UCD now plays host to over 2,500 undergraduate and graduate students, as well as a significant number of researchers across a variety of scientific disciplines. The €175m second phase of the Science Centre stretches to over 38,000sqm of new and revamped facilities.The Science Centre, costing an estimated €300m, has been hailed as a statement of intent for UCD towards consolidating the university’s international standing as a scientific leader. The government has jointly funded the project through the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions, while contributions from the University itself and from private backers also helped to cover the costs of redevelopment.UCD hailed the “extraordinary philanthropy” of some of Ireland’s top business leaders, whose personal donations had played a “great part” in the project’s success. Large corporate partners, including Intel and AOL, also helped fund the project. The third phase of the development of the Science Centre is still in the early stages of planning.~Governing Authority candidates nominated for electionTwenty-three candidates have been nominated to contest elections in three staff panels for the fifth UCD Governing Authority (UCDGA). Successful candidates will serve a five-year term, beginning from February 1st, 2014. The current Government Authority has been in office since 2009.Six seats will be filled in the professorial staff panels, five seats in the academic panel and three in the non-academic staff panel. Voting papers will be circulated this week to members of the three respective elective bodies.UCDGA consists of forty members in total, with the objective to guide the strategic direction of the University.This involves overseeing policy, reviewing the performance of top management and working with the University President to achieve UCD’s main goals. The Governing Authority is also responsible for the control, and administration of, all lands and properties of UCD and the appointment of its president.~Rural Entrepreneurship Programme aims to attract employmentProfessor Suzi Jarvis, head of UCD’s Innovation Academy, has launched a new initiative called the Rural Entrepreneurship Programme that looks to improve the living situations of those who live in rural areas by attracting sustainable employment to the more isolated parts of the country.This initiative looks to tap into the fact that more than three thirds of the Irish population is located in rural areas, compared to the EU average of just under a quarter.The programme will be introduced over the space of 18 weeks, with the introductory process running into the new year. Its focus will be on educating people to innovate in their local area despite limited resources.