NUI Galway hosts orientation to welcome 3,500 First Year students

Law students Eabha Gaughan Galway andHannah McCarthy Dublin on NUI Galway campus
Sep 22 2021 Posted: 13:48 IST

Walk-in vaccination centre opening on campus next week

New map linked to NUI Galway app for step-by-step campus navigation

NUI Galway has launched a special orientation programme to welcome a record intake of first year students to the University for the second year running.

Around 3,500 new students will be taking up offers of places on programmes at NUI Galway this year, with in-person lectures available for all students from next Monday 27 September 2021.

Ahead of next week, the University has confirmed a walk-in vaccination centre is to operate on campus. The service will open next Tuesday (September 28th), offering vaccination to students from 9am-5pm, three days a week (Tuesdays-Thursdays).

A new campus map has also been created and linked to the NUI Galway app to help students, staff and visitors to find their way around the University grounds. More than 127,000sq metres of indoor space has been mapped, allowing step-by-step navigation to any room or location in the most popular buildings on campus.

President of NUI Galway, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, extended a warm welcome to all those coming to the University campus for the first time, and to those returning to continue their studies.

“I want to say congratulations and extend a warm, safe welcome to the class of 2021. All of the students coming to campus this year have demonstrated remarkable resilience amid the significant challenges presented by Covid-19,” Professor Ó hÓgartaigh said.

“Our education and our lives have been disrupted by the pandemic and it is our aim to provide the best experience for students, safely and sustainably, on campus, for the academic year ahead.

“Táimid buíoch do phobal na Gaillimhe agus an cheantar máguaird don tacaíocht fial dár micléinn, go bhfuil gá leis i mbliana níos mó ná ariamh. We are conscious of our impact on Galway and the health, wellbeing and safety of our staff, students and the wider Galway community is our top priority. We are working hard to make this academic year a success, ensuring NUI Galway operates within public health guidelines.

“As part of that we are asking everyone in our university community to recognise the importance that we place on our values of respect, openness, excellence and sustainability and to maintain our commitment to personal and collective responsibility for the public good.

"We thank all our students who have already taken up an offer of a vaccine. A walk-in centre is opening and we urge all those who are eligible for a vaccine, and haven’t yet taken up the offer, to do so now."

Róisín Nic Lochlainn, NUI Galway Students’ Union President, said: "NUI Galway Students’ Union is here to represent all NUI Galway students and defend their rights. We are welcoming our students to campus with a mix of online and in person events to help them make friends, save money and become a part of the University community. This includes our huge Rudaí Álainn bag giveaway, free SU Card credit, our Walk & Talks, the Hump Day Hoolie, outdoor cinema, a Beach Clean Up, a swop shop, our Life Skills Courses, Walktober and the launch of our Hygiene Bank initiative.

“We have worked with the University to make sure every measure has been taken to ensure that your safety is our priority while also looking forward to an enjoyable year on campus."

NUI Galway Student Services, University management, the four Colleges and the Students’ Union have worked in partnership to plan a series of online and on-campus orientation events. They run from today Wednesday 22 September 2021, through to Sunday 26 September 2021.

Dedicated online sessions and workshops are being held as part of efforts to help students settle in and transition to higher education, to learn about how their programme will be delivered and to help them to engage with staff and fellow students.

Over the weekend, on-campus orientation takes place in line with public health advice.

Senior University academics and management will personally deliver welcome messages to students, while NUI Galway Student Services is hosting information sessions, including advice to try and stay safe and well.

Students are being encouraged to explore the campus on foot and by bus, to familiarise themselves with resources and facilities. Special zones are being set up for live music, health and wellbeing, mindfulness workshops, societies events, sports pop ups and a walking theatre.

Dean of Students Professor Michelle Millar said: “A huge effort has gone into the welcome programme for our new students. It is hugely important that we do our best to connect with our new students and help them connect with one another after all they have endured over the last 18 months or so.

“The 2021 orientation is partly a welcome, it’s partly congratulations for getting to NUI Galway and looking at what the whole student experience means. It is also important for all of our students to feel part of a wider community and to recognise they have a role to play in that community and a responsibility to make the best of their time and their place here in Galway.”

Further information on the orientation programme is available at

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