All 2011

Múscailt Arts Festival Kicks Off at NUI Galway

Monday, 7 February 2011

Today saw the beginning of the 11th annual NUI Galway Múscailt Spring Arts Festival, which will run until Saturday, 12 February. This year NUI Galway will host a superb line-up of opera, music, performance, sculpture and visual art revolving around the theme of Exploration, offering an escape into the world of fantasy, astronomy and history. Múscailt has invited special guest artists to create new work on campus, linking art and science. This year's festival hosts an array of Irish and international artists, performances by Gatto Marte, Dermot Healy, Treasa Ní Nhiolláin, NUI Galway Chamber Orchestra and the RTÉ Vanbrugh Quartet. Writer/storyteller Rab Swannock Fulton and artist Marina Wild have also created a new children's show entitled Pirates, Dragons and Moon Monsters for the Múscailt festival. New drama comes from the recently formed University College Players with a new play by Shane Daly-Hughes entitled NOT FOR OSCAR and GUMS, the NUI Galway Musical Society, will perform the rock musical, The Wedding Singer. The Colours Theatre Company will put on a new dance theatre piece, entitled The Red Apple Tree and Dramsoc will play The Lime-Tree Bower. Ana Perez Pereda, renowned Spanish Sculptor, and Artist José María Molina will spend three weeks on campus and create hanging sculptures in a project linking Art and Science. The NUI Galway Artsoc's annual show, this year entitled Black Hold Paradies, will consist of drawings, paintings, textiles and sculpture Alongside special guests, local artists, staff and students have also created work specifically for Múscailt and annual events including performances by the orchestra and choir are present as always. Speaking about the Festival, Fionnuala Gallagher, Arts Officer, NUI Galway said, "February is a time of creation and I invite everyone to visit the university and sample our exhibitions and performances. Almost everything is free or affordably priced. Come join the fun!" The Múscailt festival is produced by the Arts office at NUI Galway, and all events are open to the public. For full programme, details and further information about the festival visit, or call the NUI Galway Arts Office at 493766 or 495098. -Ends-

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NUI Galway to Host First National Social Work Education Conference

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

The first ever National Social Work Education Conference will take place in NUI Galway on Friday, 11 February in Áras Moyola. This event is being co-hosted by the National Social Work Qualifications Board (NSWQB) and the School of Political Science and Sociology at NUI Galway. It brings together student social workers, newly qualified social workers, practice teachers, researchers, policy makers, universities and employers for the first social work education conference of its kind in the Republic of Ireland. A range of speakers will explore the current issues in social work education and practice encompassing student, teacher, research and employer perspectives. It will create a picture of the current state of play in the discipline and work towards an action plan for the way forward. The aim of the conference is to create a lasting partnership between stakeholders in social work in order to meet future challenges within the discipline. The conference will highlight the importance of continuing professional development for those carrying out challenging work with a focus on one well established accredited post qualifying course in Practice Teaching. Future developments at NUI Galway in this area will also be announced. A Framework for Practice Placements in Ireland will be launched on the day. This is in response to the need for a strong framework of induction for those social workers beginning their careers, and employer-led initiatives for providing appropriate caseloads and supervision for new graduates will be explored at the conference. Professor Bríd Featherstone, Director of Social Work at NUI Galway says: "This conference is being held at a difficult time in Irish history. It will highlight the strengths and challenges facing social workers in a climate where there are increasing levels of need and distress and consider what the key policy issues should be for an incoming government in order to ensure that a high-quality workforce is sustained and developed further. The next decade of social work education in Ireland will be informed by the insights and recommendations that will emerge from this unique gathering at NUI Galway." -Ends-

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NUI Galway Co Investor in Kernal Capital Fund

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Kernel Capital today launched the €10M Bank of Ireland MedTech Accelerator Fund, Ireland's first Seed Fund to focus exclusively on the indigenous medical technology sector. With investments ranging from €100,000 to €500,000, the Fund is focussed on export orientated high potential start-up Life Sciences companies that operate in the medical device, diagnostics or medical/laboratory sectors. The Fund will operate synergistically with the Information Communications and Technology focussed Bank of Ireland Seed and Early Stage Equity Fund also managed by Kernel Capital as well as Kernel Capital's later stage Technology Funds that invest in the €2m to €5m range. The launch of this Fund marks the introduction of 'NUI Galway' as an investor with Kernel Capital. NUI Galway joins its strategic alliance partner the University of Limerick, Bank of Ireland and Enterprise Ireland in supporting this unique initiative for early stage Medical Technology companies. As one of the top performing sectors in the Irish economy, medical technology directly employs more than 24,000 people and generated €6.8bn in exports in 2009. Nine of the world's top ten medical technology companies have invested significantly in Ireland. The medical technology market is estimated to be worth circa US$300bn worldwide and the west of Ireland in particular is noted globally as a centre of excellence in the creation of innovative research based companies and indigenous medical device start ups. This new Fund creates greater access to investment enabling early stage companies to capitalise on the sectors potential. Commenting on the announcement, Donal Duffy, Head of Enterprise Ireland Relations, Bank of Ireland said: "Bank of Ireland recognises the importance of supporting start-up businesses across emerging sectors including medical technology. The launch today of the Bank of Ireland MedTech Accelerator Fund with our strategic partner Kernel Capital further demonstrates our commitment to this key growth area and our continuing support for domestic export orientated businesses in Ireland. We are delighted to be a key investment partner in this Fund and welcome the involvement of NUI Galway and University of Limerick and the valuable research work conducted in both Universities to support these emerging sectors." "Enterprise Ireland sees the medical devices and related areas as offering very strong potential for innovative, export focussed start up companies. This new Fund is very welcome, marking an important increase in the availability of capital to support the commercialisation of new and innovative products from ambitious Irish companies," said Seamus Bree, West Region Director, Enterprise Ireland. Dr. James J. Browne, President of National University of Ireland Galway, said: "Through its research activities, NUI Galway continues to play an important role in the development of the Medical Technologies sector in Ireland, so it is particularly appropriate that we are involved in this new initiative. We are delighted to invest with Kernel Capital and join with the University of Limerick in supporting the Bank of Ireland MedTech Accelerator Fund. This Fund will enable new companies to gain access to the seed funding necessary to bring their innovations to the product development stage". Professor Don Barry, President of the University of Limerick, added: "Today s announcement reflects the University of Limerick's commitment to working with Irish industry and reinforces the UL-NUI Galway Strategic Alliance. This Fund will play a key role in helping start-up and emerging companies to access early stage capital to grow, create jobs and commercialise new innovations." Niall Olden, Managing Partner of Kernel Capital said: "We are very pleased to confirm the NUI Galway as our new partner joining Bank of Ireland, Enterprise Ireland and University of Limerick Foundation continuing to invest in our new Fund initiatives. It is excellent timing, Ireland boasts Europes leading cluster of MedTech industries and there is considerable untapped potential for new enterprise creation, Irish start-up companies are ideally placed to pioneer the next generation of global healthcare devices. The Fund will operate synergistically with Seroba Kernel our Life Science Associate Firm which is focussed on larger Life Science deals and which has the ability to provide significant follow on finance to appropriate investments." ENDS

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NUI Galway and UL Announce Business Course Partnership

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

NUI Galway and the University of Limerick have announced a partnership of the NUI Galway part-time Bachelor of Commerce and the UL Bachelor of Business Studies programmes. The coordination is part of the NUI Galway/UL Strategic Alliance which aims to further a shared commitment to academic excellence. This latest initiative will open access to business students in both institutions; improving the overall student experience and broaden career opportunities. The part-time Bachelor of Commerce by blended learning at NUI Galway's JE Cairnes School of Business & Economics and the Bachelor of Business Studies by flexible learning at UL's Kemmy Business School will be delivered through a mix of face-to-face weekend workshops, online lectures, tutorials and discussion forums. Web 2.0 technologies such as wikis, podcasts and blogs will be used in an innovative way to achieve programme level learning outcomes. Blended and flexible learning methods of delivery provide third level access to mature students with work and family commitments in any location. In the next academic year, (2011/2012) students will jointly study Organisational Behaviour, delivered by the Kemmy Business School and Business Negotiations/Integrated Case-Based Workshop delivered by the JE Cairnes of School of Business & Economics. In the following year, a greater amalgamation between both business programmes is envisaged. Programme Manager of the part-time Bachelor of Commerce at the JE Cairnes School of Business & Economics at NUI Galway Éilis O Regan says, "Delivering our combined part-time Business programmes via blended/flexible learning, with monthly face-to-face workshops at NUI Galway and University of Limerick, will increase third level assess to mature students, with work and/or family commitments. This innovative delivery format will also broaden third level access across Ireland for those who did not or could not avail of third level education immediately following second level. The JE Cairnes School of Business & Economics welcomes the opportunity to work with our partners in the Kemmy School of Business." Course Director of the Bachelor of Business Studies by Flexible Learning at Kemmy Business School, UL, Dr. Ronan Carbery says, "The UL/NUI Galway Strategic Alliance adds significant value to students on both Business programmes by not only allowing them to broaden their experience of third level education with the delivery of modules in a new University setting, but by also benefitting from the shared expertise across both Business faculties. The ability for students in both Universities to collaborate with each other and with a broader range of academics will further facilitate a stimulating learning environment in which to engage with the programmes." ENDS

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NUI Galway Spin-Out Company Targets Finance Markets

Monday, 31 January 2011

A spin-out company of NUI Galway's Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) – Peracton Ltd. has partnered with FusionExperience to offer one of Peracton's flagship products MAARS Fund Management Analytics to the market. The technology was initially developed within DERI at NUI Galway and through Peracton, the MAARS technology is being offered to the finance/business world. The original MAARS technology development research has been funded by Enterprise Ireland and Science Foundation Ireland. MAARS is a platform that provides complex analytics decision support for most common equities selection (stocks, funds, ETF etc.), audit and compliance as well as forensic capabilities. In a recent report of summer 2010, Forrester claimed that Peracton s MAARS was the Hot Technology to Watch for 2010. A Forrester excerpt says: "Focusing on solving the core industry-specific business problems is the next big wave in the tech industry. Nowhere is it more evident of technology s unique role in solving business problems than in the highly tech-dependent banking market." Mr. Gordon Easden, Practice Leader, FusionExperience says: "The partnership with Peracton will allow us to add the impressive MAARS analytics application to our already extensive set of offerings. This can only be good news for our existing and potential clients and further increase the excellent end to end service we provide to the financial services community. We look forward to working closely with Peracton in the future." Mr. Richard D'Silva, UK Business Development Manager, Peracton says: "At Peracton, we are really excited about working with FusionExperience. Not only does Fusion provide a great opportunity for MAARS to get the right exposure to key people in the Investment and Asset Management space but also their experience in the Financial Services industry will be invaluable as we develop and release more MAARS financial analytics applications in the coming months." Professor Manfred Hauswirth, Vice-Director of DERI at NUI Galway said: "Peracton is a direct outcome of the foreseeing investment of the Irish government into the Smart Economy to create indigenous companies in the knowledge economy. Peracton successfully demonstrates how the "research-to-industry pipeline" can work: from Science Foundation Ireland funded basic research, via Enterprise Ireland supported translation into industrial strength products to a new Irish company providing jobs and producing tax income." For further information contact: -Ends-

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