UCD President’s Awards Recipients 2017
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.
Eithne Dodd‘s long running contribution to student life and her incredible dedication and organisational skills have contributed hugely to the smooth running and success of anything she has been involved with. Most notably Eithne has been part of the rejuvenated LitSoc committee which has been turned around into an incredibly diverse and active student society, which ultimately culminated in it winning small society of the year and publication of the year at last year’s Society of the Year Awards. Eithne was key to this achievement and was in charge of the winning Caveat Lector publication. She is a writer and then two-time section editor for the University Observer.
Aoife Doyle was auditor of FilmSoc, one of the largest societies on campus, and impressed with her dedication, commitment and generosity of her time and self to the society. Events such as the film festival week and the various social occasions were a fantastic way for students of all areas to get involved with college life and provided a platform for the film society to continue encouraging inclusiveness and embracing students of all backgrounds.
Tiarnán Fallon Verbruggen is an Ad Astra Performance scholar and has taken part in several performances with the Ad Astra Academy. He has worked tirelessly for many years to uphold a high standard of acting and set design with Dramsoc. He has won an Irish Student Drama Association Award for Set Design and has been nominated in the same competition for Acting. Tiarnán has designed the set for two Leaving Cert Shows, the biggest show of the Dramsoc calendar, which is attended by over a thousand Leaving Certificate students each year.
Tiarnán is currently the auditor of the Pediatric Society and has successfully run several Teddy Bear Hospital events, which aim to make medical experiences less daunting for children by teaching children to perform examinations and procedures on their teddy bears.
James Green, while Auditor for the Law Society revolutionised it in two key ways. The first is that he made it successful at debating. It was he who revitalised LawSoc to the extent that it is now the dominant debating force in UCD.
Before James’ year it was common for debates to attract less than 15 observers a week. He packed out Theatre L numerous times by bring in new and exciting guests, changing how debates were advertised and picking incredible topics.
During the 2015 year James became the auditor of the UCD Law Society and turned a society that in the past had plainly not reached its full potential into the society of the year in an ethical, responsible, and professional manner.
This academic year as welfare officer of the UCD branch of SVP he has been in contact with those most in need in the local area. Further, as a central committee member he had been involved in the running of the events of the society.
Cian Leahy is a Medical student and, despite his demanding course, he has been a leading example to anyone who wishes to get involved in society life. As treasurer of the 160th session of the L&H in 2014/15 he made a conscious effort to make debating more accessible, and to include and train freshers. Furthermore, he has represented the university on an international stage to a great degree of success.
From soup runs, to house debates, to DramSoc freshers projects, Cian is a familiar face to so many on campus.
Aside from debating, Cian has been heavily involved in the charity side of UCD societies for the duration of his time here. In 2015/16 he served as SVP‘s first Social Justice officer. In this role he succeeded in mobilising a group of interested members by organising regular meetings to highlight the problems that surround us. Additionally Cian has volunteered with UCDVO on two occasions.
Eoin Mac Lachlan In addition to his successes representing UCD as a competitive debater (European Semi-Finalist 2016, Irish Times Champion 2015) Eoin served as auditor of the Literary & Historical Society in 2014/2015, one of the more successful recent years seen by the society, all while maintaining academic excellence as an Ad Astra Scholar and recipient of the Butterworths Prize and Fordham Law Summer School Scholarship.
Eoin went above and beyond in service and leadership, epitomising the best values of UCD in his founding of the Outreach debating programme. Outreach seeks to develop communication and public speaking skills amongst disadvantaged students in DEIS Schools through debate, giving a voice to some of the most vulnerable students in Ireland. In its first year, 2013, Outreach reached 130 such schools, with that number now doubled. By helping these students find their voices, and facilitating them in expressing their points of view, thoughts and feelings, Eoin and Outreach have made a real difference.
Clíodhna Ní Chéileachair is one of the most successful UCD competitive debaters in recent history, and in all her successes (Irish Times, International Mace Champion, European Semi-Finalist) she has always represented UCD impeccably and enthusiastically at home and abroad. Further, she has inspired a generation of new UCD students to take up debating in her role as UCD’s debating coach, with these new recruits cutting a swathe through the debating circuit Novice competitions. Her commitment to supporting other speakers in their personal development and competitive success, as well as her talents as a debater and her drive for self-improvement have been recognised at home and abroad. She has been appointed coach of the Irish World Schools debating team for secondary school students, served as a judge of the World Universities Debating Final 2017 in the Netherlands, and as a training Consultant for the European Champtionship 2018 in Scotland. Through all this, she has kept up an intensely high standard of academic achievement, starting as a UCD Academic Entrance Scholar in 2012 and receiving a Stage 4 Scholarship in 2016. Clíodhna is an object example of committment and dedication in all aspects of her UCD life.
Ciara Wallace From the very start of her time in UCD, Ciara became involved in extracurricular activities which she cared deeply about. Her interest in social justice extends far beyond her course and in first year she joined UCD SVP Society, becoming a dedicated volunteer on weekly soup runs. From there she became a soup run rep, a committee member and is current auditor of the society. As auditor, Ciara has brought her enthusiasm and energy to every aspect of committee work. She is especially encouraging of new committee members and volunteers.
As a class rep, Ciara has shown dedication to improving UCD life for all students as well as leadership and support to her class. Her selection to sit on the Finance committee this year is a result of that dedication.
Ciara was PRO on the committee of the Economics Society which had a very successful year. Continuing her interest in global affairs and leadership, Ciara took part in the Model United Nations in New York with Lawsoc. She also volunteered with UCD access centre’s student tutoring grinds as well as with L&H outreach. Through her generosity with time and talents, Ciara has made a very valuable contribution to UCD life.
Philip Weldon is creative, hard-working, resourceful, dedicated and a brilliant leader. He has done marvellous work on behalf of the LGBTQ+ Society during his time as auditor. He is unbelievably committed, and focuses an amazing amount of time and effort on ensuring the society is performing to the best of its abilities. He cares very deeply about improving the quality of student life for LGBTQ+ students and is constantly working towards that goal. He has turned around the LGBTQ+ Society and with, Philip as auditor, the society is working with the UN on their Free & Equal campaign and hosting a ball. In one week the society hosted seven events varying from coffee mornings, to movie screenings, to a favourite ‘Coming Out Story Night’. The society is collaborating with the SU for Rainbow Week and Seachtain na Gaeilge, and has worked with PleaseTalk, GLEN, ShoutOut, Enterprise (Rent a car) and Arthur Cox and more.
Philip juggles his role as auditor of one of UCD’s most active societies with his masters and his job in H&M. He never says no to a challenge and will see it through to the end. He is extremely dedicated and no doubt carry on with strength until the end of the year.
For more on the UCD President’s Award for Excellence in Student Activities visit societies.ucd.ie/presidentsaward.