Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris has announced that he has received an application from the Connacht Ulster Alliance (CUA) for the creation of a new Technological University (TU).
The CUA includes the Institutes of Technology (ITs) in Sligo, Galway-Mayo and Letterkenny. The proposed TU would have campuses in Galway, Mayo, Sligo, Leitrim and Donegal.
Minister Harris said that the TU would “have the potential to further drive the development of higher education and regional growth in the West and North West with strong cross-border links”.
According to the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine and TD for Donegal, Charlie McConalogue, the new TU could be established as soon as early 2022. Final year students in the 2021/22 academic year could therefore graduate with University level qualifications.
Additionally, Minister Harris remarked that the new TU would bring an “opportunity to create a powerhouse of foreign direct investment, for investment in general, and for regional development in the North-West”.
“So I’m really looking forward now to the application progressing, going through all of the various stages that it has to, and delivering a Technological University.”
The Technological Universities Act 2018 provides for the creation of TUs through the merger of existing Institutes of Technology that meet certain criteria. TU Dublin and Munster TU were the first to be formed, while a third comprising Athlone IT and Limerick IT has received government approval. Waterford IT and IT Carlow have also submitted a joint application.