The University of Limerick (UL) has been named the Sunday Times Irish University of the Year 2019.
This is the second year that UL has taken the crown, after its first win as University of the Year 2015. This year, UCD was announced as the runner up.
“We are lucky enough and extremely grateful to receive the honour for 2019,” UL Student Life President Ciara Jo Hanlon told the College View.
“I think every university in the country strives for improvement and recognition, so it is great for UL to receive such an accolade,” she added.
“I don’t think it was unexpected because our new library opened this year which was a massive capital investment and it’s now the biggest library in Ireland,” said the UL Student Life VP/ Academic Officer Matthew Murphy.
Murphy explained that the brand new Glucksman Library isn’t the only contributor to the achievement. “The university got excellent results and a good number of responses in the Irish Student Survey of Engagement, which I think other universities are putting more emphasis on now too,” he said.
“We have an excellent work experience programme in our co-op placements and it is well known that UL have a leading stature in terms of graduate employability,” added Hanlon.
Ailish Finan, a second year Arts student at the university, said the library has been warmly welcomed by students.
“It’s great news to hear that we’ve been named the university of the year as UL very much deserves it, we have excellent resources available in a wide range of areas,” she said.
“The brand new library was much needed and it’s a great addition to the university as it adds even more student supports to those that need it,” Finan said.
Each one of Ireland’s universities has won the University of the Year title at least once. Murphy recalls that when he first started studying at UL in 2014, the university had just won the title for the first time.
“I’ve been here for five years now and when I first came in, it won the title and now we’ve won it again- it’s a great buzz around campus and it’s something to put into perspective as even more students choose the university,” he explained.
DCU has won the title twice before. University College Cork have won it five times.
By Gabija Gataveckaite