BA & MA journalism students celebrating the success of their self-published newspaper the Limerick Voice
Thursday, June 8, 2017

Shane McNamara, an MA journalism student has won the inaugural Irish Examiner / University of Limerick video journalism competition with his video project “Rescue 116: The people behind the recovery”.

The four-minute news piece takes a look at the work of rescuers in the recovery of the lost crew from Coast Guard Helicopter Rescue 116.

Captain Mark Duffy, Captain Dara Fitzpatrick, Ciarán Smith and Paul Ormsby lost their lives when the helicopter crashed 12km off the Co Mayo coast.

UL and the Irish Examiner partnered to create the competition, giving UL journalism students the opportunity to have their work broadcast nationally.
Coursework from the BA and MA classes were selected for publication on the Irish Examiner website in May.

The winning piece was chosen based on journalistic merit, popularity and engagement across social media.

According to Shane: "On a personal note I'm delighted to have won this prize but on a broader scale I feel this initiative with the Irish Examiner is a great way of showcasing the work done by journalism students in UL".

"I feel that projects like this one with the Examiner and the Limerick Voice newspaper which ran with the Limerick Leader in December provide vital experience and really set graduates up with good working knowledge as they embark on their careers and that we can be proud graduating UL with a degree in journalism”.

The winning video is featured below…





Read Shane’s full story on the Examiner website.

The story of Rescue 116 hits close to home for Shane, who is an Achill Island native from Dooagh, Co Mayo.

“Obviously the scale of this unfathomable tragedy rocked the country and headlined the news for some time, for me there was something closer to home. I have family and friends involved with both the Coast Guard and the RNLI and I know first-hand the dedication and the risks involved while volunteering for these organisations,” he told the Irish Examiner.

“This is something I hoped to show the public through this video. The project itself gave me some invaluable experience with regards to editing, interviewing and filming and I feel that I have learned a lot from it.”

Dolan O’Hagan, digital editor for the Irish Examiner, congratulated those who participated hopes it will be the start of an ongoing collaboration with UL.

UL’s Head of Journalism Fergal Quinn told The Irish Examiner: “Shane is a very talented young journalist and he produced what I thought was a very insightful and sensitive piece about what drives the extraordinary voluntary effort to recover the bodies of those lost at sea. As well as the winning entry, there was a very high standard of work produced by our students which attests to the potential and quality of our young journalism graduates”.


The four other projects shortlisted were:

Amy Ryan's "Cistercian Monks in Waterford fighting hard for a future"

Cillian Sherlock's "Ballaghaderreen does Ireland proud with a true Céad Míle Fáilte for Syrian refugees"

Sally Gorman's "Gym, GPS and social media: How one local GAA club are meeting the new challenges"

Steve Killeen's "Meet the young Mayo entrepreneur who hopes his app will make driving safer"