Letterkenny Institute of Technology and CLG Dhún na nGall made history yesterday when they formally signed a memorandum of understanding which formalises the strong working relationship between both organisations and recognises the opportunity to develop significant value in civic and community contribution.
This three year MoU was signed by Sean Dunnion, Chairperson, CLG Dhún na nGall and Paul Hannigan, President of Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT).
Speaking at this signing, Sean Dunnion, stated “we have been developing this MoU with LYIT over the past nine months and we are delighted today to formally launch the partnership that we believe will be mutually beneficial to both CLG Dhún na nGall and Letterkenny Institute of Technology. LYIT are providing us with a top-class menu of services that we can use in the preparation of our county teams and development squads in both hurling and football. LYIT are also providing opportunities for current underage players completing their Leaving Certificate and current/former adult county players to return to education for part-time programmes. There is tremendous value in Donegal GAA having an Education and Lifestyle Partner of the scale of Letterkenny Institute of Technology and we strongly believe that this co-operation will reciprocate in value to the Institute with one of their strategic objectives being to increase their capacity to serve the people of County Donegal on a wider and stronger basis”.
Recognising the pivotal roles that both CLG Dhún na nGall and LYIT have within County Donegal, this partnership will enable both organisations to tap into the resources they already have in place. LYIT recently made significant investments in their new Sports Performance Laboratory and also sports staff expertise as they currently offer a Higher Certificate in Sports Studies and a BSc (Hons) in Sports Coaching and Performance as CAO offerings and a Certificate in Principles of Sports Nutrition as a part-time offering. This MoU will allow various intercounty teams and development squads to avail of these facilities. LYIT will provide a mix of performance/functional testing, general/technical workshops and access to teaching and campus facilities.
In addition, recognising that it is important to look after players off the field, education scholarships and lifestyle/employability planning seminars for either full-time or part-time courses at LYIT will be awarded to Donegal intercounty players for the forthcoming three years. This is a positive development for CLG Dhún na nGall, as it is enabling career development for these athletes. Speaking about this development, Karl Lacey, current Donegal intercounty player, stated “it is a really positive advancement to see this agreement being developed between LYIT and the Donegal County Board. Due to the current level of performance expected of an intercounty player, it is great to have the opportunity to avail of state-of-the-art sports facilities at LYIT. Due to recent investment in their new sports laboratory, LYIT’s facilities are as good as any I have seen throughout the country. In addition, I believe all players will hugely welcome the addition of the LYIT education scholarships. It provides an intercounty player (be it minor or senior) an opportunity to study locally, either at a degree or postgraduate level, allowing them the opportunity to develop a career whilst still being able to train and play for Donegal. This agreement now makes it easier to juggle both”.
Paul Hannigan stated “Letterkenny IT has at its core the provision of “opportunities for all”. This agreement with CLG Dhún na nGall allows us to create more opportunities both for the Institute and the county’s Gaelic Games athletes. It is a statement of intent from the Institute and represents a step change in our approach to supporting competitive sport”.