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LIT Annual Report 2015-2016 Interactive

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Annual 2015 Report 2016Annual Report 2015/2016This is the Annual Report of the Limerick Institute of Technology The Annual Report covers the period 1st September…
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Annual 2015 Report 2016Annual Report 2015/2016This is the Annual Report of the Limerick Institute of Technology The Annual Report covers the period 1st September 2015 to 31st August 2016www.lit.ieCONTENTS>2LIT Annual Report 2015 - 2016Section 1:Chairman’s Statement President’s Statement4Section 2:Governance and Management8Section 3:Academic Development and Student Affairs14Section 4:International Activites – External Academic Links50Section 5:Research Enterprise and Development54Section 6:Campus Planning and Development72Section 7:Human Resources Report78Section 8:Financial Report82Section 9:Equal Opportunities90Section 10:News and Events94Appendix 1:Supporting Information104>3The year under review saw LIT broaden the service we provide to the Mid-West region as a whole, by becoming more rooted in the communities that host our education and enterprise centres.01CHAIRMAN’S & PRESIDENT’S STATEMENTS>4LIT Annual Report 2015 - 2016>5CHAIRMAN’S STATEMENT The 2015/16 period saw significant development of LIT’s presence in the education and development infrastructure of the Mid-West. LIT continues to be a generator of social capital and economic benefit in the region. But it is now obvious that the Institute of Technology sector, and not just LIT, must be financed at a level proportionate to the tasks it is being asked to perform if it is to sustain its role of contributing to Ireland’s educational, industrial, social and developmental needs. In a recent report the Higher Education Authority stated that ‘the [third level education] system is approaching a point where the available resources will not be able to assure adequate quality of provision’. In fact it is the case that, since 2008, the level of state grants to the Institutes of Technology has fallen by 35%, while student numbers have risen by 34%. It can scarcely be a surprise that among a series of actions identified by the HEA in its Financial Review of the Institutes of Technology is the need for over €130 million to be put into the sector in the short term just to keep its head above water. The state must match the value it places on the access to higher education with resources adequate to delivering that value.PRESIDENT’S STATEMENT LIT is a community of over 6,700 students and 560 staff across campuses in Limerick, Clare and Tipperary. Our vision, mission and remit is encapsulated in our motto: active leadership in education, enterprise and engagement. Our staff and students engage actively with industry, business and the community, enabling LIT to contribute in many ways to the people who live and work in the local region. LIT is a positive influence on sustaining and expanding the industry base in the region through our capability to develop programmes and supply graduates with the right skills and aptitudes. Our proactive approach to the creation and support of new enterprise contributes very significantly to the development of the local and regional economy. LIT’s contributions to civic and cultural life is equally important. The hallmark of our educational philosophy is active learning through a fusion of theory and practice. Active learning methods are embedded in our teaching and learning approaches and our learning environments. Our students and industry partners frequently tell us that they value this active learning ethos. LIT scores consistently well in student and graduate surveys which measure key components of learning, such as practical application, preparation for the workplace and how students are supported.The role of LIT in the community is a wide one, extending beyond any narrow definition of education and training. The deep links which LIT has with industry and commerce, with a wide variety of geographic and social communities, with local government and with the worlds of arts and sports, make LIT a major facilitator of development in the region. This critical role has been recognised by the government in, for instance, the Regional Action Plan for Jobs but not reciprocated in the provision of the financial resources needed to sustain it.LIT’s core educational provision across our Faculties/Schools (Applied Science, Engineering and IT; Business and Humanities; Art and Design) includes significant and growing research, enterprise and engagement activities. The institute also contributes in many unseen ways to the wider community through the involvement and voluntary efforts of our staff and students across a wide range of social and community projects and groups.For our part, the year under review saw LIT broaden the service we provide to the Mid-West region as a whole by becoming more rooted in the communities that host our education and enterprise centres. We have seen the first cohort of students to come through the Go4IT programme, and start their studies in Moylish. These students are typically drawn from communities within Limerick regeneration areas. At the same time, we have launched our drive to create a €1 million scholarship fund for students in DEIS schools in the region.• We registered over 1,700 new students in first year.We are pursuing our application for planning permission for a new engineering-focussed campus at Coonagh on the northside of Limerick - which is a major new piece of educational infrastructure serving the community and local and regional industry. The new Coonagh Campus will enable LIT to grow our presence in the city core. The International Fashion Incubator Limerick (IFIL) was launched in late 2015 and is integral to our already wide ranging support for entrepreneurship in the city centre. LIT and its Limerick School of Art and Design were major contributors to Limerick’s bid to become European Capital of Culture, underlining again the critical role the institute plays in the cultural life of Limerick and the region. And in Ennis we have commenced the delivery of degree-level education, for the first time, with the result that our educational footprint is now well extended over the three counties of the Mid-West.In 2015-2016, the year under review, LIT progressed a number of key priorities:• We graduated over 1,800 new graduates and postgraduates at our conferring ceremonies. • We progressed our alliance with our Shannon Consortium partners. • We partnered with the Limerick & Clare ETB and Clare County Council to offer an LIT degree in Ennis for the first time. • We strengthened our links and profile in the region, for instance through taking a lead role in initiatives that brought additional jobs to the region through our involvement in the Regional Skills Forum and delivery of the National Plan for Jobs. • We continued our success in the HEA Performance Based Assessment Compact, one of only five institutes designated as Category 1 by the HEA. • We submitted our planning application for the Coonagh Campus development. • We grew our numbers of postgraduate and international students significantly. • We took a significant step towards blended learning and technology enhanced learning.The new Questum Enterprise Centre was opened in Clonmel. LIT Thurles also expanded its role as a focus of community activity and enterprise development.• We opened up a new discipline area in Tipperary by offering an Early Childhood Care and Education degree in Thurles.While slightly outside the scope of the formal report for 2015/16, it is important to record that a new President of LIT took office on 1 September 2016. Professor Vincent Cunnane has a distinguished record of achievement in teaching, research and management in the Univeristy of Limerick, Shannon Development and Sligo Institute of Technology. The Governing Body has no doubt but that he will skilfully guide LIT through the challenges it faces and help to maximise its contribution to the many communities it serves.I would like to thank the Governing Body of LIT and all the staff for their wonderful support during my time as Interim President and I wish the incoming President the very best. I am sure LIT will continue to be an excellent place where students and staff can develop their full potential.The end of the 2015/16 academic year was also the end of the five year term of the Governing Body. I would like to thank all the outgoing members for their commitment to LIT and for the diligence with which they carried out their work of ensuring that the highest standards of governance are applied throughout LIT’s diverse operations.Terry Twomey Interim President LITThe year presented many challenges to the leadership and staff of LIT. I commend them all for continuing to provide programmes of the highest quality to all those who study and do research with us and for maintaining their commitment to the continuous improvement of everything we do. Niall Greene Chair, LIT Governing Body>6LIT Annual Report 2015 - 2016>7A Governing Body was appointed from September 2011 to 31st August 2016. Seven ordinary meetings of this Governing Body plus four special meetings were held in the period under review.02GOVERNANCE & MANAGEMENT>8LIT Annual Report 2015 - 2016>92.1 GOVERNING BODY2.2 EXECUTIVE AND SENIOR MANAGEMENTA Governing Body was appointed from September 2011 to 31st August 2016. Seven ordinary meetings of this Governing Body plus four special meetings were held. In addition, nine Audit subcommittee meetings, three Strategy subcommittee meetings and three Finance Committee meetings were also convened. One Joint meeting between the Audit and Finance Committees was also held in the year under review.Executive ManagementFees and/or expenses (including relevant fees for interview boards) paid to members of the Governing Body for the year 2015-2016 amounted to €11,402.79.Members 28th September 2011 to 31st August 2016Dr. Maria Hinfelaar (To 31st March 2016)Interim PresidentMr. Terry Twomey (1st April 2016-31st August 2016)Vice-President Academic Affairs and RegistrarMr. Terry TwomeyInterim Vice-President Academic Affairs and RegistrarMs. Maria Kyne (25th April 2016-31st August 2016)Vice-President Corporate Services and Capital DevelopmentMr. Jimmy BrowneVice-President Research Development and EnterpriseDr. Fergal Barry (To September 2015) Dr. Liam Brown (From 1st February 2016)Mr. Niall GreeneChairmanVice-President Research Development and EnterpriseDr. Maria HinfelaarPresident (to 31st March 2016)Vice-President Strategy and External AffairsMr. Michael O Connell (To September 2015)Mr. Terry TwomeyInterim President (1st April 2016-31st August 2016)Head of School of Art & DesignMr. Mike Fitzpatrick (on Secondment to the City of Culture)Acting Head of School of Art and DesignMr. James GreensladeSix V.E.C. Nominees under Section 4(1) (a) & (b) of Regional Technical Colleges (Amendment Act) 1994, IOT Act 2006. Cllr. Maria Byrne (To May 2016)City of Limerick VEC – Amalgamated to form Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board as of 1st July 2013.Cllr. Joe LeddinCity of Limerick VEC – Amalgamated to form Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board as of 1st July 2013.Ms. Mary Jackman (Vice–Chair)Co. Limerick VEC – Amalgamated to form Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board as of 1st July 2013.Heads of Faculty of Applied Science Engineering and TechnologyMs. Maria Kyne; Mr. Paschal MeehanHeads of Faculty of Business and HumanitiesMs. Marian Duggan; Mr. Donnacha Mc NamaraSenior Management Head of School of EngineeringDr. Edward Hayes (To 31st August 2016)Head of Department of Fine ArtMs. Tracy FaheyActing Head of Department of DesignMr. Mike FoxMr. Michael CorleyCo. Clare VEC – Amalgamated to form Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board as of 1st July 2013.Cllr. Micheál LowryCo. Tipperary N.R. VEC – Amalgamated to form Tipperary Education and Training Board as of 1st July 2013.Head of Department of BusinessMr. Eoin SadlierHead of Department of Food and TourismDr. Catriona MurphyCo. Tipperary S.R. VEC – Amalgamated to form Tipperary Education and Training Board as of 1st July 2013.Head of Department of Applied Social SciencesDr. Cathy JonesHead of Department of Sport and FinanceMr. James CollinsFive Elected Nominees under Section 4(1) (c) (d) & (e) of Regional Technical Colleges (Amendment) Act 1994, IOT Act 2006.Head of Department of Flexible LearningMr. Seamus HoyneMr. Chris WalsheStudent (Male – 2015-2016)Head of Department of the Built EnvironmentMr. Pat GillMs. Mairéad KeoghStudent (Female – 2015-2016)Head of Department of Electrical and Electronic EngineeringDr. Frances HardimanMs. Maureen FalveyAcademic Staff (From February 2015)Head of Department of Mechanical & Automobile EngineeringDr. Philip RyanMr. Tony MahonAcademic Staff (From June 2015)Head of Department of Information TechnologyMs. Janice O ConnellMr. Ger HartiganNon Academic StaffHead of Department of Applied ScienceMs. Michelle Mc Keon BennettOne I.C.T.U. Nominee under Section 4(1) (f) of Regional Technical Colleges (Amendment) Act 1994, IOT Act 2006.Head of Research and Technology TransferDr. Patrick Murray (From 1st September 2015)Mr. Seán TreacyLibrarianMr. Jerald CavanaghAcademic Administration & Student Affairs ManagerMs. Linda BarryHuman Resources ManagerMs. Anne TwomeyMs. Fionuala Mc GeeverIrish Congress of Trade UnionsFive VEC Nominees under Section 4(1) (g) of Regional Technical Colleges (Amendment) Act 1994, IOT Act 2006. Mr. Simon MoroneyMunster Council, Cumann Luthchleas GaelMr. Jim NagleAnalog DevicesFinance ManagerMr. Gerry O NeillDr. Kevin KelleherHealth Service ExecutiveEstates ManagerMr. Ultan GogartyMs. Margot MarsdenEnterprise IrelandIT ManagerMr. Alan BarryMs. Paula RyanInstitute of Certified Public AccountantsInternationalisation ManagerMs. Cliona CampbellMarketing ManagerMr. Shane MaloneEnterprise Development and Business Liaison ManagerMs. Gillian BarryDevelopment Manager-LIT Tipperary CampusesMr. Ciaran LynchAssistant RegistrarMs. Ann Murray (To September 2015)Assistant RegistrarMs. Frances O Connell (From September 2015)PLEASE SEE APPENDIX FOR SUPPORTING INFORMATION RELATING TO SUBCOMMITTEE MEMBERSHIP OF GOVERNING BODY.> 10PresidentLIT Annual Report 2015 - 2016> 112.3 GOVERNANCE AND MANAGEMENT OVERVIEW OF STRATEGY AND PERFORMANCE During the year under review, LIT successfully completed the submission of the HEA/LIT Compact for 2015/16. This document presents a self evaluation report, setting out a review of LIT’s performance. This performance is measured against a set of interim targets under the mission based Compact for 2014 to 2016. This was an opportunity not just to be awarded funding, but also to enhance LIT’s performance in line with national strategy and to sharpen our self-critical analysis of the organisation. This review also identifies independent benchmarks that are used, many of which are based on international norms and comparisons. The Interim Strategy Review 2015 was provided to the HEA in June 2015. This interim review process aligned the goals and objectives in the LIT Vision and Strategy to 2020 with the KPI’s in the Compact with the HEA being presented with any recent developments and changes for each of the strategic goals. The key issues identified during the course of the review included the following; 1. Financial and resource constraints are impacting on the Institute’s ability to serve the region and create employment. These financial constraints include the absence of a borrowing framework, which is inhibiting our capacity to develop much needed educational infrastructure and facilities across all our campuses. 2. A number of key strategic objectives set out in the first phase of the Compact have been progressed and developed. These include the Federated Limerick Graduate School, which is now being fully operational, with LIT having undergone a successful Research Review in 2015 for the awarding of UL doctorate degrees under common regulations and relevant doctoral training structures. 3. Under the heading of Participation, Equal Access and Life Long Learning, LIT is tracking its Compact targets at the upper end of SEG enrolments for mature students and SWD, with a very high number of students on SUSI. The purchase and implementation of a ‘One Stop Shop’ CRM system to respond, track and deliver student services has been shelved due to ongoing financial constraints. LIT is hopeful that increased funding may support this development. 4. LIT is the first institute in Ireland to implement a seamless transition from Further Education to Higher Education through an MOU with the Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board (ETB) that leverages the close relationships between FE and HE. The HEA funded Threshold Concepts project supported our work with Limerick College of Further Education to bring about this approach. 5. Flexible learning numbers were impacted by industrial action in September 2015. However, LIT is developing its model of Flexible Learning to address this area and to strive to progress our target by 2016. International benchmarking, through a Fulbright scholarship has supported this development. 6. In the area of Teaching Learning and Quality of the Student Experience, LIT uses independent benchmarks (ISSE, EU Graduate barometer) of comparative performance nationally and internationally. In nearly all 14 categories in the ISSE, LIT has outperformed the sector. Preparation for the workplace is one area being strengthened through the increased use of work placements across all programmes. Active learning is already a strong and distinctive feature of LIT’s learning environment. Student retention in first year was targeted in the Compact by> 12LIT Annual Report 2015 - 2016LIT and has started to achieve the improvement sought. This measure improved from 75.84% in 2014 to 78.6% in 2015 as a result of significant commitment in this area by LIT. The LIT Learner Retention Strategy has the following plan in place to achieve the Performance Compact targets: 1. Provide accurate and impartial pre-entry information, advice and guidance including accurate, honest marketing and publicity in a modern format. 2. Implement an institute wide attendance monitoring system. 3. Commit appropriate and timely funding to the Student Support Services in recognition of their key supporting role in the retention of students. 4. Formally review student registration systems. 5. Formally review all LIT induction programmes and student support services, based on annual student feedback of induction programmes, student support services, retention, completion, progression and withdrawal information. 6. Formally review the Learning Support Unit’s provision of flexible, responsive and accessible systems of learner support including study skills and English language support (for international students) based on annual student feedback of its services. 7. Provide staff development and support, and support staff CPD opportunities, in teaching, learning and assessment.compared with the baseline metrics and they have been achieved. We have also achieved our target for outgoing student mobility in terms of work placements. However, we have not met our target for study abroad (and the resulting metric of rebalancing incoming versus outgoing Erasmus students). The background to this underperformance and an action plan is set out below; The LIT student profile is heavily weighted toward technological disciplines, and we also have one of the highest proportions of mature students. LIT’s programme design takes strong account of industry and active learning e.g.; year long projects and professional body requirements. All of these are strengths which contribute to positive metrics elsewhere in this report. However, they tend to mitigate against students taking a period of study abroad. While there is goodwill toward international experience among many academic staff and students, the combined weight of the above factors leaves little practical room for this goodwill to crystallise into actual experience. Other obstacle
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