Monday, 29 July 2013

An Taoiseach to Open UCD EGA Panel Discussion on 'Manufacturing Engineering and Job Creation'

An Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD will open the UCD Engineering Graduates Association (EGA) Autumn Panel Discussion on 'Manufacturing Engineering and Job Creation' on October 22nd 2013. This is in recognition of the importance of the manufacturing sector to our current job creation and export drive.
The Panel Discussion will be addressed by leading national and international engineers in the manufacturing space including some of Ireland's leading entrepreneurs.

The Taoiseach recently opened the 5,250 sq metre NexusUCD Research and Innovation Centre together with the offices of ResMed a leading international company in the sensor technology business. 'By providing innovation in Irish business and education we will make Irish high-value products and services more attractive across the world' the Taoiseach said 'Building closer links between industry and higher education institutions will be essential if Ireland is to be promoted as the 'innovation island.'

An Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD at the opening of the NexusUCD
 At the launch, UCD Vice President for Innovation Peter Clinch demonstrated the UCD ambition in this area. He said that 'the university is actively supporting the transition to a sustainable Irish economy based on innovation, education, enterprise and exports'.

ResMed is an Irish company formed out of innovative engineering research in UCD. Both itself and its predecessor company Bianca Med were founded by UCD research engineers Dr. Conor Hanley and Professor Conor Heneghan who studied chemical and electronic engineering respectively. Their initial research was to invent sleep monitoring technology which became a world leader in non contact sleep and breathing. You can imagine how this transformed the remote monitoring of sleep and breathing in the home especially for babies and the older generation.
Pictured at the launch Dr. Conor Hanley of ResMed, An Taoiseach Enda Kenny and UCD Vice President for Innovation Peter Clinch
Dr. Conor Hanley of ResMed was delighted with the new research facilities in NexusUCD. 'We chose to site our new office in NexusUCD because of the excellent facilities available and its proximity to UCD and affiliated hospitals. Together they deliver an ecosystem that is vital to our innovation and growth' he explained.

The EGA Panel Discussion will further illustrate and explore the engineering innovation that is helping to drive our economic recovery. A further example of this in the agricultural engineering area is Dairymaster in Tralee, Co. Kerry, who manufacture automatic milking machines for the export market in China. Dr. Edmond Harty CEO of Dairymaster is a mechanical engineer who has a PhD from UCD in the area of milking performance in dairy farming. Edmond won the Ernst & Young 2012 Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

So please put the date of October 22nd in your diary for the Panel Discussion on 'Manufacturing Engineering and Job Creation' commencing with An Taoiseach at 7pm in the Clinton Auditorium. It will be preceded by the UCD EGA Annual General Meeting at 5.30pm.

Thursday, 18 July 2013

Civil Engineer appointed new UCD President

The really exciting news today is the appointment of Professor Andrew Deeks of University of Durham succeed Dr Hugh Brady as UCD President for the next 10 year period.

Professor Andrew Deeks

The Governing Authority of University College Dublin has today approved the appointment of Professor Andrew J Deeks as President of University College Dublin from January 2014.  Professor Deeks will succeed Dr Hugh Brady, whose ten-year tenure finishes at the end of December 2013.

A graduate in civil engineering from the University of Western Australia, Perth, Professor Deeks joins UCD from Durham University, where he is currently Pro Vice-Chancellor (Science).
Warmly welcoming the appointment of Professor Deeks,  Mr Dermot Gallagher, as Chair of the Governing Authority, said:  “Andrew Deeks has an impressive track record of leadership roles in the university sector.  UCD operates in a competitive international arena and his expertise and knowledge will help us to strengthen our national position while maintaining an active outward-looking focus.”

Professor Deeks joined Durham University as Pro Vice-Chancellor for Science in 2009.  This faculty covers one third of the university’s academic disciplines.  During his tenure, Professor Deeks spearheaded the development of Durham’s global presence strategy and extensive international partnerships, particularly in China and Brazil.  He is currently Chair of the UK Deans of Science. 

Durham University is a top 100 university in both the Times Higher Education 2012 world university rankings and in the QS rankings.  The Complete University Guide 2012 ranked Durham in fifth place out of 116 UK Higher Education institutions. 

Prior to joining Durham University, Professor Deeks was the Head of the School of Civil & Resource Engineering at the University of Western Australia, Perth, from 2004 to 2009.  As Head of School, Professor Deeks created a new model for industry involvement in the school, developed collaborative programmes with Chinese universities, significantly improved the student experience and doubled student numbers.  He speaks conversational Mandarin.   His strong commitment to students is acknowledged in the number of prizes and awards he holds for teaching excellence and innovation in teaching.

“I am very much looking forward to taking up the role of President of UCD, Ireland’s largest university.” Professor Deeks said.  “UCD plays a unique role in Irish society and economy, and, under the stewardship of Dr Hugh Brady, has made impressive inroads into becoming a truly international university.  I will bring ideas and approaches learnt from my experiences in the UK and Australia and blend these with the undoubted ambition and energy I see among the high calibre people at UCD to ensure UCD is recognised throughout Ireland and the world as an international and intercultural place of learning and scholarship of the highest standard, benefiting local, national and global communities.”

Professor Deeks is a leading expert in computational mechanics; specifically in the scaled boundary finite element method, which is a semi-analytical approach for solving elastostatic, elastodynamic and allied problems in engineering.  He is also highly respected for his research work in structural mechanics, structural dynamics and dynamic soil structure interaction.  He has authored and co-authored over 160 textbooks, research articles and conference proceedings and has been the recipient of prestigious research grants.