25 April 2005:

DIT has announced that two senior academic colleagues will take specific responsibility within the Institute for the key areas of apprentice education and student affairs.  Mr. Michael Murphy takes on the role of Dean of Craft Education and Training, and Mr. Kieran Taaffe becomes Dean of Students and International Affairs. 

Professor Brian Norton said he warmly welcomed the development.  "I am delighted that by accepting the title of Dean, my colleagues are underlining the importance the Institute attaches to future development in these critical areas.  Apprenticeship and craft education are at the heart of our history and DIT can trace its roots to the establishment of technical education in Ireland in 1887.  Michael Murphy, who was formerly Vice Principal of the College of Technology, Bolton Street, has been key to the ongoing development of our apprenticeship programme for many years and has been instrumental in our apprentice students participating and excelling in national and international skills competitions.  As Dean of Apprentice and Craft Education he will ensure that this vital area of our provision continues to support Irish industry by developing highly-skilled craftspeople, and will play a critical part in the development of facilities for craft education within the new integrated campus at Grangegorman."   

Professor Norton said that DIT has the highest number of enrolled students in the country, and their concerns must be central to how the Institute is administered.  "It is vital that our student body is adequately represented at every level within the Institute and that there is a formal two-way communication process to ensure the student voice is heard.  In addition to providing advocacy in relation to academic and other matters, Kieran Taaffe also takes responsibility for our growing international student body.   Kieran, who was formerly Vice Principal of the College of Technology at Kevin Street, has represented DIT in many countries around the world and has been centrally involved in developing an international profile for the Institute.  DIT currently has the largest number of Chinese students studying at third level, and has an increasing number of partnerships with prestigious universities - for example, agreements have been signed very recently with Tsinghua University in Beijing and ECUST in Shanghai.  As Dean, Mr. Taaffe will be actively involved in recruitment issues, liaison with partner institutions worldwide, and in enhancing international students' experiences while they are with us in DIT."

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