Wednesday, 23 November 2022

University of Galway researchers discover biomarkers which may help in determining tailored cancer treatment Researchers at University of Galway have determined that biomarkers known as microRNAs can help predict which patients with breast cancer are likely to face a recurrence of the disease and death. The researchers, led by Dr Matthew Davey, Professor Michael Kerin and Dr Nicola Miller, from the University’s College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, conducted a multicentre trial In Ireland, involving 124 patients who were treated with chemotherapy.  The findings of the research have been published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons (JACS).  They include:  MiRNAs can be used as a biomarker to predict which patients are likely to face breast cancer recurrence and mortality. Researchers conducting a multicentre trial in Ireland drew blood samples from 124 patients with breast cancer at 5 different timepoints during their cancer journey, and assessed their outcomes almost nine years later. Researchers say their discovery of the predictive value of miR-145 could help physicians better tailor treatment to the need of each patient being treated for breast cancer. According to figures from the National Cancer Registry of Ireland, over 3,500 women are diagnosed with breast cancer each year. While long-term outcomes have improved for patients with breast cancer, the most common cancer diagnosed in women, 20% to 30% of these patients will see their breast cancer relapse.  Dr Davey said: “The process of identifying which patients are more likely to have a recurrence has been a challenge. Therefore we set out to determine whether miRNAs -small, non-coding molecules that modulate genetic expression and affect cancer development - are capable predicting which patients are more likely to have a recurrence of, and die from, breast cancer. “We discovered that patients with an increased expression of a certain type of miRNA, called miR-145, are unlikely to have a recurrence of breast cancer.  “We showed that increased expression of this biomarker, which was measured in patients' blood samples during chemotherapy, actually predicted their long-term oncological outcome. We can predict those who are likely to suffer recurrence and also those who will be free of recurrence. Further studies into the clinical application of this biomarker are ongoing. “This study may also help identify breast cancer patients who could benefit from closer monitoring and additional therapies post-surgery or treatment.” This research is made possible by the National Breast Cancer Research Institute and Cancer Trials Ireland.  Ends

Tuesday, 22 November 2022

Dr Andrew Daly, Assistant Professor in Biomedical Engineering and CÚRAM Funded Investigator, will develop new bioinks for organ bioprinting University of Galway Investigator Dr Andrew Daly has today been named a recipient of a European Research Council Starting Grant Award of €1.49m. morphoPRINT will focus on creating dynamic bioinks that can program morphogenetic behaviours in bioprinted organs to enhance their physiological relevance.  Three-dimensional bioprinting, where bioprinters are used to position cells into organ-shaped constructs, holds great promise for tissue and organ engineering. Although remarkable progress has been made in recent years, it remains challenging to bioprint organs with suitable functionality for implantation. For example, in the case of the heart, bioprinted heart cells (termed cardiomyocytes) do not beat with sufficient intensity or force to pump blood around the body. This is largely because bioprinted cardiomyocytes, now typically derived from induced pluripotent stem cells, are immature, with properties more similar to juvenile rather than adult cardiomyocytes.  In the body, as our heart develops, cardiomyocytes are exposed to mechanical and electrical stimuli that 'train' and 'shape' the cells into a more mature form. Integrating these behaviours into bioprinted organs that initially exist outside of the body has been challenging. Dr Daly explains: “The morphoPRINT project will develop a new range of programmable bioinks that will allow us to 'sculpt' heart cell maturation using mechanical stimuli. I am delighted to accept this funding award which will enable our lab to develop cutting edge technology that brings us closer to the reality of bioprinted organ replacements.” Professor Abhay Pandit, Scientific Director of CÚRAM, said: “This European Research Council Starting Grant Award is an exciting opportunity for Dr Daly and speaks to the calibre of his research career to date. I welcome the opportunity for Dr Daly to continue to develop this ground breaking and promising research and the impact it will have to enhance and grow his professional reputation and profile.” Dr Andrew Daly was awarded a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Trinity College Dublin in 2018, where he developed bioprinted implants for cartilage and bone regeneration. For this work, he was awarded the Engineer’s Ireland Biomedical Engineering Research Medal. Following this, he moved to the Department of Bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania for his postdoctoral training. In 2020, he was awarded an American Heart Association Postdoctoral Fellowship to develop bioprinted cardiac disease models for screening of miRNA therapeutics. In January 2021, he started his research group at the University of Galway.   To date, his work has been published in the top journals in the field, including Nature Communications, Nature Reviews Materials, Cell, Biomaterials, Advanced Science, Acta Biomaterialia, Advanced Healthcare Materials, and Biofabrication.  Dr Daly is one of 408 researchers to have won this year’s European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grants. The funding is worth in total €636 million and is part of the Horizon Europe programme. It will help excellent younger scientists, who have 2 to 7 years’ experience after their PhDs, to launch their own projects, form their teams and pursue their most promising ideas. Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said: “We are proud to empower younger researchers to follow their curiosity. These new ERC laureates bring a remarkable wealth of scientific ideas, they will further our knowledge and some already have practical applications in sight. I wish them all the best of luck with their explorations.”  President of the European Research Council Professor Maria Leptin said: “It is a pleasure to see this new group of bright minds at the start of their careers, set to take their research to new heights. I cannot emphasize enough that Europe as a whole - both at national and at EU level - has to continue to back and empower its promising talent. We must encourage young researchers who are led by sheer curiosity to go after their most ambitious scientific ideas. Investing in them and their frontier research is investing in our future.” The grants will be invested in scientific projects spanning all disciplines of research from engineering to life sciences to humanities. Ends

Monday, 21 November 2022

AMEE, an international association for health professions education, has awarded a team at University of Galway’s School of Medicine a prestigious ASPIRE to Excellence Award for their achievements in medical simulation education and research.  The School of Medicine’s Irish Centre for Applied Patient Safety and Simulation (ICAPSS) is the first of its kind in Ireland to earn the accolade.  The ICAPSS team is a collaborative group of researchers and academics from University of Galway and clinicians from the Saolta University Healthcare Group who provide hands-on medical education training in a simulated environment. The special facility where they work, train, educate and research was officially opened by Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly T.D. in March 2022. The ASPIRE award identifies the School of Medicine as an international centre for excellence in medical education.  Professor Ronald Harden, a leading international authority on Medical Education, and AMEE General Secretary, said: “The ASPIRE to Excellence programme has an important role to play at a time of rapid change in education, when the value of a university’s teaching as well as their contributions to research are recognised." Dr Dara Byrne, Professor of Simulation Education at University of Galway and Director of Simulation for the Saolta University Healthcare Group and at the ICAPSS said: “This award is the first of its kind for a simulation facility in Ireland. It reflects our commitment to improving patient safety and the quality of care through our simulation activities that are translational and interprofessional, across the continuum of health professions education.  “Applying for an ASPIRE award challenges medical education and training providers to benchmark themselves against what is considered exemplary. This requires learners, staff and other stakeholders to develop and demonstrate excellence in education. The collaborative process stimulates the School of Medicine’s focus on improving medical education.” Dr Paul O’Connor, Senior Lecturer in General Practice at University of Galway and Research Director for the ICAPSS, said: “Patient safety and patient safety research are our priority. As we now are members of the ASPIRE academy, we can collaborate with other centres for excellence and continue to improve our simulation activities which support learners in the University and Saolta.” The ASPIRE Award highlights medical schools which have demonstrated teaching excellence in one or more areas including assessment, curriculum development, faculty development, inspirational approaches to medical education, international collaborations, simulation, social accountability, student engagement and technology enhanced learning. The collaboration between University of Galway and Saolta was particularly commended by the international expert assessment team.  In their feedback on the award, the assessment team stated "The work of the ICAPSS team is impressive and we also applaud their achievements in a relatively short period. We also note the success of the collaboration between a university and a healthcare service partner. These relationships are not always productive, so the achievements are even more impressive. We recommend sharing this model so others may benefit too, acknowledging that contextual factors may also be unique. In summary, the number of personnel at ICAPSS, many with considerable experience and qualifications in relevant domains have created, implemented and evaluated a range education programs. The application reflects a well-developed organisational structure which functions effectively, serving both the sponsoring organisations.” Ends

Wednesday, 16 November 2022

Déanfaidh an Ollscoil ceiliúradh chomh maith ar na daoine ar bronnadh Céim Oinigh orthu in 2021. D’fhógair Ollscoil na Gaillimhe inniu cé orthu a mbeidh Céimeanna Oinigh á mbronnadh ag Searmanais Bhronnta an Gheimhridh 2022. Beidh an ceiliúradh ar siúl ó Dé Céadaoin, an 23 Samhain, go dtí Dé Máirt, an 29 Samhain, agus beidh an dream a mbronnfar Céim Oinigh orthu i gcomhluadar níos mó ná 3,600 mac léinn a bheidh ag baint a gcéime amach ar na cúig lá sin.  Is iad an ceathrar a mbronnfar Céim Oinigh orthu ag Searmanais Bhronnta an Gheimhridh 2022: Margaretta D’Arcy: Gníomhaí, aisteoir, drámadóir agus scríbhneoir, agus ball d'Aosdána. Lelia Doolan: Stiúrthóir agus léiritheoir scannáin, agus scríbhneoir. An Dr Jerry Cowley: Dochtúir leighis, abhcóide Éireannach, agus ionadaí poiblí Ronan Scully: Daonnúlach, saorálaí agus tiomsaitheoir airgid do charthanais. Déanfaidh an Ollscoil ceiliúradh freisin ar bheirt de na daoine ar bronnadh Céim Oinigh orthu in 2021 ach nach raibh in ann a gcéim a fháil roimhe seo mar gheall ar na dúshláin a bhain leis an bpaindéim. Máirtín O’Connor: Ceoltóir traidisiúnta agus cumadóir clúiteach. Mary O’Malley: File a bhfuil go leor gradam bainte amach aici, agus comhalta d’Aosdána.  Grianghraif ár fáil anseo Céimeanna Oinigh  Ag labhairt dó sular thosaigh na searmanais bhronnta, bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá ag Uachtarán Ollscoil na Gaillimhe, an tOllamh Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh: “Thar ceann Ollscoil na Gaillimhe, tá lúcháir orm a bheith in ann aitheantas a thabhairt don ghrúpa daoine eisceachtúla seo, agus an gradam seo a bhronnadh orthu agus muid ag ceiliúradh chomh maith ar a bhfuil bainte amach ag breis agus 3,600 dár gcuid mac léinn i gceithre Choláiste na hOllscoile.  Tá cion fir agus cion mná déanta ag gach duine díobh ar mhaithe leis an saol poiblí, chun cur leis an tsochaí agus chun leasa an chine dhaonna, agus rinne siad a gcuid le hathrú chun feabhais a dhéanamh ar an domhan, dualgas atá orainn ar fad. “Is iontach freisin a bheith in ann éachtaí ár gcéimithe den scoth agus iad siúd a bhfuil gradam oinigh á mbronnadh orthu den chéad uair faoi ainm nua agus faoi fhéiniúlacht nua na hOllscoile a cheiliúradh. Déanaimid gach rud a seasann Ollscoil na Gaillimhe dó a cheiliúradh, idir ár luachanna, ár gcuid oibre ar son leas an phobail agus an ceangal láidir atá againn leis an áit ina bhfuilimid lonnaithe.” Tá sceideal iomlán shearmanais bhronnta an gheimhridh 2022 le fáil ag https://www.universityofgalway.ie/conferring/.  Críoch

Wednesday, 16 November 2022

The University will also celebrate Honorary Degree recipients from 2021. University of Galway today announced the recipients of Honorary Degrees at the 2022 Winter Conferring ceremonies. The celebrations take place from Wednesday November 23 to Tuesday November 29, and the Honorary Degree awardees will join more than 3,600 students graduating over the five days.  The four people to be conferred with Honorary Degrees at the 2022 Winter Conferring are: Margaretta D’Arcy: Activist, actress, playwright and writer, and member of Aosdána. Lelia Doolan: Film director, producer and writer. Dr Jerry Cowley: Medical doctor, Irish barrister, and public representative. Ronan Scully: Humanitarian, volunteer and charity fund-raiser. The University will also celebrate two of the Honorary Degree recipients from 2021 who were unable to be previously conferred due to the challenges arising from the pandemic: Máirtín O’Connor: Renowned traditional musician and composer. Mary O’Malley: Award-winning poet and member of Aosdána.  Photos of the awardees are available at the following link Honoraries  Speaking ahead of the conferring ceremonies, President of University of Galway, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, said: “On behalf of University of Galway, I am delighted to be in a position to recognise this group of extraordinary individuals, and to recognise them at the same time as we celebrate the achievements of over 3,600 of our students across our four Colleges.  Each one has made an excellent and distinctive contribution to public life, the betterment of society and the interests of humanity, leaving the world in a better place than we found it, which is the responsibility of us all. “It is also great to be able to mark the achievements of our outstanding graduates and those being conferred with an honorary award for the first time under our new name and our new identity and celebrate everything that Ollscoil na Gaillimhe – University of Galway stands for, whether it’s through our values, our work for the public good and being in and of our place.” The full schedule for the winter 2022 conferring ceremonies is available at https://www.universityofgalway.ie/conferring/.  Ends

Tuesday, 15 November 2022

University of Galway professors Henry Curran and Patrick W Serruys have been named on the annual Highly Cited Researchers 2022 list from Clarivate. The researchers have once again joined the prestigious list of more than 6,900 researchers from across the globe who demonstrated significant influence in their chosen field or fields through the publication of multiple highly cited papers during the last decade.  The highly anticipated annual list identifies researchers whose names are drawn from the publications that rank in the top 1% by citations for field and publication year in the Web of Science citation index.  Professor Henry Curran, listed in the Engineering category, is Director of the Combustion Chemistry Centre at University of Galway’s School of Biological and Chemical Sciences and Priority Area Lead of the Energy Research Centre at the Ryan Institute. His research looks at the study of the chemistry of how fuels burn in combustors in order to increase efficiency and reduce emissions for a cleaner world. This is Professor Curran’s ninth successive year being named a Clarivate Highly Cited Researcher. Professor Patrick W. Serruys, listed in the Clinical Medicine category, is Established Professor of Interventional Medicine and Innovation, Director of the CORRIB Research Centre for Advanced Imaging and Core Laboratory at the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences. He is a world-renowned expert in interventional cardiology and imaging with more than four decades experience in clinical trials and innovation in medicine. He has pioneered several interventional procedures and devices as well as imaging techniques. Professor Serruys has almost 3,000 publications and 225,000 citations. This is Professor Serruys third successive year being named a Clarivate Highly Cited Researcher since joining University of Galway in 2020. Professor Jim Livesey, Vice President for Research and Innovation, University of Galway, said: “I wish to congratulate Henry and Patrick on being included once again in the Clarivate top 1% of Highly Cited Researchers list in the world once again. To be named on this prestigious global list in successive years is a huge achievement, and they have both deservedly earned global respect and recognition for his research.” David Pendlebury, Head of Research Analysis at the Institute for Scientific Information at Clarivate said: “Research fuels the race for knowledge and it is important that nations and institutions celebrate the individuals who drive the wheel of innovation. The Highly Cited Researchers list identifies and celebrates exceptional individual researchers at University of Galway who are having a significant impact on the research community as evidenced by the rate at which their work is being cited by their peers. These individuals are helping to transform human ingenuity into our world’s greatest breakthroughs – and it is an honour to celebrate their achievements.” The full 2022 Highly Cited Researchers list and executive summary can be found online at https://clarivate.com/highly-cited-researchers/.  Ends

Tuesday, 15 November 2022

ReelLIFE SCIENCE video competition prizes awarded to schools and youth groups in eight counties - Leitrim, Cork, Kilkenny, Dublin, Mayo, Roscommon, Limerick and Galway. From the Science of Glass to the theories of Albert Einstein and from a Tour of the Heart to Why We Should Brush Our Teeth, short science videos made by young Irish filmmakers have been celebrated at the 10th Annual ReelLIFE SCIENCE Awards in University of Galway. The even took place on Sunday November 13th, as part of Science Week 2022 and the 25th Galway Science and Technology Festival.  More than 400 short science films were entered into the competition by more than 3,000 young science enthusiasts.  It is a record level of engagement with the ReelLIFE Science competition with 140 schools and youth groups taking part across the island of Ireland.  Winning videos were selected by a panel of guest judges including aeronautical engineer and author Dr Norah Patten; ‘Superhero Scientist’ and author Dr Barry Fitzgerald; and the 2022 BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition winners, Aditya Kumar and Aditya Joshi from Synge Street CBS in Dublin. All of the winning videos can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/ReelLifeScience A shared folder with high res images is available at ReelLIFEScience photos 2022  ReelLIFE SCIENCE Winners 1st Prize Primary School - Twelve talented fifth and sixth class students from Saint Hugh’s NS in Kilmore, Co Leitrim, along with their teacher Pádraig Kenny, won the €1,000 first prize for their video ‘Dr Magnifico’ explaining Albert Einstein’s theories of relativity.  Runners-up Primary School - Ingenious junior infants of Bandonbridge NS, Co Cork demonstrated ‘Why We Should Brush Our Teeth’, while fifth and sixth class students from Scoil na nAingeal Naofa from Boyle, Co. Roscommon finished third with an exploration of ‘The Endocrine System’. 1st Prize Post-Primary - Accomplished animator Isadora Lowe, a transition year student from Ursuline Secondary School in Cork, guided by teacher Niamh O’Mahony, claimed the €1000 award for the stop-motion short ‘Tooth-in-Eye Surgery’.  Runners-up Post-Primary - Lauren Kinsella from Alexandra College, Dublin 6, with the illuminating ‘The Science of Glass’, while Elizabeth Boland and Heather Shanahan from Laurel Hill Coláiste FCJ in Limerick were awarded third place, while examining ‘How is Fight or Flight connected to Test Anxiety’.  1st Prize Youth Organisation - Young filmmaker Maya Coffey, from Johnswell Youth Club Co Kilkenny, with the support of Youth Leader Breda Gill, won the €1000 prize for a video following a red blood cell called ‘Haemo’ on an educational ‘Tour of the Heart’.  Runners-up Youth Organisation - Foróige Connect group from Castlebar, Co Mayo came second under the guidance of youth officer Clement Quinn for exploring the ‘Wood Wide Web’,, while third place went to Galway Foróige AV Club, directed by youth officer Erika King, while looking at ‘How a Camera is like an Eye’.  Special Category Awards Teamwork Award - Sooey NS, Co Sligo Being Green Award - Scoil Chiaráin, Dublin 11 Science and Me Award - Ladyswell NS, Co Dublin Science Song Award - Presentation Secondary School Clonmel, Co Tipperary  Físeán Gaeilge is Fearr - Gaelscoil Riabhach, Co Galway Addressing the young filmmakers at the awards ceremony, Dr. Barry Fitzgerald said: “I was delighted to be one of the judges for the ReelLIFE SCIENCE video competition for schools and youth organisations for 2022. The level of the videos was just incredible – I loved watching them. I’d like to congratulate everyone who entered the competition and I encourage you to keep on making videos about science in the future.” The ReelLIFE SCIENCE programme challenges young people in schools and youth groups across the island of Ireland to engage with science and technology while developing their communication and digital skills, by producing short educational videos for the public.  Since being launched in 2013 by a team  of scientists from the University of Galway College of Science and Engineering, this challenge has been met by over 23,000 young people, supported by teachers and staff in more than 680 schools and youth groups.  ReelLIFE SCIENCE Founding Director Dr Enda O’Connell, was awarded Galway Science Person of the Year 2022 at the Galway Science and Technology Festival for his efforts over 10 years working on the programme.  After the awards were presented he said: “We were delighted again this year with the response to the competition, particularly with so many new schools and youth groups getting involved for the first time. We are always inspired by the inventiveness and creativity shown by the participants in their videos, and their passion for science and technology is clear to see. Congratulations to everyone who took part.” ReelLIFE SCIENCE is supported by the Science Foundation Ireland Discover Programme, the CÚRAM Centre for Research in Biomedical Devices, the Community Knowledge Initiative, the Cell EXPLORERS programme and Foróige.  Ends

Wednesday, 9 November 2022

A special information for Leaving Certificate students, Fifth Year students and parents is to take place at the University of Galway Connacht GAA Air Dome. The information evening will take place on Tuesday November 15 from 7-9pm, and will have a dual focus - sports opportunities at University of Galway and preparing for CAO.   Organised in partnership with Connacht GAA, the evening will open with a short talk from a lecturer on the teaching and learning environment at the University and how students can prepare for their first year of college. Representatives from Sports at University of Galway will present on the opportunities for participation across all sports, with an emphasis on GAA and high performance. Sports staff, coaches and scholarship students will be on hand to talk about their experiences of balancing studying and competing at a high level.  The event will feature a mini-exhibition of courses and careers with representatives across the University’s undergraduate programmes, with a good opportunity for parents and students to get information on programmes on offer, entry requirements, placements and employment opportunities.  Mike Heskin, Director of Sport at University of Galway, said: “Tuesday evening is a great opportunity for students and schools to get information about the sport opportunities on offer at University of Galway, in particular scholarships. The University offers 42 sports and the scholarship system is open to all.  “Importantly, University of Galway has made great strides in terms of our participation rates in recent years and with women’s sport enjoying success and a new profile we are seeing gender balance across the board.”    Sarah Geraghty, Director of Student Recruitment and Outreach at University of Galway, said: “Students choose University of Galway as they want to study with the best academic and research minds in their field. They want to study in our new state-of-the-art facilities, such as the Human Biology Building for medicine students and in Ireland’s largest engineering school, the Alice Perry Engineering Building. The location of our campus in the heart of Galway city appeals to students who want to live in a vibrant and creative city and who want to find a new home away from home. This information evening in collaboration with Connacht GAA is a great opportunity for students and their parents to come and meet lecturers and students and start planning the progression to university studies.” For more information about the information evening email opendays@universityofgalway.ie or call Sarah Geraghty on 087 9471484. Ends

Tuesday, 8 November 2022

€10m funding to determine impact of climate change on environmental pathogens causing health risks  University of Galway is partnering on a new €10m Horizon Europe project to examine the impact of climate change on health risks due to pathogens in the environment, specifically in coastal waters. BlueAdapt – Reducing Climate Based Risks in Blue Environments: Adapting to the climate change impacts on coastal pathogens involves 12 institutes from across 10 countries in Europe. The project brings together an interdisciplinary team of researchers, including microbiologists, epidemiologists, economists, climate scientists and policy specialists in order to investigate the complex interactions between climate change, pathogen dynamics and human health.  Professor Marc Neumann, Research Professor at the Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3) and BlueAdapt’s Principal Investigator said: “BlueAdapt presents a unique opportunity to investigate emerging disease risks in our coastal waters. We will investigate policy responses, including early warning systems, and estimate expected benefits of adaptation actions.” Professor Dearbhaile Morris, Professor of Antimicrobial Resistance and One Health at University of Galway, said: “Our coastal waters are important for tourism, fishing and recreational activities.  Through BlueAdapt we hope to assess how bacteria and viruses in our coastal waters respond to different climate change scenarios and understand better the potential impacts for human health.”  Dr Sinead Duane, Lecturer in Marketing J.E School of Business and Economics at University of Galway, who is part of the University of Galway One Health team said: “Testing and monitoring are key ways to improve and maintain the quality of our coastal waters, however how we interact with our coastal waters also plays a role.  “Through the development of behaviourally enhanced smartphone app technology, Blue Adapt will deepen our understanding of coastal water users behaviours and attitudes to exposure pollution events. This information will help develop targeted interventions in the future. This app will capture how users respond to warnings of pollution events in real time.”  BlueAdapt is a partnership between University of Galway, the Basque Centre for Climate Change, University of Exeter, Charles University, University of Warsaw, Deltares, CMCC, EuroHealthNet, Bangor University, Istituto Superiore di Sanità, University of the Basque Country and ThenTryThis.  BlueAdapt is funded under European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No 101057764 and by UKRI/HM Government. Ends

Monday, 7 November 2022

Nearly 60% of participants felt burnt out at least once per month, with 18% experiencing burnout once a week Researchers urge hospitality managers to ensure wellbeing supports for precarious workers and recognise vulnerability of younger employees  A new study has found that hospitality employees who perceive they are on a ‘zero-hour’ contract, where their hours are unspecified, are particularly vulnerable to burnout.  The study was carried out by Dr Elaine Wallace, University of Galway, and Professor Joseph Coughlan, Maynooth University, and was recently published in the International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management. As part of the study, researchers examined the hospitality environment and how challenges such as workload, antisocial hours, emotional demands, and customer civility can lead to burnout.  They also looked at how this risk is compounded by the uncertainties many hospitality employees face about their working hours.   The study gathered responses from 260 employees, 56% female and 44% male with an average age of 23, working in Ireland’s hospitality sector. Researchers found that almost half had less than a year’s experience in their role, and several perceived they were on a zero-hour contract.    Results showed that 58.8% of participants felt burnt out at least once per month, 35% multiple times a month, and 18.1% of participants felt burnt out at least once a week. As managerial support, and employees’ own commitment to their employer can sometimes mitigate against burnout, these variables were also measured. In addition, some employees “act out” when they are under burnout, and therefore the study also investigated whether the employees ever engaged in counterproductive workplace behaviours, such as coming to work late or leaving work early without permission, neglecting to follow bosses’ instructions, or acting rudely to someone at work. The results found among the group of employees those who were aware of their hours, had managerial support and were committed to the job helped to mitigate against burnout.  However, when this group of employees experienced burnout, they engaged in counterproductive behaviours against both the organisation and their colleagues. This result was especially evident when employees were younger, perhaps to fit in with a culture where work stresses are high.   When employees who believed they were on a ‘zero-hour’ contract experienced burnout, managerial support or commitment to the job did not help to mitigate against it – suggesting that these employees may be more disconnected from the organisation, feeling like an ‘outsider’, yet experiencing burnout from the work.  At the same time, this group of employees did not ‘act out’ through counterproductive workplace behaviours when they experienced burnout, unlike those who knew their hours in advance.  Dr Elaine Wallace, co-author of the study and lecturer with J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics at University of Galway, cautions: “Our study raises questions about the effect of burnout for staff on zero-hour contracts, and its effects on their wellbeing. They seem to be less able to draw from supports in their organisation, such as having a good manager.   “At the same time, although these employees don’t engage in ‘acting out’ behaviours when they experience burnout, their stress must go somewhere. This may manifest in unhealthy behaviours which could affect their own health and wellbeing.  “Hospitality managers should put supports in place to protect the wellbeing of precarious workers, and also recognise the vulnerability of younger employees who may also be more susceptible to burnout than their older colleagues.”  The full study is available to read at: https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/IJCHM-02-2022-0195/full/html Ends

Friday, 4 November 2022

Díreofar ag Lá Oscailte Iarchéime an Fhómhair in Ollscoil na Gaillimhe ar inacmhainneacht an staidéir iarchéime agus ar na deiseanna maoinithe agus scoláireachta ar fad ar cheart do mhic léinn a fhiosrú agus iad ag smaoineamh ar infheistiú a dhéanamh ina n-oideachas agus ina ngairm bheatha. Beidh an Lá Oscailte Iarchéime ar siúl Dé Máirt, an 8 Samhain ó 12-3pm i Halla Bailey Allen, Áras na Mac Léinn. Beidh eolas le fáil faoi chláir iarchéime lánaimseartha agus pháirtaimseartha atá á dtairiscint san Ollscoil, lena n-áirítear máistreachtaí múinte agus taighde, agus roghanna taighde dochtúireachta. Beidh roinnt cainteanna ar siúl lena n-áirítear plé painéil ar chonairí gairme, deiseanna deontais, maoiniú iarchéime agus an próiseas iarratais. Beidh cur i láthair ar siúl chomh maith ar Scéim Scoláireachtaí PhD Hardiman, chomh maith le Leideanna Iarratais Iarchéime agus Conas Ráiteas Pearsanta Éifeachtach a Scríobh, cur i láthair ó fhoireann an Ionaid Forbartha Gairmeacha agus na hOifige Iontrála. Mar chuid den fhócas straitéiseach atá ag Ollscoil na Gaillimhe maidir le haitheantas a thabhairt d’fheabhas agus do rathúlacht, tá gach mac léinn iarchéime de chuid an AE a bhfuil céadonóracha bainte amach acu ina bhfochéim i dteideal iarratas a dhéanamh ar scoláireacht €1,500 i dtreo a gcúrsa Máistreachta múinte san Ollscoil.   Bronnadh Scoláireacht Sármhaitheasa ar Emily Atkinson, céimí an MSc in Consumer Psychology. Bhí an méid seo a leanas le rá aici: “Is deis iontach í an scoláireacht iarchéime a spreagann agus a thugann luach saothair don obair chrua a bhaineann le céadonóracha a bhaint amach. Thug an scoláireacht deis dom díriú ar an gcúrsa iarchéime ceart a aimsiú dom féin, agus díriú ar mo chuid staidéir le linn mo Mháistreachta.” Dúirt Valerie Leahy, Oifigeach Earcaíochta Iarchéime, Ollscoil na Gaillimhe: “Molaimid go háirithe do chuairteoirí atá ag smaoineamh ar fhilleadh ar staidéar ollscoile freastal ar ár Lá Oscailte Iarchéime. I gcás beagnach leath díobh siúd a chuireann isteach ar ár gcúrsaí iarchéime níl siad díreach tar éis céim a bhaint amach, tá siad ag filleadh ar an staidéar nó ag tabhairt faoi bhreisoiliúint dá bpost reatha. Cuirtear tacaíocht ar fáil dóibh siúd atá imithe as an gcóras oideachais le tamall anuas agus léiríonn ár dtaighde go n-éiríonn go maith go hacadúil le mic léinn atá ag obair nó ag baile agus atá ag filleadh ar an oideachas.” Bíonn cláir iarchéime nua nuálacha ag Ollscoil na Gaillimhe gach bliain, ar tairiscintí uathúla go leor acu. Tá siad seo deartha chun freastal ar riachtanais an tionscail agus ar éileamh an mhargaidh. I measc cuid de na cúrsaí nua d’iontráil 2023 tá MA (Languages & Business), MSc (Cybersecurity Risk Management), agus MSc (Health Data Science). Tá raon Clár Máistreachta Struchtúrtha nua ar fáil freisin sa Fhraincis, sa Ghearmáinis agus sa Spáinnis. Is féidir le gairmithe fáilteachais tabhairt faoin Teastas Iarchéime in Hospitality Managmenet i gColáiste Ósta na Sionna, clár atá deartha chun eolas ar chórais, ar threochtaí agus ar fheidhmchláir ghnó a fhorbairt. Beidh eolas ar gach clár nua, mar aon leis an 200 clár iarchéime eile atá ag Ollscoil na Gaillimhe, ar fáil ag an taispeántas i Halla Bailey Allen.  Is gá áit a chur in áirithe roimh ré agus is féidir é sin a dhéanamh ag www.universityofgalway.ie/postgraduate-open-day. Críoch

Tuesday, 1 November 2022

University of Galway’s Autumn Postgraduate Open Day will focus on the affordability of postgraduate studies and the multiple funding and scholarship opportunities that future students should explore when considering investing in their education and career. The Autumn Postgraduate Open Day takes place on Tuesday November 8 from 12-3pm in the Bailey Allen Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn. The event will showcase the suite of full-time and part-time postgraduate programmes available at the University, including taught and research masters, as well as doctoral research options. There will be a number of talks including a panel discussion on career pathways, grant opportunities, postgraduate funding and the application process. The talks will also include a presentation on the Hardiman PhD Scholarship Scheme, as well as Postgraduate Application Tips and How to Write an Effective Personal Statement, a presentation by staff from the Career Development Centre and the Admissions Office. As part of University of Galway’s strategic focus on recognising excellence and success, all EU postgraduate students with a first class honours in their undergraduate degree are eligible to apply for a €1,500 scholarship towards their taught Masters at the University.  Emily Atkinson, graduate of the MSc in Consumer Psychology, was awarded an Excellence Scholarship. She said: “The postgraduate scholarship is a fantastic opportunity that rewards and incentivises the hard work it takes to achieve first class honours. The scholarship allowed me prioritise finding the right postgraduate course for me, and to focus on my studies during my Masters.”  Valerie Leahy, Postgraduate Recruitment Officer, University of Galway, said: “We especially encourage visitors considering a return to university studies to attend our Postgraduate Open Day. Almost half of those applying to our postgraduate courses are not recent graduates, they are returning to study or upskill for their current job. Support is offered to those who have been out of the education system for some time and our research shows that students from industry or the home returning to education flourish academically.” University of Galway introduces new innovative postgraduate programmes annually, many of which are unique offerings. These are designed to meet industry needs and market-demand. New courses for entry 2023 include MA (Languages & Business), MSc (Cybersecurity Risk Management), and MSc (Health Data Science).  A range of new Structured Masters’ Programmes are also on offer in French, German, and Spanish. Hospitality professionals can avail of our Shannon College of Hotel Management’s new PgCert programme in Hospitality Management, designed to develop knowledge of systems, trends, and business applications. Information on all new programmes, along with University of Galway’s 200 other postgraduate programmes, will be available at the exhibition in the Bailey Allen Hall.  Booking in advance is required and is available at www.universityofgalway.ie/postgraduate-open-day.  Ends

Tuesday, 1 November 2022

Three international female scientists are to lead a series of webinars focusing on cutting-edge regenerative therapeutic medicine for humans and animals at University of Galway. Taking a One Health approach, University of Galway researchers Dr Ana Ivanovska from North Macedonia, Dr Laura Barrachina from Spain, and Dr Tarlan Eslami Arshaghi from Iran, will join Professor Frank Barry, Professor of Cellular Therapy with REMEDI, will discuss their current research and how they try to advance new therapies for use in both human and veterinary medicine. Joining the University of Galway scientists for the webinars are Professor Valerie Johnson, Michigan State University, USA, and Professor Steven Dow, Colorado State University, USA. The six webinar masterclasses will run each Tuesday from November 1 to December 13 (except Tuesday November 15) at 4pm. The webinar series is organised by Celtic Advanced Life Science Innovation Network (CALIN), in collaboration with the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at University of Galway. The six webinars include: November 1: One Health and Regenerative Medicine by Professor Frank Barry November 8: Cell Therapies for Wildlife and Exotic Animals by Professor Valerie Johnson November 22: Mesenchymal Stromal Cell Therapies for Osteoarthritis by Dr Ana Ivanovska November 29: Cell Therapies for Bacterial Infections by Professor Steven Dow December 6: Animal Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells by Dr Laura Barrachina December 13: Animal Cell-Free Therapies  by Dr Tarlan Eslami Arshaghi Professor Barry said: “We hope to provide information about the kind of cutting-edge research that is going on around the world in advanced therapeutics in veterinary medicine. We are interested in using our research skills to develop advanced therapeutics for veterinary patients and have gathered together an exceptionally talented international team of qualified vets, all with profound scientific expertise.” For more information visit http://www.calin.wales/en/events. Ends


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