This year D.I.T launch a new module, LEAD, to celebrate students’ extra-curricular activity. Not unlike the Uaneen module here in DCU, LEAD stands for lead, engage, achieve and develop and encourages students to engage in extra-curricular activities that will improve their employability prospects.
The project was first discussed in DIT in 2006 but has taken five years to come to fruition. It was piloted at the end of the last academic year, by 15 students picked because of their outstanding contribution to clubs and societies during their time at D.I.T. The pilot was such a massive succes, that this September saw the first year that the module is offered to all students of all disciplines.
Jen Harvey, a D.I.T lecturer mentoring the module, spoke to the College View about the benefits of LEAD, “the module has great links with the development of employability skills and the development of graduate attributes.” The award is marketed to students, with the promise of making them more employable, more marketable as employees and above average when going into interviews.
Ms. Harvey commented on the great work that students put into clubs and societies, just recently D.I.T appeared on RTÉ Nationwide in a story on how one in three D.I.T students volunteer. The module aims to help students develop further, each must make a learning contract and must create a portfolio of how working with clubs and societies has helped them in their learning experience and what attributes and skills they have gained.
National College of Ireland Galway (NUIG) also offer opportunties for students to embrace their interests outside of their academic career. They recently launched the 2011/2012 Arts in Action programme with the aim on encouraging students to appreciate the important role that the arts can play in their life at college.
The importance of the arts in the development of graduates is the heart of this programme according to Mary McParlan, Creative Director of Arts in Action, “NUIG’s continuing commitment to the arts…is founded in the strong belief that the relationship between academic studies and the arts is significant.”
The programme takes place throughout the academic year, this year concentrating on music and languages. All but three of the activities are to take place in Áras na Mac Léinn, NUIG, at lunchtime. Developed by the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies, events will include performances by the Abbey Theatre, NUI Galway medical Orchestra, NUI Galway student and TG4 Young Musician of the year, Pádraic Keane, ConTempo, Martín O’Connor and Frankie Gavin.