Sunday 4 December 2016

Plan for new technology university back on track

Katherine Donelly

Published 28/08/2015 | 02:30

A report commissioned by Education Minister Jan O'Sullivan found that the establishment of a technological university was viable, but that much work needed to be done
A report commissioned by Education Minister Jan O'Sullivan found that the establishment of a technological university was viable, but that much work needed to be done

THE chairman of the Institute of Technology Carlow says he believes that a technological university in the south east could be a reality within three years.

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Mr John Moore was commenting after a decision by the college’s  governing body  to enter a new facilitation process aimed at getting the project back on track.

Mr Moore said that he was “confident that a committed and equal partnership between both institutes will deliver a technological university for the south east region within three years."  .

The decision of the IT Carlow governing body follows a similar decision earlier  this week by the governing body of Waterford Institute of Technology (Waterford IT).

The proposal to merge Waterford IT and IT Carlow into a new entity with technological university status has been mired in controversy.

Waterford IT pulled the plug on talks last year after a report raised questions about how long it would take for IT Carlow to meet the criteria necessary for an upgrade to technological university.

That prompted Education Minister Jan O'Sullivan to commission a report from former Higher Education Authority chairman Michael Kelly, who found that the establishment of a technological university was viable, but that much work needed to be done.

Commenting on the decision of his governing body, Waterford IT president Professor Willie Donnelly said that the initial engagement was a necessary forerunner to any substantive engagement on the technological university as there was "a need to address the issues of mutual trust and respect".

Prof Donnelly said there was a "very clear message from regional stakeholders on the need for a university in the south east and the institute's focus remained on the creation of a university of international standing with an earned reputation for leadership in teaching, research and innovation".

He said they were fully committed to providing leadership in the delivery of the university. The preliminary process will be facilitated by Ms Jane Williams of management consultants the SIA Group.

Irish Independent

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