News in Brief

UCD sign agreement with ministers from Malaysia

UCD alongside the Royal College of Surgeons Ireland (RSCI) have recently signed an agreement with Ministers from the State Government of Terengganu, Malaysia to provide medical education.

The Penand Medical College in Malaysia is run by UCD and RCSI and allows Malaysian Students to spend the first two and a half years of their medical training in Dublin and the remaining two and a half years in Penang. This programme is currently open to 130 students and is expected to build up to 150.

A medical college branch campus in Terengganu, Malaysia will be set up as a part of this new agreement.

According to Most Hon Haji Ahmad Razif bin Abd.Rahman, the Malaysian Chairman on State Education: “Irish medical education has an excellent international reputation for training high quality, clinically skilled doctors and Terengganu welcomes this agreement with UCD and RCSI to extend this education program to our State.”

The President of UCD, Dr Hugh Brady, said: “Since the original agreement with the Malaysian Government over twenty years ago, thousands of Malaysian doctors have received some or all of their training in Ireland. These students play an active part in campus life and are testament to the true value of internationalising our higher education sector.”

The value of this two-and-a-half-year programme, as well as a similar five-year programme, is almost €20 million per annum for UCD and RCSI.

– Katie Hughes

UCD graduates to receive reduced rate for new Student Centre services

Student Centre manager, Dominic O’Keefe confirmed that recent graduates of UCD, who paid the Student Centre Levy, will be receiving a reduced entry fee to the Student Centre facilities.

“We did say originally to people, those who paid the levy, that we’d give them a reduced entry on a graduate level and also that if you pay the maximum fee we’ll give you six months free membership,” he said.

Mr O’Keefe says that getting the graduates back to the university is “about marketing, it’s bringing the students that are graduates back to the college”.

Students who have already left Dublin can transfer their membership so “if you can’t take up the offer, you can always give it to your brother or your sister, so if you leave Dublin, you don’t lose it – you can transfer it to somebody.

“We’ll write to all the graduates, probably between now and Christmas and inform them – we have a vast database from Banner,” Mr. O’Keefe said.

He insists that “we’re trying to honour all the commitments we said we’d do and also give the graduates who left here four years ago an opportunity to come back and see what it looks like eventually.”

– Katie Hughes

L&H host national maidens competition

The National Maidens debating competition took place on the 18th and 19th of March. It was hosted by UCD’s Literary and Historical Society (L&H) on campus with the final being held in the Morehampton Hotel in Donnybrook.

This year’s competition saw 44 speakers and 30 judges participating from UCD, Trinity, NUI Maynooth, UCC, UL and NUIG. The competition takes place in a different participating university each year, with last year’s competition being held in NUI Galway.

PriceWaterhouseCoopers, who provided food and socials for the weekend, sponsored the competition. According to incoming auditor for the 157th session, Christine Simpson, this sponsorship was essential to have “the most fun possible while keeping the cost to the speakers at a minimum and ensuring it was affordable to all”.

The format of the competition was a mace style – speakers were given the motion for the debate 15 minutes before it was scheduled to begin. Speeches were five minutes long, with six speakers in every room.

Motions from the weekend included topics of feminism and emigration. The motion for the semi-final was “that this house believes that in countries where abortion is already legal, it should be incorporated into the National Health Service and be made free”. The motion for the final was “that this house would brand sex offenders” which was ultimately won by Trinity speaker, John Doody.

– Mathilde Guenegan