Thursday, December 16, 2021

UL Class 2020: Graduate Outcome Reports

All higher education institutions in Ireland survey their graduates within 9 months of completing full-time courses. This national survey is conducted under the aegis of the HEA (Higher Education Authority) and the results are compiled in the HEA report on 'First Destinations of Award Recipients in Higher Education' which is published each year. 

Top line Results


  • 75% of the Class of 2020 went directly into employment.


  • 7% of graduates are working globally. This is down from 12% and is likely attributable to travel restrictions and cautious behaviours around Covid-19.


  • 17% of the class are engaged in further study or training.


  • 7% of graduates are seeking employment, with ca. 1% unavailable for employment (for reasons of e.g. health, family, gap year).


  • The results suggest that higher educational attainment is positively linked to higher employment rates, with 96% of UL PhD/Research graduates and 80% of Taught Masters graduates in employment.


  • The sectoral spread of the Class of 2020 employment is of interest viz., Human Health and Social Work (19%), followed by Professional, Scientific and Technical sector at 15%, Financial, Insurance and Real Estate (14%) and Industry (13%). At 11%, Education remains a significant sector for graduate employment.


  • The average graduate salary was €34, 987, with 59% of graduates earning in excess of €30,000.


  • The results indicate that higher educational attainment is positively linked to higher salaries, with PhD/Research Masters graduates earning an average salary of €51,250 and the average salary of Taught Masters Graduates calculated at €37,934.


  • In line with recent trends, the Western Corridor (West, Mid-West and South West) continues to be the preferred destination for UL graduates, accounting for almost two-thirds (63%) of graduate employment. This compares with 26% in the East. Globally, the most popular destinations were North America (29%), EU (25%) and the UK (23%).

For the Faculty of Science and Engineering, the relevant data are here.

Thursday, October 21, 2021

Athena Swan : presentation of the award to the Department of Biological Sciences


Following the earlier announcement of the renewal of Athena SWAN bronze award to the Biological Sciences Department, the co-chairs Dr Audrey O’Grady and Dr James Brown received the award and certificate on behalf of the departmental self-assessment team (co-chairs pictured with Prof Mey), on Tuesday 12th October, 2021. 

The award was presented on behalf of Athena Swan Ireland to the co-chairs by the first female president of an Irish university, and current UL president Professor Kerstin Mey (in a limited capacity COVID safe ceremony), along with presentation to awardees of the other eight Athena SWAN awards that UL attracted in 2020-2021, including Irelands first departmental Sliver award. 

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Teaching Hero: Dr Audrey O'Grady


In April 2021 Dr. Audrey O’Grady, was recognised as a Teaching Hero in the 2021 student-led Teaching Hero awards. The Awards are organised by the National Forum in collaboration with the Union of Students in Ireland and provide an opportunity for students across the country to recognise and celebrate outstanding teaching in Irish higher education institutions. This year students were asked to describe why their nominees deserved recognition as an innovative or inspiring teacher. Audrey was nominated by her undergraduate students who submitted both a written report and video. There was particular recognition for Audrey’s support of students during online teaching during restrictions.

Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Athena Swan Bronze Award

The department of Biological Sciences Athena Swan Committee are delighted to announce that we have had our Bronze Athena Swan Award renewed. Originally, the department was one of the first in Ireland to receive this award, recognizing our early leadership and commitment towards achieving equality for all staff and students.

The application was co-chaired by Dr. James Brown and Dr. Audrey O’Grady, and made possible by the hard work and helping hands of many staff and students in the department over several months. This award recognizes the department's commitment to creating a workplace that is inclusive, welcoming, and where everyone is treated equally, and with dignity and respect. This culture is important to us, to inspire and support all our students and staff, and we follow the motto “if you can see it, you can be it”, both as educators and as leaders in our communities.

The Athena SWAN charter is a framework that is used internationally to support and transform gender equality in higher education and research. The charter launched in Ireland in 2015 with a specific remit to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing the careers of women STEMM employment. The charter has since been expanded to include arts, humanities, social sciences, business and law (AHSSBL) and staff working in professional, managerial and support roles (PMSS). Notably, the department of Biological Sciences is the first department in UL to have a PMSS champion- Jackie Kennedy. We look forward to implementing our plan over the next 4 years, further building our department into a place where everyone is truly treated equally, and is a beacon of diversity and inclusiveness.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Teaching Assistant in Biological Sciences (2 Positions) - 10 Month Fixed Term Contract


The University of Limerick (UL) with over 16,300 students and 1,700 staff is an energetic and enterprising institution with a proud record of innovation and excellence in education, research and scholarship. The dynamic, entrepreneurial and pioneering values which drive UL’s mission and strategy ensure that we capitalise on local, national and international engagement and connectivity. We are renowned for providing an outstanding student experience and employability and conducting leading edge research. Our commitment is to make a difference by shaping the future through educating and empowering our undergraduate and postgraduate students. UL is situated on a superb riverside campus of over 130 hectares with the River Shannon as a unifying focal point. Outstanding recreational, cultural and sporting facilities further enhance this exceptional learning and research environment.


Applications are invited for the following position:


Faculty of Science & Engineering


School of Engineering


Teaching Assistant in Biological Sciences (2 Positions) - 10 Month Fixed Term Contract


Salary: €31,319 p.a. pro rata


Further information for applicants and application material is available online from:


"A Teaching Assistant post in the University of Limerick operates as a training contract. The duration of the contract is limited to 10 months. However, it may be renewed for one further period only not exceeding 10 months. Applications will only be considered from individuals who have not already received two Teaching Assistant contracts.”


The closing date for receipt of applications is Tuesday, 18th May 2021.

Applications must be completed online before 12 noon, Irish Standard Time on the closing date.


Please confirm that you are currently eligible to work in Ireland. Applications by candidates who are not eligible to work in Ireland will not be processed.


Please email if you experience any difficulties

Monday, April 19, 2021

Congratulations to Rachael Blackmore


With a global viewership of 600 million, there will not be many who missed out on Rachael Blackmore notching up another historic achievement, passing the winning post in front, at the 2021 Aintree Grand National.  Winning the 173rd running of the race has shot her to a new level of jockey greatness, a fitting reward for someone who has shown phenomenal mental courage and resilience.

The Grand National transcends National Hunt racing into the wider public consciousness and her story, a balm in challenging times.  Rachael rode a perfectly judged race, clearing the last fence on Minella Times in front and with 494 yards to go, she pulled away with an almost unbelievable dawning that she was going to win. Rachael’s post-race quotes remind us of how demure and modest she is, someone who is admirably willing to stay grounded and focused.

Rachael has had a whopping 516 Irish rides this season and is currently 8 winners away from topping the Irish National Hunt leader board. There are 2 weeks left to the finale of this competition and Rachael is within reach of this title, although, she has not left us short of accolades this year.

All the staff of The Department of Biological Sciences would like to extend our congratulations to Rachael, to her family and of course, to her trainer Henry De Bromhead, with whom she has developed a remarkable partnership.


Amy Fitzgerald

Equitation Teacher & CD Diploma Equine Science

MSc, BSc, HSI Level 2 Coach