01 Dec 2021

SLIDESHOW: Limerick students celebrate as on-campus conferring ceremonies return

THERE were scenes of jubilation and celebration at Mary Immaculate College this week as conferring ceremonies made a very welcome return to campus after being held online last year due to the pandemic. 

Over the course of the two days, close on 1,500 students from 28 counties, 18 countries and four continents conferred with academic awards across the College’s 30+ programmes. 

In a specially recorded video message, Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris TD, congratulated all those graduating. “All graduations are to recognised and celebrated. However, this year’s group of graduates and your peers throughout the country have persevered with your studies through an unprecedented and challenging time, so your successful completion is more impressive,” he said. 

A special ceremony was held last evening to celebrate the conferring of degrees on more than 40 PhD and Master’s postgraduate students. This celebratory event saw the highest number of research degrees being awarded in the College’s history with 25 graduates from 2021 receiving doctoral awards.  

There were a number of other firsts witnessed over the course of the two days including the first cohort to graduate from MIC’s M Ed in Leadership of Wellbeing in Education (M Ed LWE) programme, the only master’s programme of its kind offered in Ireland.

A number of award winners were recognised for their remarkable achievements over the course of the four ceremonies

Speaking this week, Professor Eugene Wall, President of MIC, told the graduating Class of 2021 that they were asked to do something that was never asked of any preceding graduating classes. "You were asked to sacrifice your final year of study on campus,” he said as he congratulated them for their collective efforts. 

Wishing them well for the future, Prof Wall added: "My earnest wish for you is that the personal qualities and characteristics that you have developed will be key assets in enabling you to flourish both professionally and personally.”  

A number of MIC Alumni took time out of their busy careers to deliver a special video message of congratulations to the Class of 2021, including MIC Alumni Recipients 2019 Pat McDonagh (Businessman and founder of Supermacs) and Róisín Meaney (bestselling author); star of RTE’s Home & After School Hub, Múinteoir Ray (Cuddihy); Current RTÉ and former Limerick Leader journalist, Petula Martyn; Olympian and Ireland women's field hockey international, Naomi Carroll and former CEO of the Teaching Council, Áine Lawlor, to name but a few. Watch what they had to say here. 

In attendance at the various ceremonies over the two days were Councillor Tom Ruddle, Deputy Mayor of the City and County of Limerick; Niall Collins, Minister of State at the the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science;  Chairperson of the Board of Trustees and Governing Authority of MIC, Bishop Brendan Leahy and Provost/Deputy President of the University of Limerick, Professor Nigel Healey. 

*PICTURES: Alan Place

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