All 2007

NUI Galway Researchers Focus on Mobile Healthcare

Monday, 26 November 2007

Increased demand for Electronic Engineering Graduates Expected Researchers from NUI Galway are part of a national group awarded just under €4m by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) for the development of mobile healthcare technology. The group will develop technology to assist clinicians with more effective remote monitoring of out-patients in their own homes. Drivers for the technology include an ageing population, increasing pressure on centralised healthcare facilities and the need to reduce the number of in-patients. Many such applications involve the generation and analysis of large quantities of biological signals for each patient, driving the need for sophisticated electronic signal processing techniques. A key focus of the research will be efficient operation for longer life in mobile devices. The research group, entitled "Efficient Embedded Digital Signal Processing for Mobile Digital Health" (EEDSP), is led by University College Cork, and in addition to NUI Galway, includes academic researchers from University of Limerick and University College Dublin, as well as a number of industry partners. According to Dr. Edward Jones, Lecturer in Electronic Engineering and leader of the NUI Galway team, "This grant from SFI will help the EEDSP group to advance the state of the art in this area of increasing importance to society. At the same time, a steady supply of graduates will be required to meet the needs of the rapidly growing digital healthcare industry. Dr. Jones added, "Electronic Engineering offers a tremendous range of possible careers over a wide range of sectors that are critical to society. Some of these might not immediately spring to mind to leaving cert students, including this relatively new and rapidly growing area of digital and mobile healthcare". NUI Galway is holding its annual Open Day on Thursday, 29 November, and those interested in electronics as a career should drop by the Electronic Engineering stand at this event to find out more. -ends-

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NUI Galway Honours Gabriel Byrne during Winter Conferrings

Monday, 26 November 2007

One of Ireland's best known actors and most appreciated sons will be conferred tomorrow (Tuesday, 27 November) with a Degree of Doctor of Arts (honoris causa) at National University of Ireland, Galway. Gabriel Byrne is one of the best known actors in the world and he will be conferred as part of the winter conferring at NUI Galway along with over 800 students from across the faculties and schools. Gabriel Byrne started his acting career with Ireland's Focus Theatre before joining London's Royal Court Theatre in 1979. His film debut came soon after, in John Boorman's 1981 Arthurian epic, Excalibur. He has worked with some of cinema's leading directors, including the Coen Brothers, Wim Wenders, Jim Jarmusch, Ken Loach, John Boorman, David Cronenberg and Bryan Singer. Moving between independent and studio films, in addition to producing three pictures and writing two, he has starred in 35 feature films, including Miller's Crossing, The Usual Suspects, Into the West, The End of Violence, Dead Man, Vanity Fair and Spider. Rod Stoneman, Director of the Huston School of Film & Digital Media, said, "Gabriel Byrne is an artist whose imagination and performances have offered us irreplaceable ideas and images and we are pleased to honour him for this. His involvement with Irish cultural activities and charitable works is exemplary, reflecting a generosity of spirit and commitment to his homeland." Students will graduate throughout the day from the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences; College of Engineering and Informatics; Faculty of Law; Faculty of Commerce; College of Science; and College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies. Speaking ahead of the conferring, President of NUI Galway, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, said, "We in NUI Galway are delighted to honour Gabriel Byrne as an outstanding Irish actor, who is respected internationally as a master of his craft. We re especially pleased that on the day we graduate the first students from new and innovative programmes in film and digital media, that we are honoured by the presence of Gabriel Byrne, who receives a Doctor of Arts for his outstanding contribution to Irish and international film." Some students at the conferring ceremony will be the first to graduate from certain new courses, such as the MA in Advanced Learning Skills, MA in Philosophy: Ethics, Culture and Global Change, MA in Digital Media, MA Production and Direction, and MA Public Advocacy and Activism. ENDS

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Mineralogical Society Distinguished Lecture at NUI Galway

Wednesday, 21 November 2007

'Minerals, metals, molecules and microbes' The Mineralogical Society Distinguished Lecturers programme comes to the Environmental Change Institute, NUI Galway, on Thursday 29 November, with a lecture by Professor David Vaughan of the University of Manchester. Professor Vaughan will deliver a lecture on "Minerals, metals, molecules and microbes: environmental mineralogy and sustainability", at 8pm, with refreshments from 7.30pm, in the Orbsen Building Seminar Room. Environmental mineralogy is the study of minerals with the purpose of understanding and assessing their influence in the movement and fixing of organic and inorganic contaminants at and near the earth's surface. According to Professor David Vaughan, of the University of Manchester, "Metals are critically important both as resources and potential pollutants. Understanding how they can be concentrated or dispersed at the Earth's surface depends on new knowledge, at the molecular scale, of processes involving mineral surfaces, ultrafine particles and mineral-microbe interactions." The lecture will address the following questions: How do we use minerals to contain waste? Can minerals offer green solutions to the problems of waste management? How do minerals assist in the remediation of contaminated soils and waters? How do flora and fauna interact with minerals in rocks and how do they work to break down stone buildings and walls? What are some of the state-of-the-art techniques used to study metal cycling in the environment? Dr. Martin Feely, of the Geofluids Research Group in the Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences at NUI Galway, says that, "On a local level, one of the most visual examples of the importance of mineral-microbe interactions is the manner in which lichen work to degrade Ireland's old stone walls. Understanding how this process occurs is relevant for geologists, archaeologists, environmental consultants, botanists and microbiologists." This lecture is free and open to the public and is hosted by NUI Galway's Environmental Change Institute (ECI) and Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences. For more information please contact or phone 091 495061. ENDS

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President to lead high-level NUI Galway delegation to China

Monday, 19 November 2007

Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of National University of Ireland, Galway will today lead a high level delegation to China of academic representatives from various university faculties and research centres. Over the course of the 5-day visit the delegation will be expanding and strengthening links by meeting with, and in many instances signing memoranda of understanding and partnership agreements between NUI Galway and 17 Chinese institutions. * Developing stronger educational links with China is not only a key feature of NUI Galway's international strategy but features prominently in the Irish government's Asia strategy (1999-2009). Some of the benefits of these links are graduate placement, recruitment and co-operation in the field of research and development. Ms Anna Cunningham, Director of International Affairs at NUI Galway, said, "Attracting high calibre international research Masters and PhD students is a strategic priority for NUI Galway. We are fortunate to have solid links in place already with a range of prestigious Chinese universities. The objective of this visit is to formalise these links and create further opportunities for reciprocal exchange of postgraduate students and collaborative research." During the visit Professor William Schabas of the Irish Centre for Human Rights will deliver a paper at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) with which NUI Galway will sign a formal agreement. Among the other institutions formalising agreements with NUI Galway will be Hong Kong University of Science & Technology and the Institute of Oceanology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Qingdao, who will forge a formal linkage with the Martin Ryan Marine Research Institute, NUI Galway. In addition, the Beijing Alumni Chapter launch will be hosted by Ambassador Declan Kelleher at the Irish Embassy. Speaking ahead of the visit, President Ó Muircheartaigh said, "This historic visit to China represents a wonderful opportunity for NUI Galway to build upon the strong existing relationships between our university and China. With over 70 alumni in China, Galway is the Irish university with the most China-based graduates. The visit by this delegation will be a platform for our existing and developing connections with China - so that these can be strengthened and built on, thus paving the way for increased cooperation in educational exchange, in research & development and in greater cultural understanding." Dr Louis de Paor, Director of the Centre for Irish Studies and Professor Kevin Barry, Dean of the College of Arts, Social Sciences, and Celtic Studies, will visit Nanjing and Fudan Universities with a view to attracting Master and PhD students for a period of study at the Centre. The Centre currently has a student from Nanjing, sponsored by the China Scholarship Council conducting her doctoral research on the work of Roddy Doyle. Professor Barry says, "In order to establish these exchanges NUI Galway are providing Chinese language classes where 30 students are currently enrolled with two lecturers from Beijing. During the next academic year at NUI Galway, it is planned to offer undergraduate students the option of studying Chinese as part of Arts and Commerce programmes." In his remarks at the launch of the Alumni Chapter, the President reminded alumni and guests that the links between NUI Galway and Beijing would be further enhanced by the participation of three current students and 1 alumni in next year s Olympics in Beijing who will compete in sprinting (Paul Hession, 110 & 200m) rowing (Alan Martin, Cormac Folan) and the 20km walk (Olive Loughnane). ENDS

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NUI Galway to Showcase 17 New Degree Courses at Open Day

Monday, 19 November 2007

The NUI Galway Open Day will take place from 9am - 3pm on Thursday, 29 November. Thousands of secondary school students from all over Ireland are expected to attend, along with their parents and teachers. The day will showcase 17 new degree courses which will be on CAO forms for the first time in 2008. With a radical departure from traditional Arts degrees, the new CONNECT Programme from the College of Arts, Social Sciences, and Celtic Studies is offering seven new four-year degrees. The CONNECT programmes are designed to increase the employability of graduates by developing distinctive skills and creating connections with life beyond the campus. During third-year, students will be immersed in their specialised field, this opportunity might include: project-based work, educational placement in the community, portfolio preparation, creative practice, study abroad, service learning, or placements within Non-Governmental Organisations. The seven new CONNECT degrees are: BA with Children's Studies (GY110); BA with Creative Writing (GY111); BA with Film Studies (GY112); BA with Human Rights (GY113); BA with Irish Studies (GY114); BA with Theatre and Performance (GY115); and BA with Women's Studies (GY116). Other new programmes from the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies are a BA in Mathematics and Education (GY109) and two degrees offered entirely through Irish BA Gaeilge agus Léann an Aistriúcháin (GY107), and BA Riarachán Gnó (GY108). The Faculty of Commerce is offering a new three-year BA Commerce Degree with Accounting (GY207), while the College of Engineering has a new Bachelor of Science in Project and Construction Management (GY410). For those interested in the sciences there are four new degrees: Physics with Applied Physics (GY315); Physics with Medical Physics (GY316); Physics with Astrophysics (GY317); and Biopharmaceutical Chemistry (GY318). Finally, the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences will offer the first undergraduate podiatry programme available in the country, leading to a Bachelor of Science in Podiatry (GY504)*. "According to Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President, NUI Galway, "The initial CAO deadline is a little over 10 weeks away so the Open Day is important in helping students find out more about the huge range of courses here at NUI Galway. It's also a wonderful opportunity for future students to learn more about student life in the University, especially the improvements in sporting and cultural facilities, including our new Sports Centre and Swimming Pool as well as the Cultural Centre". Lecturers and current students will be available throughout the day to answer questions about student life at NUI Galway. Giving a taste of academic study, there will be introductory lectures throughout the day in Arts, Law, Engineering, IT, Commerce, Science and Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences. Information stands will provide practical input on topics including student services, admissions, accommodation, volunteering and career development. For further information contact Mary Coyle on 091 492814, email or visit ENDS

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