NUI Galway and UHG Scholarship Honours Memory of Extraordinary Tarpey Sisters

Pictured at the 2018 Tarpey scholarship presentation in the Clinical Sciences Institute, NUI Galway, are this year’s recipients, Chloe Conlon School of Medicine and Fiona Geraghty, School of Nursing and Midwifery, with Professor Derek O’Keeffe, Dr Georgina Gethin, Ruth Tarpey, Tim Tarpey, Mary Tarpey and Professor Sean Dinneen, NUI Galway.
Nov 19 2018 Posted: 12:11 GMT

NUI Galway and University Hospital Galway recently presented the Tarpey Scholarships to students, Chloe Conlon and Fiona Geraghty. The scholarships are part of the Hazel and Tanya Memorial Fund which was established by the Tarpey family in memory of their daughters who tragically passed away.

Hazel and Tanya Tarpey were sisters who left a long lasting impression on many members of staff who encountered them in the Diabetes Centre and across every ward and discipline in the hospital before they both passed away of a rare genetic autoimmune disease that affects the endocrine glands called APECED (autoimmune polyendocrinopathy-candidiasis-ectodermal dystrophy). Their parents, Tim and Mary and siblings, Ruth and Dermot wanted to honour the memory of Hazel and Tanya by fundraising to establish these two annual scholarships in their names.

The memorial fund grants two annual research student scholarships in NUI Galway, one each in the School of Medicine and the School of Nursing and Midwifery. Chloe Conlon, a fourth year medical student from Sligo Town, was presented with the School of Medicine scholarship, with Fiona Geraghty, fourth year nursing student from Williamstown, Co. Galway, receiving the School of Nursing and Midwifery scholarship 

Last year’s scholarship winners Grace Cosgrove and Cherie Tan also attended the presentation and expressed gratitude to the Tarpey family. School of Nursing and Midwifery recipient of the Inaugural Tarpey Scholarships, Grace Cosgrove, said: “I wanted to use the money generously provided by the Tarpey family to further my education in nursing and increase my skills at ward level so that my clinical practice would improve and that the skills I have acquired will directly benefit my patients. The Electrocardiogram (ECG) course taught me skills on carrying out and interpreting ECG’s. From this I have now gained understanding into different cardiac arrhythmias, their treatments and can now carry out ECG independent from a doctor. This has reduced waiting times for my patient on the ward and has facilitated prompt action in any abnormalities.”

Cherie Tan, School of Medicine Recipient of the Inaugural Tarpey Scholarships, said: “The scholarship was used to attend the National Cancer Annual Meeting (NCAM) 2018 held in Singapore. The theme for NCAM 2018 was ‘Medical Informatics: From Big Data to Precision Oncology’. Through NCAM 2018, I learnt about how large medical data is synthesized to personalized medicine for individual patients in the field of oncology, an area which I hold special interest.”

NUI Galway’s Professor Sean Dinneen who cared for both sisters said: “The Tarpey sisters left a deep and lasting impression on all who encountered them, especially because of their extraordinary courage.”


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