The Connacht Ulster Alliance [CUA] welcomes the announcement of €1.8m in Government funding by the HEA and Minister Mitchell O’Connor today. The funding will be crucial to support the ongoing investment and work of the CUA partners [the Institutes of Technology of Letterkenny, Sligo and Galway-Mayo] towards meeting the criteria for designation as a Technological University as laid out in the relevant legislation. In particular, the funds will support academic staff in further development of their qualifications; enhance the level of applied research activity and build capacity in this area; underpin extensive consultation and communication with individuals and groups inside and outside the partner institutes; and maintain the CUA Project Team in its project management and supporting role.
CUA Project Manager, Dr. Perry Share welcomed the announcement from the Minister:
“This funding is crucial in the progression of the Connacht Ulster Alliance and we welcome the Ministers announcement today. As the project progresses, increasing numbers of students, staff and the broader regional communities will be drawn into the process of reinventing higher education in the West/North-West.”
The CUA has established a network of working groups and teams to help to create the Technological University of the future. These are in areas such as governance and organisational structures; research development, including the development of innovative industry-focused research programmes; academic quality systems; and online/blended learning. These groups, supported by the Project Management team, are actively working on collaborative projects and engaging with external bodies.
President of IT Sligo, Dr. Brendan McCormack also welcomed the announcement from the Minister:
“We are delighted to receive this endorsement from Minister of State for Higher Education, Mitchell O’Connor and the HEA. Together with our partners at GMIT and LYIT, this funding will accelerate the progress towards our collective Technical University ambitions.”
The CUA is creating a distinctive Vision and Mission; an organisational structure that reflects the geographic and institutional span of the new Technical Univeristy; new industry-focused masters’ programmes; and further developing its nationally leading position in the field of online and flexible learning. It is also reviewing and focusing its international strategy and activities. The CUA is a founder member of the global World Technology Universities Network and this will help it to benchmark its development with established and emergent technological universities across the world.
PHOTO: Minister of State for Higher Education, Mitchell O’Connor T.D. with CEO of THEA, Dr. Joseph Ryan.