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Irish Scholars Scoop Prestigious Awards

18th July 2013
Irish Scholars Scoop Prestigious Awards

#marinescience – Thirty-seven Fulbright Awardees were officially announced at an event on MS The World, which was sponsored by a U.S. Fulbright alumnus, Dr. Jack Pinkowski and his wife, Mrs. Monica Pinkowski, as part of The Gathering recently (12th July 2013).

Since 1957, the Fulbright Awards are given annually by the Irish and U.S. governments and provide Irish students, scholars, and professionals with the opportunity to study, lecture, and research at top universities and institutions throughout the United States.

Among the 37 awardees were two Fulbright-Marine Institute Awardees:

Dr. Brendan Cahill is a Fulbright-Marine Institute Scholar Awardee. As a recent PhD graduate of University College Cork's Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Brendan will travel to Oregon State University to undertake research on ocean wave energy test sites to assess how accurately they replicate sea conditions.

Dr. Triona McGrath is the Fulbright-Marine Institute Scholar Awardee who is also from Ennis. Triona will go to the Scripps Institute of Oceanography in San Diego to research ocean acidification in coastal water environments.

This year's other Fulbright Awardees, from fourteen Irish higher educational institutions, will travel to America on their awards, to study at Rice University in Texas, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. and to Oregon State University.

Speaking at the launch of this year's Fulbright Awards, Mr. Patrick McDermott, Chair of the Fulbright Commission Board, said, "year after year, the Fulbright Awards attract Ireland's top researchers, professionals, and graduates. With the breadth and expertise seen in this year's winners I know that these current and future leaders will gain invaluable experience that they can share upon their return to Ireland."

Welcoming the presentation of the Fulbright Marine Institute awards, Ms Caroline Bocquel, Director at the Institute said "research, technology and innovation are key drivers of the economic development and recovery in Ireland, as outlined in the National plan of Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth - An Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland (www.ouroceanwealth.ie). We are therefore delighted to see the Fulbright Awardees' benefit from this funding opportunity to explore innovative ways in developing excellence in marine research and sciences so as to further encourage sustainability in Ireland. I know that their contributions to the future of Irish marine policy will be informed by their time in the U.S."

A number of other agencies sponsor Fulbright Awards including CRH plc, Enterprise Ireland, the Marine Institute, and Teagasc. As well as the sponsored awards, the Department of Arts, Heritage, and the Gaeltacht and the National Lottery support the Irish Language Awards for scholars and teachers.

Ms. Colleen Dube, Executive Director of the Fulbright Commission, said, "the Fulbright Awards continue to reflect the diversity and depth of Irish academia. Although this year's awardees have a definite science and technology angle, the arts also feature prominently, with awardees going to the School for Improvisational Music in Brooklyn, New York and the California Institute of the Arts. I look forward to seeing, and hearing, the wonderful outputs from each of these 37 awardees at the end of 2014."

Dube continued, "In this Gathering year we are especially delighted with the Fulbrighters' role as cultural ambassadors while in the U.S. With 37 Irish awardees going to the U.S. and 13 Americans coming to Ireland this autumn, we are thrilled to be a part of the ongoing cultural and educational exchange between the two countries."

The next round of applications for Irish Fulbright Awardees will open on Wednesday, August 28th, 2013. Interested applicants in all disciplines are encouraged to visit the Fulbright Commission's website, www.fulbright.ie, for more information. All applications for the 2014-2015 academic year will be due on Wednesday, November 13th, 2013.

Published in Marine Science
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Marine Science Perhaps it is the work of the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of marine research, development and sustainable management, through which Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. From Wavebob Ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration these pages document the work of Irish marine science and how Irish scientists have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

 

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At A Glance – Ocean Facts

  • 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean
  • The ocean is responsible for the water cycle, which affects our weather
  • The ocean absorbs 30% of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity
  • The real map of Ireland has a seabed territory ten times the size of its land area
  • The ocean is the support system of our planet.
  • Over half of the oxygen we breathe was produced in the ocean
  • The global market for seaweed is valued at approximately €5.4 billion
  • · Coral reefs are among the oldest ecosystems in the world — at 230 million years
  • 1.9 million people live within 5km of the coast in Ireland
  • Ocean waters hold nearly 20 million tons of gold. If we could mine all of the gold from the ocean, we would have enough to give every person on earth 9lbs of the precious metal!
  • Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world – Ireland is ranked 7th largest aquaculture producer in the EU
  • The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean in the world, covering 20% of the earth’s surface. Out of all the oceans, the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest
  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. It’s bigger than all the continents put together
  • Ireland is surrounded by some of the most productive fishing grounds in Europe, with Irish commercial fish landings worth around €200 million annually
  • 97% of the earth’s water is in the ocean
  • The ocean provides the greatest amount of the world’s protein consumed by humans
  • Plastic affects 700 species in the oceans from plankton to whales.
  • Only 10% of the oceans have been explored.
  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean each year, equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute.
  • 12 humans have walked on the moon but only 3 humans have been to the deepest part of the ocean.

(Ref: Marine Institute)

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