USI Condemns UCD’s Suggestion to Cut Irish Student Places

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Union of Students in Ireland (USI) President, Annie Hoey, condemned the suggestion made by University College Dublin’s (UCD) President Prof Andrew Deeks, that UCD may have to turn over places for Irish students to international students should the higher education funding crisis continue …” (more)

[Simon Foy, University Times, 8 June]

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Trinity’s Rankings Rise Must Not Obscure the Challenges Facing Irish Universities

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Yesterday’s announcement that Trinity has moved up 10 places to 88th in the QS World University Rankings should certainly be welcomed. After years of continuous decline, the reversal of this longstanding trend is a significant step for Trinity, and other Irish universities, in regaining their strong standing on the international stage …” (more)

[Simon Foy, University Times, 8 June]

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Trinity could attract ‘star academics’ after Brexit if pay restraints eased

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Constraints on public pay should be loosened after Brexit to attract international ‘star academics’ working in important areas of national interest to Ireland, the Seanad has heard. Thomas Molloy, director of public affairs and communications at Trinity College, Dublin, said Ireland was in danger of squandering the opportunities presented by the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union …” (more)

[Mary Minihan, Irish Times, 8 June]

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Leo Varadkar: Public sector pay deal means ‘it won’t be possible to do all we want in next budget’

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The incoming Taoiseach has welcomed plans to ballot public workers on a proposed new pay deal. However, Leo Varadkar has conceded that the costs of the new deal will reduce the amount available to spend elsewhere in the Budget …” (more)

[BreakingNews.ie, 8 June]

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Funeral held for Queen’s University Vice-Chancellor Professor Patrick Johnston

Posted in Life on June 8th, 2017 by steve

“The funeral has taken place for the late Professor Patrick Johnston who was Vice-Chancellor of Queen’s University Belfast. He passed away suddenly on Sunday at his holiday home in Co Donegal aged 58 …” (more)

[Belfast Telegraph, 8 June]

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Citing €500,000 Annual Cost, Staff Oppose New Faculty Managers

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“In a major shake-up to Trinity’s often rigid administrative system, a new proposal has already generated significant opposition from senior staff across the College’s 24 schools, with claims it will cost nearly €500,000 a year …” (more)

[Dominic McGrath, University Times, 8 June]

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Your toddler’s college bills could cost you €70,000 in 15 years’ time – best start saving now

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Looming college bills will be very much on the minds of the parents of students starting their Leaving Cert this Wednesday. Yet parents of young children should also be preparing for these mammoth bills – it could cost almost €70,000 to put your toddler though college by the time they reach college-going age …” (more)

[Louise McBride, Independent, 4 June]

Draft public service pay deal is ‘wholly inadequate’ – says TUI president

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI) president Joanne Irwin has described the proposed review of two tier pay scales included in the draft public service pay deal as ‘wholly inadequate’. The pay of new entrants to teaching is a particularly thorny issue because of the large numbers recruited on lower pay scales during the recession, to cater for rising school enrolments …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 8 June]

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Hostages, at last

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

IrelandHugh Brady, until recently President of UCD, famously summed it up: universities can’t bargain well with government, because they have no hostages, nothing to threaten government with. And we have seen the results over the last decade. University autonomy has increasingly been treated as a tired technicality with no real substance to it. We have also seen massively reduced funding, huge growth in governmental controls, and significant public criticism premised on the assumption that what universities spend is ‘public money’.

But less and less of it is public money these days. Less than half of university income today comes from public funds, and the trend is steadily downwards. And the structural inability of the current government to take hard decisions pretty much guarantees that nothing much will change in the near future. Absent some remarkable change both in Ireland’s economic fortunes and in official attitudes, the public element in university funding will rapidly approach relative insignificance, while the government attempts to pull the strings that come with it ever tighter.

Hence UCD’s recent announcement. Other Irish universities are not quite at this stage yet, but most are not far off.  This gives universities a greater freedom to manoeuvre and to bargain than they have had for a very long time. The DES has made it clear by its actions that it is not much bothered by crumbling university facilities or by appalling staff:student ratios.  But it will begin to worry as universities openly muse that the limited funding they receive from government is not worth the burden of state regulation that now comes with it, or that it is simply not the universities’ job to keep large swathes of Irish youth out of the dole queue – especially those who need (and deserve) something quite different from what the universities have to offer. Least of all does the DES want the most successful universities to start arguing that they should be private institutions.  But to avoid that, it must offer the universities something better. It must start to bargain at last.

The Blogmeister

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UCD warns it may cut number of places available to Irish students

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“University College Dublin has warned it may have to reduce the number of places available for Irish students if it does not get more funds. There is no threat to the intake for this year, but UCD president Professor Andrew Deeks has sent a clear signal that patience is running thin on the issue of sorting out the financing of higher education …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 8 June]

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Trinity College Dublin planning €1.25bn tech campus

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The planned technology campus by Trinity College Dublin (TCD) for the ‘Silicon Docks’ area of Dublin could entail a capital investment of up to €1.25bn. That is according to TCD, which stated that its Trinity Technology and Enterprise Campus (TTEC) project ‘would represent one of the largest infrastructural projects undertaken in Ireland since the IFSC’ …” (more)

[Gordon Deegan, Independent, 8 June]

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Trinity and UCD climb latest world university rankings

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Ireland’s top universities are climbing back up international rankings following a decade of cutbacks which meant many of them tumbled down influential league tables, new figures show. However, the country’s largest university UCD has warned that third level education remains under severe financial strain …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 7 June]

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UK universities fall down global league tables after budget cuts

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

“Britain’s universities are being dragged down by falling levels of research funding and employing fewer highly qualified staff than their international rivals, according to the compilers of a prestigious world university league table. The QS world university rankings for 2018, published on Thursday, shows the majority of British universities slipping down its table …” (more)

[Richard Adams, Guardian, 7 June]

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Two-thirds of Royal College of Surgeons graduates to leave Ireland

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Just 84 graduating doctors out of a class of 275 from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) plan to stay in Ireland. The Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) and opposition politicians say more needs to be done to encourage students from abroad who study medicine in Ireland to stay and work in the Irish health service …” (more)

[Jack Power, Irish Times, 7 June]

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Keep women in academia by providing childcare, historian urges universities

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

“A leading British historian has called on universities to provide more support for childcare to reduce the number of women who leave academia before they reach the peak of their careers. Starting a family remains one of the greatest obstacles for women who are building their careers as university researchers, but too little is done to help them …” (more)

[Ian Sample, Guardian, 7 June]

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Draft pay deal: State employees offered average pay rises of 6.6% by 2020

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“About 250,000 State employees will receive pay improvements of between 6.2% and 7.4% as part of a new three-year extension of the existing Lansdowne Road agreement. It is understood the deal, if accepted, will cost the exchequer €880 million over three years …” (more)

[Martin Wall, Irish Times, 8 June]

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WIT says they’re not closing College Street library

Posted in Governance and administration on June 8th, 2017 by steve

“The President of Waterford Institute of Technology says he is at a loss as to why anyone would fear the College Street library would be closed. Students are today protesting outside the College Street Campus because they say the want to save the library …” (more)

[WLR FM, 7 June]

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