht iomlán €88 milliún déanta ann agus a bhfuil tacaíocht aige ó mo Roinn féin, ár mianaidhm sa réimse seo. Cuideoidh fógra an lae inniu, mar aon leis na céimeanna eile atá á nglacadh againn san earnáil seo, le hinfheistíocht a mhealladh, le smaointe gnó agus le poist a chruthú sa tír seo a bhfuil géarghá leo.” Ag labhairt chomh maith ag seoladh Insight bhí an tAire Taighde agus Nuálaíochta, Sean Sherlock T.D., a dúirt: “Céim thábhachtach chun cinn atá i seoladh Insight chun na scileanna atá riachtanach d’Éirinn a fhorbairt d’fhonn na féidearthachtaí a bhaineann le holltiomsú sonraí a chothú agus leas a bhaint astu. Infheistíocht mhór náisiúnta é Insight sa réimse nua taighde seo atá riachtanach más le Éire a bheith rathúil in earnáil na teicneolaíochta amach anseo.” Sa lá atá inniu ann, tá an oiread sin sonraí á gcruthú gach uile soicind timpeall orainn. Beidh ról lárnach ag Insight i dteicneolaíochtaí don chéad ghlúin eile a fhorbairt chun na sonraí loma atá á gcruthú a fháil agus a úsáid mar choincheapa agus mar smaointe luachmhara a chuideoidh le cinntí níos fearr a dhéanamh faoin tsochaí, faoin ngeilleagar, faoi chúram sláinte agus faoin rialtas. Ag an seoladh inniu, dúirt an Dr James Browne, Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh: “Tá cáil idirnáisiúnta ar OÉ Gaillimh i réimse na hanailísíochta sonraí agus an ghréasáin shéimeantaigh. Tá an-ríméad orainn, dá bhrí sin, a bheith páirteach in ionad taighde náisiúnta den chineál seo in earnáil atá ag méadú as cuimse. De bhrí go dtabharfaidh Insight an oiread sin taighdeoirí den scoth le chéile i gceithre áit éagsúla, cuirfidh sé cáil na hÉireann as Anailísíocht Sonraí ar fud an domhain agus beidh buntáiste anseo don Ollscoil agus dár gcomhpháirtithe ICT i nGaillimh agus níos faide i gcéin." Cruthófar 300 post go díreach as Insight, agus cuirfidh sé le hoiliúint an chéad ghlúin eile de shaineolaithe in anailísíocht sonraí. As seo go ceann sé bliana, táthar ag súil go mbunóidh taighde Insight 12 seach-chuideachta nua, timpeall 50 iarratas ar phaitinní, agus os cionn 50 ceadúnas teicneolaíochta, rud a chruthóidh na mílte post go hindíreach in earnáil na hanailísíochta sonraí. Is gnó ollmhór í an Anailísíocht Sonraí mar go mbainfidh Éire sochar as sciar de mhargadh na hanailísíochta domhanda. Meastar gur fiú os cionn $34 billiún an margadh domhanda d’anailísíocht ghnó agus is é an t-olltiomsú sonraí is cúis leis an méadú 60% i gcorrlach oibriúcháin miondíoltóirí. Meastar go bhfuil luach bliantúil $300 billiún ar anailísíocht sonraí sa chóras sláinte na Stát Aontaithe. Ag labhairt ar an bpoitéinseal a bhaineann le taighde in anailísíocht sonraí in Éirinn, dúirt an tOllamh Stefan Decker, Stiúrthóir Insight: “Tá poitéinseal ollmhór le hAnailísíocht Sonraí do gheilleagar na tíre seo. Níl fiúntas ar bith le sonraí astu féin ach le teicneolaíocht agus an t-eolas a bhaineann ciall as sonraí, níl teorainn ar bith leis an bhfiúntas atá ann. Mar theicneolaíocht, níl teorainn ar bith le hAnailísíocht Sonraí, tá buntáiste ann do na hearnálacha atá chomh héagsúil le cúram sláinte, rialtas, an geilleagar agus na meáin. Comhpháirtíocht ar leith é Insight idir taighde agus tionscal, rud a chuidíonn linn leas a bhaint as teicneolaíocht ar mhaithe leis an bpobal.” Ag labhairt dó faoin bhfógra, dúirt an tOllamh Mark Ferguson, Ard-Stiúrthóir SFI agus Príomhchomhairleoir Eolaíochta an Rialtais: “Acmhainn taighde náisiúnta i dteicneolaíocht faisnéise agus cumarsáide (ICT) é Insight d’Éirinn agus léiríonn sé an infheistíocht atá dírithe ag an tír seo i dtaighde den scoth. Tá Insight ar cheann de sheacht nIonad Taighde SFI den scoth atá chomh mór agus chomh fiúntach sin go bhfuil comhinfheistíocht déanta ag comhpháirtithe tionscail iontu. Beidh Insight i mbun taighde atá riachtanach do sheasamh iomaíoch feabhsaithe na hÉireann i réimse na hanailísíochta sonraí chomh maith lenár seasamh idirnáisiúnta in earnáil an ICT.” Críoch
Thursday, 12 December 2013
NUI Galway Alumni Club is holding its annual Alumni Christmas get-together on Thursday, 19 December from 5:30- 80pm in the Aula Maxima, The Quadrangle, NUI Galway. Graduates are invited to attend and meet with former classmates from home and abroad for carols, mince pies and refreshments. According to Sandra Butler, Galway Alumni Club chair, "Christmas is the ideal time to renew old NUI Galway acquaintances and make new ones. We would love to see as many graduates as possible back in their alma mater for the evening.” RSVP online at www.nuigalway.ie/alumni or telephone the alumni office at 091 492721 by Wednesday, 18 December. Graduates, friends and family welcome. Ends Ócáid Bhliantúil na Nollag ag Alumni OÉ Gaillimh Beidh ceiliúradh bliantúil na Nollag ag Club Alumni OÉ Gaillimh Déardaoin, an 19 Nollaig san Aula Maxima, an Chearnóg, OE Gaillimh idir 5:30pm agus 8:00pm. Deis a bheas anseo do chéimithe sásamh a bhaint as carúil, as pióga mionra agus as sólaistí i dteannta a gcomhghleacaithe ranga sa bhaile agus i gcéin. Dúirt Sandra Butler, Cathaoirleach Chlub ALumni OÉ Gaillimh “Níl aon am níos fearr ná an Nollaig chun casadh le seanchairde as OÉ Gaillimh agus aithne a chur ar dhaoine nua. Ba bhreá linn an oiread céimithe agus is féidir a fheiceáil ar ais ina n-alma mater don ócáid.” Is féidir RSVP a sheoladh ar líne ag www.nuigalway.ie/alumni nó cuir glao ar an Oifig Alumni ag 091-492721 faoi Dé Céadaoin, an 18 Nollaig. Fáilte roimh chéimithe, a gcairde agus a dteaghlaigh. -Críoch-
Wednesday, 11 December 2013
NUI Galway’s Astronomy Society, with the Galway Astronomy Club, will welcome Astronomer Dr Jacqueline Keane for a special Christmas talk entitled ‘2013: The Year of the Long-haired Stars’. The free talk will take place on Tuesday, 17 December at 7.30pm in IT 250, IT Building, NUI Galway. In ancient times, comets or “long-haired stars” inspired terror because of their sudden appearance, potentially great brightness, and large tails. Comets, long considered harbingers of doom, have been blamed for some of history's darkest times. About once a decade, a truly spectacular comet is visible even through the bright city lights. This public talk will discuss what comets are and how comets help us understand the formation of the Solar System. A summary of the Comet ISON observing campaign will be presented, with a special focus on the University of Hawaii campaign using numerous 10-meter telescopes at 14000 feet on the summit of Mauna Kea. The prospects of viewing comets in 2014 will also be discussed. Dr Jacqueline Keane is an Assistant Astronomer at the University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy. An NUI Galway BSc in Physics and Masters in Astronomy graduate, Dr Keane received her PhD in Astrophysics from Groningen University in the Netherlands, where she worked with the Infrared Space Observatory observations of interstellar ice features and their formation via grain-surface reactions. After her PhD, she moved to California to work at the NASA Ames Research Center where her work concentrated on understanding the composition of cold material in star-forming molecular clouds using the Spitzer space-based telescope. Dr Keane currently specialises in ground-based observations of comets and how they can be used to understand the conditions in the early Solar System. The NUI Galway Astronomy society is in its second year with nearly 600 members. The main goal of the society is to promote astronomy, both recreationally and academically. Throughout the year the society hosts a series of talks on astronomy and organise events to increase general awareness and understanding of astronomy and host a series of talks on astronomy and events throughout the year. They work with the Galway Astronomy club and are supported by the University's Centre for Astronomy. For more information on NUI Galway’s Astronomy Society and Galway Astronomy Club visit www.socs.nuigalway.ie/society_profiles/view/447 or www.galwayastronomyclub.ie. -Ends-
Wednesday, 11 December 2013
“Horizon 2020; an opportunity to bring NUI Galway’s research to market in Europe and to bring Europe’s best researchers to NUI Galway” says NUI Galway VP for Innovation, Lokesh Joshi NUI Galway is prepared for the significant opportunity presented by the launch of Horizon 2020, at €80bn the biggest and most ambitious European funding scheme to date. Irish Universities are aiming to secure €1bn from Horizon 2020 which will replace Framework 7 which is currently running. NUI Galway secured €38.8m in research funding under Framework 7 between January 2007 and July 2013, with further applications pending. The action plan for participation of the Irish universities in Horizon 2020 has been launched by Minister for Research and Innovation Mr Sean Sherlock TD as part of the national launch of the European Union’s new Horizon 2020 Programme. Minister Sean Sherlock, TD, speaking at the launch said, “I welcome the renewed commitment of the universities to maximise their participation in Horizon 2020 across all areas. At a time when national funding for research must be carefully invested, it is critical that the universities and all public research institutions gain maximum leverage from exchequer funds”. NUI Galway Vice President for Research, and Chair of the Irish Universities Association VPs of Research Group, Professor Lokesh Joshi said “Horizon 2020, the biggest and most ambitious research funding scheme in European history is an opportunity to bring NUI Galway’s research to market in Europe and to bring Europe’s best researchers to NUI Galway. NUI Galway is prepared for this significant opportunity and European challenge to build on our experience and successful track-record in winning European funding. The national action plan entitled “Horizon 2020: Sustaining Excellence in University Research & Innovation” outlines the position of the universities on the Horizon 2020 proposals and sets out a series of recommendations and actions to enhance the performance of Irish universities, giving the sector the best chance of success in Horizon 2020. The Irish Universities, in partnership with the private sector, have been the most successful participants in FP7 and their involvement is essential for Ireland to reach its target of securing over €1 billion in funding from Horizon 2020. More information on www.nuigalway.ie/our-research or www.iua.ie -Ends-
Tuesday, 10 December 2013
The Hospital Saturday Fund gives opportunity to students to spend two months in a developing country Students of medicine will have new opportunities to spend two months in a developing country with funding made available by The Hospital Saturday Fund. The School of Medicine working with the Galway University Foundation will invite fourth year students of medicine to apply for funding for the medical electives, which will be offered in the summer of 2014. A medical elective is a period of supervised learning, chosen by the student. In this case the work will be in a resource poor setting which has many recognised benefits for students: to experience clinical practice and health care in different cultural and organisational settings and to learn about diseases and conditions that are not often seen at home. Senior Lecturer in Social and Preventative Medicine Dr Diarmuid O’Donovan welcomed the support of The Hospital Saturday Fund and said “these electives help to improve the ability of students to manage patients from diverse backgrounds and to better understand global health. Many electives are based in low-resource tropical settings where the organisation and provision of healthcare, and the social, cultural, economic and political environments are very different from what students have experienced in their home institutions.” Hospital Saturday Fund (HSF) Chief Executive Paul Jackson visited NUI Galway to meet some of the staff and students of the medical school and said The Hospital Saturday Fund is delighted to be supporting Galway University with the establishment of their Medical Electives Programme which will give students the opportunity to extend their knowledge and skills in diverse overseas locations. The Hospital Saturday Fund is pleased to have the opportunity to establish a partnership with Galway University and look forward to working closely with them in future and seeing the development of the students as they benefit from first-hand clinical experience and development of their skills’. The Hospital Saturday Fund is a charity that provides grants to medical charities, hospitals and hospices and this includes making awards to medical schools to fund medical student electives. The support has been welcomed by the School of Medicine. Research and clinical elective opportunities are highly prized among medical students. This support will facilitate twelve students who will work in various clinical disciplines in developing countries. These elective opportunities will be awarded based on an essay competition that will be open to all students in the fourth medical year. NUI Galway’s School of Medicine is also exploring the possibility of student exchanges with medical schools in developing countries. NUI Galway is committed to providing a high standard of training to ensure that students receive adequate and appropriate preparation before going abroad. Students planning to travel are offered training by the School of Medicine, in conjunction with the International Office and the Community Knowledge Initiative programme. This training covers broad areas such as personal health advice, travel safety and security, cultural awareness and stress management. -ends-
Tuesday, 10 December 2013
An mbíonn tú ag féachaint ar TG4? Ar mhaith leat do thuairimí faoi TG4 a roinnt linn? Seoladh tráthnóna Fios Físe, Togra Taighde de chuid Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh chun Painéal Lucht Féachana a bhunú do TG4. Is i gcomhar le TG4 atá an cinneadh tógtha an Painéal a bhunú. Beidh sé mar aidhm ag an togra nósanna féachana agus tuairimí Phobal na Gaeilge i leith TG4 a fhiosrú. Beidh ballraíocht an Phainéil dírithe ar Phobal na Gaeilge ar fud na tíre, ón nGaeltacht agus lasmuigh di, agus ó Thuaisceart Éireann. Baileofar eolas ó bhaill an Phainéil go seachtainiúil trí Dhialann Féachana a bheidh le líonadh ar líne. Má tá tú 15 bliana d’aois nó os a chionn, Gaeilge ar do thoil agat agus spéis agat do thaithí agus do thuairimí ar TG4 a roinnt, déan teagmháil linn: firstname.lastname@example.org Céard go díreach a bheidh le déanamh ag baill an Phainéil? Gheobhaidh baill an Phainéil ríomhphost gach Luan ina mbeidh nasc chuig Dialann Féachana a bheidh le líonadh ar líne. Beidh roinnt ceisteanna sa dialann féachana a bhaineann le sceideal TG4 don tseachtain atá thart (Luan go Domhnach). Ní thógfaidh sé ach roinnt bheag nóiméad an dialann féachana a líonadh gach seachtain. Is beag scríobh atá i gceist, ticeanna i mboscaí ar cheisteanna ilroghnacha den chuid is mó. Beidh tú in ann do shástacht maidir le cláir ar fhéach tú orthu i gcaitheamh na seachtaine a thuairisciú sa dialann. Beidh spás sa dialann freisin le tuairimí a thabhairt i bhfoirm scríofa, más mian leat é sin a dhéanamh. Beidh an chéad Dhialann Féachana le líonadh an tseachtain dar tús 16 Nollaig 2013. Beidh sé riachtanach an Dialann Féachana a bheith seolta ar ais roimh 5pm gach Máirt. Níl aon tréimhse ar leith a gcaithfidh ball fanacht ar an bPainéal Féachana Scéim Dílseachta Mar chomhartha aitheantais do bhaill an Phainéil beidh tarraingt oscailte ag deireadh gach míosa ina mbeidh ainmneacha bhaill uile an Phainéil a mbeidh ceithre dhialann seolta ar ais acu i gcaitheamh na míosa sin. Bronnfar duais €500 ar an gcéad duine a dtiocfaidh a (h)ainm as an tarraingt agus bronnfar €100 an duine ar an gcéad chúigear eile a dtiocfaidh a n-ainmneacha amach. Cosaint Sonraí Ní roinnfear sonraí pearsanta bhaill an phainéil le haon tríú páirtí. Ní bheidh do shonraí pearsanta le feiceáil ach an oiread ar aon tuairiscí a eascróidh ón eolas a bheidh sna dialanna féachana a sheolfar ar ais. Eolas staitistiúil agus tuairiscí gan ainm a bheidh i gceist. Stórálfar do chuid sonraí go sábháilte. An bhfuil spéis agat clárú don Phainéal? Má tá, téigh go dtí: http://www.fiosfise.ie/register.asp le do thoil. Tuilleadh eolais: www.fiosfise.ie email@example.com nó glaoigh ar 091 505060 ‘Fios Físe’ Launched by NUI Galway and TG4 Do you watch TG4? Would you like to let us know what you think about TG4? NUI Galway and TG4 have launched Fios Físe,a joint research project which will establish a Viewer Panel for TG4. The Panel will seek to capture the TG4 viewing habits and preferences of Irish Speakers. Panel membership, aimed at Irish speakers inside and outside An Ghaeltacht, in the Republic and in the North of Ireland, will ask panel members to fill in an online ‘Viewing Diary’ once a week. If you are a fluent Irish speaker, over 15 years of age, and you would like to share your thoughts and experiences of TG4, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org What is expected of viewers who sign up? Panel members will be sent an email every Monday with a link to a Viewing Diary which can be filled in online. The Diary will ask questions about the TG4 schedule of the previous week (Monday to Sunday) A short multiple-choice questionnaire will assess your views on any programme you watched in the previous week, and will allow you to add comments if you so wish. The first Viewing Diary will be available on the 16 December 2013. The Viewing Diary must be filled in by 5pm on the Tuesday of each week surveyed. Panel members can opt out at any stage they wish to do so. Loyalty Scheme TG4, to show their appreciation to participating viewers, will have a draw at the end of each month for all viewers that return four completed weekly Viewing Diaries. There will be one prize of €500 and five prizes of €100 each month for the winning respondents. Data Protection Viewers’ personal information will be securely stored and will not be shared with any third party. No information which could identify any individual will be published in any report arising from the viewing diairies and viewers opinions. Information published arising from the viewers’ panel will be anonymous and based on analysis of all viewers’ viewing patterns. Would you like to register for Fios Físe? If you would, please register at: http://www.fiosfise.ie/register.asp -ends-
Tuesday, 10 December 2013
Galway companies Westway Health and Element Software were named as Best Early Stage company and New Start company respectively at InterTradeIreland’s 11th annual all-island Seedcorn Investor Readiness Competition. The winners were announced at the grand final of the competition at Clontarf Castle in Dublin last night. Westway Health as Best Early Stage company will take away a cash prize of €100,000 and Element Software wins €50,000 as the Best New Start company. Two Northern Ireland companies were also recognised at the Awards. Belfast-based Blow Moulding Technologies and See.Sense from Newtownards each won €20,000 as the Northern Ireland regional winners in the Best New Start and Best Early-stage categories respectively.Their recognition at the Awards brings the total prize money secured by Northern Ireland companies in the Competition to date to €645,000. Seedcorn is the island’s largest business competition for new start and early stage companies in any sector, from any part of the island. The competition, aimed at companies who have a new equity funding requirement, has an overall total cash prize fund of €280,000. To date, InterTradeIreland has supported over 1,950 enterprising companies through the Seedcorn process with previous finalists going on to secure more than €174 million worth of equity. Bizimply from Dublin was also awarded for the best venture stemming from a University spinout / support programme, walking away with a cash prize fund of €10,000 on the night. Speaking at the final, Thomas Hunter McGowan, CEO, InterTradeIreland said:“To be truly investor ready, it’s not all about the pitch and having a perfect presentation; the proposition, the substance behind it and the team are all key for potential investors. Seedcorn provides young companies, who are at a critical stage of their development, the opportunity to really put their proposition to the test. This year we opened our master classes to all the 24 companies that were taking part in the regional finals, which was a valuable opportunity for them. Not only does this give companies an opportunity to test their proposition robustly but it also starts them off on the journey to learn from the experience of those that have already ‘been there, done that’. “Both Westway Health and Element Software have overcome extremely tough competition throughout the Seedcorn process and their success highlights that they are the bright stars for the future. The team at InterTradeIreland and I sincerely congratulate them both and we look forward to working with them and watching them grow.” Westway Health has developed a technology designed to tackle major problems in human and animal medicine and to fight antibiotic-resistant bacteria, like MRSA. Westway Health has specifically focused on the treatment and prevention of bovine mastitis (infection of the udder) which is a major health and economic issue, costing the dairy industry in the EU and US over €3 billion a year. Conventional antibiotics are currently used to treat mastitis. However, this solution has poor treatment outcomes, leading to culling of cows and lost milk revenues, as milk from cows treated with antibiotics must be withdrawn from sale for a period of time during and after treatment. Westway Health’s product, PanaMast, is the first non-antibiotic solution meaning farmers can continue to sell milk during and following treatment. As up to 80% of dairy cows exhibit some signs of infections at some stage each year, this will have a major impact on the bottom line of farmers and milk producers. Prof. Vincent O’Flaherty, Chairman, Westway Health and Head of NUI Galway's School of Natural Sciences said; “The Seedcorn competition process was a great learning curve and we received invaluable feedback from investors, entrepreneurs and advisors regarding our pitch and business plan. The potential market for PanaMast is €1.5 billion per annum from the major markets in Europe, the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. We are absolutely thrilled to have received this recognition from the Seedcorn judges, especially when we were up against such tough competition. The prize money will help us to fund formal clinical trials next year and to advance towards our target of PanaMast hitting the shelves by 2017.” Founded in 2011 by Dorothy Creaven (CEO) and James Harkin (CTO), Element Software developed Element Wave, a real-time analytics and mobile messaging platform for app publishers who want to address the issues of customer retention and user conversion. One of the biggest issues with the mobile app market is low user retention with more than 70% of mobile app users drop off within the first three months. Real-time analytics and mobile messaging platform, Element Wave, tackles this problem for app publishers by keeping people interested in using their apps. Dorothy Creaven, CEO, Element Software said: “We are absolutely delighted to be InterTradeIreland's Seedcorn winner in the New Start category for 2013. With the high standard of competition, it has been great validation for our new product, Element Wave, and an important milestone for our mobile technology company. Element Wave is the next generation in mobile marketing for B2C companies as it helping to solve the major problem of low user retention in the mobile app industry. The Seedcorn competition has meant a lot to us in terms of attracting marketing and investment opportunities, and the prize money will mainly be used to assist us in closing sales with our growing customer base outside of Ireland. Seedcorn is much more than a standard competition; the feedback on our business plan that we have received along the way has really helped to push our business ahead and we look forward to announcing more exciting news in 2014.” The Seedcorn competition imitates the real-life investment process and gives companies a valuable opportunity to put their business idea to the test and ensure that it is investor- ready and stands up to external scrutiny. Business plans received were initially assessed and short listed companies were subjected to a rigorous investment pitch process by a panel of judges made up of entrepreneurs, investors and business experts in competing for the Best New Start and Best Early Stage Company titles on a regional basis in Connacht & Leinster, Munster, Dublin and Northern Ireland. The regional winners in each category secured an initial €20,000 share of the prize fund for their company. Finalist companies also benefit from being part of the InterTradeIreland Seedcorn Network – an extensive business and investment community that helps boost their profile, contacts and future potential investment opportunities. Further details are available on http://www.intertradeireland.com/seedcorn/. Follow the Seedcorn Competition on Twitter (@ITI_seedcorn #Seedcorn) or on LinkedIn (Seedcorn Network).
Tuesday, 10 December 2013
NUI Galway’s researchers will have the answers at the final of Threesis; Three Slides, Three Minutes Ever wondered how research at NUI Galway affects you, your family, and your community? The public are invited to a competition which might just answer that question on Thursday December 12th, at 7.30 pm in An Taibhdhearc Theatre, Galway City Centre. The THREESIS competition will see NUI Galway staff and students present their research to the audience and a panel of judges in accessible language a non-expert can understand, in three minutes or less. Each of the 8 finalists will have only three slides and three minutes to communicate their research area and relevancy. Competitors are judged on how well they convey their subject and their ability to communicate to a general audience. Each of NUI Galway’s five priority research areas will be represented, with topics ranging from the brain structure of people with Bipolar Disorder to the transport of pollutants in groundwater. The winner will receive a prize and award, based on the decision of the judges who will include: Eithne Verling, Director of the Galway City Museum; Professor Lokesh Joshi, Vice-President of Research at NUI Galway; and Johnny Holden, Irish Times Journalist and Editor of the NUI Galway Research Matters Publication. Professor Lokesh Joshi said: “This event will provide a snapshot of the diversity of research going on at NUI Galway. The talks will be sharp and to-the-point, with plenty of time while the judges deliberate for NUI Galway researchers and members of the community to share ideas over a glass of mulled wine.” He added “The audience will also be treated to a short talk from last year’s THREESIS competition winner, Dr. Ronán Hennessy. His talk “Making Time for Old Lines” is based on his work in developing an animated Google Earth based application for visualizing the evolution of the Irish rail network.” The event is free and refreshments will be served on the night. Please RSVP to email@example.com . -Ends-
Tuesday, 10 December 2013
EU initiative, Puzzled by Policy, provides a free, interactive platform for understanding public attitudes to key policy issues An NUI Galway project, led by INSIGHT will offer Europeans the opportunity to understand key EU policies and issues. The project, an EU Commission eGovernment project aims to give Europeans a voice in policy creation. Developed by leading IT companies, public authorities, universities and NGOs from across Europe, Puzzled by Policy aims to consult with people in a way that is both fun and engaging. It combines innovative online tools with traditional face-to-face consultation techniques to ensure accessibility, transparancy and inclusion, transforming the way in which those who shape European policy listen to and get feedback from the public. Developed over the last 3 years, Puzzled by Policy is a unique combination of online and offline engagement. The online platform, which is freely available to utilise, download and install, makes it easy for any organisation to begin talking with people about the issues that affect them most. Deirdre Lee, Project Co-ordinator from INISIGHT@NUI Galway, says “Puzzled by Policy has demonstrated that new web technologies can improve our democratic systems and can help produce more effective government policy, through open and transparent processes.” “Such innovative technologies are imperative for supporting Irish government initiatives such as the eGovernment Strategy, Open Data Initiative and Open Government Partnership, and was used as part of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Ireland consultation process to define Ireland’s first OGP National Action Plan” she said. Policy Profiler offers a unique way for citizens to understand where their views lie on the political specturm. The uDebate eParticipation platform enables people to freely discuss and exchange ideas. Consultation initiators (government, NGOs, research institutes, thinktanks, etc.) can access all this information in a summarised, visual form to help them understand exactly where public opinion lies on key issues. Ten policy-makers from regional, national and European governments engaged in the Puzzled by Policy process, as did over a hundred NGOs from Spain, Hungary, Greece, Italy, Slovenia and Ireland. Since its inception, the Puzzled by Policy platform has had over 200,000 page views with 6,600 people actively participating. Puzzled by Policy will be presented at a number of major international events over the coming weeks, including the European Commission and EESC’s ‘European Integration Forum’, the Council of Europe’s ‘World Forum for Democracy’ and the Assembly of European Regions’ ‘Building Inclusive Societies Conference’. For more information on adopting Puzzled by Policy visit http://puzzledbypolicy.moonfruit.com/ or www.puzzledbypolicy.eu, or contact Deirdre Lee, the project coordinator, at NUI Galway at 091 495336 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. -Ends-
Wednesday, 4 December 2013
The innovative Higher Diploma in Software Design and Development offers internships to graduates and works with leading ICT companies to meet their employment needs NUI Galway President Dr Jim Browne has awarded the first group of students their Higher Diploma in Software Design and Development (Industry Stream) programme. 90% of those that graduated from the course have found employment. The programme is an innovative collaboration between NUI Galway and leading Information and Communication Technology (ICT) companies which help design the course and provide internships for the graduates. Dr Enda Howley, Director of the Higher Diploma in Software Design and Development (Industry Stream) said “we are seeing huge benefits of closer collaboration between academics and industry and we are fortunate now that these students are able to reap the rewards of this new programme.” “The first year of the programme has exceeded all expectations” he said “and we look forward to working with many more talented students over the coming years and engaging with more new companies interested in developing their long-term supply chain of talent.” The ICT Skills scheme was devised by the Higher Education Authority (HEA) to fund the university fees of suitable graduates from areas such as engineering and science to give them the skills that are needed in the software development industry. NUI Galway has developed the Higher Diploma programme with a view to selecting up to 20 highly performing graduates from areas such as Civil Engineering and pairing them for re-training and internships with suitable industry partners. -ends-
Wednesday, 4 December 2013
Tá áiseanna nua ilmheáin, toradh comhshaothar foirne agus mic léinn faoin scéim EXPLORE seolta ag Scoil an Oideachais, Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh Forbraíodh na háiseanna Ardteistiméireachta seo mar iBooks. Tá siad bunaithe ar churaclam Éiceolaíochta agus Tíreolaíochta na hArdteistiméireachta. Is de thoradh compháirtíochta idir mic léinn agus foireann an DGO (Dioplóma Gairmiúil san Oideachas) a forbraíodh na iBooks seo faoin scéim EXPLORE agus le maoiniú ó COGG (An Chomhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta agus Gaelscolaíochta). Ba iad Séan Ó Grádaigh agus Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir ón DGO a bhí mar bhainisteoirí togra agus a stiúir. Áiseanna teagaisc agus foghlama iad atá feiliúnach do mhúinteoirí agus do dhaltaí araon, atá daite, mealltach, spreagúil agus lán le pictiúir, físeáin agus idirghníomhaíocht. Ag seoladh na sraithe dó, thréaslaigh Gearóid Ó Conluain, Rúnaí na hOllscoile le foireann agus le mic léinn an DGO a rá “Is sampla den scoth iad na háiseanna seo d’fhiúntas comhoibriú foirne agus mic léinn agus béim na hOllscoile ar nuálaíocht agus ar thacaíocht d’úrsmaointe.” Dúirt Seán Ó Grádaigh, agus é ag tagairt do na leabhair thíreolaíochta: “Is fíorannamh a fhaigheann múinteoirí tíreolaíochta an deis a gcuid daltaí a thabhairt amach le hobair allamuigh a chomhlíonadh, ach ag baint úsáide as an gcineál seo teicneolaíochta, is féidir linn an tíreolaíocht bheo a thabhairt isteach sa seomra ranga.” “Tá idir scileanna teicneolaíochta, digiteacha agus praiticiúla le feiceáil agus le foghlaim ag baint úsáide as na leabhair seo. Cuireadh go mór le máistreacht ar an ábhar agus le cumas teicneolaíochta na múinteoirí faoi oiliúint agus iad ag forbairt na leabhar seo” a dúirt Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir. Is féidir teacht ar an háiseanna seo saor in aisce ar an iBook Store. The School of Education in NUI Galway has launched Leaving Cert iBooks, the product of staff – student collaboration on the Dioplóma Gairmiúil san Oideachas iBooks developed by the School of Education in NUI Galway are breathing new life into Woodland Ecology and Geography Fieldwork for Leaving Cert students. The iBooks are the result of NUI Galway’s EXPLORE student / staff innovation collaboration. Seán Ó Grádaigh and Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir from the Dioplóma Gairimiúil san Oideachas in the School of Education collaborated with students from the course to develop the iBooks with the aid of funding from An Chomhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta agus Gaelscolaíochta (COGG) Rúnaí na hOllscoile Gearóid Ó Conluain congratulated staff and students on the iBooks and said “The School of Education’s iBooks are an excellent example of the benefits of staff / student collaboration and underline NUI Galway’s commitment to facilitating innovation and bringing good ideas to life.” Project manager Seán Ó Grádaigh said “Geography students rarely get the opportunity to experience the great outdoors, but this type of technology brings the living Geography into the classroom.” Co-manager Sinéad Ní Ghuidhir said “Using these books enhances not only content knowledge, but also develops digital literacy and practical skills. The student teachers gained invaluable experience in subject mastery and in educational technological competency during the project.” The interactive multimedia teaching resources are aimed at both teachers and students and are packed with imagery, videos and interactive learning. They are now available in the iBook store. -ENDS-
Tuesday, 3 December 2013
NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Athlone Secondary school students interested in NUI Galway are invited to an information evening in Athlone on Thursday, 12 December. Parents and guardians are also particularly welcome to the event which runs from 7 to 9pm in the Radisson Blu Hotel, Athlone, Co. Westmeath. The evening will begin with short talks about NUI Galway and some of the 60 courses it offers. Afterwards, current students and NUI Galway staff will be on hand at information stands to answer any individual questions in relation to courses offered by the University and about practical issues like accommodation, fees and scholarships, and the wide range of support services available to our students. The ever-increasing popularity of NUI Galway is in-part due to a whole suite of innovative new programmes, developed in response to the changing needs of the employment market. Unique programmes include a Bachelor of Arts in Human Rights, an Energy Engineering degree which is taught in the University’s new Engineering Building, Ireland’s largest School of Engineering, and a Maths and Education degree aimed at training Maths teachers. Visitors to the information evening will also get information on NUI Galway’s newest degree programme, a BA in Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies, BA in Journalism, BA in Science (Physics- degree options in Applied, Astrophysics, Biomedical or Theoretical) and a Bachelor of Commerce (Gaeilge) which is brand new for 2013-14. “NUI Galway has a great deal to offer. Our own students tell us our lecturers are inspirational and challenge them to achieve their full potential. The student experience in Galway is second to none, and we want to bring a taste of that to Athlone, while also providing all the practical information on accommodation, CAO points, fees, scholarships and courses. With so many courses on offer, this event in Athlone is a perfect opportunity for prospective students to meet current students and lecturers to see what degree might be the right fit for them”, says Caroline Loughnane, Director of Marketing and Communications at NUI Galway. To find out more about the information evening in Athlone, contact NUI Galway's Schools Liaison Officer, Celine O’Donovan on 087 2391219 or email@example.com. -Ends-
Tuesday, 3 December 2013
Project aims to foster academic-industry research interactions between Ireland and Japan An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny T.D. has announced that a consortium of Irish Higher Education Institutions, led by NUI Galway has been awarded €1.24m in funding to collaborate with their Japanese counterparts through Science Foundation Ireland’s (SFI) International Strategic Cooperation Award (ISCA). The NUI Galway-led consortium of Irish Research Bodies will partner with 21 Japanese Universities and a number of companies and research institutes, with the aim of building strategic partnerships to perform cutting-edge scientific research, encourage more industry-informed research, and foster academic-industry interactions between Ireland and Japan. Speaking in Tokyo, Japan, An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny TD said, “This new initiative, supported by the Irish Government through Science Foundation Ireland, will build on the extensive linkages that already exist between the Irish and Japanese research communities. It will encourage a higher level of research engagement at both an academic and industrial level." "The ultimate aim" An Taoiseach said "is to create innovative products, services and jobs to benefit Ireland and Japan as well as tackling important social challenges such as caring for an ageing population and climate change. Importantly, it will also help increase awareness of Ireland’s growing international standing in the area of research among potential new partner organisations in Japan.” Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of SFI and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government, said, "Ireland ranks 20 in the world for the quality of its research. Our focus on funding excellent scientific research with impact is important for the economy and country. Ireland continues to develop strategic international partnerships. Through SFI’s ISCA programme we are fostering new important research collaborations between Irish based Researchers and both academic and industry partners in Japan.” The partnerships developed by the consortium will address 6 key thematic areas which align with both Irish and Japanese research priorities. These are: · Environmental and climate sciences and technologies; · ICT and Big Data analytics; · Advanced manufacturing and materials; · Imaging and optics; · Future healthcare including connected health; · Medical devices and regenerative medicine. Project Leader, Professor Ciaran Morrison of NUI Galway, commented "Many Irish researchers already have significant interactions with Japanese colleagues but until now there has not been a framework to support those interactions and to convert them into more tangible collaborations. The key goal of this initiative is to promote Irish science to Japanese research institutions, in order to forge new collaborative links between researchers in the two countries. Japanese research is very strong and Irish researchers can really benefit from closer association with their Japanese counterparts". ENDS
Tuesday, 3 December 2013
The NUI Galway Students’ Union Enterprise Awards, now in their 4th year, reward enterprise and innovation among students. The NUI Galway Students’ Union Enterprise Awards, now in its fourth year, invites students across the campus to put forward proposals for a project or business. The winner will receive a prize of €10,000 investment capital and the two runners up will receive prizes of €5,000 each. The NUI Galway Students’ Union Enterprise Awards aim to unlock the potential of NUI Galway students by providing financial support and expertise for students who wish to start a project in the areas of business and/or social entrepreneurship. The awards are generously supported by NUI Galway and NUI Galway Students’ Union. The closing date for submissions is 5pm Friday 17th January. More information is available at www.su.nuigalway.ie NUI Galway President Dr Jim Browne said “The Enterprise Awards offer an opportunity for students to bring ideas to life and, in doing so, learn invaluable business and entrepreneurial skills. A key aim in NUI Galway is to offer our students a broad skillset that builds on their academic achievements and prepares them for the challenges of working life. “ Sean Kearns, President of NUI Galway Students’ Union, said “the Enterprise Awards are a showcase for the best and brightest student minds on campus. They reflect the dynamic, innovative and creative graduates we all wish to see emerging from NUI Galway, now and in the years ahead.” 2012 Enterprise Award Overall Winner Niamh Duffy said “The NUI Galway Students’ Union Enterprise awards is a truly life changing experience. Having zero business knowledge prior to taking part, the skills and knowledge I gained were invaluable to making my vision a reality no matter what the outcome. A year on and we are getting ready for our big launch thanks to the awards!” -Ends-
Monday, 2 December 2013
The Creative Edge Project shows that the Audio Visual Sector added €72m to the economy of county Galway alone in 2012, employing over 600 people UNESCO has identified the creative economy as one of the most rapidly growing sectors of the world economy. The recently published Creative Economy Report further confirmed that the creative economy can transform export earnings, job creation and an economy’s ability to generate income. The Creative Edge project, at the Whitaker Institute in NUI Galway is a €1.1 million funded initiative supported by the European Union through the Northern Periphery Programme that has explicitly focused on the development of the Creative Economy in Europe’s peripheral regions. To mark the end of the Creative Edge project, NUI Galway’s Whitaker Institute will host a conference entitled ‘How Creative Industries Contribute To and Shape Peripheral Region Societies and Economies?’ on Monday, 2 December, 11am – 3pm in An Taibhdhearc, Middle St. in Galway City. Key findings of the research carried out by members of the Whitaker Institute point to the vibrancy of the Creative Economy across the Western Region of Ireland: The West of Ireland is home to 2,466 creative industries, ranging from micro enterprises to those who employ hundreds in this growing sector. The audio visual sector in Galway alone contributed over €72 million to the local economy in 2012, employing over 600 people in highly skilled positions County Galway hosted 83 festivals and events in 2012 ranging from local fairs to international events like the Volvo Ocean Race, which brought in over €62 million in expenditure to the Galway city-region. Graduates trained in creative economy pursuits are four times more likely to set up their own business. The creative sector has positive spillover benefits into other industrial sectors and more broadly in terms of contributing to social and community development as well as place making and identity formation. Dr Patrick Collins, School of Geography and Archaeology and the Whitaker Institute for Innovation and Societal Change at NUI Galway, said: “This is important work because we in the west of Ireland have an obvious competitive and comparative advantage in creative/cultural produce. We are known for our ability to tell stories, to paint a picture through the use of different media, and this sort of narrative construction is fundamental to success in the Creative Economy.” The project focuses on four regions across the northern periphery of Europe - Vasterbotten in Northern Sweden; Kemi-Tornio, in Northern Finland; South East Economic Development region in Northern Ireland; and the West of Ireland, all of whom share a high degree of rurality. James Cunningham, Director of the Whitaker Institute for Innovation and Societal Change, said: “The Creative Edge project has demonstrated the importance of the creative industries to the economic and social vibrancy of peripheral communities and has piloted new ways of how this sector can retain local authenticity while having an international focus in exploiting new markets and opportunities.” Ian Brannigan, Regional Development Director of the Western Development Commission said "The WDC is delighted to continue our efforts with the Whitaker institute to grow the creative industries sector in the West of Ireland and beyond. Our “mycreative-edge.eu” platform has allowed hundreds of regional creative businesses to access global markets and with 8,500 unique views last month alone we are excited to see interest translate to sales in the run up to the Christmas season". Those interested in creating a free online profile and promoting their creative business internationally with MyCreativeEdge can register at www.mycreativeedge.eu/register. -ends-
Monday, 2 December 2013
Are you in primary school? Would you like to see what NUI Galway is like? Monday, 02 December, 2013: NUI Galway is inviting students from 4th, 5th and 6th class to apply for a taste of university life. NUI Galway Youth Academy is now taking applications for its next round of courses beginning in January 2014. Classes will run over six Saturday mornings in January and February from 10am to 12.30pm, followed by a graduation ceremony for the University’s youngest graduates in March 2014! To date almost 400 students from primary schools across Galway city and county have participated in a range of specially designed courses ranging from IT to Italian and Engineering to Psychology. NUI Galway established their Youth Academy in 2012 in order to give 4th, 5th and 6th class primary school students with ability a stimulating introduction to University life. The Academy gives students and their families a taste of what it is like to study at one of Ireland’s most popular universities, and perhaps, inspire them to progress to third-level education. All courses are highly interactive and use a variety of teaching techniques to ensure students get the most out of their time at NUI Galway. The courses offered as part of the Youth Academy include: Idea detectives-Exploring the world with Philosophy Discovering Italy: Italian Language and Italian Genius Psychology: who we are, how we think and what we do Engineering our planet A fun introduction to computer programming, the internet and multimedia Weird stuff our ancestors did Words and books: playing with language and literature Introduction to Mandarin Bio-EXPLORERS Ocean Physics: Motion in the Ocean When Play Becomes Performance: How to Make Drama A fee of €150 per student applies for the six week programme and the graduation celebration day. A limited number of scholarships providing free places to students are available depending on family circumstances. To apply for the Youth Academy or for further information on all of the courses visit www.nuigalway.ie/youthacademy. Places are allocated on a first-come first-served basis and students participate in one course for the duration of the programme. The closing date for applications is Friday, 13 December and early booking is advisable. Geraldine Marley, the Youth Academy Coordinator said: “We are delighted to announce the next round of courses for 2014 and are looking forward to welcoming children and their families to NUI Galway.” -Ends-
Tuesday, 5 November 2013
NUI Galway President Dr Jim Browne welcomes ‘further recognition of NUI Galway’s commitment to biomedical excellence.’ The Stanford Biodesign programme has selected BioInnovate Ireland, led by NUI Galway, as their first Global Affiliate Programme, an affiliation that represents the Stanford programme’s recognition of BioInnovate Ireland's continued growth and development. This affiliation will serve to further the collaborations between both programmes, lead to the development of further training materials and exercises, and allow interactions between Fellows on both programmes. Dr Paul Yock, Director of Stanford Biodesign said ‘We are pleased and excited to see the growth of BioInnovate Ireland into a world-class training program in biomedical technology innovation. Going forward, we are happy to be able to partner with BioInnovate as our first “Global Affiliate” program. We look forward to this opportunity to share best practices in education and training, create new teaching materials and provide mutually beneficial experiences for our fellows and students.’ President of NUI Galway Dr Jim Browne said ‘this affiliation is further recognition of NUI Galway’s commitment to biomedical excellence. The BioInnovate programme enables collaboration across diverse fields to meet the needs of patients, clinicians and industry and puts innovation at the forefront of what we do.” Dr Mark Bruzzi, Director of BioInnovate Ireland said ‘We are delighted to partner with Stanford Biodesign through their affiliates programme, and very much look forward to working with them and maximising our efforts to the benefit of both programs.’ The BioInnovate Ireland Fellowship is a medical device innovation training programme modelled on the prestigious Stanford Biodesign programme. With industry, academic and government support, and access to leading academic researchers, clinicians and industry experts worldwide, the programme facilitates and trains multidisciplinary teams of experienced professionals in the process of matching unmet clinical needs to attractive market opportunities. The programme is led by NUI Galway and offered in collaboration with University of Limerick, University College Cork and Dublin City University. Programme support comes from Enterprise Ireland, Irish Medical Devices Association (IMDA), Boston Scientific, Medtronic, Creganna Tactx Medical, Steripack, Aerogen and Zeus.
Monday, 4 November 2013
Secondary school students interested in NUI Galway are invited to an information evening in Kildare on Thursday, 14 November. Parents and guardians are also particularly welcome to the event which runs from 7 to 9pm in the Osprey Hotel, Naas, Co. Kildare. The evening will begin with short talks about NUI Galway and some of the 60 courses it offers. Afterwards, current students and NUI Galway staff will be on hand at information stands to answer any individual questions in relation to courses offered by the University and about practical issues like accommodation, fees and scholarships, and the wide range of support services available to our students. The ever-increasing popularity of NUI Galway is in-part due to a whole suite of innovative new programmes, developed in response to the changing needs of the employment market. Unique programmes include a Bachelor of Arts in Human Rights, an Energy Engineering degree which is taught in the University’s new Engineering Building, Ireland’s largest School of Engineering, and a Maths and Education degree aimed at training Maths teachers. Visitors to the information evening will also get information on NUI Galway’s newest degree programme, a BA in Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies, BA in Journalism, BA in Science (Physics- degree options in Applied, Astrophysics, Biomedical or Theoretical) and a Bachelor of Commerce (Gaeilge) which is brand new for 2013-14. “NUI Galway has a great deal to offer. Our own students tell us our lecturers are inspirational and challenge them to achieve their full potential. The student experience in Galway is second to none, and we want to bring a taste of that to Kildare, while also providing all the practical information on accommodation, CAO points, fees, scholarships and courses. With so many courses on offer, this event in Naas is a perfect opportunity for prospective students to meet current students and lecturers to see what degree might be the right fit for them”, says Caroline Loughnane, Director of Marketing and Communications at NUI Galway. To find out more about the information evening in Kildare, contact NUI Galway's Schools Liaison Officer, Siobhan Dorman on 086 042 1591 or firstname.lastname@example.org. -Ends-
Monday, 4 November 2013
The site, a collaboration between NUI Galway, the HSE and the Health Protection Surveillance Centre, will provide real time data about the spread of the flu Flusurvey.ie is a new website that will map the spread of the seasonal flu and allow health authorities and members of the public fight against the seasonal flu. Flusurvey.ie is part of Influenzanet, already used in other European countries, which is an innovative development using on-line volunteers to support existing influenza monitoring systems. It is a research collaboration between NUI Galway, the HSE/Health Protection Surveillance Centre, and international partners from the EU-wide Influenzanet project. The system will indicate to those that register, how many other cases are recorded in their area. It will provide valuable real-time public health information on the demographics and geographic location of influenza sufferers. Using internet technology it provides public health agencies across Europe with novel opportunities for gathering data from members of the public on infectious diseases such as influenza. Volunteers register online and self-report by answering short questions relating to demographic, medical, socio-economic and lifestyle issues. The information received is anonymous and only general non-specific information is made available. Participants can view interactive maps with influenza data broken down at their local and national levels, and the system can map the spread of the disease in its early stages, and provide health professionals with an early warning signal of nationwide outbreaks. Project Leader Dr. Jim Duggan, Senior Lecturer at the College of Engineering and Informatics, and Researcher at the Ryan Institute, says that “Modern technology can transform the way people interact with their physicians, and the wider public health system. This new project will demonstrate the potential for national self-reporting systems, and the approach can be extended for surveillance of other diseases, especially those which are not being monitored regularly through traditional public health surveillance.” Dr. Darina O’Flanagan of the HSE/HPSC welcomed the initiative and said that Flusurvey.ie / Influenzanet will be a useful addition to flu surveillance in Ireland and that the information gathered will be aggregated to complement existing methods of influenza surveillance, and to support modelling and analysis activities. Seasonal influenza is a highly contagious viral disease that is characterised by a sudden onset of fever, accompanied by muscle pain or headache, and a cough or sore throat. In Ireland, the influenza season typically starts in October, and continues through to late May. In additional to the debilitating nature of influenza for individuals, international studies have consistently highlighted the adverse economic impact of the virus due to absenteeism, and also how it can adversely impact on an individual’s productivity in the workplace. Influenzanet is accessible at http://flusurvey.ie, and will be available to the general public from Monday November 4th, 2013.
Monday, 4 November 2013
Harnessing diatoms, a type of microscopic algae, as a platform for drug delivery has been the focus of one of many research projects funded by Science Foundation Ireland at the Network of Excellence for Functional Biomaterials (NFB) at NUI Galway. Research describing methods to alter the chemical composition and architectural features of diatoms has recently been published in the November issueof Nature Communications. With an impact factor of 10.015, Nature Communications is rated third among all multidisciplinary science primary research journals for 2012. The production of nanomaterials is a fast developing field of nanotechnology. The synthesis of nanomaterials varying in chemical composition and size is challenging. Biological structures inspire for the design and fabrication of advanced nanostructured materials. A variety of organisms is capable of synthesising complicated architectures, among which are diatoms. Diatoms are microalgae found in both freshwater and seawater environments. To date over 100,000 species have been identified. Diatoms have enormous ecological importance and contain nano-scale diverse patterns and structures. Current engineering practices cannot manufacture the highly elaborate architecture of diatoms. Diatoms and their unique architecture are currently being investigated as new, effective vehicles for drug and gene delivery. In this application, the diatom would carry an appropriate amount of drug or gene to the desired site (e.g., tumours or diseased tissues), while minimising undesired side effects of the drugs on other tissues. Diatoms are also being explored as biosensors because of their large surface area and optical properties. The silica structures of diatoms are readily integrated with traditional processing methods in the semiconductor industry. Yvonne Lang, a PhD student at the NFB, collected diatoms from Galway Bay and cultured them in the laboratory. Her work was supervised by NUI Galway’s Professor Abhay Pandit and co-supervised by Dr David Finn. Yvonne’s research involved altering the chemistry of the living diatom and tailoring it for its intended application. The results presented in Nature Communications describe this innovative strategy, and how various microscopy techniques enabled both chemical and architectural modifications to be monitored in microscopic algae. An extension of this work will allow this natural resource to be harnessed for the preparation of biocompatible structures for the delivery of therapeutics.
Thursday, 7 November 2013
100 new Postgraduate Scholarships for full-time Taught Masters 2014 NUI Galway has announced details of a new scholarship scheme for postgraduate students designed to reward exceptional achievement. Postgraduate Scholarships valued at €1,500 per student will be awarded to all students studying a postgraduate taught Masters programme in the year 2014/15 who have a first class honours undergraduate degree. The scheme is open to postgraduate students, applying for a fulltime Taught Masters programme due to commence in autumn 2014. Scholarships will be awarded to students accepted on a fulltime taught masters and who fulfill the criteria as outlined by the University. Interested students should visit the NUI Galway website for further detail about the scholarships and for information about the general postgraduate student application process: www.nuigalway.ie/postgraduate/scholarships. NUI Galway offers over 500 postgraduate taught programmes, with a wide range of programme choice across its five Colleges, and flexible modes of delivery. Postgraduate study is increasingly essential in enabling new graduates to develop specialist knowledge in particular fields, and in enhancing employability skills. But course fees, along with maintenance costs, put postgraduate study out of the reach of many talented students. Announcing the scholarships at the University’s recent Postgraduate Open Day on campus, Professor Nollaig MacCongháil, Registrar and Deputy President of NUI Galway, said “the scholarships were developed in response to the cuts in maintenance funding for postgraduate students." He said "we know that more and more students are looking to postgraduate study as a means of enhancing their skills and their employability, but financial constraints are a big problem. We believe that these scholarships will enable more of the brightest and most committed students to progress to postgraduate study.” Postgraduate students make up a significant part of the student population at NUI Galway, with almost 4,000 students (taught and research) across all schools and disciplines. For more information on postgraduate programmes and scholarships at NUI Galway visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/postgraduate/scholarships or phone 091 492844 or email email@example.com. ENDS
Thursday, 7 November 2013
100 Scoláireacht nua Iarchéime do Chláir lánaimseartha Mháistreachta Mhúinte 2014 D’fhógair OÉ Gaillimh sonraí faoi scéim scoláireachtaí do mhic léinn iarchéime chun gnóthachan eisceachtúil a aithint. Bronnfar Scoláireachtaí Iarchéime ar luach €1,500 an mac léinn ar gach mac léinn ar glacadh leo ar chláir lánaimseartha Mháistreachta Mhúinte in 2014/15 a bhfuil fochéim chéadonóracha acu. Tá an deis seo ar fáil do mhic léinn iarchéime a dhéanann iarratas ar chlár Máistreachta Múinte lánaimseartha atá le tosú i bhfómhar 2014. Bronnfar scoláireachtaí ar mhic léinn a ghlacann le háit ar mháistreacht lánaimseartha teagaisc agus a chomhlíonann critéir na hOllscoile. Ba cheart do mhic léinn a bhfuil spéis acu anseo cuairt a thabhairt ar láithreán gréasáin OÉ Gaillimh chun tuilleadh eolais a fháil faoi scoláireachtaí agus chun eolas ginearálta a fháil faoin bpróiseas iarratais do mhic léinn iarchéime: www.nuigalway.ie/postgraduate/scholarships. Cuireann OÉ Gaillimh os cionn 500 clár iarchéime múinte ar fáil le rogha leathan as cúig Choláiste agus modhanna solúbtha seachadta. Tá staidéar iarchéime ag éirí níos riachtanaí chun saineolas a thabhairt do chéimithe nua i réimsí áirithe agus chun scileanna fostaíochta a fheabhsú. Ach mar gheall ar tháillí na gcúrsaí mar aon le costais chothabhála bíonn go leor mic léinn chumasacha nach mbíonn in acmhainn tabhairt faoi staidéar iarchéime. Ag labhairt dó faoin bhfógra, a rinneadh ag an Lá Oscailte Iarchéime ar an gcampas le gairid, dúirt an tOllamh Nollaig MacCongháil, Meabhránaí agus Leas Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh: “Forbraíodh na scoláireachtaí mar fhreagra díreach ar na ciorruithe a rinneadh ar mhaoiniú cothabhála do mhic léinn iarchéime. Tá a fhios againn go bhfuil níos mó mic léinn ag díriú ar staidéar iarchéime d’fhonn cur lena gcuid scileanna agus chun a gcuid deiseanna fostaíochta a fheabhsú, ach tá srianta airgid ag cothú fadhbanna móra. Creidimid go dtabharfaidh na scoláireachtaí seo deis do níos mó de na mic léinn is cliste agus is tiomanta dul ar aghaidh chuig staidéar iarchéime.” Is mic léinn iarchéime iad cuid mhór de phobal OÉ Gaillimh; tá beagnach 4,000 mac léinn (ar chláir mhúinte agus thaighde) sna scoileanna agus sna disciplíní ar fad. Chun tuilleadh eolais a fháil ar chláir agus ar scoláireachtaí iarchéime in OÉ Gaillimh téigh chuig http://www.nuigalway.ie/postgraduate/scholarships nó glaoigh ar 091 492844 nó seol rphost chuig firstname.lastname@example.org. CRÍOCH
Friday, 8 November 2013
Event celebrates 10 years of Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD) accreditation of NUI Galway’s Masters of Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management Dr John McGurk, Head of CIPD, addressed HR professionals, Western Region CIPD branch members, NUI Galway students, staff and alumni and spoke about the importance of human resource management in supporting organizational innovation. The event, sponsored by Medtronic, was jointly organised by the Discipline of Management and the Western Region CIPD branch and was held the Aula Maxima in NUI Galway. Dr McGurk, explaining the people aspect of innovation, said “innovation is essentially about people connecting using their skills and sharing and combining knowledge. HR can play a critical role in supporting that effort.“ Martin Conroy, Senior Director of Continuous Improvement for Medtronic, also addressing the conference, agreed that product and process advances are not simply technological outcomes and require unlocking the potential of organisation’s employees. Mr. Conroy, who trained as an engineer, explained that value was added by HR policies that supported employee empowerment. Tom Ryan, Associate HR Director at Alkermes and Annette Murphy, Assistant Principal, Department of Social Protection, course alumni, described the role of HR in supporting innovation in private and public sector organisations. The event was chaired by alumnus Geraldine Grady, Chairperson of the Western Region branch of CIPD. Maureen Maloney, Programme Director for the Masters in Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management at NUI Galway said, “It was fantastic to assemble such a group of high quality participants to speak about an important and timely topic. Of course, we were delighted to reunite with our alumni and friends from the HR community.” This seminar was organised to celebrate 10 years of CIPD accreditation of the Master in Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management at NUI Galway. Over 200 alumni of the programme are working as professional HR managers in Ireland, the UK, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, China, Australia, the United States and other countries.
Monday, 11 November 2013
Project aims to tackle early falls detection both inside and outside the home NUI Galway is testing a wearable sensor and home wireless network to detect falls in the elderly, as part of a €2.25 million EU project called FATE. The project is actively recruiting participants aged 64 and over to test the system in their own homes. The FATE system is made up of a highly sensitive, portable fall detector, a wireless home network and a smart phone. The portable fall detector incorporates accelerometers which are capable of running complex falls detection algorithms. Unique features of this system include a bed sensor for night-time monitoring and the ability to monitor falls even outside the home. The FATE - FAll deTector for the Elderly is an EU Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) funded project involving 10 partners across Europe including a multidisciplinary team from NUI Galway, Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Physiology, Occupational Therapy, Nursing, Gerontology and Podiatry. The project aims to test and validate this innovative ICT-based solution to improve the quality of life of the elderly population, both at home and outdoors. Falls in the aging population are a very significant problem, an economic burden for care providers and are associated with significant deterioration in the person’s quality of life often resulting in hospitalisation. Professor Gearóid Ó Laighin, Professor of Electronic Engineering at NUI Galway and FATE Principal Investigator for NUI Galway says “one of the key issues with falls in the elderly is the so called “long lie” where fallers remain on the floor for more hour after the fall due to lack of detection. This system has the potential to significantly reduce the incidence of undetected falls and drastically improve outcomes after a fall”. Dr Leo Quinlan from the Discipline of Physiology, School of Medicine at NUI Galway and project leader for FATE describes the potential impact of the system as very significant and explains “Falls can lead to a restriction in normal activity levels for the older person, due to developing a fear of falling leading to a social isolation and reduced quality of life. This system has the potential to give confidence and security to both the older person and their carers.” Recruitment for the study is on-going and Mary Rose Mulry (Occupational Therapy) and Dean Sweeney (Electronic & Electrical Engineering, NUI Galway) will visit interested candidates to discuss taking part in the study and what is involved for those that do. For more information visit http://fate.upc.edu/index.php Contact Mary Rose Mulry 085 815 1871 or email@example.com or Dean Sweeney 087 711 7064 firstname.lastname@example.org -ends-
Monday, 11 November 2013
Introducing children and their families to the fascinating world of how living things work! Do you ever wonder how living things work? Or what they are made of? Or how scientists study living things and how this can help us? Cell EXPLORERS, part of the Bio-EXPLORERS science outreach programme based in the School of Natural Sciences at NUI Galway (www.nuigalway.ie/bughunters/), answers all these questions and more! On the final day of the Galway Science and Technology Festival, Cell EXPLORERS will present two workshops in NUI Galway. The Cell EXPLORERS Show will lead children and their parents through a series of interactive workstations where they will learn about the workings of the living cell and the instructions that control it. In the second workshop, The School of Natural Sciences Next Top Model, families will get a chance to interact with the NUI Galway researchers and learn about the model organisms they study and why they study them. Then decisions will have to be made and votes cast to crown the inaugural School of Natural Sciences Next Top Model organism! Do not forget to book your free ticket on the Galway Science and technology Festival website (www.galwayscience.ie) and make sure to come and join us on the 2013 Galway Science & Technology Festival Exhibition day on Sunday 24th November where you too can become a Cell EXPLORER! As well as interactive workshops, the Cell EXPLORERS team of volunteers is running a Road show. The Cell EXPLORERS team of volunteers has travelled over the past year and visited more than twenty 5th and 6th primary school classes, introducing over 600 local school children to the excitement of working in science. This success has allowed the programme to be granted key prestigious funding this year. This year the Cell EXPLORERS Roadshow is travelling to schools outside of Galway city, those schools that rarely receive science show visits. Funding from Science Foundation Ireland’s Discover Science & Engineering Programme Award, and the support of the Galway Science and Technology Festival, means that the Roadshow will reach another twenty primary school classes this autumn culminating during Science week and the Galway Science and Technology festival. Further funding from a Wellcome Trust People Award is allowing new school visits to be designed and implemented by Biochemistry undergraduates as part of their degree course. Also, for the first time, Cell EXPLORERS is visiting infants, 1st & 2nd classes in an exciting collaboration with Naomi Lavelle, of Dr How’s Science Wows. The “Little Cells” project is funded by the Galway Science and Technology Festival and introduces these young children to the different kinds of cells in our bodies in a fun and interactive way. Make sure you explore the extraordinary with Cell EXPLORERS this year! About the Wellcome Trust The Wellcome Trust is a global charitable foundation dedicated to achieving extraordinary improvements in human and animal health. It supports the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities. The Trust’s breadth of support includes public engagement, education and the application of research to improve health. It is independent of both political and commercial interests. www.wellcome.ac.uk - Ends -
Tuesday, 12 November 2013
Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway was honoured with the prestigious Outstanding Contribution to Engineering Award at the fourth annual Engineers Ireland Excellence Award ceremony in the Four Seasons Hotel in Dublin on Friday, 8th November. Dr Browne, a graduate from NUI Galway and a native of County Westmeath, has had an international career that spans both industry and education. He spent a number of years working with Nortel Networks in Canada and Ireland and has also consulted with a wide range of Irish and international corporations, overseas universities as well as public and private bodies. The twelfth and current President of NUI Galway has published over 200 academic papers and 15 books, including translations into French and Chinese. He was awarded a Doctor of Science by the University of Manchester for published work in 1990 and he is a member of both the Royal Irish Academy, the Irish Academy of Engineering and is a Fellow of Engineers Ireland. In April this year, the Minister for Health & Children, Dr James Reilly T.D. appointed Dr Browne as the Chair of the Children’s Hospital Group Board to oversee the merger of the three children’s hospitals in advance of the move to the chosen site in Dublin. Accepting the award Dr Jim Browne said, “I am delighted and humbled to receive this award from Engineers Ireland, and all the more so given the high standing and professionalism of Irish engineers. I had the great honour to serve as President of Engineers Ireland in 2008 / 2009. During that time I had the opportunity to see, at first hand, the tremendous contribution that engineers make to all sectors of the Irish economy and society. At NUI Galway, we are teaching and inspiring the next generation of engineers, preparing them to make their mark on the future of Irish engineering.” Commenting on the award, Engineers Ireland Director General and Chartered Engineer, John Power, said, “I am delighted to present the Outstanding Contribution Award to Jim; his leadership role is reflected in the number and variety of his memberships including the editorial boards of a number of international research journals, the Senate of the National University of Ireland and the Review Group on Engineering Research Centres in the UK, to name just a few. “In addition to the significant contribution he has made to the engineering profession, Jim is well recognised as most approachable, friendly and helpful by all his peers, colleagues and indeed students. He is a shining example of what is wonderful about engineers and the profession and is totally dedicated to Ireland's recovery in both word and deed.” Mr Power added. The fourth Engineers Ireland Excellence Awards also included awards for: Engineering Project of the Year Award, sponsored by the NRA – East West Interconnector, EirGrid Plc Chartered Engineer of the Year Award - Kevin Harnett, Chartered Engineer shortlisted for his contribution to the project ‘Development of a Commercial Scale Tidal Stream Turbine’ with OpenHyrdo Engineering Education Award – Best in Class 2013, sponsored by CRH Plc - Online Engineering Education – Institute of Sligo Technology of the Year Award, sponsored by the NSAI - Enhanced Wind Turbine - Airsynergy Environmental Infrastructure Award, sponsored by EPA – Mullingar Water Treatment Scheme, Contractors: Veolia Water Ltd, BAM Civil Ltd, Pierse Contracting Ltd, Consulting engineers: J.B. Barry & Partners Ltd / Byrne Looby Partners, Westmeath County Council Leadership Award, sponsored by Shell E&P Limited - John Barry, Chartered Engineer, Programme director for Irish Water Volunteer of the Year Award – Peter Tiernan, Chartered Engineer, Thomand region International Engineer Award sponsored by ESB –Niall McDermott, Chartered Engineer, Director of the International Group at J.B. Barry and Partners Limited Best Paper / Presentation Award, sponsored by Griffiths & Armour and Beale and Company - ‘Titanic Belfast – Designing an Icon’, presented by: Dr. Michael Shaw, Chartered Engineer, Barry McAllister, Chartered Engineer, Paul McGettigan, Chartered Engineer, RPS Group Belfast Innovative Student of the Year Award, sponsored by Siemens - Patrick Byrnes, Cork Institute of Technology, Innovative Student Engineer - Level 8 and Alastair Chambers, Institute of Technology Carlow, Innovative Student Engineer - Level 7 Continuing Professional Development Employer of the Year Award, sponsored by Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland – joint winners, Abbott Ireland, Sligo and Cavan and Dromone Engineering, Meath -Ends-
Tuesday, 12 November 2013
NUI Galway’s Astronomy Society will host the first Science Fortnight, running from 11-22 November. The Science Fortnight will take place in conjunction with National Science Week and the Galway Science and Technology Festival, with all events taking place on campus. As part of Science Fortnight, the NUI Galway Astronomy Society will welcome Kevin Nolan for a special public talk entitled ‘Exploring Mars, Discovering Earth’ on Wednesday, 20 November. Kevin Nolan is a lecturer in physics at the Institute of Technology Tallaght and Co-ordinator to Ireland for The Planetary Society. Kevin is nearing completion of a part-time PhD involving design of a software image analysis pipeline for the European Space Agency’s INTEGRAL, a multi-wavelength space observatory. He is a published author of Mars, a Cosmic Stepping Stone, which looks at the effects and relevance of Mars exploration. This talk will discuss how people have attributed naïve "Earth-like" characteristics to our sister planet for centuries. Though early space missions obliterated those early perceptions - suggesting Mars to be a dormant world - recent missions reveal a planet with characteristics and past activity suggestive of early Earth-like characteristics now regarded as relevant to the emergence of life. With a well set out strategy, the exploration of Mars has finally matured and is expected to deliver valuable scientific insights. This talk will examine some of these issues and present the latest findings from the MSL-Curiosity Rover currently exploring the surface of the Red Planet. The talk will take place at 7pm in the Colm Ó hÉocha Theatre in the Arts Millennium Building (AM250), NUI Galway. This talk is free and open to the general public. The NUI Galway Astronomy society is in its second year with nearly 600 members. The main goal of the society is to promote astronomy, both recreationally and academically. Throughout the year the society hosts a series of talks on astronomy and organise events to increase general awareness and understanding of astronomy. They work with the Galway Astronomy club and are supported by the University's Centre for Astronomy. -Ends-