Making an Impact winner to be announced today

by Colin Gannon

The annual contest will be held in the Helix today to celebrate some of Ireland’s elite postgraduate research communicators. Image Credit:HEA

An annual contest will be held in the Helix today to celebrate some of Ireland’s elite postgraduate research communicators as five finalists vie for two top prizes.

The Making an Impact competition, in its ninth year, is held in partnership through the Higher Education Authority and the Irish Independent.

The finalists are tasked with explaining to an expert panel and a lay audience, comprised only of second-level students, why their research is significant to Irish society or even impactful on a global scale.

The HEA told the College View that this is an exercise in communicating research and emphasised that it is not an academic presentation.

Two winners will receive a prize of €2,500 each, both sponsored by the Irish Independent. The panel will decide on one award and the students will vote to determine the second winner.

This year’s finalists are Greg Tierney (Trinity College Dublin), Eoin Murphy (NUIG), Joanne Duffy (NUIG), Edwin Alblas (UCD) and Hala Jabar (UL).

UL student Jabar will present her ‘Music and Migrants’ research which “examines the use of community music workshop and ethos as a tool to create musical interventions for refugees and asylum seekers in Ireland.”

Jabar grew up in Palestine surrounded by conflict and her research is inspired by her own interactions with music as she saw first-hand the positive effects music-making can have on those displaced through war.

“I wanted to gain more knowledge and experience of the extent the benefits of music making can have for refugees coming to Ireland,” she said.

The independent adjudication panel, who whittled down all 130 entries to five finalists, will remain as the expert panel on the day. Katherine Donnelly, Education Editor of the Irish Independent, chairs the panel.

One of last year’s winners, Paul O’Dwyer, told the College View that the competition was a “great learning experience” and that it was worthwhile in gaining exposure for his research.

“One critical skill I learned was the ability to present everything I need to in a concise but detailed manner.”

Colin Gannon

Image Credit: HEA