Over 200 graduates were conferred
Professor Vincent Cunnane, President of LIT told the conferring class of 2017 that Tipperary is exceptional in having an Institute of Higher Education located in the county, with some of the benefits including international impact, while at the same time celebrating its own uniqueness.
Speaking at conferrings for over 200 graduates in areas ranging from Sports Strength and Conditioning to Business, and from Social Care to Computing, Professor Cunnane said, “By having LIT in Thurles and Clonmel, it means that many benefits of Higher Education that are usually only felt in the bigger cities are brought to Tipperary. For example, people can achieve a qualification locally that is recognised worldwide, and at the same time, people are travelling internationally to study in Tipperary”
David Himmelmann, Dean of Media, Culinary Arts, Recreation, and Access at Canadore College in Ontario was in Thurles to see his son, Detlev graduate with a Master’s degree in Sports Strength of Conditioning. Detlev is part of a growing Canadian student community in Thurles, resulting from a partnership between LIT and Canadore.
Professor Cunnane cited the example of Michael Clegg, Strength and Conditioning coach at Sunderland FC, who was graduating with his Masters in the same class as Detlev Himmelmann. “Michael Clegg studied for his programme while working at Sunderland, having been hired by Roy Keane when he was Sunderland manager in 2006. The fact is that Tipperary is impacting on Michael’s career in the UK, as a result of having Higher Education located here.
In front of cameras from Netflix – which travelled to Thurles for the graduation as part of a forthcoming documentary on Sunderland – Professor Cunnane went on to point out that “the father of your former chairman at Sunderland, Niall Quinn, was born in this town, captained Tipperary’s Under-21 hurlers, won honours for his county, and lived here until his passing.
“So Tipperary has had a hand in your career up to now, and will have a hand in your career as it develops from this point. Roy might like to claim you for Cork, but we’re making a Tipperary man of you.
Alongside this impact, Professor Cunnane stated that the institute’s two enterprise and innovation centres in Thurles and Clonmel were helping to generate jobs in the county, while LIT is supporting the inaugural Tipperary Business of the Year at the Tipperary Chamber, and is stimulating local businesses through the Ryan Enterprise Fund. “This is quite aside from the impact of having 1000 students and staff in Tipperary.
He went on, “On November 25th, LIT and Mary Immaculate College will be hosting the first ever Higher Education Open Day in Thurles, which is a clear signal that Thurles is growing as a student town, and that coming to college here is a great option not just from people in Tipperary, but from around Ireland and from overseas.”