University of Galway celebrates Times Higher Education award for technological innovation

From left, John Clancy, chief executive of Galvia; broadcaster and comedian Sandi Toksvig; Paul Stapleton, Systems Support Coordinator; Josephine Walsh, Head of Student Engagement projects at University of Galway; Bríd Seoige, Head of Content, University of Galway; and Aloma Onyemah, Director of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Trust and member of THE Awards judging panel.
Dec 13 2023 Posted: 10:34 GMT

University of Galway has celebrated a Times Higher Education award for technological innovation for its virtual assistant for students named Cara.

The Times Higher Education Award underscores the University's commitment to leveraging innovation in its pursuit of academic excellence and comprehensive student support. 

Cara is an innovative artificial intelligence-powered virtual assistant which has been developed by the University of Galway in partnership with Galvia, a pioneering AI company based in Galway.

The University was rewarded for its work on the project by receiving the Times Higher Education Award for Technological or Digital Innovation of the Year at a gala event in Liverpool. The recognition celebrates the exceptional achievement in technological advancement that Cara offers as well as the significant leap forward in enhancing student supports and data collection methodologies within the academic landscape. 

Cara efficiently addresses online queries from students while at the same time gathers essential data to identify and support at-risk individuals in the student community.

Josephine Walsh, Head of Student Engagement projects at University of Galway, accepted the award on behalf of the team, saying: “This is a great acknowledgement of all the work the University of Galway Student Services team and the Galvia team have done in collaboration and it marks our joint commitment to supporting students.” 

John Clancy, chief executive of Galvia, said: "We extend our heartfelt congratulations to the University of Galway on this prestigious recognition. Collaborating with the university to develop Cara has been an inspiring journey, showcasing the transformative potential of AI-driven solutions in advancing education and student well-being."

Director of Student Services at the University of Galway, John Hannon, said: “We are honoured to be recognised by Times Higher Education for our commitment to technological innovation and student support. Cara represents a transformative leap forward in higher education, enabling us to provide exceptional support to our students while optimising our resources."


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