Limerick and Clare ETB honours shining stars

SOME of Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board’s top students, both past and present, were recently honoured at a special ceremony at Thomond Park. Photo: Brian Arthur

SOME of Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board’s top students, both past and present, were recently honoured at a special ceremony at Thomond Park Stadium showcasing the depth of talent that the ETB supports through its schools.

The national awards ceremony hosted by Education and Training Boards Ireland were part of a week-long series of local, national and international events for #ETBWEEK, celebrating the education services provided by all 16 Education and Training Board regions across Ireland.

Limerick and Clare ETB had the honour of recognising for alumni awards two Team Ireland athletes competing at Paris 2024, Róisín Ní Riain and Sarah Lavin.

19-year-old world-class Limerick swimmer Róisín from Drombanna completed her Leaving Certificate last year at the ETB’s all-Irish secondary school Gaelcholáiste Luimnigh.

Described as a delight to teach, Róisín was also honoured as a great classmate, kind, fun-loving and a wonderful person to be around. In between balancing her studies last year she achieved incredible success, winning Gold and Silver medals at the Para Swimming World Championships in July and was named Swim Ireland’s Para Swimmer of the Year in November.

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Commenting on receiving her award, Róisín said: “It’s been an amazing day here today getting to meet so many people from all over Ireland. Everyone is so talented and there has been so many great achievements, I’m honoured to be here today and to receive this award.”

29-year-old Sarah Lavin from Lisnagry is a former Castletroy College student and is currently Ireland’s fastest woman. Sarah specialises in high hurdles, enjoying major success and breaking records in various championships in recent years, including achieving a personal best at the recent World Indoor Championships.

During her time at Castletroy College she always showed great confidence when competing in the school’s events but off the track she was described as having huge humility and was never one for the limelight. She is held in high esteem by all her teachers and is a fantastic role model to all the school’s students.

Sarah was in training camp on the day and she sent a special video: “I’d just like to thank everyone associated with my nomination, I’m truly honoured to be chosen as part of the Limerick and Clare ETB alumni awards for 2024”.

This year’s BT Young Scientist winner Seán O’Sullivan from Pallaskenry, County Limerick was also at the event, he made national headlines recently when his AI related project ‘VerifyMe’ saw him scoop the top prize at the 60th BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition in January.

Sean is a student at Limerick and Clare ETB school, Coláiste Chiaráin in Croom and he was at Thomond Park as a nominee for an ETB Bursary award.

Speaking about his achievement Seán said “It’s incredible, the bursary is going to be so helpful when I move from second to third level education, it will also help support my AI project ‘VerifyMe’ and help with mentorship, guidance and college fees, so I’m very grateful.”