Nobel Prize Winner Launches Cross Border Collaboration

One of Ireland’s most eminent scientists, Dr. William C. Campbell, awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 2015, was at IT Sligo on Wednesday to launch three new cross border programmes in biomedical sciences, a partnership between IT Sligo and Ulster University.

The 86-year-old Dr. Campbell, along with his colleague, Professor Satoshi Omura, was awarded the Nobel Prize for the development of therapies that have revolutionised the treatment of some of the world’s most devastating parasitic diseases.

Dr. Campbell, born in Ramelton, Co Donegal, delivered a 30-minute lecture on his award-winning work to a packed Aurivo Auditorium, IT Sligo’s new €1.5m conference and meeting facility.

The lecture was attended by undergraduate and post-graduate science students as well as pupils from local secondary schools

Dr. Campbell, who described his Nobel win as “like a fairytale”, launched the new BSc honours degree programmes in Biomedical Sciences, a cross border partnership between IT Sligo and Ulster University.

The School of Biomedical Sciences at Ulster University and the School of Science at IT Sligo have developed three innovative, distance-learning BSc (Hons) degree programmes in the Biomedical Sciences.

This is in response to the skills requirement in the relevant clinical and bio-industrial sectors, professional body request, the changing economic environment, and a need for flexible learning opportunities.

Through collaborating on these pioneering new programmes the institutions are making best use of their combined expertise in order to meet the needs of students and employers.

This is the first cross-border collaboration for distance-learning Biomedical Sciences BSc programmes.

Speaking at the event, Interim President of IT Sligo Mr. Colin McLean said cross-border collaboration between two leading Higher Education distance learning providers in Ireland and UK brought complementary expertise. “It also showcases the strength of online learning in tailoring the programmes’ delivery and assessment to match industry’s current and future requirements.”

Ulster University Pro-Vice-chancellor, Learning, Teaching and Student Experience Professor Denise McAllister said the collaborative partnership would boost the availability of specialist skills across the entire spectrum of health and medical related professions.

She said: “Our greatest strength lies in inter-dependent collaboration, not competition. More importantly, for organisations to stay innovative in this environment, they must have scalable, networked relationships.”

Photo caption:
Nobel Prize Winner Dr William C. Campbell poses for a selfie with students of Sligo Grammar School during Wednesday’s official launch of new cross border programmes in Biomedical Sciences – a collaboration between IT Sligo and Ulster University.


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