NUI Galway Appoints Director of Marketing and Communications

Monday, 14 July 2008

NUI Galway is pleased to announce that Caroline Loughnane has joined the University as Director of Marketing and Communications. She has worked in education marketing for the last ten years, and as Head of Marketing at the University of Birmingham for the last five years. Ms Loughnane is a graduate of NUI Galway, having completed her BA in English and History in 1993, and an MA in English Literature (1996). She also holds a Higher Diploma in Education from Galway (1998) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing. Caroline, originally from Gort, Co. Galway, brings with her over ten years experience in marketing and communications in the education sector. During her time at Birmingham, she was responsible for an extensive rebranding of the University, the development of a postgraduate recruitment strategy, internal communications to support a University-wide restructure, integrated marketing and communications campaigns, and developing innovative approaches to student recruitment in a highly competitive undergraduate market. Speaking about her appointment, Ms Loughnane said: "I am delighted to be joining NUI Galway at such an exciting time for the University. NUI Galway is one of Ireland's top universities and has ambitious plans for the future. I am looking forward to the opportunity of taking the University into the next phase of its development, and to building on the excellent work that has already taken place in raising the University's profile, nationally and internationally." Ms Loughnane added: "The Higher Education sector has transformed itself over the last ten years and universities are now competing in a global arena. Marketing and Communications have a key role to play in enabling Irish Universities to compete on an international stage." -ends-

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Dark Ages were Golden Age of Irish Scholarship

Monday, 14 July 2008

History expert hopeful of a resurgence of interest in science and maths An International Conference on the significant role played by Ireland in the field of mathematics in the Early Middle Ages takes place at NUI Galway from 18-20 July 2008. The 2nd International Conference on the Science of Computus will bring together leading scholars of Early Medieval scientific knowledge during the period of the so-called 'Dark Ages'. The Science of Computus is the mathematics required to calculate the date of Easter and related topics. Computus straddles the fields of: mathematics and astronomy; biblical interpretation and cosmology; empirical astronomical observation; and the perennial quest to understand the concepts of Time and Time-Reckoning. The conference is organised by the HEA funded Foundations of Irish Culture Project, based in the Moore Institute for Research in the Humanities and Social Studies at NUI Galway. According to the Director of the Foundations of Irish Culture Project and conference convener, NUI Galway's Professor Dáibhí Ó Cróinín: "There is much talk these days about the decline of mathematics and the sciences in Irish schools, and the effect that will have on the future prospects for Ireland's economy and society. What many Irish people don't realise is that Ireland was once at the forefront of mathematics and science. In fact, the 'Dark Ages' were anything but dark in the fields of mathematics and astronomy, rather it was the 'Golden Age' of Irish medieval scholarship." Professor Ó Cróinín is hopeful of a resurgence of interest in science and maths: "We only need to look at events like the Young Scientist Competition, and our own University outreach programmes, to see that there is interest in the sciences among young people which can be cultivated and nurtured. There is also a vast amount of state-of-the-art work being carried out by Irish scholars and researchers, at home and abroad. The conference aims to highlight the very similar cooperative-type work that was being carried out, between Ireland and Europe, during the Golden Age of Irish medieval scholarship." The conference has attracted speakers and experts from Australia, Belgium, Canada, England, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Scotland, Spain, and the USA. Professor Ó Cróinín added, "From the time of Columbanus, around 615 AD, Irish scholars led Europe in the field of computistical studies. The contribution of our 'Wandering Scholars' is still highly regarded in other countries today, and evidenced by the wide range of international experts participating in our conference." A focus of the conference will be the scientific knowledge that Irish scholars nurtured and developed during the years circa AD 500 to AD 1100. Time-reckoning, calendars, and the minute reckonings required to compute the date of Easter all involved the minutiae of mathematics, including the original concept of 'digital calculation', and astronomical observation in a truly scientific fashion. The event will appeal to those interested in the history of science in Ireland and Europe, or in the origins of present-day mathematical and astronomical ideas. For a full listing of the speakers and topics, and further information, see the conference website: -ends-

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Mary Robinson Addresses Primary Care Conference at NUI Galway

Friday, 11 July 2008

Speaking at NUI Galway last night, former President of Ireland, Mary Robinson, called for a human rights approach to healthcare and greater accountability, nationally and internationally. She said that such a principled approach to healthcare was needed, especially in the face of a possible global recession as in "hard times it is more difficult to make the right decisions". Mary Robinson was addressing the 2008 Annual Scientific Meeting of the Society for Academic Primary Care (SAPC), a major international healthcare conference hosted by the University's Department of General Practice. According to Mary Robinson, who is now President of Realizing Rights, the Ethical Globalization Initiative: "Policy interventions that are grounded in human rights with a strong gender dimension can help inform and support efforts to strengthen health systems and improve their performance. Human rights require not only that quality health systems are available and accessible to all, but that positive action is taken to address the economic, social and political inequalities behind mortality and ill-health. A human rights approach helps to ensure a holistic and integrated approach to health delivery, with a focus on prevention." Among the audience were leading healthcare academics and researchers from Ireland, UK, Australia and the US. The audience heard from other speakers during the three-day conference on topics such as: Gaining insight into the awareness, understanding and attitudes of patients towards MRSA; Predictors of outcome for mild to moderate depression in primary care; and Patient's experience when visiting their GP. Professor Andrew Murphy, Department of General Practice and conference chair, NUI Galway, said, "The issue of health as a human right has been reflected in many of the conference papers at this event. On a macro level, healthcare is a human right and on an individual level it is a very unique interaction between caregiver and patient. One of the emerging themes in this field is the vital role that patients can play in the management of their own care and the importance of data management and privacy." At the event Anne Rogers, Professor of the Sociology of Health Care, University of Manchester spoke about the 'expert patient' and enhancing the self management capabilities of people living with long-term conditions. Professor Tom Fahey, from the RCSI Medical School, spoke about the how Information and Communication Technology (ICT) will help facilitate high quality evidence-based practice (incorporating diagnosis, prognosis and therapy) in primary care. For more information about the conference visit -ends-

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NUI Galway President Pays Tribute to the Late Séamus Brennan

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

NUI Galway President, Dr. James Browne, has paid tribute to the late Séamus Brennan, former Minister and graduate of the University. A native of Galway, Séamus Brennan, graduated from the University with a Bachelor of Commerce in 1968, and a Bachelor of Arts (Economics) in 1969. In March of this year, Séamus Brennan attended NUI Galway's Gala Banquet where he received the 2008 Alumnus Award for Law, Public Service and Government, from the University. The annual Alumni Awards recognise and celebrate individual excellence and achievement. Dr. James Browne, NUI Galway President, said: "The University offers its sincere condolences to Séamus's family, many friends, and colleagues. We valued him as a graduate and also as a talented politician, who served his country with complete commitment. It was our pleasure to have him back on campus earlier this year to receive an Alumni Award and he will be remembered fondly." ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Aitheantas Tugtha ag Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh do Shéamus Brennan, nach maireann Thug Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr. James Browne, aitheantas don Iar-Aire agus céimí de chuid na hOllscoile Séamus Brennan, nach maireann. B'as Gaillimh ó dhúchas do Shéamus Brennan, a fuair Baitsiléar Tráchtála ón Ollscoil seo i 1968, agus Baitsiléir Dán (Eacnamaíocht) i 1969. I Márta na bliana seo, bhí Séamus Brennan i láthair ag Mórfhéasta na hOllscoile agus bronnadh Duais Alumni 2008 don Dlí, an tSeirbhís Phoiblí agus an Rialtas air. Tugann na Duaiseanna bliantúla Alumni aitheantas do dhaoine aonair ar ardchaighdeán. Dúirt an Dr. James Browne, Uachtarán, OÉ Gaillimh: "Ba mhaith leis an Ollscoil comhbhrón a chroí a dhéanamh le teaghlach Shéamuis, a chairde agus a chomhghleacaithe. B'iontach an céimí é agus polaiteoir den scoth a bhí ann, agus bhí sé tiomanta go huile agus go hiomlán dá thír. Ba mhór an onóir dúinne gur fhill sé ar an gcampas níos luaithe i mbliana chun Duais Alumni a ghlacadh – fear a chuaigh i bhfeidhm orainn ar fad." críoch

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NUI Galway Students Embrace 'Let's Do It Galway' Ethos

Monday, 7 July 2008

Two NUI Galway students have played a key part in planning for the Volvo Ocean Race, which is expected to attract over 140,000 visitors to Galway next year. Research undertaken by Edel Gallager, from Caherlistrane, Co. Galway, and Daithi Evans, from Durrus, Co. Cork, as part of their Higher Diploma in Applied Science, is contributing to the design of a comprehensive safety management plan for the event. Both students have a primary degree from NUI Galway and are now studying a Higher Diploma in Applied Science focusing on in Occupational Health and Safety, and Hygiene. Subjects covered in the Higher Diploma include safety and risk management, which is integral to the planning of any major public event, such as the Volvo Race. Students are also encouraged to engage with the local community by applying their theoretical, research and practical skills to assist local non-profit organisations. Academic Supervisor, Mary Dempsey, of NUI Galway's College of Engineering and Informatics said, "The University ethos enables students to engage in community efforts. In this particular case, working on such a vast project of international significance will be of huge benefit to the students. This type of applied research activity equips students with a valuable skill set combining both intellect and citizenship". In preparation for the Volvo Race, Galway is developing a three-acre race village for the stopover. Public safety is paramount to the 'Let's Do It Galway' team who worked with the NUI Galway students to develop a plan covering a major port redevelopment to house the race village, open air concerts, hospitality and cultural events. Neil Carney of 'Let's Do It Galway' commented, "There is a real sense of excitement as we build towards the Galway Stopover in May/June 2009. It is a fantastic opportunity for Galway City and County, and for the West of Ireland in general to showcase itself to the wider world. The Volvo Ocean Race is one of the largest international sporting event in the world, and its' arrival in Galway in 2009 will be a fantastic occasion for the community." He added, "The entire ethos of 'Let's Do It Galway' is that we are all in this together, without community spirit and support this event would have, pardoning the pun, no wind in its sails. Support from NUI Galway's staff and students is very welcome and their passion and determination reflects the team spirit behind the race. The work carried out by Daithi and Edel adds a valuable resource to the planning of this major event." NUI Galway promotes student engagement in community based projects through its ALIVE volunteering programme and through the service learning modules incorporated into its teaching programmes. Galway Harbour Master Captain Brian Sheridan has actively encouraged and supported NUI Galway students in various research projects over the years. According to Captain Sheridan, "Students from the University have contributed a lot to the city and the port in terms of volunteering their time and energy. They are the next generation of professionals and tapping into their skills and ideas is always hugely beneficial". Captain Brian Sheridan continued, "Working closely with the University on the many aspects of planning for the new deepwater port at Galway has been very advantageous to the ports management team. Fresh ideas, new technologies and sometimes a different approach have all meant that the liaison between NUI Galway and the Galway Harbour Company has paid dividends for both organisations and will go from strength to strength. Edel and Daithi came through on all fronts with this project and I am sure they have both gained invaluable experience working with the ports sector as I have learned from them." The Volvo Ocean Race, formerly the Whitbread Round the World Race, is run every four years, covering 39,000 miles in nine months and visiting ten ports around the world. -ends-

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