Traveller students recognised at University of Galway ceremony

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galway daily news university of galway students receiving certs
Participants in the Educational Transition Programme and University of Sanctuary Summer Programmes receive certificates of completion

Ten Irish Travellers have been recognised after completing the Access Centre’s Educational Transition Project by University of Galway.

The students were presented with Certificates of Completion at a special ceremony on campus.

The programme, organised by the University’s Access Centre and Community Knowledge Initiative, supports Irish Travellers, International Protection Applicants, refugees and vulnerable immigrant groups to learn practical skills that will help them to transition back into education.

Dr Paul Dodd, Vice President Engagement at University of Galway, sad that it was a great pleasure to meet each of the individuals completing the Summer Learning Programme and Educational Transition Programme.

“We are delighted to have had the opportunity to support and welcome this diverse group of enthusiastic learners to our university community,” he said.

“We hope each person has gained new insight, practical knowledge and transferable skills that can inspire and support further interest in higher education as a viable option open to everyone.”

Now in its second year, University of Galway’s Educational Transition Project for Irish Traveller students was developed to build on existing initiatives and to work directly with community organisations in supporting members of the Irish Traveller community to progress to higher education.

The Educational Transition Project is a multi-disciplinary programme and is designed to support Irish Traveller students to achieve their desired educational goals, whether they are school leavers or mature students.

The programme commenced in early July 2022 and was delivered in person, four days a week, over three weeks.

Also recognised at the ceremony were participants of the University of Sanctuary Summer Learning Programme, which is now in its fourth year, and has returned to in-person delivery after two years online.

The programme is open to International Protection Applicants, refugees, vulnerable immigrant groups and Irish Travellers.

It has been developed in collaboration with the University’s Access Centre, Careers Development Centre, Chaplaincy, Flirt FM, College of Business, Public Policy and Law, and the English Language Centre.

The University of Sanctuary Summer Learning Programme is designed specifically to provide learning and skill development to facilitate full participation in education, employment and Irish society more broadly.

The programme aligns to the University’s core strategic values of Respect and Openness.

The end of the two programmes coincides with the opening of the University of Sanctuary Scholarship Programme, which to date has welcomed 30 students from 19 different countries to the University.

For the 2022-2023 academic year, the programme will be made up of 23 fee waivers across the four Colleges at both undergraduate (Level 8) and postgraduate (Level 9) levels.

Information on the scholarship programme can be found at https://www.universityofgalway.ie/sanctuary/scholarships/.