News in Brief


Plans for Ennis College met with concern
Quinton O’Reilly

PROPOSALS to establish a third level institution in Ennis, Co. Clare have been met with concern as local politicians fear the establishment of such a college would hinder current plans for the construction of a Regional Learning Centre in the town.


Members of Clare County Council have argued against the construction of the college, as they fear that creating and accommodating existing third level institutions would damage chances of developing the Regional Learning Centre.

The local politicians had revealed plans to build the third-level institution in Ennis during its September meeting. If created, the college would complement and expand on similar courses offered by neighboring colleges.

However, plans are already in place which aim to establish the Regional Learning Centre, which will be located in the former council chamber for a period of three years.

It is hoped that courses will be made available in 2009 and the development of further courses in the Regional Learning Centre will depend on demand.

The scheme is being supported by the Strategic Innovation Fund and is being pursued by the Shannon Consortium, which is made up of the University of Limerick (UL), Mary Immaculate College, Limerick Institute of Technology and the Institute of Technology Tralee.

Investigation launched into Pearse College fire
Deirdre Fogarty

GARDAÍ have launched an investigation into a fire at Pearse College in Crumlin that occurred on September 9th. The fire, which happened on the early hours of the morning, destroyed a number of prefab buildings.
English teacher at Pearse College, Pat McManus, denied that the blaze has affected the day-to-day running of the college. “A lot of people weren’t even aware that the fire has happened”. He added that “people started ringing on Tuesday morning to know if class was still continuing… it hasn’t really impinged on us at all.”
The complex, which consisted of 20 prefab rooms, had not been in use since January. The prefab buildings were originally used by the college’s Curriculum Development Unit which relocated to Rosary College earlier this year. There had been plans to demolish the buildings in the coming months.

Units from the Dublin Fire Brigade attended the blaze around 1:30am and remained at the scene until 2:50am, however the origin of the fire has yet to be determined. The blaze was the second to occur in Pearse College over recent years. The previous fire was caused by vandals who set fire to a number of prefabs.

Kercher murder suspect may face lone trial
Quinton O’Reilly

ONE OF three suspects held over the murder of British student, Meredith Kercher, could face being tried separately if indicted.

The Italian courts have agreed that Ivory Coast citizen, Rudy Hermann Geude, is be tried separately from American student, Amanda Knox and her Italian former boyfriend, Raffaele Sollectio.

Mr Geude’s lawyers requested that the hearing against him would be held as a separate, fast track process since they feared that Ms Knox and Mr Sollectio would form a pact against him.

The first hearing occurred on the 15th of September in which Ms Knox and Mr Geude attended but Mr Sollecito did not. The hearing is to determine if the prosecution has enough evidence to charge the three suspects.

Ms Kercher’s body was discovered in her Perugia flat on the 1st of November 2007. All three suspects have denied sexual assault and murder.

Within a few days of the killing, Italian police had arrested Ms Knox, Mr Sollectio and another man who was later released without charge. Mr Geude was arrested a month later in Germany. Mr Geude claimed that he had fled due to fears that he would be convicted for a murder that he didn’t commit.

A second pre-trial hearing will commence on the 26th of September.

Timbaland to be honoured by Trinity College
Zelda Cunningham

MUSIC producer Timbaland is expected to visit Trintiy College Dublin in October. The artist, whose real name is Timothy Z. Molsey, will receive an honorary patronage, to the TCD Philosophical Society (Philsoc).
Timbaland will speak to students who are members of Philsoc and there may be an opportunity for students to put questions to the guest.

Timbaland, in accepting his honorary patronage, will be one of many high profile guests that the Philosophical Society have received. Other noted recipients of the award are Bono, Desmond Tutu, actor Al Pacino and Senator John McCain. Former members of the society include Oscar Wilde, former president Mary Robinson, Samuel Beckett and John Butler Yeats.

Timbaland has become one of the best-known producers and performers in the music industry, having collaborated with such high profile artists as Justin Timberlake, Nelly Furtado and the Pussycat Dolls, as well as helping to produce Madonna’s 2008 album, Hard Candy.

Molsey began his career in the early nineties as a DJ when he was discovered by female rapper, Missy Elliot, who helped launch his career.

Currently in its 324th session, the Philosophical Society is one of the largest societies in Trinity College, with over half of the student body claiming membership to the society. The society was founded as a paper-reading society, and is the oldest society of its type in Ireland.