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UL Summer Conferring Pictured at the UL conferring ceremony were Aoife Kavanagh and Kim Flood Picture: Alan Place UL Summer Conferring Pictured at the UL conferring ceremony were Aoife Kavanagh and Kim Flood Picture: Alan Place


University of Limerick’s Summer Conferring Ceremonies sees more than 1,200 new graduates



Pictured at the UL Summer Conferring Ceremony were Aoife Kavanagh and Kim Flood Picture: Alan Place

More than 1,200 students were conferred at the University of Limerick’s (UL) Summer Conferring Ceremonies this week

Award-winning journalist and UL lecturer, Audrey is pictured here with her husband Paul and daughter Naoise (2).Pic Arthur Ellis

More than 1,200 students were conferred at the University of Limerick’s (UL) Summer Conferring Ceremonies this week, all of whom join the university’s vast alumni which now boats more than 125,000 members globally.

This summer’s ceremony saw a mix of students from varying backgrounds and professions confer which demonstrates the diverse landscape of the university’s student population.

Among the 1,200 conferring students were 600 Garda College graduates, an award-winning journalist, and a Cork GAA star who all have a common aim following their graduation; “making a real difference in people’s lives”.


UL Provost and Deputy President Professor Shane Kilcommins said it was a ‘privilege’ to celebrate the conferring of degrees upon the new graduates from An Garda Síochána, who successfully completed their Bachelor of Arts in Applied Policing.

Professor Kilcommins said Monday’s ceremony marked “a significant milestone in your careers and in your journey as guardians of our communities and the highest representation of public service”.

Audrey Galvin, the award-winning journalist and lecturer, spoke ahead of her graduation from University of Limerick this week, where she was conferred with a PhD in Philosophy from the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences.

She noted, ““What I uncovered from my research, before I met with the people who were central to the story, was a group who were often paid lip-service, spoken to rather than included in a conversation about who they are and what they want from life,” recalled Audrey.

Pictured is Aoife Daly, Abbeyfeale Co Limerick, Post Graduate School Leadership. Pic Arthur Ellis

“The participants and their families gave incredibly powerful accounts of their experience as people with ABI, and their loved ones who care for them.”

While ‘The Silent Wounded’ was critically acclaimed, for Audrey – as with any other project she undertakes, her focus lay in the power of the story and its impact on those listening and involved.

“I am interested in people’s lived experience, how they cope with adversity and challenges in their lives – I think that’s where the power of a story lies,” said Audrey.

“I always tell students: a story should affect the head, the heart or the pocket, or it won’t resonate with people.”

Cork GAA star, Seán Powter’s journey to UL saw him move to Liemrick in 2020, he studied Neuroscience at UCC and played in the Sigerson Cup during his time there. He was part of the 2019 winning team, despite being injured for most of the competition.

In 2020 Seán moved to Limerick to undertake graduate studies in Medicine.

“During my time studying Neuroscience, I developed a fascination with how the human body and brain work. Being an athlete also played a big role – I’ve had my fair share of injuries and learned first-hand how crucial medical knowledge is for recovery and overall health,” he explained.

“The idea of making a real difference in people’s lives through healthcare really appealed to me. So, combining these interests and experiences, going into medicine felt like the right path.

Cork senior football centre forward Seán Powter celebrates success off the pitch. Pic Arthur Ellis

“I went to UL because of the specific graduate medicine programme they offered. The problem-based learning model used in UL was extremely beneficial and a major reason why I chose UL. In addition, the amazing sports facilities they have was a major deal breaker.”

This has been a proud week for UL with the conferring ceremonies and was topped off when UL was announced to have jumped to 61st in the world in a new impact ranking of over 1,900 universities worldwide.

UL was also ranked second in Ireland and is the only Irish institution to improve its position year on year in the new Times Higher Education (THE) Impact Rankings, which have just been announced.

The rankings are a global performance benchmark which measure the positive societal impact the university is having in contributing to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).

UL is ranked 61 out of the 1,963 universities surveyed, a jump of 25 places compared to last year when it was ranked 86 out of 1,591 universities.

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Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.