The University we enjoy today had its origins in a citizen-led campaign which sought access to higher education in Limerick. In 1972 the National Institute for Higher Education, Limerick welcomed the first 113 students, while shortly afterwards 147 National College of Physical Education students would share the campus at Plassey.
Led by a young and determined director, Dr Edward Walsh, and supported by an enthusiastic cohort of staff and students, it grew and developed, and in 1989 it became Ireland’s first new university since the foundation of the state. In a few years the other institution which shared the campus, Thomond College of Education, which itself pioneered the approach to the education of post-primary specialist subject teachers, was merged into the University, which broadened the new University’s curriculum and expertise.
To learn more about the campaign that led to University of Limerick, why not visit the Reflections exhibition on the UL campus which opens on 27 September. Did you know that one of the early proposed sites for the campus was King John’s Castle in Limerick city, or that the campaigners of the 1960s proposed naming it after President John F. Kennedy or that the Stables was originally earmarked for demolition. Think you know UL … think again.
If you have any memories of your time in UL, please share them with us!