Modern Ireland: Uni Spotlight
Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest
This week we’re turning our university spotlight to focus on the newest school in the country: TUS Midlands Midwest. This uni was officially opened in October of 2021, but the schools it was formed from have much longer histories. TUS Midlands Midwest is an amalgamation of the Limerick Institute of Technology, which was founded in 1852 (though it’s been through many incarnations,) and the Athlone Institute of Technology, which the Irish government established in 1970. The resources of these two storied organizations are now serving more than 14,000 students on their six campuses across four counties and three provinces: multiple in Limerick City, and then in Athlone, Thurles, Clonmel, and Ennis.
Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest is as expansive as its name implies. First off, the Limerick campuses include the main Moylish campus, just outside the city, with 6,000 students, as well as the Limerick School of Art and Design (LSAD) in the city proper (plus, Coonagh, which holds engineering-focused research facilities—the first in the region!) Said to focus on “active learning through a fusion of theory and practice,” Moylish is the center of much student life—from society events to professional development opportunities. It also includes the 350-person Millennium Theater where the performance arts come to life, as well as the Hartnett Enterprise Acceleration Center, home to at least 20 startups at any given time. While Moylish is slightly outside of the city, LSAD on Clare Street is right in the heart of Limerick. LSAD houses one of the top 50 Fashion departments in the world, augmented by the school’s incredible location that allows for incredible, culturally rich offerings for the art-inclined student.
The second principal campus after Moylish is Athlone, which provides over 200 industry-driven courses through the PhD level. These offerings include a large number of pioneering courses, as well as numerous study-abroad opportunities through the over 230 university partnerships the Athlone campus maintains (including in Beijing, New York, and Prague.) From their Business and Hospitality program where you can focus on everything from Tourism to Accounting, to Science and Health with everything from Nursing and Healthcare to Sport and Health Sciences—Athlone has prospects in a variety of industries. And Athlone’s population is around 25,000, making it the perfect balance between the recreation of a city and the coziness of a town.
Meanwhile, Thurles maintains TUS’s “Sports Lab,” a world class sports strength and conditioning facility that increases student’s practical learning skills (and whose research is utilized by many sports teams!) The Lab includes: “a unique 3D Organic Motion Capture System for motion analysis, a 45m six lane sprint track especially designed to improve speed, a Paralympic area, cable machines, a range of sport technology systems, including micro electro mechanical systems and GPS systems; Olympic lifting platform; five functional screening kits; weights and the full range of exercise machines.” And just across from campus is the Tipperary Technology Park—making it a truly unique place to support new enterprise development in this field!
Then we head over to the Clonmel campus, which is focused on digital subjects. These classes include their innovative Game Art & Design program, as well as Digital Animation Production, Creative Media and Design, and their newest focus: Visual Effects for TV, Film, and Animation. This relaxed, but technically-focused learning space strives for accessibility of cutting-edge tech while fostering creativity and invention. And the location can’t be beat! Right in the middle of the Golden Vale, this large town has everything you could want as a college student—cafes, restaurants, pubs, and culture—with the incredible natural beauty of the area an added bonus. The Suir Blueway Tipperary is just a stone’s throw away to hike or bike, not to mention the watersport opportunities along the river!
Lastly, we have Ennis, known for its small class sizes and Social Care Work courses in the middle of the largest urban centers in the Midwest, which retains its historic charm. However, within the gorgeous late-Georgian architecture, you’ll find thoroughly modern facilities with computer labs and recreational centers where students can complete “a total of 6 degree programs in Social Care, Early Childhood Care, and Education and Business.” Just like TUS’s campus here, this area of County Clare is known for its balance between “then and now,” which means the perfect combination of boutiques and eateries with buildings dating back to 1242 and traditional Irish music around every corner.
Essentially, TUS has everything to offer—smaller towns and class sizes or a larger university feel in a larger city—whatever a student is looking for! But there’s one uni left in Ireland we haven’t covered, the most highly specialized on the list. Visit the blog next time to learn more!
This post is part of a series. Read modern Ireland post, all Irish snack foods, here. Check out the blog every Monday and Thursday for more posts about Irish history, dance culture, community news, and spotlights on our dancers, staff, and families—among other fun projects! And don’t forget to dance along with us on both Facebook and Instagram.
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