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20/09/2021

BREAKING: New technological university announces its first president

BREAKING: New technological university announces its first president

Professor Vincent Cunnane has been named as the first president of the Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest

The chair of the Joint Governing Body of the AIT-LIT Consortium, Professor Tom Collins, has welcomed the announcement  that Professor Vincent Cunnane is to be the first President of the Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest. 

The appointment was announced by the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris following an international recruitment process. 

The term of the appointment is eight years and Professor Cunnane will take up his post from the commencement of the new Technological University on October 1.

Confirming the appointment, Minister Harris said: "The new technological university will be the third established in the State, and will be a new powerhouse university, driving development and investment across the Midlands and Midwest regions. I want to congratulate Professor Cunnane on his appointment. Professor Cunnane has vast experience and will be perfectly positioned to lead the new institution in realising the benefits that technological universities have to offer - education for all, from apprenticeship to doctoral degrees, research-informed teaching and learning, and, crucially, regional development," he stated.

Commenting on the appointment of Professor Cunnane, Professor Collins said: "All in the consortium are very pleased that Vincent Cunnane is to be the inaugural President.  He has a distinguished record of achievement in the academic, research and development spheres.  He is eminently qualified to lead the development of the TU and its contribution to the economic, social and cultural life of the Midlands, Midwest and beyond.   In that task he will be greatly assisted by the quality and commitment of the leadership team and staff of the TU.”

Prof Cunnane said: "I feel honoured and privileged to become the founding president of Ireland's newest Technological University. I have seen the evolution of the technological sector over the last number of years. To lead this exciting, dynamic and visionary new organisation will be a challenge but one that I very much look forward to with the support of a really talented, enthusiastic and motivated cohort of staff."

Tony Brazil, outgoing Chair of Limerick Institute of Technology has paid tribute to Prof Cunnane. "I have worked closely with Vincent over the past three years since I became Chair and I have been hugely impressed by his vision, energy and leadership.  He will be an outstanding first President for the new TU."

Liam Rattigan, outgoing Chair of AIT Governing Body also welcomed the appointment. "I want to wish Vincent and all in the new TU every success as it embarks on this new phase of higher education in the Midlands and the Midwest," he stated. 

"I also want to pay tribute to the legacy of Prof Ciarán Ó Catháin who has led AIT for the past two decades and under whose leadership the Institute achieved university status", he added.

The Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest will commence on October 1, next, with campuses in Limerick, Athlone, Clonmel, Ennis and Thurles.

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