Ireland’s University of Limerick expects to recruit 4,000 students as part of its ambitious expansion strategy.
University of Limerick said it hopes to create over 300 additional jobs and increase recruitment by 4,000 students over the next five years.
Speaking at the launch of the “UL@50” strategy, Dr Des Fitzgerald laid out an ambitious Strategic Plan to guide the development of the institution over the coming five years.
The university’s Chancellor Ms Mary Harney launched the plan alongside the President at the start of this month.
The launch was held at the site for the new UL City Campus in the former Dunnes Stores site on Sarsfield Bridge in the city centre.
University of Limerick acquired the site earlier this year and it forms the heart of the university’s development plans.
Dr Fitzgerald stated that the plan was hoped to bring an additional 4,000 students to Ireland, many of whom will be based in Limerick city centre, with a hope for student recruitment figures to rise to an additional 8,000 in following years. Current student numbers are around 16,000.
Students bring over €30 million to the region
As part of the University of Limerick recruitment, there will be an emphasis on postgraduate and international students, bringing an additional annual spend of circa €30 million to the city and region.
The number of staff employed by the university is expected to grow by around 330 to 1,930 to meet the needs of rising student numbers.
The university’s overarching priority over the course of the plan is to increase its national and international academic reputation through excellence in research and education.
Chancellor Harney noted at the event that the University is to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the NIHE (National Institute for Higher Education) in 2022, stating that the coming anniversary spurred the university to greater ambition during the development of the new strategic plan.
Harney said: “Ambition has always been key to UL. Today’s campus accommodates 16,000 students across 250,000 sqm of state-of-the-art lecture theatres, classrooms and research facilities on a campus of over 360 acres.
“Yet it began in 1972 with 113 students based in one building with seven academic members of staff. By matching the ambition and drive of our founders, we will ensure that the university reaches its fullest potential over the coming years.”
Dr Fitzgerald added that the coming years would see a revolution in teaching styles and philosophies and UL would seek to lead this transformation in Ireland.
Kate Frazer is a reporter for Global Education Times with a focus on UK/Ireland and North American education news. When she is not writing for GET News, Kate spends her time as an English and Maths tutor, and is currently pursuing her PGCE in Secondary Mathematics.
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