President Higgins launches ‘Being Young and Irish’

08 September 2012:  President Michael D. Higgins paid a return visit to DIT Bolton Street this weekend to formally launch his “Being Young and Irish” initiative – a consultation with young people across the country to explore their vision for Ireland and what they can do to contribute to ‘taking charge of change’.  The event, which was the first of four regional consultations, was attended by one hundred 17 – 25 year olds.  Over the next three weekends consultations will take place in Monaghan, Cork and Galway.  


President Higgins at the launch of "Being Young and Irish"

In his opening address, President Higgins told the participants You have the opportunity today to articulate that kind of society you seek to live in with others, grow older in, and in the future hand on to other generations... You also have the opportunity to share and reflect on, to suggest and decide the kind of arrangements, choices, and compromises you seek, that you are willing to live with, and make to achieve that vision.”


President Michael D. Higgins with, left, Professor Brian Norton,DIT,  and right, Olivia McEvoy, Project Manager of ‘Being Young and Irish’, and Dr. Mike Murphy, DIT.

In addition to those participating in person in the regional consultations, the President has extended an open invitation to all young people across Ireland to make their own submissions to “Being Young and Irish”.  You can share your views in text, video and/or audio format – see for how to make your voice heard.  The deadline for submissions is the end of September.

At the end of the consultation process, a team of researchers from Dublin Institute of Technology led by Drs. Kevin Griffin and Matt Bowden will capture the ‘spirit, the heart and soul of the process’ in a final report to be presented to President Higgins and to be discussed at a seminar in Áras and Úachtaráin later this year.

As President Higgins departed, Professor Brian Norton presented him with a memento of his visit - a framed print, depicting the Irish International Exhibition of 1865’, held at Earlsfort Terrace.  President Higgins had been particularly taken by the image on his visit to the campus earlier this year to mark the centenary of Bolton Street. 


Professor Brian Norton presents print of Irish International Exhibition of 1865 to Úachtarán Michael D. Higgins

The ‘Being Young and Irish’ event was organized by the Project Manager, Olivia McEvoy, and a team of young volunteers.  McEvoy paid tribute to DIT colleagues in the Buildings Office and Information Services for all their support in facilitating the event and to Aramark who provided the catering.

View video from the event



Team DIT at the launch of "Being Young and Irish"


President Higgins  with facilitators and volunteers, and researchers Drs Kevin Griffin and Matt Bowden, DIT


President Higgins briefing participants and volunteers


President Higgins with Professor Brian Norton, President of DIT, and Dr. Mike Murphy, Director and Dean of the College of Engineering and Built Environment


Back to Top