Waterford News

French Ambassador to Ireland at WIT

The French Ambassador to Ireland, H.E. Stéphane Crouzat joined Councillor John O’Leary, Deputy Mayor of Waterford, President of WIT, Professor Willie Donnelly along with local teachers of French, restaurateurs and many food producers from the region for a celebration of the very best in French and Irish cuisine at WIT on 10 April 2019.

Guests enjoyed a meal which showcased locally produced artisan food and French wines prepared and served by 2nd year students form the Higher Certificate in Culinary Arts under the direction of Chef and programme leader, Edward Hayden and lecturer Nuala Gordon. The celebration marked the annual ‘Good France/Goût de France’ day supported by French Chef Alain Ducasse and the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, ‘Good France’ aims to celebrate the diversity of world gastronomy and its links with French cuisine.

Speaking after the ‘Good France’ event, Ambassador Crouzat commented that ‘Waterford and France share a unique tradition as illustrated by the history of the Waterford Blaa, a notable Irish bread that is said to have been introduced by the Huguenots in the 17th century. I was delighted to see Waterford Institute of Technology, a keen supporter of the Good France initiative over the years and last year’s winner of the Dairy Chef competition, participating again this year in this celebration of Franco-Irish gastronomy. I thoroughly enjoyed discovering the work of Irish and international WIT students on such diverse aspects of culinary arts including food sustainability and oenology. I was also impressed to see how the institute engages with the local community from restaurants to schools showcasing, for example, outstanding local talents in dance and singing’.

WIT President Professor Willie Donnelly added, 'our links with France go back many years and we are honoured to welcome H.E. Ambassador Stéphane Crouzat to WIT to celebrate that connection. We are particularly delighted to host this evening's 'Goût de France/Good France’ event in association with the French Embassy as our links with France are extremely important to us. We have inter-university collaborations with many of France’s leading universities, a joint Masters programme in Business with Brest Business School, an Erasmus+ exchange network with over 25 French partner institutions and several research partnerships in different parts of France’.

Commenting on WITs links with France in the area of culinary arts, Head of School of Humanities, Dr Suzanne Denieffe remarked that ‘we are particularly pleased to further develop our cooperation with the French Embassy through the 'Goût de France’ event.' Referring in particular to the growing number of international opportunities available for students on the BA (Hons) Culinary Arts programme, Dr Denieffe added that ‘our students in the area of Culinary Arts are very fortunate to have excellent opportunities for work placement and study all over the world as an integral part of their programme. Our students can also spend time studying and on work placement in France and we are delighted to cooperate with some of France’s leading institutions in the areas of Culinary Arts and Hospitality including the University of Angers and the world renowned Institut Paul Bocuse in Lyon’.

WIT’s increased cooperation with France was also highlighted by Ray Cullen, Head of Department of Languages, Tourism and Hospitality, who referred to the Institute’s collaboration with the French Embassy to organise the National Dairy Chef competition, an exciting initiative with the National Dairy Council (NDC) and the French Dairy Council (Cniel). 'The competition brings together culinary students from the leading colleges in France and Ireland to work together to champion their respective institutions by creating a three-course menu celebrating Irish and/or French dairy produce. We are especially proud that WIT student, Hope Cuddihy (4th year BA (Hons) Culinary Arts) paired with a student from the University of Cergy-Pontoise was runner-up in this year’s event which took place in Paris last week’.

RIKON are hosting a 1/2 Day Business Facilitated Workshop in conjunction with Waterford Chamber on Thursday, 25th of April in Arclabs, WIT Carriganore Campus. This interactive workshop will be of interest to any Waterford business looking to grow and improve their company in 2019.

The workshop will be facilitated by dedicated strategists and market specialists from RIKON who will work with the attendees on various business model elements throughout the day. The workshop is free to attend but places are limited.
For more information and booking, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The target attendee is any company who is interested in the growth of their business and would like to potentially review the business model of their company. It is also of interest to anyone who would like to learn more about RIKON Services and funding opportunities for their business. The workshop will focus on the potential growth opportunities for the companies in relation to their products / services / overall business.

Agenda for RIKON Open Day:

8:45am – 9:15am
Company Registration

9:15am – 9:30am
Opening of Event with Gerald Hurley, CEO of Waterford Chamber
Welcome and Overview of Workshop with Dr Patrick Lynch, Director of RIKON

9:30am – 10:45am
Business Model Canvas Evaluation and Facilitation with Dr Patrick Lynch; Director of RIKON and Lorna Bailey; Business Strategist

10:45am – 11:10am
Tea / Coffee / Scones Break

11:10am – 12:40pm
Customer Experience Mapping and Facilitation with Danielle Whelan; Business Development and Marketing Coordinator and Rory McCall; Business Strategist

12:45pm – 1:15pm
Innovation Voucher Funding Writing for SME’s – Tips and Tricks with Danielle Whelan and Vladislavs Samsinovs; Marketing Coordinator

1:15pm – 1:30pm
Close of Event with RIKON and Waterford Chamber

Closing date for applications is Thursday 30th May 2019. No applications will be accepted after this date.

The Community Enhancement Programme will fund projects that seek to enhance facilities and communities in disadvantaged areas. This Programme will offer not-forprofit groups access to capital funding in order to kick-start, advance or complete their projects. The Programme seeks to address some of the difficulties these groups face in terms of accessing small scale levels of funding to match their own fundraising efforts.

How to apply

All applicants must complete the application form which can be downloaded from the Waterford Council’s website www.waterfordcouncil.ie. Alternatively you can collect an application form at Waterford City & County Council Customer Service points at Bailey’s New Street or at the Civic Offices, Davitt’s Quay, Dungarvan.

Once completed please submit your application by post to:
Colette O’ Brien
Community Enhancement Programme,
Waterford City & County Council,
Baileys New Street,

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In 2014, the then Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton TD officially opened the new Local Enterprise Office Waterford on The Mall.

The Minister stated that the Local Enterprise Office “will deliver more services and better services to the start-ups and small businesses across the county that we rely on to create the jobs we need, with more staff and more funding”, and five years on the Waterford Local Enterprise continues to support and help businesses grow throughout the city and county.

Since 2014, 642 new jobs have been created by LEO supported companies and LEO Waterford has provided almost €3 million worth of financial assistance to 164 companies.

The enhanced range of business support services introduced in 2014 has been well received and LEO Waterford continues to provide investment and resources and develop programmes for start-up and established businesses.

Richie Walsh, Head of Enterprise at Local Enterprise Office Waterford said the demand for services has grown significantly and this is a reflection of the resilient entrepreneurial spirit in Waterford. “The uptake on participation in training programmes and mentoring has increased year on year since 2014. We’ve seen the number of participants on training programmes increase by almost 200%, while 95% more clients are availing of mentoring services since 2014.”

“Supports such as business training, grant assistance, and enterprise education have a positive impact on start-ups and small businesses. By providing highly practical services and resources to make the entrepreneurial journey a little less fraught, LEO Waterford is in the business of helping start-ups to get off the ground.”

One such local company to avail of LEO support back in 2014 is EveryEvent, an award-winning event production company, that lends creativity and the wow-factor to festivals and events throughout the country.

John Grubb, Director of EveryEvent said that the supports from Waterford LEO, particularly at the start of their journey was a major boost to the company. “Back in 2014, EveryEvent was just a concept and it was the input and assistance from Waterford LEO that helped us realise its true potential.”

“For a young company like ours to have not just financial assistance, but a wide range of business support services available to us, was a huge vote of confidence in our business and gave us the impetus to grow.”

National initiatives launched in 2014 which continue to grow each year include Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur competition, Local Enterprise Week, the National Enterprise Awards and Women’s Enterprise Day.

Richie Walsh added, “These flagship events give us the opportunity to engage with those who are thinking of starting a business, in start-up phase or already established in business and offer any assistance we can to help them grow and “make it happen.”

If your business in pre-start, start-up or established business phase and would like to find out more about what business support services are available from LEO Waterford visit www.localenterprise.ie/Waterford/

The forthcoming Munster Maths and Science Family Fair 2019 will be held in Mallow on October 13th later this year. The annual event, first held in 2010, attracts approximately 4,500 primary and secondary school kids and parents/guardians from across Munster as visitors to each event.

This science, engineering, technology and maths (STEM) event features exhibitors from Industry that highlight the science and innovation that underpin their technologies and products. The focus of the annual fair is to showcase the fun side of science and to show how it is used in the things that we do, use and see every day. Exhibits feature a wide range of interactive demonstrations on innovative manufacturing, robotics, 3D printing, drone technology, IoT, and sustainable energy technologies and more. In addition, educational institutions highlight their research in key sectors and a number of primary and secondary schools exhibit STEM projects undertaken by their students.   

Exhibitors to date for the 2019 event include Eli Lilly, Kostal Ireland, Johnson & Johnson, Blizzard Entertainment, Dairygold, Horner APG Europe, Cork Institute of Technology, University College Cork and Waterford Institute of Technology. While ddemonstrating that science can be both entertaining and interesting, exhibitors also seek to encourage young people to embrace the subjects which can be the pathways to stimulating career opportunities.

Exhibiting companies demonstrate their commitment to corporate social responsibility and leadership in STEM related activities. Members of the Waterford Chamber of Commerce that would like to profile the science and innovation behind their success and engage with an interested and curious audience would be welcome at the event.

For more information, contact Freddie at 087 9805951 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Munster Maths and Science Fair Team

Address: Floor 3, Mallow Parish Centre Building, 27-28 Bank Place, Mallow, Co. Cork.

Phone: 085 8554555

Website: www.mallow.ie

Facebook: @MallowDevelopmentPartnership

Twitter: @MallowDevtPship

Student Sport Ireland 1

John Windle, WIT Novus Senior Manager, has been unanimously ratified onto the Student Sport Ireland Board of Directors. John is from Waterford City.

Student Sport Ireland is the governing body of third level sport in Ireland the organisation works to enhance student health and well-being through increasing participation in sport and physical activity in third level colleges in Ireland. John will take up the role of National Children’s Officer an imperative element within Student Sport Ireland.

Speaking following his appointment John outlined how he was “delighted to represent WIT on the board and I look forward to using it as platform to promote and develop student sport not only in WIT but across all third levels institutes”.

John has extensive knowledge in child protection from his experiences in coaching swimming and athletics as well as being responsible for large group activities for children. John has completed his Safeguarding Level 1 and 3 as well as his TULSA Children’s First E-Learning Programme course.

As a Senior Manager within WIT Novus, John is responsible for the management of several divisions within the company including the WIT Arena Manager, WIT Head of WIT Vikings Sport and Manager of WIT International Summer Business. These roles along with John’s 16 years’ experience working in the Fitness and Sports Industry, has provided him with a wide range of knowledge in Finance, Governance, Human Relations and Health and Safety and Child Protection.

Lean Forum 2018Over 300 people from industry across Ireland attended WIT’s hugely successful Lean Forum last year. Booking is now open for this year's event and each of the workshops sells out quickly so early registration is advised

The 7th Annual WIT Lean Enterprise Excellence Forum will take place in the Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) Arena on Thursday, 9 May 2019 and will feature subject matter experts and experienced industry practitioners who will present on core Lean themes.

The forum will be of interest to organisations of all sizes and from all sectors that have adopted or will adopt Lean thinking and practices to enable and sustain competitiveness in national and global marketplaces. It is run in association with RIKON, WIT, the South East Lean Network, Lean Business Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, IDA Ireland and Lean Construction Ireland (LCi).

According to Darrin Taylor, co-founder and co-director of the Lean Academy of Lean Enterprise Excellence, “This industry-academia conference focuses on best practices and cutting-edge developments in lean enterprise, operational, and process excellence; Lean thinking and practices; and continuous improvement.”

The forum will feature Keynote Speaker Professor Peter Hines; a prominent global thought leader in Lean and award-winning author who said, “I am as ever really looking forward to the WIT Lean Forum. It is by far my favourite conference of the year, full of genuine people looking to share freely their knowledge with other organisations. I am happy to be part of this gathering and will discuss my new book The Essence of Excellence.”

The Annual WIT Lean Enterprise Excellence Forum is distinctive for featuring organisations of all sizes - from large Multinationals to SMEs and Micro Enterprises. Repeat attendee and guest speaker Dr Noel Hennessey (Principal Consultant SA Partners, M.D. Practical Lean Solutions) says that “irrespective of where you are on your Lean Journey, attending the WIT Lean Forum will definitely accelerate you’re learning, within insights garnered from both an academic and practical perspective.”

This is a free and open all-day conference. Places are limited, and it is strictly a ticket-only event available from WIT Lean Forum.

Booking is now open at www.witleanforum.com.

Dr Michael OSullivan and Prof Bernadette FlanaganThe growing interest in the study of spirituality across the world is one of the significant signs of our times. In line with this development an historic international conference on 'Spirituality in Society and the Professions' has been announced and will take place in Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) on 16-18 May 2019.

The conference is a collaboration between the European Institute for Spirituality in Economics and Society (SPES), based in Budapest, and the Spirituality Institute for Research and Education (SpIRE) in Dublin.

The topic of the conference is related to the Routledge International Handbook of Spirituality in Society and the Professions edited by Laszlo Zsolnai and Bernadette Flanagan. This original book will be launched at the conference by Michael Comyn, RTE.

The conference has attracted speakers from the US, Australia, Hungary, Belgium, Spain, Rome, Norway, the Netherlands, the UK, and Ireland, some of whom are contributors to the book. It intends to show how professions have already, and can in the future, gain a good deal in insight and wisdom by embracing spirituality in their working models and practice. In this way they will be a form of spiritual capital for personal, social, and planetary wellbeing.

Dr Michael O'Sullivan and Prof Bernadette Flanagan, who are recognised international leaders in the field of spirituality studies in higher education, and lead the WIT MA in Applied Spirituality which takes place in Dublin, are delighted to be involved in the organising of this conference at WIT because it shows how a university level institute of Technology in the South East, an education and research Institute of Spirituality in Dublin, and a European Institute for Spirituality in Economics and Society based in Hungary can come together to serve the spiritual quest of people in society and the professions.

"This is the first time in this country that such a number of high level spirituality publications will be launched on the same day," said Dr O'Sullivan. "My hope is that an outcome of the conference and the book launches will be to attract more people to do the MA in Applied Spirituality, as well as to add to the graduates that Bernadette and I have worked with in recent years who have been publishing, presenting at conferences, and/or going on to do PhDs in spirituality".

There is evidence of the increasing recognition that spirituality is a dimension in almost every sphere and aspect of social life. The conference aims to discuss the most important issues, frameworks, and problems regarding spiritually-related activities in different fields of social life.

Chapters in the book behind the conference highlight that spirituality-based new approaches and models for the professions are being explored in different societal fields, including religion, psychology, philosophy, theology, ecology, agriculture, water, landscape and urban planning, tourism, medicine, psychological counseling, sociological work, nursing, sport, health, economics and business, management, leadership, politics, law, policing, science, architecture,technology and design, fashion, literature, visual arts, music, theatre, film, dancing, martial arts, media, and education.

"We are also delighted that at this conference some of our spirituality graduates will launch their books while others will present papers," added Prof Flanagan.

The Design Challenge Waterford winning entries exhibition opens on Tuesday, 2 April (6.30pm) in the Waterford Institute of Technology’s Granary campus in Waterford city and runs from to Monday, 8 April.

The exhibition is part of a Waterford Cultural Quarter Design challenge, which is a research, collaboration with WIT’s Creativity & Culture Research Group in the School of Humanities, main project partners Waterford City and County Council and Garter Lane Arts Centre, together with support from Local Enterprise Office, Institute of Designers in Ireland, Design and Craft Council of Ireland, Creative Ireland and local community groups and industries.

The exhibition includes a diverse range of exciting design proposals from sixteen students in year four of the BA (Hons) in Design (Visual Communications) and two year five of the BArch (Hons).

The design proposals address specific challenges encountered by the groups and individuals within the Waterford Cultural Quarter. These challenges were highlighted within the project's totally inclusive public consultation process.

This exhibition stage of the competition is open to public vote and national jury, with the winning design proposal then being implemented within the Cultural Quarter.

Katherine Collins, Waterford Cultural Quarter Project Manager said, “Waterford City and County Council worked in a collaborative partnership with WIT and Garter Lane Arts Centre to examine the opportunities and challenges faced by the Cultural Quarter community, with assistance from Creative Spirits, our URBACT (EU) programme. Through the work of the students and their mentors we can see how our creative city can be defined by citizenship, openness & tolerance, and how it can support innovation, initiative and activity. We look forward to bringing the winning design forward to fruition and commend our partners and the students on the high quality and professionalism of their approach to design led solutions”.

Máire Henry, Head of Department of Architecture, commented that ‘Cultural quarters serve a diverse range of people groups and activities. The projects presented by the two students of architecture are enterprise based and open to all. They are embedded in the fabric of the O’Connell street area and resonate with the history of the area whilst imaging a future which provides more permeability and connection with the Quay and adjoining areas. Both projects respond to their individual briefs but add an extra dimension by creating ‘free space’ for the general public to ‘linger’ and socialise’.

Design Lecturer Joy Rooney noted that ‘this research project has a design led approach. It addresses real challenges shaping the Cultural Quarter today, as voiced by the community there. Our rapidly urbanising world has brought a rich cultural diversity to this historic precinct. Looking to the future, many sustainability challenges will unfold for this maritime city. Innovative design proposals from our students are directly informed by feedback from the community and project mentors. The designs are exhibited for consideration, with the winning proposal emerging as a tangible, creative action for the community’.

Another design collaborator Dr Fiona Dowling feels that the Design Challenge in O’Connell Street presents many opportunities for the design students to experiment and consider the wider implications that design has for a city space. The multi-disciplinary approach with Visual Communication and Architecture working on a collective brief has been a first and one, which links with the over-arching aim of the project to create a collaborative environment. The outreach for WIT Design to link with local groups and partners in the Waterford’s Cultural Quarter has been one of support and mutual growth which will be built on going forward.

For more information on the Design Challenge project visit: www.designchallengewaterford.ie.

Purple Flag Hoot Parade 2019Ensuring a safe and secure night-time experience is essential for any city to prosper. The internationally recognised Purple Flag accreditation, which Waterford first received in 2015, is due to be re-assessed in early April and the stakeholders are putting every effort into delivering a positive outcome for the city.

According to Chair of the Waterford Purple Flag Working Group Eric O’Brien, “Having Purple Flag status it very important for Waterford as it recognises the commitment to a safe and secure night time experience. It recognises business and stakeholder group contributions towards making Waterford the best it can possibly be and is supporting the great progress that has been made already in Waterford.”

Purple Flag is a gold standard accreditation for evening and night time economy accredited by the Association of Town and City Management (ATCM) and looks at the wellbeing, movement, appeal and sense of place within a city centre, with successful locations able to demonstrate a variety of initiatives aimed at attracting visitors to the area during the evening and night. Within the Purple Flag zone you’ll find a diverse range of entertainment on offer in a well-managed and welcoming environment.

Waterford City will be reassessed by independent assessors from ATCM in early April and in preparation for the judges visit, the committees are actively carrying out inspections of areas and projects to ensure standards are met.

According to Waterford Chamber CEO Gerald Hurley, who is Co-ordinator of Purple Flag Waterford, “Our stakeholders are determined to retain the Purple Flag status for Waterford and are working towards a common goal of continually improving standards. We have a vibrant and varied night time economy here in Waterford and particularly as we head towards the tourist season, we need to make sure that our community and visitors can enjoy a great and safe night out.”  


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