Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD travelled to Limerick on Friday afternoon (22 February) to visit the brownfield site of LIT’s new engineering-focused higher education Coonagh campus.
This first phase of the Coonagh development comprises the full fit out of more than 5,000 square metres of previously unused space, transforming it into state of the art teaching, learning and research facilities. The campus will welcome its first students this autumn.
During his visit, Minister McHugh planted a tree beside the main building, and witnessed first-hand how a €11.6million Government investment is being utilised to develop phase 1 of this state of the art higher education campus.
Following his tour of the site, Minister McHugh said the new campus will play a pivotal role in the further advancement of education and industry in the Mid-West region.
Minister McHugh said: “This new third level campus is designed for agility of use and will provide facilities that encourage education and research to co-exist, give students first-hand experience of industry’s most up to date technology and facilitate industry leaders to meet and share ideas.
“I am impressed by LIT’s commitment to making third level education more accessible by providing undergraduate and post graduate courses, flexible training and apprenticeships - traditional and new, which includes the much acclaimed degree apprenticeships.”
Welcoming Minister McHugh to Limerick, LIT President Professor Vincent Cunnane said: “The work you see here today marks the beginning of a €150 million planned development investment across LIT’s six campuses.
“It also marks the first phase of LIT’s Coonagh campus, and I look forward to working with you and your department as we plan and build the next phase.
“Here in LIT we continue to work closely with local industry to ensure the Coonagh campus will be the first port of call for business leaders and companies seeking out graduates with specific skill sets, up-skilling employees, and assisting with research that will ensure this region remains at the forefront of mechanical and electrical engineering development for decades to come.
“Ultimately LIT’s campus at Coonagh will provide the research and educational support to the industry that much of the region’s economic growth is predicated on.”
Prof Cunnane thanked Minister McHugh for his interest in the ongoing work at LIT.