Ministerial approval for Limerick engineering campus

LIT Coonagh
Minister of State Mary Mitchell O'Connor is given a tour of the LIT Coonagh campus by Professor Vincent Cunnane. Photo: Alan Place

Higher Education Minister Mary Mitchell O Connor has visited the site of the Limerick Institute of Technology’s new engineering-focussed campus at Coonagh Cross.

The campus comprises of 36 acres of land and more than 7,000 square metres of built space and its purchase was funded by the Department of Education and Skills through the Higher Education Authority (HEA).

LIT President Professor Vincent Cunnane confirmed that Ireland’s first degree in Manufacturing 4.0 is set to run from Coonagh allowing a speedy response to industry demands.

“This is critical as the cyber world joins with the manufacturing industry. In fact, we are introducing the country’s first specialist degree in Manufacturing ICT next year.

“This is very much about the nexus of Higher Education and Manufacturing.  The course is being developed in response to Manufacturing 4.0., the next phase in the digitisation of the manufacturing sector, an area in which it is critical for Ireland to gain a competitive advantage.

“The new Bachelor of Engineering degree is to be delivered through an apprenticeship model, and will be located at our Coonagh campus.  The degree will in fact it will give rise to the new profession of Manufacturing ICT Engineer in Ireland.

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“The first B.Eng, Manufacturing ICT apprentices are expected to join the programme in the next academic year.  The delivery model means that industry in the region can upskill very quickly.

LIT Coonagh
Minister of State Mary Mitchell O’Connor is given a tour of the LIT Coonagh campus by Professor Vincent Cunnane.
Photo: Alan Place

Minister O’Connor said that after a period of unavoidable retrenchment, a turning point had been reached for State investment in Higher Education.

“We have provided additional funding for the sector and it is great to see such wonderful regeneration of a disused space. This new development will undoubtedly enhance the student experience for all the engineering students in LIT. It will facilitate the skills agenda and strengthen the interface between LIT and industry in the region.

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