SEFS Alumni News Spring 2019

Welcome from Head of College, Professor Paul Ross

22 May 2019

As we approach the summer there is a real sense of optimism around our College of Science, Engineering and Food Science.  The first preferences for CAO applications are in and I am delighted to say that the demand is significantly up on this time last year for programmes in the college, and this is spread across nearly all the disciplines. This will ensure a solid talent pool in the future to lead our knowledge-based economy, especially in this region. 

One of the programmes that is attracting a lot of attention this year is our new degree in Agricultural Sciences which will be a seamless partnership with Teagasc/Moorepark at Fermoy.  This course will fill a major gap in our programme and be a major keystone connecting food and environment to business and technology while using the agricultural might (expertise and facilities) of Teagasc.  Importantly, this programme is already attracting great support from industry in the shape of scholarships and bursaries, and in the future, I am very confident that this degree will continue to grow within the college.  Other new programmes started last year in the college including the BSc in Data Science and Analytics in the Department of Computer Science, and a BA in Psychology and Computing between the School of Mathematical Sciences and Computer Science – both programmes are addressing key developing areas in the IT sector.

In the last year, one of our main priorities within the college has been the regeneration of the Kane building which houses the Schools of Chemistry, Physics and IT Services.  This iconic building, built in the late 1960s, is in real need of investment and will need a complete makeover costing in the region of €52 million.  At present, the vast majority of SEFS and medical students are educated there at some point in their studies and also the building is a major thoroughfare through the campus.  The prioritisation of the Kane is reflected in the university's strategic plan as are new buildings required for Engineering and Life Sciences, however, these also require major funding.

This year has also seen some major strategic appointments being made in the college in the areas of Internet of Things, Grasslands, Wave Energy, Microbiome and Physics.  One of these is Professor Seamus Davis in quantum physics, who joins us on a 50% appointment with Oxford and was recruited from Cornell.  Seamus is a UCC alumnus and a pioneer in quantum physics and we are delighted to be able to attract someone of his calibre.

In conclusion, 2018 was a landmark year in that UCC surpassed €100 million in research income, most of which was generated from within our college.  So, we have good reason to be optimistic for UCC in Science, Engineering and Food Science!

We would like to stay in touch with you over the coming years and help you stay in touch with one another. You can update your contact details at and you are welcome to share this newsletter with your friends and former classmates.

Best wishes

Professor Paul Ross,

Head of College of Science, Engineering and Food Science,
University College Cork.


Alumni and Development

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