Date: 2nd May 2019
I am delighted to announce that the University has been awarded a Bronze Athena SWAN award to the expanded charter.
The Athena SWAN Steering Committee (ASSC), which I chair, made the decision to apply for the Athena SWAN expanded charter, introduced in Ireland in November 2017, rather than renewing to the AS STEMM standard, which primarily focuses on the careers of women in STEMM. We are the first institution to upgrade our existing award to the expanded charter and the second university with Maynooth University to be awarded the expanded charter. This award recognises work undertaken to address gender equality more broadly, in arts, humanities, social sciences, business and law (AHSSBL), and in professional and support roles, and for trans staff and students.
Athena SWAN therefore is not just about one gender but promotes equality and diversity across all disciplines.
We are the best performing HE institute in Ireland regarding female representation at full professor level, rising from 8% in 2007 to 32% in 2018 – eight points above the national average. During autumn 2017, I restructured the Executive Committee of the University so that 8 of the 12 members are women, surpassing the target of 40% female representation set by the Minister for State for Higher Education. 50% of UL’s Faculty Deans are women, 41% of Heads of Department are women and 53% of UL’s Assistant Deans are women.
I remain strongly committed to providing access to the University with a particular focus on refugees and asylum seekers. Indeed, UL was awarded the status of University of Sanctuary in 2017 by City of Sanctuary in the UK. Amongst other attributes, I believe our commitment to equality and diversity underpins our designation as Sunday Times Irish University of the Year 2019.
I am also delighted to announce that the Kemmy Business School, the Graduate Entry Medical School and the School of Allied Health have also been successful in achieving Bronze Awards to the expanded charter. I would particularly like to congratulate the Dr Christine Cross (KBS); Professor Norelee Kennedy (School of Allied Health) and Professor Ailish Hannigan (GEMS) who led their AS Self-Assessment Teams and their schools application process. Please convey our congratulations to your team members.
This is an outstanding achievement and now brings to 8 the number of schools/departments with Bronze Awards in UL, the highest in the country. I would like to thank members of the Athena SWAN Steering Committee and the Faculty Athena SWAN Self-Assessment Teams for their input to the Athena SWAN Application. I would also like to take the opportunity to thank those of you who completed the AS Equality and Diversity Attitude Survey (53% response rate) in April 2018. Your input was extremely valuable in informing the application. I would particularly like to congratulate Dr Marie Connolly, Head of Equality & Diversity who led the institution application and who with Maureen Keogh, Athena SWAN Administrator, Equality & Diversity Office HR, also supported the school/department submissions.
I am very proud of what we have achieved and I look forward to working with you to ensure that we deliver on our 4 year comprehensive AS Gender Action Plan which seeks to proactively improve the position of women, men where appropriate and under-represented groups at every level of our institution.
Dr Des Fitzgerald
Uachtarán / President
Oifig an Uachtaráin / Office of the President
Ollscoil Luimnigh / University of Limerick
Guthán / Phone: + 353 61 202020
Ríomhphost / Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Gréasán / Web: www.ul.ie
Two new gender equality awards for Irish universities
Date: Friday 4 May 2018
Advance HE is pleased to announce Maynooth University and National University of Ireland, Galway have achieved bronze institutional awards in the latest Athena SWAN submission round.
The Athena SWAN Charter award recognises higher education institutions’ and departments’ commitment to tackling gender inequality in higher education. In November 2017, the charter was expanded in Ireland to include arts, humanities, social sciences, and business and law departments (AHSSBL) and professional and support staff.
Maynooth University is the first Irish institution to obtain an expanded award.
Six new Bronze departmental awards have also been conferred to University College Cork, School of Biological, Earth & Environmental Sciences; University College Cork, School of Chemistry; University College Cork, School of Pharmacy; University of Limerick, Department of Physics; University of Limerick, School of Education; National University of Ireland Galway, School of Medicine.
Advance HE’s Athena SWAN manager, Dr Ruth Gilligan, congratulated the latest awardees. She said: “I am delighted with the results of the latest Athena SWAN submission round in Ireland, and congratulate all institutions and departments on your success. This has been the culmination of many months of hard work, and this achievement demonstrates your great commitment to advancing gender equality in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEMM) and AHSSBL subjects and employment. Advance HE looks forward to continuing to support you as you strive to improve gender inequalities within your institutions.”
By the end of 2019 Irish HEIs will be required to secure Athena SWAN Bronze awards to be eligible to compete for research funding allocated by Science Foundation Ireland, the Irish Research Council, and the Health Research Board. HEIs will also be required to hold Athena SWAN Silver awards by the end of 2023 to be eligible for research funding.
The full list of winners is available on our website
For more information on Athena SWAN in Ireland, visit: https://www.ecu.ac.uk/equality-charters/athena-swan/athena-swan-ireland/
Advance HE was formed in March 2018, following the merger of the Equality Challenge Unit, the Higher Education Academy and the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education. Our purpose is to advance the professional practice of higher education to improve outcomes for the benefit of students, staff and society. Advance HE has been created to be “of and for the sector” and is jointly owned by GuildHE and Universities UK. We are driven by the strategic needs of higher education. Through our passion for excellence we aim to create an inclusive culture that champions the continuous development of teaching, leadership and research. We use an evidence-based approach to identify what works, and develop practice-based solutions. Our vision is that the world-class reputation and standing of higher education is enhanced and recognised for transforming lives, enriching society and developing the economy for the better.
Athena SWAN Ireland Seminar and Awards Ceremony - 23rd November 2017
11.30 – 14.30 Thursday 23 November 2017 Banquet Hall, Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin, Ireland
The Athena SWAN Ireland seminar and awards ceremony, taking place from 11.30 to 14.30, Thursday 23 November 2017 at the Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin.The programme will feature an awards ceremony, a workshop provided by the Equality Challenge Unit’s Research and Data team, and presentations that will help institutions and departments on their Athena SWAN journey.
More information including the programme of speakers can be found online at http://www.ecu.ac.uk/events/athena-swan-ireland-seminar-and-awards-ceremony/.
Please click here to view the agenda for the day.
Date: 30th July 2015
University of Limerick Achieves Prestigious Athena SWAN Award
The University of Limerick is celebrating today being one of the first Irish institutions to receive the prestigious Athena SWAN Bronze award. Responding to the announcement the University of Limerick’s Vice President Academic and Registrar, Professor Paul McCutcheon said “UL is delighted to be one of the first Irish Institutions to be awarded the prestigious Athena SWAN Institution Bronze Award. This is an exciting development for the Higher Education Sector in Ireland. In UL we recognise that it is in the strategic interest of the University to ensure that all our people are enabled to achieve their full potential ensuring equality of opportunity for all our staff and students. The Athena SWAN process provides us with a clear framework through which gender equality can be measured and improved upon across the institution and particularly within our STEMM departments. Our institutional strategies should lead to higher numbers of female students in STEMM disciplines, higher levels of female applications for positions and promotions, resulting in increased numbers of females within STEMM realising their full career ambitions.
According to figures released by the HEA recently the University of Limerick continues to have the highest percentage of women at professorial level in the country, 31% or almost one third of professors at UL are female. This compares to a national average of only 19%.
The University of Limerick’s track record of success in researching and promoting gender equality has been facilitated through funding support from the Atlantic Philanthropies and Science Foundation Ireland and the European Commission. Currently UL is leading a project which is supported by the ‘Progress Programme’ of the European Union as part of a suite of initiatives exploring gender equality in the EU. GEM (Gender Equality in decision Making) is led by the Human Resources Division in UL in conjunction with the Kemmy Business School, the national employer’s federation IBEC and industry partners Dell EMEA, with other European higher education Institutions. The project’s particular focus is on the impact of HR-related practices, i.e. selection, performance management and promotions/advancement on gender equality in decision making within organisations. UL is also a key partner and the only Irish University in a European Commission FP7 Funded cross national 5 year Project 2012-2017, FESTA - Female Empowerment in Science and Technology in Academia which is concerned with implementing changes in the working environment of academic researchers.
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