Students and staff from the School of Business and Social Sciences at IT Sligo attended the inaugural international Human Rights lecture at The Mary Robinson Centre in Ballina, Co Mayo.
Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland and United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights introduced the guest speaker Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus, Chairman of the Yunus Centre and founder of the Grameen Bank, Bangladesh.
The former President’s gift of The Robinson Archive to her home town of Ballina was warmly welcomed by Mayo County Council and Ballina Town Council. Ireland’s first Presidential Library will be housed in the home she grew up in on the banks of the River Moy, with the incorporation of a purpose-built museum, research facility and events venue.
The aim of The Mary Robinson Centre is to foster and promote the study of themes, such as, Ireland’s role at international level, its links with the Irish Diaspora, empowering women in leadership at all levels and on a global scale, international human rights and climate justice. It is supported by the Centres for Human Rights and Women’s Leadership at the National University of Ireland Galway and the Climate Justice Centre in Dublin.
The theme of the lecture was that ‘we can create a world without poverty, if we only want it’. The lecture took place on ‘The International Day for the Eradication of World Poverty’ on the 17 October 2014 and coincided with the launch of The Mary Robinson Centre.
Professor Yunus spoke about the need for education systems in mainstream society to focus on the ‘social dividend’ as well as the ‘profit dividend’ and to begin engaging in social business education. This, he said would help enable ordinary people to attain greater benefits from their work and enterprise efforts.
Mary O’Keeffe a lecturer in the Department of Marketing, Tourism and Sport found the talk very inspiring. ” This concept could be introduced in third level education to complement modules like Not for Profit Marketing and Management and Community Development,” she said. “I believe it could introduced earlier in the educational system also, for example, in Transition Year where students are asked to investigate a social business in a community context.”
IT Sligo students on the four-year degree programme in BA in Social Care Practice and BA in Early Childhood Care and Education, study equality, social inclusion and Human Rights as an integral part of their programmes.
The degrees also incorporate a practical work based semester of 3 months in both year 2 and year 3 and placements have taken place in Ireland, Europe, South Africa, Ghana, Vietnam, Ethiopia, America and Canada.
Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland and UN Commissioner for Human Rights and Erin McLoughlin a Social Care Practice student at IT Sligo at the launch of The Mary Robinson Centre in Ballina, Co Mayo.
Samuel Adeyinka Ayorinde a student of Social Care Practice at IT Sligo and Professor Muhammad Yunus the guest speaker Nobel Laureate and Chairman of the Yunus Centre and Founder of the Grameen Bank, Bangladesh at the launch of The Mary Robinson Centre in Ballina.
Dave Bruce, Lucy Guerin, Erin McLoughlin and Samuel Adeyinka Ayorinde students of Social Care Practice at IT Sligo with lecturer Marie McGloin, IT Sligo and St Angela’s College, NUI Galway.