Government, county councils and IT Sligo have unveiled a joint initiative that will benefit the long-term quality and management of our roads.
Highly qualified engineers, consultants and contractors are responsible for the roads network, from the lay-out of footpaths to multi-lane motorways.
Now they will be offered the opportunity to improve their expertise by accessing latest research, developments and innovations.
IT Sligo in collaboration with the Local Authority Services National Training Group (LASTNG) has developed a programme comprising five key modules that will provide a significant upgrading of practitioners’ current knowledge of best practice nationally and internationally.
The new online part-time course, to be delivered by IT Sligo, is tailored to address current civil engineering skills shortages in the areas of road maintenance engineering and network management.
Completion of the course will lead to the conferral of a Post Graduate Certificate in Road Maintenance Engineering and Network Management (Level 9).
Local authority applicants will have 80% of their course fees funded by the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport and 20% by local authorities.
Individual or combined modules may be taken leading to the award of Post Graduate Certificates in the specialisms covered.
The modules are: network management and contracts; transportation planning; traffic control and safety; road pavement design and management; structural assessment and inspection; geotechnical engineering and drainage systems.
Participants must have a BSc (Hons) Civil Engineering or equivalent.
Mr Seamus Neely, CEO, Donegal Council, speaking at the signing of the collaboration agreement ahead of the expected validation of the new course, thanked all involved in the initiative.
He said: “This programme has developed as a result of a collaboration between the Institute of Technology Sligo and the LASNTG, and in particular the Roads Services Training Group, and I would like to congratulate all concerned with its development.
“I also thank the representatives of the Dept of Transport, Tourism and Sport who have agreed to contribute towards the course fees for Local Authority staff.
“I am confident that this is just the start of further collaborations between the LASNTG and IT Sligo and indeed I can identify areas in the water services and environmental areas for further expansion.”
Mr Trevor McSharry, Head of Department of Civil Engineering and Construction at IT Sligo, said: “This new collaboration has significant potential and we are currently looking at developing progression options to Post Grad Diploma and Masters level in this area.”
LASNTG co-ordinates the delivery of comprehensive training to the best international standards for all staff involved in the provision of services in water supply, waste water, roads and the environment.
Roads Services Training Group (RSTG) was set up to meet the developing requirements of the Roads Services sector through the provision of new and existing courses at the Regional Training Centres.
(L-R) Dominic Mullaney, Principal Officer Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport; Tom Reilly, Head of Strategy IT Sligo; Seamus Neely, Chairman LASNTG and CEO Donegal County Council; Trevor McSharry, Head of Department of Civil Engineering and Construction IT Sligo; Ciarán Hayes, CEO Sligo County Council.