NUI Galway has officially launched its BE Programme in Energy Systems Engineering. The new course, which will be based in the new Engineering Building currently under construction at NUI Galway, has been developed in partnership with key members of the energy industry including; ESB, GE Energy, Airtricity, Bord Gais, Wavebob, a wave energy technology company, and ARUPS and RPS, two consulting engineering practices.
“The Government has set out ambitious plans for energy, and particularly renewable energy over the next ten years. In order for these plans to come to fruition, we must seek to build on our technical expertise, and continue to add to the highly-skilled energy workforce in this country,” says Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Eamon Ryan TD, who officially launched the new programme. “It is in developing a strong academic platform, with practical, on-site experience that our future successes will be guaranteed. I must commend NUI Galway and its industry partners for their foresight in developing this course, which I’m sure, will be in great demand.”
The strong links with industry provide the degree programme with very practical routes. The partnership will also support innovation and technology transfer, working with a cluster of energy companies in the West of Ireland including Wavebob, Eirecomposties, Enerit, and C&F Engineering.
The Energy Systems Engineering programme will incorporate aspects of traditional civil, electrical and mechanical engineering, with emphasis on energy policy, economics, environmental issues and a strong focus on informatics. The programme will include a range of additional optional modules which will provide students with maximum flexibility to choose from diverse career paths.
The multidisciplinary programme will culminate in integrated design projects that address the sourcing, conversion and utilisation of energy. Subjects on offer will also include strong elements of civic engagement and service learning, with, for example, student volunteers travelling to India and Africa to install solar systems. Students are also required to study a broad range of related subjects, including Economics, Sociology and Politics, and Law and Science.
The current National Development Plan and Programme for Government have placed a strong focus addressing energy issues. The new course on offer has been developed to meet a range of requirements of the ’Green Tech’ sector and will play a key role in the furthering the Government’s Smart Economy agenda. Additionally, the Strategy for Science, Technology and Innovation listed energy as a research priority. The course will enhance and further support the strong energy research activity that already exists on the NUI Galway campus.
Graduates of the programme will be multidisciplinary engineers equipped to solve problems across the whole spectrum of energy systems. The new degree programme can be applied for through the CAO as change of mind option.