A former ballet dancer from Tipperary has been named the 2017 Student of the Year by Hibernia College at an awards ceremony last week.
Roscrea native, Diarmaid O'Meara received the Student of the Year Award along with a Research Prize from Hibernia College after graduating with a Professional Master of Education in Primary Education alongside more than 800 students on Friday 24th November at the Convention Centre Dublin.
Mr O'Meara had been working as a professional ballet dancer in London before undertaking his Master of Education but having always been interested in education, he wanted to return to Ireland to become a teacher. The blended learning style with a mix of online and face-to-face tuition that Hibernia College offers, worked for Diarmaid allowing him to remain at home and to continue working as a ballet teacher in Ireland.
Attending the event was cyberpsychologist Dr Mary Aiken who spoke to the graduates, family members and guests on the risks concerning the use of social media by children and young teenagers.
Dr Aiken highlighted the significant role that teachers can play in preparing children to interact with social media and technology in general.
President of Hibernia College, Dr Seán Rowland commended the students for their achievements: “I would like to thank the students, families, friends and Dr Mary Aiken for attending the graduation ceremony to mark this special occasion. The hard work required in completing studies, should not be overlooked and I would like to congratulate Diarmaid and all of the students for this significant achievement. The demand for teachers in Ireland is greater than ever with unqualified people filling teaching roles to meet this demand. Those graduating have a bright future with immense career opportunities ahead of them and I have no doubt that 2017 newly qualified teachers will go on to teach and inspire future generations.”