All 2011

RTÉ Broadcaster Reaches Out to Fellow Galway Grads

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

RTÉ Broadcaster Sean O’Rourke and NUI Galway have joined forces for a new University initiative to re-establish contact with its graduates.  The University is using a novel combination of web video and text messaging to reach out to its alumni and highlight the benefits of keeping in touch.  O’Rourke has recorded a short web video appeal which will feature on explaining how easy it is to get back in touch with the University, and asking those who see it to pass on the message.  Graduates, he explains, are simply being asked to text the word GRAD, followed by a space, and the year of their graduation, to 51000.  “The Alumni office in NUI Galway”, says O’Rourke, “will then get in touch and re-establish contact.” A native of Portlaoise who grew up in Galway, Seán completed a BA in English, History and Legal Science at NUI Galway, graduating in 1977. Seán was awarded the 2006 NUI Galway Alumni AIB Award for Literature, Communications and the Arts, and is the founding chairperson of the Alumni Association’s Dublin Club. He first joined RTÉ in 1982 as presenter/reporter in Radio News features. He was Political correspondent with the Irish Press between 1984 and 1989, when he returned to RTÉ as Programme Editor/Presenter, working on the News at One, Morning Ireland and This Week. Since 1995, Seán has been presenter of the News at One. In 2003, Seán began presenting The Week in Politics, a weekly review of political events on RTÉ One. He was Radio Journalist of the Year in 1997 and won PPI Awards for News Broadcaster of the year in 2008, 2009 and 2010. Seán was also conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa) earlier this year by NUI Galway. O’Rourke himself believes maintaining contact with the college is worthwhile, “I am involved with the Dublin branch of the NUI Galway Alumni” he said, “and it is a terrific way to stay connected.  We have different events, talks, evenings at the theatre, concerts, and we would simply like as many people as possible to enjoy the wonderful sense of connection and camaraderie that involvement with the Alumni association brings.”  O’Rourke explained that there are Alumni branches around the country as well as abroad and that graduates of all ages are made welcome. He added that those who spread the word would be entered into a draw the win the latest iPad on offer or a weekend away at the g Hotel.   ENDS

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One Hundred Years Later, a New Museum Guide

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Only two tattered copies remain of the original Zoology Museum catalogue, published in 1911 by UCG, now known as NUI Galway. One hundred years later, Éamon de Buitléar has officially launched a completely new version of the booklet at a special ceremony on campus.   The Zoology and Marine Biology Museum is housed in the Ryan Institute at NUI Galway, and currently has over 500 specimens on display from a broad range of animal groups. Specimens include native animals as well as more exotic creatures, including stuffed monkeys, koalas, kiwis and the intriguing kangaroo rat.   The museum’s origins go back to the formation of the University in 1849, with many of the specimens coming from the Zoological Society of London. By 1899 it was among the best working museums of its kind to be found in any university of the time. The previous information booklet, called ‘A Catalogue of the Specimens’ was produced by Professor R. J. Anderson in 1911.   Speaking at the special ceremony on campus this week, the well-known wildlife filmmaker, Éamon de Buitléar, said: “To see this fine museum and launch this booklet is an absolute pleasure.  For many of us, the way we lead our lives today means we are getting further and further away from nature. This museum is a valuable resource and portal into our past, and an introduction into the wonders of nature.” One of the highlights of the museum is its possession of four genuine Charles Darwin specimens that were purchased from the Zoological Society of London. These consist of three mammal specimens: a grison, a cavy and an Azara’s fox; and one bird specimen, a guira cuckoo. All four specimens are native South American species and were collected on Charles Darwin’s trip aboard HMS Beagle from 1831-1836. Another special collection housed in the museum consists of over 100 ‘Blaschka models’. The father-and-son team of Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka produced beautiful, intricate glass representations of marine animals, originally developed as educational models. They are now considered to be works of art, with a value that makes them irreplaceable. “Our museum is a time capsule taking us back to the days of Darwin and other great adventurers who travelled the world collecting exotic species” said Wallace Arthur, Professor of Zoology. “This museum is part of the University, but also belongs very much to Galway and the public. We welcome visitors and encourage them to spend as much time as they wish studying the specimens in whatever way is appropriate for their needs – very different needs for different groups, for example biologists, artists and laypeople.” Free and open to the public daily, the museum attracts large numbers of visitors, ranging from the general public to school parties to visiting researchers and academics.   The museum collection is used extensively in practical classes for Zoology students. The material allows the students to examine characteristic features of species and broader taxonomic groupings at first hand.   -ends-

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European Award for Business Information Systems Programme at NUI Galway

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Highest international standards for business and management education    NUI Galway has been awarded EPAS* accreditation for its Business and Information Systems Programme. Awarded by the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD), this accreditation confirms that the BSc in Business Information Systems (BIS) meets the highest international standards for business and management education.  Achieving the accreditation is a major feat for the course, being only one of eight European undergraduate programmes to receive the five-year award.   Speaking at the formal launch of the EPAS accreditation in the J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics, President of the NUI Galway, Dr Jim Browne, said: “This is a tremendous endorsement of the activities of our Business School.  As one of only eight European universities to receive this quality mark, we in NUI Galway are proud of this acknowledgement of the quality of our business education programmes, and in particular the BIS degree programme.”   Business Information Systems is a four-year undergraduate degree that explores the use of technology in the modern business environment.  Incorporating skills development in technology, business and technology management through individual, team and virtual team project work combined with global learning and industry engagement initiatives.  Martin Hughes, Programme Director of the BSc BIS highlighted: “The BSc. BIS degree provides students with the ideal platform for a successful career in business - over 70% of the 2011 class were in career employment by graduation.”   Dr Chris Coughlan, Head of Cloud Computing Innovation Centre, Hewlett-Packard Galway, in welcoming the five-year accreditation, said: “The input of industry into the development and design of the programme has really paid off and the interaction between local and national employers and the J.E. Cairnes School of Business & Economics was particularly well received by the international peer review team. The practical effect of this interaction with industry and business is that it ensures that BIS at NUIG is ahead of the curve not only meeting their current needs but anticipating their future needs.”   NUI Galway staff, students and various industry figures attended the EPAS launch, recognising that the award signifies the quality of BIS programme graduates and their career progression globally.  The accreditation now recognises and reinforces, on an international stage, the strength of the programme and the esteem with which it is held in industry.   ENDS

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Employment Law and Mental Health Topic for NUI Galway Conference

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

The School of Law in association with the Employment Law Association of Ireland will host the inaugural conference for the new LLM in International and Comparative Disability Law and Policy, entitled ‘Employment Law and Mental Health’, on Saturday, 12 November.    The conference, organised by the Centre for Disability Law and Policy and the Clinical Legal Education programme in conjunction with the Employment Lawyers Association of Ireland will address the issue of Employment Law and Mental Health in Ireland while also addressing the topic from a legal and medical perspective.    Shivaun Quinlivan, Director of the LLM in International and Comparative Disability Law and Policy, says: “This interdisciplinary approach will assist each discipline in gaining a broader understanding of the important issues that need to be addressed, which is indicative of the holistic philosophy at the core of this new LLM programme.”   The conference is aimed at legal practitioners, medical practitioners, academics, researchers, NGO’s and those involved in mental health and disability issues.    Mental Health can cover numerous issues from work related stress, post-traumatic stress disorder, or mental health problems including, for example, depression.  Employers have legal obligations and requirements in respect of these employees, and it is important to understand the various issues, both legal and medical that arise in this context.   The conference will be chaired by Dr Mary Keys of the School of Law, NUI Galway, who is the public representative on the Mental Health Commission. The conference will bring together nationally renowned experts in their respective fields, including Marguerite Bolger Senior Counsel, and Dr Ann Jeffers Consultant psychiatrist.     The conference will take place in MY243 Theatre, Áras Moyola, NUI Galway and will commence at 10am. There will be Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points available to those who are eligible and a Certificate of Attendance will be provided after the Conference.   For further information, including the conference programme, registration and a list of speakers, see   ENDS  

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NUI Galway to Hold Information Evening in Tipperary

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Secondary school students interested in NUI Galway are invited to an information evening in Tipperary on Thursday, 17 November. Parents and guardians are also particularly welcome to the event which runs from 7 to 9pm in the Anner Hotel, Thurles, Co. Tipperary. 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 suite of innovative new programmes, developed in response to the changing needs of the employment market, including an Energy Engineering degree 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 which is brand new for 2012. “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 Tipperary, while also providing all the practical information on accommodation, CAO points, fees, scholarships and courses. With so many courses on offer, this event in Thurles is a perfect opportunity to meet current students and our lecturers to see what degree might be the right fit”, says Caroline Loughnane, Director of Marketing and Communications at NUI Galway. To find out more about the information evening in Tipperary, contact NUI Galway's Schools Liaison Office, Siobhán Dorman, Schools Liaison Office on 086 042 1591 or -Ends-

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