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Finance students to retain economic tutorials

Daniel Lynch Editor

Initial fears that revised methods in the Economics Department would lead to phasing out of tutorials and practical classes this year have been staunchly denied. Co-ordina- tor for Finance, Professor Sherman commented: “The Department of Economics will be offering tutori- als and practicals this year, as per last year.”

Some student commentary indi-

cated they feared there was a chance practicals would be scrapped in a revised plan for Eco- nomics. However Professor Sher- man reiterated: “There is no vagueness intended in the state-

ment that the Department of Eco- nomics will be offering tutorials and practicals this year, as per last year”.

Contrary to some perceived

opinions, the revised plans are looking to add to, rather than take away from student options. “We would propose, in fact, that sup- porting learning through comple- mentary non-traditional formats would enhance the learning expe- rience by offering greater accessi- bility to learning assistance and so be more advantageous to students” added Ms Sherman.

Recently the Economics depart-

ment has been independently re- viewed with

a summary Weird Wide World

Man’s best friend until the end…literally A Yorkshire terrier was buried in a cemetery in Arkansas, despite being quite healthy. His owner left in- structions to bury the pet, called ‘Tom Tom’ with him when he died, regardless of how old he was. The owner, one Donald Ellis, believed that no one would have been able to love Tom Tom as much as he, so they should be together in death. His family brought the dog to a vet, who initially refused to euthaniee the animal but eventually caved, believing the family would do it themselves if they had to. Source- KMBC TV Kansas.

Fly the proud hippo of patriotism A Connecticut man is being held in lieu of $100,000 bail on charges of larceny, criminal mischief and con- spiracy charges for stealing an American flag and hoisting a stuffed hippopotamus toy instead. Twenty three year old Jeffrey Kovic was arrested for committing the heinous act at Waterbury, Connecticut’s Town Plot Park. Source: Associated Press

Boy, you better be keeping a condom in your lunchbox In an effort to improve sexual health practise, the Swiss government has announced it will help with the development of condoms for boys as young as 12. The circumference of the ‘extra small’ condoms will be 5/16ths of an inch less than standard condoms, perfect for adolescents or bus drivers. Source: Daily Tele- graph London

Congratulations, here’s a fork An American Technician has won the Karaoke World Championship held this year in Moscow. Edward Pi- mentel received the highest number of audience votes and was awarded one million Russian dumplings for his effort. The winners of the male and female double categories were given a karaoke machine each, ar- guably a much more practical prize. Source: Associated Press

Hunting bears sir? Buy one of these deathsticks! A Montana woman successfully repelled a black bear attack with a zucchini after it attacked her 12 year old collie. The woman screamed to get the animal’s attention, and when he charged at her she threw the vegetable at him, striking him in the head and causing him to run away. It is believed that female menstrual blood attracts black bears, and the fact that the woman acted so aggressively seems to support this. Source: weirduniverse

I ain’t getting in no house A cat stuck in a tree for 10 days finally descended on Friday. The feline spent a week and a half roughly 60 feet above a Michigan garden. The fire department were called but they were unable to help, as they didn’t have a ladder big enough to reach the kitty. When the cat was eventually coaxed down it promptly scratched a neighbour and ran away. Source: Associated Press.

concluding, “The Department has been very successful in the devel- opment of a student focus” and has strength in the areas of “student focus, teaching capability, quality of student experience, and accessi- bility and availability of staff to students”.

Fears appear to have been

sparked from other departments which implemented cost cutting measures in the past. The English Department previously cast lec- tures via podcast to combat over- crowding in first year lectures. Students were split alphabetically and attended alternating lectures, while being expected to use pod- casts in lieu of the other half.

September 28th 2010 News in brief

Memorandum of Under- standing signed with Nigeria

UCC has signed a formal agree- ment with Nigeria, that will likely see collaboration and co- operative research between the university and Nigerian institu- tions in the future. The Memo- randum of Understanding was signed between Paul Giller, UCC Vice President for Academic Af- fairs, Her Excellency Dr Kemafo Chikwe, Nigerian Ambassador to Ireland, and Professor Okojie, Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Universities Commis- sion. The agreement will likely see staff and student exchanges as a result in the upcoming years. Source: The Irish Examiner

Bioinformatics confer- ence held in UCC

The VIBE (Virtual Institute of Bioinformatics Éire) Conference was held at UCC last week, drawing bioinformaticians, mi- crobiologists and computer sci- entists from around the country to the university. Bioinformatics is the application of computa- tional systems in biology. It is used in areas like mapping DNA and protein sequences. The con- ference is held bi-annually with the aim of consolidating bioin- formatic research in Ireland. This year's conference was organised by UCC bioinformaticians Drs Marcus Claesson (Microbiol- ogy), Pasha Baranov (Biochem- istry) and Avril Coghlan (Microbiology). Source:

Labour TD criticises col- lege working week

Labour Deputy Róisín Shortall, addressing the Dáil Public Ac- count's Committee, stated that there are academics in Ireland with as little as 15 total hours of work per week. This comes after the Chief Executive of the Irish Universities Association put for-

ward a formula of the average academic's working week, which has no minimum amount of hours. She said that the news is demoralising to students, who expect to be challenged at col- lege but find themselves with very as few as 6 or 8 lectures per week. Her words have been crit- icised by Irish university heads, however, who feel the figure is unrealistic. NUI Maynooth Pres- ident John Hughes said that he believed the average academic was working 59 hours per week, between lectures, preparation for lectures, academic research and contribution work. Source: The Irish Times

Universities may be forced to repay €20 mil- lion

Irish Universities may have to repay as much as 20 million Euros in allowances to senior staff members which did not re- ceive authorisation. The Dáils Public Account's Committee heard how allowances of around €1 million were paid by each university to staff despite the fact that the sanction of the Depart- ment of Education, which would be a breach of the Universities Act. It was also heard that the total of university pension funds had liabilities of €2.15 billion, and despite this a large number of academic staff were allowed to retire with 'enhanced pen- sions'. This has drawn criticism from student representatives, who are angered that university heads are calling for the intro- duction of student fees while being irresponsible with the funding they already have. Uni- versities accused of this unap- proved allotting of funding will be liable to face “retrospective sanction”. Source: The Irish Ex- aminer

Compiled by News Editor Byron Murphy

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