Undergraduate Award Makes Wayne’s World

An IT Sligo student’s study of the bathing water quality at Enniscrone beach in County Sligo has won him a prestigious Undergraduate Award for 2016.

Wayne Egan from Enniscrone in County Sligo graduated with a BSc Honours in Environmental Management (online). His final year thesis, assessing the impact of the Bellawaddy river on the microbiological quality of the bathing waters at Enniscrone beach, won him the gold medal at the Undergraduate Awards in the Earth & Environmental Sciences category.

The Undergraduate Awards scheme is the world’s largest academic awards programme. It is uniquely pan-discipline, identifying leading creative thinkers through their undergraduate coursework.

The Awards provide top performing students with the support, network and opportunities they require to raise their profiles and further their career.

The organisers received 5,514 submissions from students in 243 third level institutions across 40 countries for this year’s awards. To win, the student must be the top performer in his/her category.

Wayne is the sole award winner from the Institute of Technology sector this year.

“I was over the moon when I heard the news,” said a delighted Wayne. “My supervisor Declan Feeney encouraged me to submit my project for the Undergraduate Awards. The fact that I’ve won makes me very proud of the Environmental Science department at IT Sligo and of the college in general.”

Wayne has enjoyed a long-standing connection with the Institute, having originally graduated with a diploma in Science Pollution Assessment & Control in 1993 when the college was known as Sligo RTC.

He has worked for the last 20 years with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and in recent years, combined his day job with his online studies in Environmental Management.

“It’s a tremendous reward for Wayne and for his work ethic and dedication,” says Declan Feeney, lecturer in Environmental Science at IT Sligo.

“This body of work is also very timely, as it deals with one of the Wild Atlantic Way’s signature beaches. I think what helped his project stand out was the fact that it explored preventive measures and tangible solutions to the problem of water pollution at blue flag beaches.”

In addition to Wayne’s success, two other IT Sligo students received highly commended awards this year.

They were Killian Glynn, a final year student in Performing Arts, and Geraldine Courtenay – a Tourism student in the Institute’s School of Business & Social Sciences.

Wayne will receive his Gold Medal Award at the Undergraduate Award Summit in Dublin this November.

Photo caption:
IT Sligo graduate, Wayne Egan, winner of the Undergraduate Award 2016 in Earth & Environmental Sciences.

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