Thursday, 20 December 2012

Christmas Greetings to EGA Members

I wish all of our members at home and abroad and your families a happy and peaceful Christmas. 

We had our 2012 AGM in November which was followed by what was a record attendance for an EGA Meeting at the subsequent Panel Discussion chaired by Pat Kenny on ‘Can we shape Ireland's recovery on the German model?’. Led by the German Ambassador to Ireland, our five Speakers were outstanding on the current EU fiscal crisis – so much so that Pat Kenny devoted an hour-long slot to relive the debate on Today with Pat Kenny last Tuesday morning. A link to the Pat Kenny programme and a summary of the original full debate are both available on the EGA website (

We are planning a very full programme of work in 2013 commencing with formulation of a new EGA Strategy for the next few years which will be aimed at projecting UCD as an Engineering College of truly international reputation.

We hope to support the newly integrated College to climb even greater heights in the years ahead. All of our Members will be invited to take a view on the new Strategy to broaden our remit and profile within UCD nationally and internationally as a centre for Learning, Research, Innovation, and Enterprise. In this regard the current links between Engineering and Business will be greatly strengthened.

I take the view that the Engineering profession and our entire industry are already central to our national recovery when you see that our significant national growth is in manufacturing exports (Pharma, ICT, Biomedical). That is not always acknowledged by media and others to be the case. Our exports and job creation in these areas are often fully ascribed to the ‘Life Sciences’ with no mention of ‘Engineering’, which is not an accurate representation.

We need to be more articulate on our key contribution to society and more holistic in considering our crucial future role in rebuilding the national economy including our physical and social infrastructure. We need to do more than engineer the future; we also need to inspire the future generations of engineers in our schools.

If we do not take this opportunity to shape events now in our recovery, then surely they will shape us as unfortunately has happened over the past decade in the Irish economy.

In addition to the Annual Lecture, Presentation of Final Year Gold Medals and Lunch/Distinguished Graduate Award this year, we are hoping to have an extra event to encourage a visit home to a planned Engineering conference in September by our many graduates abroad as part of The Gathering 2013, a tourism initiative promoted and supported by Government.

Nollag Shona agus Athbhliain faoi mhaise daoibh go léir.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Welcome to my new blog

My name is P J Rudden and I have the honour to have been elected President of the UCD Engineering Graduates Association last month. I want to pay tribute to and thank the outgoing President Michael Loughnane for his work as President over two terms in the past 4 years. It was a difficult 4 years for Ireland and for Europe and indeed especially for people in the engineering profession many of whom had to emigrate.

Outgoing and Incoming Presidents of the UCD Engineering Graduates Association,
Michael Loughnane and P.J. Rudden
We have to look forward though with optimism and hope that the initial signs of recovery we are seeing will continue and grow in 2013 and 2014. As a profession we have a duty to assist that recovery in any way we can and in that way raise our profile within UCD and the general community.

This blog is intended to raise the profile of the UCD Engineering Graduates Association. Our purpose is to assist and promote UCD as a leading College of Engineering internationally in terms of Innovation Manufacturing Enterprise and Job Creation. We are examining our remit and our structures to deliver better on this purpose.

Pictured at the UCD EGA Debate were L-R:
P.J. Rudden President of UCD EGA,
Dr. Bridgid Laffan Professor of European Politics UCD,
Dr. Eckhard Lübkemeier German Ambassador,
Professor Gerry Byrne Dean UCD Engineering, Dr. Brian Sweeney,
 Stephen Donnelly TD and Debate Chair Pat Kenny.
UCD is a unique Engineering College in Ireland in having Civil, Environmental, Chemical, Mechanical, Electrical, Energy,  Electronic and Biosystems Engineering integrated in the one College on the same campus

In March 2013 the EGA  will publish our 5 Year Strategy Plan 2013 - 2018 to assist UCD in a new Development Plan for Engineering Innovation. We want all of our Members and Graduates to bé part of this new Vision for Engineering in UCD and will therefore consult widely on how best to achieve our aims.

Engineering is already the engine of growth in the Irish economy with our Pharma, ICT and Biomedical maunfacturing sectors leading our exports from FDI and indigenous companies. Our Engineers and Scientists from UCD and other third level colleges are leading this export drive towards recovery.

Newly Elected President of UCD Engineering Graduates Association
with graduates who attended AGM and Panel Discussion.
Front L-R: Elaine Johnson, Ashley O'Toole, Katie O'Neill and Angela Treanor
Back L-R: Warren Phelan, Roisin Bradford, Conor Delaney and John Finegan.
This blog will keep you informed as we chart our progress to meet the EU 2020 Strategy of a 'smart innovative and sustainable Europe'. Ireland's Presidency of the European Union in the first 6 months of 2013 will put us centre stage in the driving seat of growth and recovery.

Join us in this voyage of discovery and bé part of the growth of UCD Engineering into a powerhouse of Innovation and Enterprise in the European sphere. Be a 'Follower' of this blog and - better still -  join the Engineering Graduates Association and be a real part of the exciting journey with us.

The views expressed on this blog are my own personal views and do not necessarily represent the views of either the UCD Engineering Graduates Association or of UCD.