GMIT President welcomes visit from Minister Simon Harris to Mayo campus

Minister to meet staff and students, tour facilities and hear of plans for the campus


Press Office

Date Article Written: 

Saturday, July 17, 2021

The President of GMIT, Dr Orla Flynn, is delighted to announce a visit to GMIT Mayo on Monday next (19 July 2021) from the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris, TD.

Minister Harris will be welcomed to the campus in Castlebar by Dr Flynn and the new Head of School of Health Science, Wellbeing & Society and Vice-President of the GMIT Mayo campus, Justin Kerr. The Minister will also be interested to meet GMIT Students’ Union leaders and a small group of final year nursing students who are completing internships at nearby Mayo University Hospital. The Minister will be given a tour of the campus and its facilities and hear future plans for the campus in the context of the proposal for the establishment of a  Technological University (TU) for the West and North-West of Ireland for which application was made in May and which is currently working its way through the legislatively prescribed assessment process before coming to the Minister for decision.

Dr Orla Flynn will also outline recent important developments that have taken place on campus in the past year, especially relating to the newly established academic School of Health Science, Wellbeing and Society.

The Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris, TD, says he looks forward to meeting everyone and hearing about recent changes and future plans . “I am really excited to visit GMIT and see firsthand the campus and meet student leaders.

“The future is so bright for GMIT. The application for the new Technological University made by GMIT and its IT Sligo and Letterkenny IT partners in the Connacht Ulster Alliance (CUA) is currently being considered by the international advisory panel that I have appointed and without prejudice should it pass all tests would I am sure deliver important benefits for the North West.

“The campus here in Mayo is continuing to grow with the establishment of the new School of Health Science, Wellbeing and Society serving the wider region in the critical areas of Nursing, Health Science, Social Care, Early Childhood and Outdoor Education. I look forward to further expansions as we continue to grow and rebuild our third level sector.”

Dr Orla Flynn, President of GMIT, says: “Our Mayo campus plays a critical role in enabling GMIT to deliver on its regional remit. The establishment of a new GMIT School led from our Mayo campus is a significant development for the entire western region and we have already seen strong growth in both undergraduate and postgraduate student numbers under the leadership of Justin Kerr. I am confident that developments in preparation for a prospective Technological University which we have undertaken with partners IT Sligo and Letterkenny IT will bring further benefits for the Mayo campus, and ultimately for the wider region.”

Justin Kerr, VP GMIT Mayo and Head of the GMIT School of Health Sciences, Wellbeing and Society, outlined structural changes in the campus organisation as well as projected growth in student numbers: “The School has two Departments - Department of Nursing, Health Science and Integrated Care, and Department of Environmental Humanities and Social Sciences.

There are currently 702 full-time equivalent students in the School, with significant growth projected in the years ahead. We are delighted to say that already the 2021 CAO applications for Level 8 programmes in the new School are up by 22% from 2020 figures, with first preferences up by 12.5%.”

GMIT Mayo offers a range of courses in disciplines such as Nursing, Social Care, Early Childhood Education, Outdoor Education, History & Geography, Business, Art, Cybersecurity. For further details about these courses, see:

The proposed TU for the West and North-West if approved would see the establishment of one of the largest multi-campus universities across the island of Ireland. Together, GMIT, Letterkenny IT and IT Sligo can bring together almost 600 academic programmes to a current CUA student population of 20,000 students across eight campuses. 

In addition to undergraduate and postgraduate courses, it would offer upskilling and employee education and support enterprises, especially SMEs, through collaborative research and enabling technology transfer. It would also build economic, cultural and social prosperity across a unique geographical region which has dispersed rural population and significant urban centres.


Issued by Regina Daly, GMIT Communications & Press Officer, GMIT, Dublin Road, Galway.
0879618355 (m)

Galway-Mayo IT, IT Sligo and Letterkenny IT working together to become a TU for the West and North-West of Ireland