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    UCD President’s Award for Excellence in Student Activities 2002

    UCD President’s Awards Recipients 2002

    Gach bliain tugann Dámhachtainí an Uachtaráin aitheantas do na mic léinn sin a bhaineann an scoth amach in imeachtaí seach-churaclaim, imeachtaí a chinntíonn gur áit spleodrach, shuimiúil, dhinimiciúil agus dhaonnúil é UCD le cónaí ann agus le hobair agus staidéar ann chomh maith. Iarrtar ar fhoireann agus ar mhic léinn UCD iarrthóirí a ainmniú le haghaidh na ndámhachtainí sin.

    The President’s Awards each year provide recognition for those students who excel in extracurricular activities of a kind that make UCD an exciting, interesting, dynamic and humane place to live, study and work. Staff and students at UCD are invited to nominate candidates for these awards.

    (John) Paul Brady BA (2002) is an arts student who, in the words of the person who nominated him, typifies everything good about UCD. His most visible activity has been as a debater in which role he has been the winner of the Independent Mace competition and has competed with honour in the World University Debating Championships on two occasions. He was the auditor of the L&H 2000-2001 which should keep any occupied but was, in addition, an active student journalist and broadcaster, a council member of the Students’ Union and an active member of the Life Society. I am pleased to present the award to him.

    Brighid Breathnach BA (2004) ‘s particular contribution was as a champion of Irish language groups on campus and she has made significant inputs to An Cumann Dramaíochta, An Cumann Liteartha and An Cumann Gaelach. She was auditor of An Cumann Gaelach for two successive and successful years and organised this year’s Seachtain na Gaeilge. In addition she has been the Irish Language Officer and the Accommodation and Employment Officer in the Students’ Union. Brighid is also a student in the arts faculty. Comhghairdeas dí as ucht a obair go léir.

    Tony Cogavin BA (2000) MSc (2013) is one of that gallant band who manage the fragile temperaments of those individuals who make their mark on the stage and has brought dramsoc this year to one of its most successful seasons for a long time. Dramsoc has long provided the training ground for many of Ireland’s most successful actors, directors and playwrights but behind these starts is inevitable, a hardworking auditor of the society. He is not just a good manager however, and he himself has received the Best Actor award at the Irish Student Drama Association Festival in 2002. Tony is a post-graduate student in the arts faculty.

    Enda Curran BA (2002) earned this award last year but was abroad at the time of the presentation and asked to have the presentation deferred. Enda has been the backbone of so much activity in College over the past few years that it is a wonder how he has kept such a a good academic record in his studies for a BA in English and History. He has been prominent in the L&H as a debater, he co-founded the Formula 1 Society, and, with a former award winner, was responsible for re-invigorating the Belfield FM radio station. In addition, he has been involved with the Kevin Barry Cumann and with the Students’ Union. This year, he has been the New Editor of the University Observer, which has had a most successful year. Enda is a very worthy winner of an award.

    Brian Flanagan BCL (2004) MPhil (2007) PhD (2011) – a law student – is this year’s auditor of the L&H and he has been responsible for a most innovative and successful year in that office, demonstrating that energy and ability is not confined to the arts faculty. The office of L&H auditor is always a heavyweight one, carrying, as it does, the weight of a lengthy history on its shoulders. Brian initiated the L&H Fellowship scheme, which, in its opening year, has honoured such luminaries as John Hume, Seamus Heaney and Mick McCarthy – and that was before UCC gave Roy Keane an honorary degree. Apart from the world of debating, Brian was a valuable member of the Student Centre Advisory committee, the Societies Finance committee and the Alcohol Awareness committee, which reported directly to the Governing Authority. He is another worthy winner.

    Lee Hayes BE (2003) is an engineer and he has been the financial brains behind the activities of the very successful Engineering Society. In particular, he has been credited with the success of this year’s Engineering Day, which was in danger of collapse until he stepped in to rescue it from financial embarrassment. As a student of Electronic Engineering, Lee cannot have much fee time but yet he has another side to his achievements as a keen and successful musician who has played in the National Concert Hall. We welcome him to the ranks of award winners.

    Dermot Hewson BA (2001) is an arts graduate who has invaded the sanctuary of the law faculty by becoming the very successful auditor of the Law Society. In addition he has undertaken the thankless roles of chair of the Students’ Union and of Union Development Office. In his work in the Students’ Union, Dermot has been a source of advice and encouragement for many of its members. For all his contributions he fully merits this award.

    Seamus Mac Suibhne MB BCh BAO (2002) is a final year medical student. His list of achievements reads like one from the good old days when medical students were noted more for their abilities as the life and soul of the College rather than their points score on the Leaving Certificate. Seamus came to public attention first as a member of the UCD team winners of the Challenging Times competition on RTÉ. He was a very successful auditor of the Philosophy Society, Features Editor of the University Observer, a contributor to the journal of the English Literary Society, as well as to the Lancet and the Irish Medical Times. Neither did he neglect the world of medicine having served as secretary of the Medical Society and been the winner of the Sheppard Memorial essay prize of the Irish College of General Practitioners. We can look forward to a very interesting selection of magazines in his waiting rooms if he goes into general practice.

    Colm Maguire BComm (2001) is a commerce student. As with other winners, Colm belies the stereotype of the commerce student as one with an eye on his first Mercedes and he has made many contributions to the wider College world. He has been involved in he Students’ Union activities, he was deputy editor of the University Observed, an active participant in the debates of the L&H and he was involved with the musical dimension of dramsoc activities. His major contribution in his own faculty was as chairperson of Commerce Day this year – a most successful event which raised more than €12,000 for Cystic Fibrosis.

    Una Morrison BComm (2002) is another final year commerce student who has a very impressive and wide-ranging CV. Her most significant contribution is to AIESEC – an international association of students in Science, Economics and Commerce – for which, Úna has been the driving force in UCD this year. She joined the organisation while studying in Germany and since coming back to Ireland she has organised a range of activities inside and outside UCD. In fact she will be responsible for organising AIESEC in Ireland next year. In addition, Úna has been secretary of the Photographic Society and is a keen participant in the activities of the Canoe Club.

    Breandán O hAnnaidh BE (2000) MEngSc (2005) PhD (2005) is a PhD student in electronic engineering. That should be enough to keep any student fully occupied. However, Breandan, as a recipient of a sports scholarship, is a prominent member of the GAA Club being this year’s vice- chairman and vice-captain of the senior team. He is also the treasurer of the Handball Club and was the founder auditor of the GAA Supporters Society. Among the other activities he pursues to take his mind off the world of electrons, he is an active member of An Cumann Galeach, of the Kevin Barry Cumann and of the Engineering Postgraduate Student Society.

    Michael Shovlin BCL (2000) LLM (2002) is another post-graduate student – in this case a candidate for the master’s degree in Law. Michael is one of those students who is respected and liked by all elements in College – both staff and students. He is a past Education Office of the Students’ Union and, in that role, was a member of the Governing Authority. Continuing in that area as a representative of post-graduate students he has been elected as the first ever student member of the Finance Committee of the Authority – the committee where, it is widely believed, that all important decisions in College are taken. Michael has also been an active member in various College societies. He was auditor of the Outreach Society and an activist in the Kevin Barry Cumann of Fianna Fáil.

    Colin Walsh MB BCh BAO (2002) HDipCH (2004) is another final year medical student. Colin’s particular extra-curricular activity has been in the world of debating. With Paul Brady, who was our first winner this evening, he won the Independent Mace competition – the premier debating competition in these islands. He went on to reach the final of the World University Debating Championships held in Toronto this year, in which he just failed to take first place. Wearing another hat, Colin has filled the key role of Returning Officer for the Student Union elections – a job calling for tact, diplomacy and resolution – and here, I speak as a former Chief Returning Officer who always had the counts completed in one day. Colin’s award is being accepted by a member of his family who was himself an award winner when he was young.

    For more on the UCD President’s Award for Excellence in Student Activities visit