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Another Kick in the Balls by Dublin

  • 29-01-2005 11:40am
    #1
    Closed Accounts Posts: 88,981 ✭✭✭✭ mike65


    from indo
    A UNIVERSITY for the south-east was given the thumbs down by EducationMinister Mary Hanafin yesterday.

    On a visit to Waterford Institute of Technology, Ms Hanafin said there was no government policy to give the institute or any other third-level organisation in the region university status.

    She said the country already had nine universities and the institute filled a need in the region.

    Speaking at the opening of new Information and Communications Technology building and student restaurant at the Cork Road campus, the minister said of WIT: "I think one of its key features is that it provides courses at a number of academic levels, from certificate right through to post-graduatelevel. I would not like to see any of this lost."

    Local Transport Minister Martin Cullen has said there was a "glaring deficit" in the region, while Justice Minister Michael McDowell has also backed calls for a university. Since 1968, some 23 education ministers have visited WIT during an ongoing campaign for university status.

    Sarah Murphy

    So once again the government policy is - keep the South-East poor and stupid.

    Mike.


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,726 ✭✭✭✭ DMC


    Along with the North East, North West, South West and the Midlands, tbh.

    But what is in a name? I don't feel the IT's around the country are any different than the RTC's that I was educated in (Dundalk, if you ask) Same courses, maybe a few more degrees, but more often than not, they are still a Diploma and Certificate place of education. If you ask me, the name change a few years ago was just snobbery.

    The same thing happened in England in the 80's when they changed from Polytechnics to Universities. Overnight it turned into like the University of 221B Leicester Road, more or less because the term Polytechnic wasn't cool and attractive to educators and students alike.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,946 ✭✭✭ jmcc


    Wasn't Waterford IT meant to be the only IT in Ireland until some Labour Party apparatchik of a Minister For Education decided to apply the communist ethos to all Regional Technical Colleges and make all of them ITs?

    The South East needs a university. The Dublin government just don't want to give the South East its due. Perhaps it might be a good thing for everyone in the SE to withold tax and pay the withheld tax directly to WIT and declare it a University. Kind of like the US Revolution - No Taxation Without Universityfication etc? ;)

    Regards...jmcc


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 88,981 ✭✭✭✭ mike65


    jmcc wrote:
    Wasn't Waterford IT meant to be the only IT in Ireland until some Labour Party apparatchik of a Minister For Education decided to apply the communist ethos to all Regional Technical Colleges and make all of them ITs?

    Correct, Cork RTC threw a hissy-fit, and it went from there.

    DMC a univeristy is more than a name though the name is important in itself. A centre of learning to be valuble to the economy of a region must also be a centre of research which the WIT is'nt to any great level at the moment. The upgrade to University level standards would allow valuble links to be forged with the worlds top technology companies this would then encourage same companies to locate facilities in the South-East. Also the WIT has a decent number of degree courses (27) and the power to award its own globally recognised qualifcations. The leap to University level would'nt be very big or expensive down here.

    Mike.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,946 ✭✭✭ jmcc


    mike65 wrote:
    Correct, Cork RTC threw a hissy-fit, and it went from there.
    At least that Labour Party TD who was the then minister didn't get reelected. Spring tides also go out again. :)

    It is galling to see the money those intellectual technological pygmies in the Dublin government wasted on that con-job that was the MLE. The funds wasted on it could have pushed a few ITs towards university status.

    Regards...jmcc


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,726 ✭✭✭✭ DMC


    mike65 wrote:
    Correct, Cork RTC threw a hissy-fit, and it went from there.

    DMC a univeristy is more than a name though the name is important in itself. A centre of learning to be valuble to the economy of a region must also be a centre of research which the WIT is'nt to any great level at the moment. The upgrade to University level standards would allow valuble links to be forged with the worlds top technology companies this would then encourage same companies to locate facilities in the South-East. Also the WIT has a decent number of degree courses (27) and the power to award its own globally recognised qualifcations. The leap to University level would'nt be very big or expensive down here.

    Mike.

    I understand that WIT is bigger than yer average IT, but, as outlined by jmcc, when one went to an IT, the others wanted it too. I really cant see somewhere like Letterkenny* or Dundalk* having a university. When one goes, the others will want to as well. If the name changes, but the funding doesnt match the status of the title, then, its bunk.

    So therefore, all that it becomes is a name change.

    * No offence to either town intended, but doesnt the University of Dundalk sound a wee bit silly? :D


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  • Registered Users Posts: 5,946 ✭✭✭ jmcc


    DMC wrote:
    * No offence to either town intended, but doesnt the University of Dundalk sound a wee bit silly? :D
    No more so than Dublin City University or University of Limerick. :) After the NIHEs were transformed into universities, there was no continuity. The growing ITs such as Waterford IT, would have a natural progression to university status but blinkered ignorance in the Dublin government has blocked that path.

    Regards...jmcc


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 9,230 OLDYELLAR


    Ah wtf , i jus graduated from there in june and i heard back then they were defo getting university status , that is bloody ridiculous!!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 88,981 ✭✭✭✭ mike65


    It seems we have ministers on our side just not the right ones.

    from politics.ie
    Labour Party Deputy for Waterford has accused the Government of playing politics with the proposal to grant full university status to Waterford Institute of Technology, following a series of contradictory statements from Cabinet members on the issue. Deputy O"Shea was speaking during a Dail debate he tabled on the issue last night.

    Deputy O"Shea commented, "Support for a university for the south-east has come from a range of senior Cabinet members. The Minister for Justice and President of the Progressive Democrats, Michael McDowell, is reported as having roundly endorsed the compelling case for a south-east university which was made at a regional conference in Waterford city last January.

    "Moreover, my constituency colleague, the Minister for Transport, Deputy Cullen, made the keynote address at the same conference and stated that Waterford Institute of Technology is a university in all but name. He also stated this is an anomaly which must be rectified in the very near term.

    It is a primary goal."

    "However, despite such senior figures rhetorically supporting the issue, replies to two recent parliamentary questions I tabled to the Minister for Education and Science cited the OECD Review of Higher Education in Ireland, and its recommendation that: the differentiation of mission between the university and the institute of technology sectors be preserved and that for the foreseeable future there be no further institutional transfers into the university sector."

    "The expert group from the OECD carried out a major review of the Irish higher education system which involved visiting Ireland and consulting extensively with all the major education stakeholders. The positions taken up by the president of the Progressive Democrats and the Minister for Transport, on one hand, and the Minister for Education and Science, on the other, are hardly compatible. There is no other interpretation of what she stated than that she intends to cut off Waterford's march towards university status.

    "The Government's policy on this hugely important issue depends on whether one listens to Minister McDowell, Minister Cullen, or Minister Mary Hanafin. "The first two give the impression that university status for Waterford is near at hand, while the Minister for Education appears to be indicating that this status will not be achieved in the foreseeable future.

    "Politics are undoubtedly being played with this extremely important issue which is vital for the future development and prosperity of the entire south-eastern region.

    "It seems to me that Fianna Fáil and the PDs have no intention of conferring university status on Waterford Institute of Technology. This should be clearly and unambiguously understood. However, it should not deter, in any way, the purpose and commitment of those of us who understand how vital university status for WIT is in terms of bringing about a major enhancement of the economic, cultural, and industrial development of the region.

    "No less an authority than Dr. Edward Walsh, President Emeritus of the University of Limerick, has stated that the challenge for the State in establishing a university in Waterford should not be significant, either in financial or organisational terms, particularly in light of the major capital investment already made in buildings and infrastructure to support a 6,000-student campus at WIT and a new 150-acre campus at Carriganore.

    "In his response to me last night, Minister of State Tim O"Malley, merely trotted out the standard line that the Government was continuing to support the upgrading and extension of WIT.

    "This is not enough. Waterford is the only one of the five major cities that does not have a university and has waited long enough for this to change. I am calling on the Minister for Education to reverse her position and give Waterford Institute of Technology, Waterford, and the South East region the vital additional third level status and investment that is both greatly needed and richly deserved."

    and WLR fm
    There's still no sign of a government commitment to University status for WIT.

    Earlier this week, Justice Minister Michael McDowell said he would be in favour of a university for the region.

    However, on her first official visit to Waterford as Education Minister, Mary Hanafin said the institute was already servig the needs of the region.

    She wouldn't be drawn on the issue of a University.

    The Minister was in Waterford to officially open the Blackwater Community Cllege in Lismore and the ICT Building on WIT's Cork Road campus.

    Mike.


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