STUDENTS from Letterkenny Institute of Technology are gearing up for this year’s graduation ceremonies. Almost 1,200 students will graduate in Letterkenny on Friday and in Killybegs next Wednesday.
Among these students will be Fire Fighters who have completed the Bachelor of Science(Hons) in Fire Safety Engineering. Every Thursday for three semesters a group of seven students travelled from Dublin, and one from Gorey, County Wexford, to attend lectures in Letterkenny.
Their aim was to achieve an honours degree, following on from having completed a part-time Bachelor of Engineering Tech (Ord) in Fire Safety Engineering at DIT. The part-time mature students were all in employment in fire services – with Dublin Fire Brigade, Dublin Airport Authority, Iarnród Éireann and Wexford County Council.
Cathal Ryan, one of the graduates, said: “We considered ourselves very lucky to have received an offer of a place on this programme but it was not without its difficulties. The average travel time from Dublin was a seven hour round trip every Thursday beginning at 4.30am with others having to travel further, before you even sat down to a lecture! The incredible professionalism and excellent tutors in LYIT made this trip a whole lot easier.”
Anne Boner, Head of Department of Civil Engineering and Construction, explained The BSc (Hons) in Fire Safety Engineering has been running at LYIT since 2001.
“Typically one or two students each year choose to complete the one year add-on over two years and normally this involves attending classes two days a week,” said Ms Boner.
“When approached by the DIT ordinary degree graduates, we took into consideration what they had already covered and came up with a programme which meant they could complete their honours degree in 20 months attending one day a week during term time. It was a tall ask for students to complete an eight hour day on top of travelling to and from Letterkenny but, with work and family commitments precluding a longer stay, the group jumped at the chance to come to Letterkenny and judging on the results achieved, they gave it their all and it was well worth their effort!”
As this specific group of fire safety graduates look forward to Friday’s graduation ceremony and say goodbye to Letterkenny, eight further students, from Dublin and Galway, have already taken their place participating in the programme this year.
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