All 2011

NUI Galway announce 2011 Alumni Award Winners

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

NUI Galway has announced the winners of the 2011 Alumni Awards to be presented at the eleventh annual Alumni Awards Gala Banquet on Saturday, 5 March, 2011 at the University. Following a successful Gala last year, the Gala Banquet will again be held in the Bailey Allen Wing located in Áras na Mac Leinn. The event will be hosted by RTÉ newsreader Siún Nic Gearailt, a graduate of NUI Galway. The Alumni Awards recognise individual excellence and achievements among the University's more than 80,000 graduates worldwide. The Awards programme boasts an impressive roll call of 68 outstanding graduates who have gone on to honour their alma mater, including, for example, Michael D. Higgins, Ciarán FitzGerald, Sean O'Rourke, Professor Frank Gannon, Dr Luke Clancy and Gráinne Seoige. The winners of the six alumni awards to be presented at Gala 2011: Bank of Ireland Award for Business, Public Policy and Law Gabriel D'Arcy BSc 1981, CEO Bord na Móna Bank of Ireland Award for Engineering and Informatics Michael Conroy BE 1984, General Manager, Cisco Product Group, Ireland Seavite Alumni Award for Science Dr Gerald Farrell BSc 1981, HDip Ed 1982, Managing Director of Eli Lilly (ROI) & former President of Irish Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association (IPHA) AIB Award for Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies John Walshe BA 1968, HDip Ed 1969 Education Editor, Irish Independent Medtronic Award for Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences Dr Brian Griffin MB, BCh, BAO 1979, Cleveland Clinic, USA - Director, Cardiovascular Disease Training Programme & The John and Rosemary Brown Endowed Chair in Cardiovascular Medicine; US Associate Editor, Heart Aer Arann Alumni Award for Sports Achievement and Leadership Colm Murray BA 1972, RTÉ Sports Presenter Speaking on the announcement of the Awards recipients, President of NUI Galway, Dr James J. Browne said: "Our Alumni Awards programme recognises the many Galway alumni who are leaders in their professions and excel in their pursuits at national and international levels. These awards celebrate the life-long value of an NUI Galway education and recognise individual achievements among the University's more than 80,000 graduates worldwide. I congratulate each of the Award winners and look forward to welcoming them back to their alma mater for the Gala Banquet in March." For booking information contact Emma Goode on 091 492721 or email Online bookings at ENDS

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NUI Galway academic appointed to prestigious European Research Council

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

The European Commission has appointed Professor Nicholas Canny of NUI Galway to the governing body of the prestigious European Research Council (ERC). The ERC is the first pan-European funding organisation for frontier research. It aims to stimulate scientific excellence in Europe by encouraging competition for funding between the very best, creative researchers of any nationality and age. Professor Canny is the first person from Ireland to be appointed a member of the Scientific Council, the ERC's governing body. The ERC Scientific Council was established by the European Commission in 2005 and is composed of 22 distinguished scientists and scholars from all over Europe, including some Nobel Prize winners. With a budget of € 7.5 billion to spend on scientific research, the ERC defines the scientific funding strategy and methodologies for Europe, and acts on behalf of the scientific community to promote creativity and innovative research. Speaking about his appointment, Professor Canny said: "I am surprised and delighted by the invitation to be the first person from Ireland to serve on the 22 person governing board of the European Research Council. While I am a little daunted by the challenge, I consider it an honour for myself personally, for NUI Galway and the Royal Irish Academy with which I have been associated for so long, and for the entire research community in Ireland. I am particularly pleased that the selection committee decided in favour of somebody from Ireland to represent the interests and perspectives of European researchers in Humanities and Social Science disciplines" Professor Nicholas Canny is Director of the Moore Institute for Research in the Humanities at NUI Galway and President of the Royal Academy. His 1976 study The Elizabethan Conquest of Ireland: a Pattern Established, 1565-76 brought him to international attention. It was awarded the Irish Historical Research prize, as was his more recent work on Irish History Making Ireland British, 1580-1650 (Oxford, 2001). He has also published extensively on Europe's relations with the wider world, and edited the first volume of The Oxford History of the British Empire. His next book the Oxford Handbook of Atlantic History, c1450-c1840, which he has co-edited with Philip Morgan of Johns Hopkins University, will be published March 2011. Nicholas Canny was educated at University College, Galway (now NUI Galway), and at the University of Pennsylvania, and has held post-doctoral appointments at Harvard and Yale Universities, at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, and at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Studies. He served in spring 2005 as professeur invité at the École des Hautes Études, Paris and in 2005-2006 was Parnell Senior Research Fellow at Magdalene College Cambridge. Internationally renowned as a scholar, Nicholas Canny is the only Irish person to share with Séamus Heaney the distinction of being both a Fellow of the British Academy and a Member of the American Philosophical Society. Commenting on the appointment, NUI Galway President, Dr James J. Browne, said, "The appointment of Professor Canny to the European Research Council is a great personal honour and brings great prestige to the Moore Institute, and to NUI Galway. As the only Irish representative and the only historian on the Council, he will bring a unique perspective to the work of the Research Council. I have no doubt but that his knowledge and expertise will make him a very valuable member of the ERC." -Ends-

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Line Up Announced for Múscailt Arts Festival at NUI Galway

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Múscailt Spring Festival is coming. From 7 to 12 February 2011, NUI Galway will host a superb line-up of opera, music, performance, sculpture and visual art with many free events to which the public are welcome. The theme this year is Exploration (in all its senses). Múscailt has invited special guest artists to create new work on campus, linking art and science. There is the Irish premiére of a new opera, a new children's show, original drama, new writing and an abundance of music. Alongside special guests, local artists, staff and students have also created work specifically for Múscailt and annual events including the musical and performances by the orchestra and choir are present as always. Continuing the success of Múscáilt, music will feature strongly in this year's programme with the Festival hosting the Irish premiére of Gatto Marte's (Cats from Mars) new Opera , Colombo Tutto Tondo, (Colombus, the world is round). In association with Music for Galway RTÉ Vanbrugh Quartet will perform two concerts celebrating Beethoven's late quartets. NUI Galway Chamber Orchestra will perform movements from Mendelssohn's Italian symphony and Weber's clarinet concerto featuring special guest Robert Solyon and GUMS -NUI Galway Musical Society will perform the rock musical, The Wedding Singer, a comic tale of a Wedding Singer whose fortunes change when he is jilted at the altar. During the festival Dermot Healy, celebrated Irish writer of poetry, novels, plays, memoir and screenplays will read from his forthcoming book, Writing in the Sky and emerging writer Rab Swannock Fulton will introduce his new sci-fi 'blog novel 'in progress, Marcus Marcus and the Hurting Heart. 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. Titled 'Jovian Sequences', the sculptures are inspired by Jove's moon's movements, showing time dancing around the orbits, drawing spiral lines, in a visual game incorporating the three dimensions of the orbits within the space, and the spiral development, which shows the fourth dimension, time. The two artists will also host interventions in Physics and Astronomy in conjunction with the Centre for Astronomy and local art colleges, GMIT, GTI and LIT. Fred Robeson, artist from Holland, will transpose 50 individual prints on to the lift shaft on the balcony of Áras na Mac Léinn, to produce a giant artwork entitled 'Nature Versus the City'. He will be working on it from mid-January and will unveil the work during the festival. The Artsoc's annual show, this year entitled Black Hole Paradise, will consist of drawings, paintings, textiles and sculpture. This year, writer/storyteller Rab Swannock Fulton and artist, Marina Wild, have joined forces to create a new show for children up to 10 years of age, Pirates, Dragons and Moon Monsters, involving performances of rhyming poems, in the surrounds of original paintings, all on the theme of exploration. The Red Apple Tree, a new dance theatre piece, will be presented by The Colours Theatre Company. A new, modern-day, drama entitled NOT FOR OSCAR by Shane Daly-Hughes will be performed by the recently formed University College Players and Dramsoc will play The Lime-Tree Bower by Conor McPherson. Commenting on this year's line up, Fionnuala Gallagher, NUI Galway Arts Officer says, "This year Múscailt celebrates 'Exploration' offering an escape into the world of fantasy, astronomy and history. We will experience Jove's moons, through sculpture; recreate Columbus' journey through song and music and watch Dermot Healy's barnacle geese 'writing in the sky'. Belts may be tightened but the creative world is very rich in 2011 and Múscailt is in full swing." All exhibitions are open throughout the week. The programme includes many more events by Comedysoc, Dramsoc, Juggling Soc, Comic Soc, Anime Manga soc, Filmsoc, individual artists and new dramatic monologues by staff and students in a SOLOS Show. A comic market-place with chill-out zones is also on offer. For full details, see website For a copy of the programme and more info, contact the Arts Office at 493766 or 495098 or Fionnuala Gallagher at Tickets for events will be available from the Socsbox at 091 492852 or For more info on society events see Flirt FM 101.3 will provide daily updates. All ages are extended an invitation to come on campus and enjoy the events, shows and exhibitions on offer from 7 to 12 February. -Ends-

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NUI Galway Students hold the Sixth Annual Teddy Bear Hospital

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

The 6th annual Teddy Bear Hospital, the largest ever in Ireland, will take place at NUI Galway from 27 to 28 January. Organised by the Sláinte Society, the NUI Galway branch of the International Federation of Medical Students Associations, the event will see over 1,300 sick teddy bears admitted to the hospital, accompanied by their owners, 1,300 primary school children between the ages of three and seven. Up to 200 students from NUI Galway will volunteer to diagnose and treat the teddy bears. In the process, they hope to help the children feel more comfortable around doctors and hospitals. Event Organiser, Bryan Reidy, a second year medical student at NUI Galway and a member of Sláinte Society, said: "This year 1,300 ill teddies and their concerned owners will visit the Teddy Bear Hospital over two days. We hope to build on the successes of previous years and show that going to the doctor isn't so scary after all." This year, 32 local primary schools are participating in the event. On arrival at the Teddy Bear Hospital on campus, the children will go to the 'waiting room'. Then the children and their teddy bears are seen by a team of Teddy Doctors and Teddy Nurses, who will examine them and decide if Teddy needs to visit the specially designed Teddy X-ray or MRI Machine. A Teddy Pharmacy will also feature, stocked with healthy fruit from Total Produce along with medical supplies from Boots to help Teddy recover. After all this excitement the children can enjoy a bouncy castle and visit an Order of Malta ambulance, sponsored by Medisource. Entertainment will be provided throughout the day by NUI Galway's Juggling Society and face painters. Recently, the Medical School at NUI Galway announced that it has been allocated additional places on its flagship undergraduate Medical programme. Students applying to study medicine this February for a September 2011 start, will see an additional 19 places made available, bringing the total number of Medicine places at NUI Galway to 118, making it the second largest Medical School for undergraduate Irish and EU students in the country. Ríona Hughes, NUI Galway's Societies Officer, said: "The Teddy Bear hospital is now established as the NUI Galway societies major community outreach programme and we are thrilled with its success. It is wonderful to invite the children and their teddies on to campus for such a great reason and it is a fantastic opportunity for the students to engage in a meaningful way with the Galway City and County schools." -Ends-

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Fair Ireland Forum Dialogue Series at NUI Galway

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Asylum seekers experiences' of Ireland's Direct Provision System NUI Galway will host the second event in the Fair Ireland Forum dialogue series on Thursday, 27 January at 7pm. The dialogue will explore asylum seekers' experiences of Ireland's direct provision system. The perception of asylum seekers themselves will form the central focus of the dialogue with additional contributions from a legal and NGO perspective. The event will be held in the Siobhan McKenna Theatre in the Arts Millennium Building at NUI Galway. The Fair Ireland Forum is an initiative of members of NUI Galway staff that aims to create space for the NUI Galway community to make concrete contributions to public debates on the current challenges facing Ireland – grounded in principles of fairness, social inclusion, democratic governance, accountability and respect for human rights. Fergal Landy, a member of the Fair Ireland Forum steering group at NUI Galway says: "The inaugural Fair Ireland Forum event in May 2010 was a great success and explored the human rights of children and families in Ireland, a dialogue that broadly took place in the aftermath of the Ryan Report on institutional abuse. The upcoming event is crucial to encourage this generation to show leadership in scrutinising the direct provision system now, rather than leaving it to subsequent generations saying we never knew what was going on." Participating in the dialogue will be Director of Galway Refugee Support Group, Triona Nic Giolla Choille, Albert Llussà i Torra, Solicitor with Daly Lynch Crowe and Morris and Vice-Chair of the Irish Refugee Council, and representatives of the asylum seeking community in Galway. Dr Vinodh Jaichand, the Deputy Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights, will facilitate the dialogue on the evening. There will be an opportunity for a public discussion/question and answer period. As part of this event there will also be a slide-show photography exhibition entitled New Bridges: a collection of photographs and stories by people living in direct provision. This exhibition is the result of a four-month collaboration in 2010 between visual ethnographer Zoë O'Reilly (NUI Maynooth) and eight individuals seeking asylum in Ireland and living in the direct provision system. The work is part of a doctoral research project, aiming to explore and to create better understandings of asylum and direct provision in Ireland, from the experiences of those living within this system. All photographs and texts were created by the participants of the project. The event is free and open to the public. This dialogue series is supported by the Social Sciences Research Centre (SSRC). ENDS

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