Stories and Articles
Graduate Attributes and Values
My name is Simon Spichak and I submitted my thesis for MSc Anatomy and Neuroscience here in UCC in 2021. I specifically picked UCC because I wanted to work under Profs. John F. Cryan and Ted G. Dinan on the microbiota-gut-brain axis at APC Microbiome Ireland.
I moved to Ireland from Canada, without knowing anyone here. Working in a high-paced laboratory environment is extremely stressful, and during this time I think I demonstrated the value of Resilience. I had to be resilient to troubleshoot experiments and learn new skills. My resilience also helped me manage my mental health during my degree. I wanted to help other students build resilience around the world – so at the end of my degree I founded Resolvve Inc. My business helps university and high school students (in Canada, for now), access integrated mental health support.
Overcoming my anxiety, I competed and won a science communication competition called FameLab. I represented Ireland in the International FameLab Competition in 2020. I also pushed my boundaries, performing stand-up comedy about my research through Bright Club. It also inspired me to begin communicating science through writing published across Massive Science, RTE Brainstorm, BioSpace, Medium, and Futurism.
At the same time, I also began working more on my mental health startup, Resolvve. Shortly after it debuted, our psychotherapists began serving students across Canada. By combining psychotherapy, academic coaching and career counselling, the therapists cover many student concerns. We are also working on mental health education and now have several free ebooks that we provide to other students. I hope that I can help other students also build resilience by giving them the tools to thrive in school and in life.
My name is Maria Torres, I am an indigenous lawyer from Peru. Nowadays, I am studying my master’s in Government and Public Policy (MRes) at UCC. It is a part-time and an online program and I’ve just finished my first year. I am eager to get to know Cork, and I really hope to do it once the pandemic ends.
I think I embody the attribute of being an Effective Global Citizen who recognizes and challenges inequality. Everyday at work, in politics and in academia, I challenge colonial mentalities and colonial societies, who still think that there is a culture and a way of thinking/being superior to others, which is an idea that still prevails in the midst of the 21st century and is one of the main reasons of deep social inequality, even when the gross domestic product increase year after year.
I am committed to enhance indigenous self-identification in every political space I can. Last year, I ran for Congress when indigenous leaders asked me to represent their peoples. Although I didn’t win a seat, leading a campaign based on making people aware about the importance of reclaiming indigenous identity was rewarding. My goals included creating awareness that most Peruvians descend from indigenous peoples, and we have the moral duty to support their struggles for the respect of their rights. Also, this allowed me to explain that it is no coincidence that those who have suffered poverty, exclusion, and subordination, after two centuries of a Republic, are indigenous peoples, their children and grandchildren, because actually there is a historical cause that started with colonization and has continued in Republic.
This year I have also been selected to participate in the Next Generation Leaders Program organized by the Talloires Network of Engaged Universities. I’ll be participating in the Civic Engagement Futures working group, to assess how learning, teaching and research in universities can really connect with reality in order to support their communities. I look forward to putting my Effective Global Citizen attribute in practice one more time.
My name is Heather McGrath and I am in my final semester of my Masters at UCC. I am studying the MA in Arts Management and Creative Producing at the Department of Theatre.
My signature graduate attribute/value is: Creator, Evaluator, and Communicator of Knowledge. My character embodies that of a creator as it is focused and forward-thinking. As a trained musician and performer, a vital aspect that I have learned is to persevere and remain resilient. I put this wholeheartedly into my learning and development. My curiosity has always encouraged me to ask the question “why?”, and so as an evaluator, I find satisfaction in getting to the bottom of a sticky situation, finding a solution through innovation. As a communicator of knowledge, I like to advocate that everybody should have a voice and should be heard. The best way, I have learned to be a sharer of knowledge, is to disseminate what is there to be learned from others.
My most prominent achievement that speaks best to this attribute is my upcoming project as part of the MA in Arts Management and Creative Producing, Out of Orbit virtual arts festival. With my concept being planned, unplanned, and re-planned, I have had to adapt my creative and critical thinking skills to work within a covid-19 compliant threshold. By doing so it has allowed me to evaluate the situation by taking a strategic approach and letting my creative intuition fully take hold. I have had the pleasure of utilising my innovative and artistic skills by creating my event (Stellar Sessions), which enabled me to collaborate with professional musicians and exuded my resilience by working entirely remotely and virtually to create my end vision. It also afforded me the opportunity to learn from those that I got to collaborate with on my event, but also my fellow cohort.
As a professional, and as my own person, the skills that I have gained from the MA and UCC, have afforded me the opportunity to expand my capacity for creative and critical thoughts and become a more artistic creator, a team player and innovative evaluator, and an empathetic communicator of knowledge. It has further signified my desire of combining my passion for music, the arts and communication with artistic flare in the future.
Dia duit, Johanna is ainm dom. Is Francach mé, as Oilean Reunion dom. Táim i mo chónaí i gCorcaigh anois agus is mac léinn Erasmus mé. Ta céim sa Bhéarla ar siúl agam. Taim sa triú bliain. Taim ag foghlaim Gaeilge le cúpla mi chomh maith. Is maith liom Gaeilge agus Corcaigh. Tá sé go hiontach!
I'm Johanna and I am a French Erasmus student from Reunion Island. I'm currently living in Cork and I'm doing an English degree in UCC. I'm on my third year. I've been studying Irish as well for a few months now and I really love it. I love Cork, it's beautiful!
I respect my family, my friends, people and myself. I respect ideas and identities different than mine. I respect values and particularly tradition which is really important for me, since I am from a mixed background. I am from a place where different cultures make one: Indians, Muslims, Africans and French form a big and solid community. And respect is one of the first thing taught in such a place.
I think it is important to teach the youth about the past. Since coming to Ireland, I've been studying Irish. By doing so I've learned so much about Ireland's culture and its people. To me, this is a way of showing respect to the people that were here before, to their customs and showing respect to the country itself which has a strong history and interesting folklore tales. To my amazement, I have discovered similarities between the beliefs here and those I have back home. This is an example of respecting the past and our ancestors.
My name is Yuhan Hao and I am currently studying for a BSc in Risk and Actuarial Studies in the School of Mathematical Sciences at UCC. This is a four year honours degree programme delivered in partnership with Beijing Technology and Business University (BTBU). I chose this degree programme because I think risk and insurance-related concerns will become more and more important in people's lives in the future. After I graduate, I want to work in an insurance company and will use my free time to join a rap club to develop my interest in this area.
My assigned attribute is Creator, Evaluator and Communicator of Knowledge and I cannot resist the charm of words. From writing articles to writing poems, I feel that I can express my feelings through words. After I touch rap, I start to write lyrics, because songs can express their emotions better through melodies. Every poem I write, every song is creating a new thing like never before. I feel happiness and accomplishment in my creation. Every work I create is a record of my life like a milestone in the sunset of memory.
In terms of my key achievements in the creation and communication of knowledge, I have written hundreds of love poems, all dedicated to one special person. I have also written other poems to record high school life and emotional changes, such as missing friends who are far away and the campus scenery of the four seasons. At university, I also wrote three or four songs and performed them at the Christmas party for international students.
Begin. Belong. Become.
启程 归属 蜕变
My name is Jennifer Conroy and I am in year 3 of the Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) programme.
Compassion underpins everything here in University College Cork. I am so privileged to have the opportunity to study on the BSW course and learn from such amazing staff, support staff and fellow students, all of whom have incredible passion and compassion. One of the core values for a social worker is compassion and I am honoured to be here with my classmates developing and enhancing our skills to be the best we can be in order to help others.
Throughout my UCC journey I have been honoured to work with the students in the Certificate for Contemporary Living (CCL) course, hold the position of Class Representative 2018/2019 and Peer Support Leader 2019/2020, all of which require many attributes and values but the most important skill is to be able to show compassion. Starting a new journey can be exhilarating and exciting but it can also be terrifying and daunting.
The start to my own UCC journey was very exciting but brought with it the daunting reality of change, upheaval, nerves, worries and apprehension. I received amazing support everywhere I went, from the Mature Student Office to the Skills Centre and everything in between. I found great reassurance in unexpected brief chats or even a welcome greeting. I feel through my roles as Class Representative and Peer Support Leader, I have had the opportunity to give back at least some of the compassion that was given to me and I will strive to give back more.
My name is Kyle Macaulay and I am in my 3rd Year of the BA (Hons) Arts-Music, taking Music and Politics.
I believe strongly in the importance of creative practice to enhance learning, refresh and reinvigorate interest in important older works and to invent new inspiring work. As a traditional musician and sound engineer, my creative works come in the form of recordings and new compositions. I am constantly striving to find ways to put my own stamp on compositions or unique older works before releasing the recording in the hope of inspiring a new group of people.
My recently released debut album "Barra Taoide" (Sponsored by UCC's Quercus Talented Students’ Scholarship programme) epitomises my aspirations as a performer, as a composer and as an advocate for the ceaseless promotion of traditional music. The album features a range of significant older tunes from my local area which have been arranged and given new life in the project. These tunes sit neatly alongside my own compositions, written to muse upon a particular historical period, a person or an idea. Recording and releasing this music has allowed it to reach a new audience, one which may not have been privy to the importance and the significance of this older music. It also allows it to reach a more familiar audience, but it refreshes the tradition, ensures its organicity and aids in the passing on of the music through generations. As a creator, this is my most important contribution.
My name is Temitope Akinlade and I am currently studying Biological Sciences and I am in my 2nd year.
Personally, I love being organised. This enables me to think ahead and most of the time, know the right thing(s) to do. Therefore, when I have a set goal, I like knowing what my options are so that I can plan ahead and with a determined mind, be able to achieve my goal.
One of my best achievements to date is securing a scholarship to study in UCC. I never thought I could or would win it. It was very competitive and there were many abled contestants, but I was among the few that were chosen.
UCC has always been a place that I wanted to study at. Even when I got offers and letters from other universities, I still had my mind set on UCC. I mean, what’s not to love about the college?; its scenery, its location, its hardworking staff, its diverse students, and most importantly, an array of services that ensure that you have a great time in college. UCC is a community in its own right and a welcoming one at that. Therefore, being able to study here is one dream I never thought would come true.
My name is Yitong Su and I am currently undertaking a MA in Translation Studies following the successful completion of the Diploma in Social Science and Arts last year in UCC. Prior to coming to UCC in 2018, I was studying at Xiamen University of Technology (XMUT) as an English major student. My studies in XMUT focused on Translation into English which is why I went on to further study of Translation Studies in UCC.
I feel that I embody this attribute from my experience of studying and working abroad for the last number of years. I have been studying in Ireland since 2018 and I also studied in Switzerland as a visiting student for one semester. I attended the business school in Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz in Olten and met a lot of international students there. In addition, I also worked in Universal Orlando, Florida for my internship where I worked as a photographer and saleswoman for about three months.
One of my key achievements to date in terms of global citizenship is learning to respect and accept people from other cultures which might be totally different from mine. This has been a key learning from my time at University. Furthermore, developing a creative thinking pattern and excellent interpersonal and communication skills are crucial to contributing in an international global competitive environment and I believe these skills that I am constantly developing and refining will enable me to become a truly effective global citizen.
Begin. Belong. Become. 启程 归属 蜕变
My name is Jamie Twomey and I am currently in my third year of BSc Government.
I feel like I show resilience through my work ethic and my willingness to push on. Throughout the college year there can be many tough and testing times. It is during these tough times that my resilience, along with a strong support network, pays off. As a student who suffers with a visual impairment, it can get tough around exam time with the extra pressure of study. Due to my visual impairment, I often get migraines from extensive reading. This can be a nuisance when it comes to study. Knowing my condition has enabled me to prepare myself around exam time. Thankfully, the Disability Support Service are also a massive help in this regard. This ensures that I am at no disadvantage.
When I completed my Leaving Certificate, I did not get offered the course I really wanted. I then took the decision to attend a PLC for a year. Throughout the year, I put in the hard work and it paid off. The following summer I was offered my dream course. Since coming to UCC I have not allowed my disability to get in the way of enjoying everything that the university has to offer. I am deeply involved in Societies and have also sat on the Student Council. In January 2020, I will be heading off to New York interning in the State Assembly as part of my work placement.
Is mise Sadhbh. Táim sa tarna bhliain ag gabháilt do BA (onóracha) sna hEalaíona le ceol, ag deanamh staidéar ar cheol agus ghaeilge.
Creidim go bhfuil na tréithe seo leanas go smior ionaim, fiosracht chun foghlamtha, féin mheabhraíocht agus feasacht. Tá mo chúrsa ag tacú lem’ fhorbairt acadúil agus ag tabhairt na scileanna inaistrithe chuí dom gur féidir liom a úsaid i gcomhthéacseanna éagsúla. Tá an slí cuimsitheach acadúil seo ag tacú le forbairt mo charactéar, mo phroifisiúntacht, mo fhéin inniúlacht do machnaimh criticúil agus cruthaitheacht. Mo bhua mar chéimí ná cruthaitheoir an eolais. Creidim sa luach seo mar ní chím mé féin mar shoitheach chun a bheith líonta ach cruthaitheoir an eolais pearsanta tríd mo theicnící foghlamtha pearsanta.
Creidim gur teanga bheo í teanga na gaelainne agus tá an bhaint atá agam le TG4, RnaG agus turasanna chun na Gaeltachta larnach ionaim mar chruthaitheoir an eolais. An gaisce is mó ar mo phaidirín a labhrann le mo bhua mar chéimí ná an post páirtaimseartha mar mhúinteoir cheoil. Táim fostaithe go páirtaimseartha ag an Acadaimh Ceoil Sonatina. Múinim an fhliúit, an fheadóg stáin agus teoiric an cheoil do 15 mac léinn bunscoile. Is ranganna aonair uirlise iad na ranganna seo agus rang-ghrúpa iad na ranganna teoirice. Tugann an múineadh seo deis dom tacú le leanaí éispéiris ceoil atá fiúntach agus éifeachtach a aireachtáil agus a chur ar a gcumas chun a bheith mar chruthaitheoirí an eolais iad fhéin.
My name is Sadhbh and I am currently in second year of BA (Hons) Arts-Music, taking Music and Irish.
I believe that I embody the qualities of well-roundedness, curiosity and self-awareness. My course is assisting in advancing my academic development and equipping me with transferable skills that can be applied in different environments. This holistic educational approach is helping to develop my character, my professionalism and my capacity for critical and creative thought. My signature graduate attribute is creator of knowledge. I believe that I embody this value as I do not see myself as a vessel to be filled but rather a creator of personal knowledge through my personal learning techniques.
I see the Irish language as a living language and my engagement with TG4, RnaG and trips to the Gaeltacht as integral in me as a creator of knowledge. The achievement which best speaks to my graduate attribute of creator of knowledge would have to be my part time job as a music teacher. I am employed in a part-time capacity by the Sonatina Music Academy and I teach Flute, Tin Whistle and Music Theory to 15 primary school students weekly. These classes are individual instrumental classes and group theory classes. This teaching affords me the opportunity to assist children in meaningful musical experiences, enabling them, in turn, to become creators.
Meet Vera who represents our core value of Compassion.
My name is Vera Stojanovic and I am a second-year Applied Social Science student.
I am the founder and coordinator of BetterTogether, a charity working to empower women seeking asylum in Cork City and County. BetterTogether has been working directly with women living in Direct Provision since 2016 in the area of social and emotional wellbeing. The work that I have been doing through the organisation was planted and grew from the core value of compassion, as I believe many initiatives do.
The work that I have done through BetterTogether very much speaks to compassion as the charity was born out of compassion. When I found out about the direct provision system in 2016, it was compassion and a need to act which drove me to do something. It was the compassion of the people around me, the people who gave their time and got involved, that have made BetterTogether what it is today. I am constantly humbled by the transformative power of compassion.
Through this work, I have been awarded a Quercus Active Citizenship scholarship, been asked to sit on the Working Group of the University of Sanctuary at UCC and on two Cork City of Sanctuary Working Groups. I have had the opportunity to travel to Mexico to work in a refugee support centre and I also have secured a 4 month work placement at Moria refugee camp on the island of Lesvos, Greece which I will undertake next summer.
My name is Zhuming Bao and I am currently studying for a MSc in Nursing at UCC.
Prior to coming to UCC, I completed a degree in General Nursing from the Kunming Medical University in the Yunnan Province of China. I chose to do nursing so that I could use my medical knowledge to help others. After graduation, I may continue to study in Europe to learn more about the medical system here. I may choose to get a PhD or return to work in China. No matter what, I will not stop moving forward.
My assigned attribute is being socially responsible and I think nursing is a profession that really speaks to this attribute. I chose to pursue a Postgraduate qualification in this field which shows how committed I am to developing and enhancing my knowledge and skills to make a difference through being socially responsible in my work.
My greatest achievement in terms of being socially responsible is my award-winning research on the antibacterial activity of the plant Ageratina Adenophora commonly known as crofton weed or sticky snakeroot. Native to Mexico, since the plant was introduced as an ornamental plant back in the 19th century, it has become a global invasive species and, in 2003, it ranked first in the "China's First List of Invasive Alien Species" issued by the State Environmental Protection Administration and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. It is everywhere in my province (Yunnan). Because my Grandpa was a traditional Chinese Medicine doctor, I was aware that this plant was used by local people for medicinal purposes and I wanted to find a way that we could use this plant for positive outcomes. I conducted experimental research when I was in third year of my bachelor’s degree and secured funding from the school. I finished the research one year later and found that the chemical gradients from the plant could kill certain bacteria which led to getting additional funding from another laboratory. I continued the research for another year (2013-2014) and won the Science and Technology Progress Award of Yunnan Province.
Begin. Belong. Become.
启程 归属 蜕变
My name is Mary FitzGerald and I am in 2nd year of my Occupational Therapy degree.
I always want to be the best that I can be in every aspect of my life - whether as a university student, international para-athlete or otherwise. I am not defined by my 'disability'; I do not feel that there is a limit to what I (or indeed anyone) can achieve. As an athlete, I always want to be better than yesterday's performance. I never want to have regrets; I give 100% to everything I do. Of course, people may doubt you, but that only drives one on further in pursuit of their goals. My personal motto is 'never tell me the sky is the limit when there are footprints on the moon!'.
If I had to pick one achievement to best speak the core value of ambition, it would be making it onto the Paralympics Ireland Fast-Track Panel at the age of nineteen. Of course, it was a dream of mine for a long time; however, I knew it would not come easy. I knew that it required nothing but hard work, diligence, dedication and focus. It was hectic at times, balancing my athletics with a full-time university degree, but I always focused on the big picture and what I wanted to achieve. Many probably said that it was unrealistic, but I knew that if I could put my mind to it that I could achieve it. In January 2019, I was delighted to be called to the panel. I'm hoping to go to the World Para Athletics World Championships in Dubai in November 2019 and of course the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo!
My name is Harry McCann and I am in my 2nd year of my BA degree in Digital Humanities and Information Technology.
I have taken a digital-first approach to all of my work in the last 5 years. I truly believe that a digital society, built upon the foundations of technology and connectivity, could change the world we live in for the better. My philosophy is that when we are connected, we are stronger, and there is no limit to what we can achieve.
I founded my first business in 2014, Kid Tech, to 'Teach the Next Generation Tech'. Over the space of 18 months, I taught almost one thousand young people all across Ireland how to code. In August 2015, I founded the first Digital Youth Council in the world to give young people a voice in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM). The model which I designed and implemented can now be seen in countries around the world.
In 2017, I delivered my TEDx talk entitled 'The Power of STEM' in Vilnius, Lithuania. My talk explored the idea of the power of introducing STEM into our education system.
In 2017, I founded my most recent venture, Trendster Media. A digital media agency, creating the next generation of digital footprints.
I have received a number of awards and honours in recognition of my work over the years, the most notable being the JCI Ten Outstanding Young Persons in the World Award in Amsterdam in 2017. In 2018, I was appointed EU Ambassador for #SaferInternet4EU campaign by the European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Mariya Gabriel.
My name is Hannah O’Connor and I am a final year Chemistry student, having entered through Biological and Chemical Sciences.
As the Welfare and Accessibility Officer on the UCC Societies Executive this year, my role encompasses the value of Respect. As Welfare Officer, my main aim is to support the wellbeing of committee members of various societies and help them to maintain the balance between academic and extracurricular activities. As Accessibility Officer, I help create inclusive and accessible UCC Societies. These roles are achieved by the respect that is shared by everyone in UCC Societies.
Before I was elected to my role on the UCC Societies Executive, I was heavily involved in the UCC LGBT* Society and still am this year. I served as Chairperson from June 2018 to May 2019 and, in October 2019, we organised a panel of LGBT* speakers from various STEM disciplines to talk to students about their experiences as a queer person in STEM. The event was inspired by House of STEM, the national organisation for queer people in STEM disciplines in Ireland. This event is close to my heart as it encompassed two facets of my life, my love of chemistry and my sexuality. It was heart-warming to speak with people who had similar experiences to me and whom I respected. When promoting this event, I contacted representatives of various STEM departments in UCC and the enthusiasm that staff showed towards the event proved just how inclusive UCC can be!
My name is Cailean Coffey and I graduated from the BA in Applied Psychology in 2019.
As a writer, and as a journalist, my job is to keep the people informed. As Editor of the University Express, I did all I could to find, confirm, and verify information that I felt was important for students to know. Knowledge is power, and the more we know as a people, the more powerful we can be in the face of adversity,
As Editor of the University Express in 2018/19, I lobbied the Students’ Union for an increase in the student capitation fee in order to fund and develop student media in UCC. As a student body, it is important to be informed on administrative developments in UCC as well as developments on a wider scale, that could affect our lives as students. The only way to ensure this is to develop the student media facilities in UCC, invest in publications such as the University Express and Motley magazine, and ensure that media in UCC has a bright future. I launched and organised a campaign asking students to increase their capitation fee by €5 to develop student media in UCC. The motion was passed with a 60:40 majority. This meant that UCC students were the first ever student body in Ireland to vote to increase their capitation fee in order to fund student media. This is a legacy and a mindset which, I hope, will last forever.
My name is Ruixue Feng and I am currently in the second year of my PhD on Examining the Factors affecting Economic Well Being in China. Before starting the PhD, I did a degree in Financial Management in Beijing Technology and Business University (BTBU) in China. I then did a Diploma in Business Economics before completing a taught Masters in Business Economics at UCC.
I started playing volleyball at High School and have been playing it for nearly 10 years now. Volleyball has taught me the meaning of resilience, not only on the court but also in life. In the face of intense pressure during a game, players should never give up. I remember when I was in BTBU, there was a volleyball league between colleges and the match was the best of five sets. My team lost in the first two games, and in the key third game, we were falling behind at the beginning. However, my teammates and I never gave up and finally turned the whole game around to win the final victory! In the process of playing volleyball, my skills and mentality have grown and developed. In the future, no matter what I face, I think I will be able to deal with it calmly and optimistically and will not give up. I think that this is the true meaning of resilience. My greatest achievement in this area is winning a Bronze Medal in the 2013 Capital College Volleyball Challenge.
Begin. Belong. Become.
启程 归属 蜕变
My name is Colla McMahon and I have just graduated from UCC with a degree in BSocSc (Social Science).
I am the Co-Founder and Director of a company called Tiny Homes and I believe that in business, when you are trying to think of a new product or service idea, the idea should revolve around a solution to a problem experienced by large groups of people.
To identify a problem or the scale of a problem, one has to willingly put oneself in other people's shoes and consider the needs of others. By doing this, one can create a product or service that not only solves a big problem but solves it in a way that is socially responsible and keeps the users at heart.
Although it is early days for us as a company, we have been able to provide a couple of Tiny Homes to people who have really needed an additional house.
There was one client in particular who lived with her sister and her sister's young family. This person did not have the confidence to leave her sister's house but both her and her sister wanted their own space, creating quite the dilemma.
In the end, we built her a Tiny Home in the back garden of her sister's property. Since moving into her own Tiny Home, she has enjoyed her own independence, her own space and the whole family has peace of mind. We hope to continue providing housing solutions to the people in society who need it most.
My name is Lauren McGeough and I am a UCC graduate with an Honours Bachelor of Commerce degree. Throughout my journey in UCC, my course was challenging but I have grown both academically and personally.
The opportunity to study at UCC initially felt distant while I was undertaking the Leaving Certificate. However, the HEAR scheme provided me with the opportunity to begin my academic career at the university I dreamt of attending. Throughout my degree, the UCC PLUS+ staff provided me with endless support to be resilient in the face of every challenge.
My name is Marcus Hogan, I am from Co Kilkenny and I am currently undertaking a MA in International Relations at UCC having graduated from a BA in World Languages where I studied German, Spanish and Portuguese. I am a Quercus University Scholar for Academia and a Lord Puttnam Scholar (Film and Screen Media).
I like to view languages as different systems of communication and each language brings with it its own view of the world, allowing learners to see their own world and that of others through a different lens. However, learning multiple languages at once allows one to draw parallels between them and one’s own language which illustrates that we are all human and not so different after all. For me, the most important aspect of language learning is the ability it gives you to communicate interculturally. This culturally sensitive communication is what helps break down barriers, reach agreements and make new friendships/partnerships. If one views languages student as one who is concerned with the science of communication, then I believe there is a pressing and growing need for such people equipped with intercultural communication skills to help break down barriers in an age when barriers, borders and walls are becoming increasingly more prevalent and popular.
As a ‘creator’ of knowledge, one must find a medium through which one communicates this knowledge. This is why I applied for the Lord Puttnam Scholarship run in conjunction with Lord David Puttnam and UCC’s Film and Screen Media Department. Alongside the other Puttnam Scholars, I was involved in the making of a documentary that dealt with the topic of Irish identity with a view to possible future developments in a post-Brexit Ireland. Even though I had no previous experience of film-making or with any form of screen media, I applied as I was drawn by the chance to create content that carried a message, that had the ability to communicate to all kinds of people, irrespective of their linguistic/cultural background.
My name is Keziah Knight and I am a graduate of University College Cork with a BA and MA in English. During my studies I sat on two society committees: as Secretary for the SAMH (Suicide Awareness and Mental Health) society and as Events Officer for the Journalism society. I also acted as Class Representative during my MA (2017-2018). The value I attribute to my time in UCC is Compassion.
I came to UCC as an Access student via the UCC PLUS+ Programme. I previously had doubts about attending college due to financial concerns. However, after being accepted for the HEAR scheme, the hope to attend a 3rd level institution became a reality. It was upon my arrival in UCC that I met the team in UCC PLUS+ and gained more confidence in my ability to study at 3rd level. The belief and compassion that the staff in UCC PLUS+ had in me helped me through my undergraduate degree. I began to realise that the biggest barriers I had faced were ones I placed on myself.
Upon completion of my Masters Programme, I joined the UCC PLUS+ team as a graduate intern. Working within the Schools Outreach Team, I strived to raise aspirations of students who, like me, may not have believed that 3rd level was an option for them. I channelled the compassion that had been shown to me into my work. It has been an honour to interact with schools and students over the last couple of years and it has taught me a huge deal about myself in the process. I have learned that the value of compassion is integral to encouraging young people to choose the option that is right for them. If it wasn’t for this work with UCC PLUS+, I would never have realised my own goal in returning to my studies with the eventual hope of becoming a Social Worker. Compassion teaches us that, despite any worries that crop up along the way, we must always remember to be kind to ourselves and others.
My name is Sophie and I am in 3rd year of the BSc (Hons) International Development and Food Policy degree.
I think I embody the attribute of being an Effective Global Citizen who recognises and challenges inequality as I am a youth activist who promotes Food Security, Gender Equality and Anti-bullying at local, national and global levels. I speak regularly at events such as The European Development Days in Brussels, WE Day UK, Irish Aid Awards, Thought for Food Conference and Cork Climate March among others.
I was selected by the UN to be a Youth Leader for Zero Hunger at United Nations General Assembly in 2015. In 2017 I was chosen to represent Ireland at the bi-annual Youth Ag Summit where the delegates were challenged to find solutions on “How to Feed a Hungry Planet”. While at the Summit, I co-founded “Agrikua”, an online platform to promote women in agriculture in developing countries. Agrikua went onto win the first prize at the summit and our are now being funded by Bayer Crop Sciences to develop the idea further. In 2017, I was also invited to participate in the inaugural UNleash Innovation Lab in Denmark working to find solutions to Sustainable Development Goals.
I am one of only 10 women (along with Facebook founder, Sheryl Sandberg) to be included in the Disney book about leadership, 'Choose to Matter' written by Olympic medallist and ESPN presenter Julie Foudy.
My name is Zhuming Bao and I am currently studying for a MSc in Nursing at UCC.
Prior to coming to UCC, I completed a degree in General Nursing from the Kunming Medical University in the Yunnan Province of China. I chose to do nursing so that I could use my medical knowledge to help others. Nursing in China is still at a level that needs to be developed. After graduation, I may continue to study in Europe to learn more about the medical system here. I may choose to get a PhD or return to work in China. No matter what, I will not stop moving forward.
My assigned value is compassion and I think nursing is a profession that requires a lot of empathy and the ability to feel and show compassion. I chose to pursue a Postgraduate qualification in this field which shows how committed I am to developing and enhancing my knowledge and skills to make a difference in this career. Nursing is a part of me, and I am willing to devote myself to this profession.
Begin. Belong. Become.
启程 归属 蜕变
Meet Nosa who represents our graduate attribute of being digitally fluent.
My name is Nosakhare (Nosa) Ogunmwonyi. I am a second-year student studying Biological and Chemical Sciences.
I know the course I am doing is Science-related but I have a massive interest in technology. My interest in finance and technology led me to the FinTech sector, where I discovered virtual currencies and created my own start-up company called NIKO VC™. Some of my key achievements in this space include being a Member of the UCC Student Connect Forum (SCF), an initiative set up as part of the Connected Curriculum, to give students a voice in terms of feeding into the design and delivery of digitising student services. In Summer 2019, I also took part in a student incubation programme (Student Inc.) to help develop my businesses NIKO VC™, which is aimed at the person who wants to learn about or invest in crypto currency, and AKA Blockchain™ which is an educational tool to help people understand blockchain and acquire bitcoin.
I believe that I embody the graduate attribute of being digitally fluent as I was born into a generation that is surrounded by fast developing technology but, while some people decide to just sit back and use what is already created, I have decided to take this one step further and innovate, create and educate. My businesses very much relate to helping people understand and gain confidence in using emerging digital technologies and I strive to enhance what we can accomplish rather than settle for what we already have. I consider myself a futurist and I am committed to understanding emerging technologies and their disruptive potential for future innovation.
Meet Maria who embodies our core value of Ambition.
My name is Maria Flavin and I am a graduate of the BSc International Development and Food Policy at University College Cork. The value I would assign to my journey at University College Cork would be ambition as I believe that UCC creates an environment that shapes ambitious individuals and fosters success. The reason I chose my course all those years ago on my CAO form was that I had an ambition to advocate for others and help to empower them. It was not only through my course but through other opportunities in UCC that I got to actualise that vision.
In my second year of college, with the nomination of the UCC PLUS team, I was awarded funding to travel to Thailand to volunteer with EIL focussing on LGBT* rights and sexual health. This was one of the most amazing experiences of my life; to meet other ambitious individuals, experience a different culture and to learn about advocacy work. I then went on to intern in my third year of college, with Trocaire in Sierra Leone just after the ebola epidemic looking at areas such as sustainable livelihoods, and women’s empowerment. With the tools I had gained in my course and the skills I had learnt by my position as Media Officer for the International Development Society, I was able to take lead of my own project and conduct social media and communications training with our local partners, amongst many more activities.
I am so grateful to have been awarded such fantastic opportunities which I feel have shaped me into the person I am today. Not only did UCC create the environment so that I could be the most successful version of myself they also helped me to believe that I could be that person.
I came to UCC in 2013 through the Access Programme and they have been an immense support throughout my college experience. Through difficult personal situations that I faced throughout the years, UCC PLUS and the staff at UCC offered me support to strive for success and I truly believe that I owe my success to their belief in me; sometimes when my own belief in myself faltered.
Throughout the years, I have volunteered with UCC PLUS as an after-school homework tutor and also helped with first year UCC PLUS orientations. I then went on to intern with the UCC PLUS office working in schools outreach with primary and secondary school students to encourage them to believe in themselves and to realise that higher education is an option for them too. This is where I realised what my next step in life would be.
After taking a few years out of my studies to work in higher education management, I now look forward to returning to UCC to begin my Higher Diploma in Social Policy with the intention of pursuing my Masters in Social Work. I will continue to chase the ambitions that brought me to UCC.
Begin. Belong. Become.
My name is Maeve Richardson and I am in 2nd year of the BSc Government degree.
I believe I embody the graduate attribute of being an Effective Global Citizen who recognises and challenges inequality by choosing to be an active citizen and fighting to represent communities whose voices aren’t always heard. As someone on the autism spectrum, I feel it is vital to represent our voices politically and socially. Ensuring youth and student voices are given a platform has been at the core of my activism as well.
Receiving a Quercus Active Citizenship Scholarship has been an absolute honour as it truly is a mark of recognition of my efforts to be an effective global citizen who recognises and challenges inequality. I am proud to have been elected as UCC’s Students’ Union Equality Officer last year and to formerly be the Irish Second-level Students' Union's Welfare & Equality Officer in 2017. I have also held positions in Scouting Ireland and the National Youth Council of Ireland. This year, I am lucky to also be UCC Societies Development & Community Engagement Officer to help societies grow and be supported. All of these roles have been geared to providing a platform for young people to be heard.
My name is Keying Chang and I am currently studying for a BSc in Risk and Actuarial Studies which is a dual degree programme between UCC and the Beijing Technology and Business University (BTBU). My degree is a very challenging programme but I feel that nothing is impossible for me. I like Europe very much and, here in Cork, the people here are very friendly, which is one of the reasons why I chose to study here.
Integrity in Chinese can be translated as being fair and frank and assertive. As part of our own personal growth and development journey, we will all go through a variety of experiences and will face thousands of choices. The choices we make will determine the type of person we are and become. A person of integrity must not be afraid of people who are dominant, must not bully the weak, must always adhere to the right path where the lure of fame and fortune would cause one to stray. There are many roads leading to success in the world. To have integrity, be positive and go forward courageously, is that not the definition of success? I feel that I embody integrity in many ways including in my studies. Before I went to college, many of my teachers in secondary school told me "don't write your homework if you can't do it. Do not just copy it.” I have always listened to this advice, especially in the face of pressure, and this takes a lot of integrity.
In terms of my greatest achievements, I once studied tea art in a tea company in China and won the first prize in the Beijing competition with my teammates. The process of making tea is something very special to me. It transports me away from the hustle and bustle of life, calms me down and lets me appreciate the beauty and integrity of such a time-honoured tradition. Seeing the tea leaves in the water stretch bit by bit, seeing the colour of the tea soup deepen bit by bit, is a very healing process.
Begin. Belong. Become.
启程 归属 蜕变
My name is David Killoughy and I will be graduating in October 2019 with a degree in BSc Computer Science.
I think I embody the attribute of being an Independent and Creative Thinker as together with Jordan Morrison, a fellow UCC student, I am co-founding my own start up, Setlist, which is a social music app that connects user’s music streaming services together, analyses their listening history and creates perfect playlists for groups of people of all sizes. Setting up a business requires creative thinking skills to overcome the challenges in doing so. As my degree has given me a background and training in software development, this has allowed me to develop our business and build the app myself without needing to hire outside help. This gives me a great deal of control and independence.
I believe my greatest achievement to date regarding independent and creative thinking is having been accepted on to entrepreneurial accelerator and incubator programmes such as Student Inc., this last summer, and Ignite which I will begin in October. These achievements best speak to my independent and creative thinking as I have not only proven to myself that I am capable of taking exciting risks and choosing the path less travelled but I have also received external validation in that there are others who see the value in my work and are willing to help it reach its full potential.
My name is Annaliese Murphy and I’m currently in 2nd year of Arts International.
I think I embody the trait of resilience because in the Super League we have a match every weekend and we have to keep going and not give up due to constant games. This summer, my Irish u20 women’s basketball team competed in the European Championships in division B and we won the bronze medal. We showed resilience throughout this competition as we lost one of our qualifiers which put us under pressure to win our next match to qualify for the top 4. We lost the semi-final and we had a quick turn around the next day in the bronze medal match. We showed great resilience and perseverance here as we won the bronze medal match by 3 points which also saw us promoted to division A.
Is mise Colm agus táim sa dara bhliain agus mé ag déanamh staidéir ar Cheimic na Comhdhúile Cógasaíochta.
Is minic go bhfuilim i mbun agóide um cheisteanna sóisialta. Bhíos ag campáil amach le #OccupyTheQuad le déanaí, agus glacaim le Extinction Rebellion. Déanaim iarracht bheith ar na sráide. Go gairmiúil, ba bhreá liom laghdú a dhéanamh ar méid an fuíll ghuaiseach a cruthaíonn mo thionscal.
Nuair a rinne an rialtas iarracht anuraidh críochfort do ghás fraiceáilte a chur gan iniúchadh ar liosta PIC an AE um cánacha timpeallachta a sheachaint, spreag mé grúpa brú a chur ar teachtaí dálaí le cabhair Friends of the Earth, agus dá bhárr cuireadh moill ar an bplean.
My name is Colm and I am a second year Chemistry of Pharmaceutical Compounds student.
I express my social responsibility by means of protest. I am involved with Extinction Rebellion and am part of the #OccupyTheQuad movement, and take any opportunity I can to get out on the streets. Professionally, I want to make my industry cleaner by reducing hazardous waste.
When the government tried to fast-track a fracked gas terminal onto the EU PIC list, avoiding environmental regulations, I mobilised a group along with Friends of the Earth to send last-minute emails to their TDs opposing the project, and this political pressure led to a deferral.
Meet Fiona Keeley, current Editor-in-Chief of the University Express, who represents the core value of Ambition.
My name is Fiona and I'm studying BA Digital Humanities & IT and I am about to go into my fourth, and final, year of my degree.
The value I attribute to UCC would be ambition. I came to UCC to study Digital Humanities, but the university has offered me much more in the past three years. Saying yes to opportunities and actively pursuing them has led me to extraordinary places. I have been lucky enough to be surrounded by people with a strong work ethic. I believe in learning from my peers and this continuous learning process has shaped who I am today.
I spent part of my third year of college in Dublin on work placement in PwC. The ambition instilled in me while at UCC had taught me to work competently and it allowed me to develop new skills in the workplace throughout the year. Moving to the capital also presented the chance to become involved in many different communities, and I wanted to make the most of my time in Dublin. I became a member of my local Toastmasters club; completed a diploma in radio journalism and became involved in a community radio station. This aspiration to further my skills while on my placement year grew from the ambition I had seen around me while at UCC, the idea that you can achieve whatever you want to do if you are willing to work hard and focus on something that is important to you.
My name is Jordan Morrison and I am a 3rd Year Business Information Systems student.
I’ve always liked creating things. I started writing and playing music when I was 9. From 12 – 19 I played and managed several bands. Over the course of 5 years, I co-wrote 2 albums and self-published them under our own label with my band ‘Crojayn’. I also started an all ages live music event called ‘Emergence’ that ran for 2 years. I really think there’s no better buzz than creating things out of thin air.
From my studies in UCC, I was able to fuse my obsession for music with technology and business. My current project ‘Setlist’ is a data driven social music start-up which I have co-founded with my business partner and fellow UCC student, David Killoughy. Blackstone LaunchPad at UCC have been really supportive in helping us develop and grow our business.
Our first product is a mobile and desktop application that connects people’s music streaming services (such as Spotify, Apple Music etc), it then analyses their listening history and creates perfect playlists for groups of all sizes. Setlist solves the age-old problem of trying to play music in social settings - whether it's at a bar or restaurant, at a gathering with friends or even a DJ performing in front of crowds of thousands of people; Setlist will give anyone the power to play the right songs at the right time and in the right place. The software is still currently in development, but we are on track to roll out it to UCC students in the next few months. We have also been accepted onto a 12 month start-up accelerator programme called Ignite which starts in October.
Sarah Stafford is ainm dom, táim I mo chéad bhliain d’eolaíochtaí bitheolaíochta agus ceimiceacha anseo ag UCC, tar éis scoláireacht Quercus ealaíon cruthaitheach agus taibhithe a fháil. Táim athléimneach mar dhuine agus mar aisteoir, ní ghéillim riamh agus bím I gcónaí ag iarraidh feabhsú.
Gan dabht mar aisteoir, ní théann léirithe I gcónaí mar a bhí beartaithe,uaireanta caillim line nó treoir,d’fhéadfadh go mbeadh prop curtha san áit mícheart nó ar iarraidh ar fad; ach in ionad a thabhairt suas cuirim in oiriúint don chás agus leanaim ar aghaidh.
Tá athléimneacht léirithe agam trí bhéim a leagan ar ghníomhaíochtaí seach-churaclaim agus tá spriocanna gnóthachtála ard agam chun athléimneacht agus rath a thaispeáint.
I gcroílár na hathléimneachta tá creideamh ionat féin agus creideamh i rud éigin níos mó ná an duine féin, tuiscint ar chuspóir.
Is meascán de neart,leaisteachas é athléimneacht, an cumas chun lúbadh mar fhreagairt ar imeachtaí dinimiciúla saoil de réir mar a théann said chun cinn. Mar phríomhthréith is ea athléimneacht taibheora toisc go bhfuil sé an-intuartha ar an stáitse I dtéarmaí éisteachtaí a ullmhú, an ghluaisteacht,an ceol agus na leideanna riachtanacha a fhoghlaim I ngach léiriú aonair agus an carachtar sin a chorprú go hiomlán. Is deis é gach rud a dhéanaim scil nua a fhoghlaim agus a fhás.
I believe I exhibit independent and creative thinking as I started my music degree as a classically trained Mezzo Soprano but, over the last six years, I have been introduced to a great number of world music genres, such as Javanese Gamelan, West African Drumming, and North/South Indian Classical music. These experiences have broadened my musical horizons and my interest in the subject of Ethnomusicology. It was my new-found interest in the discipline which led me to spend a semester abroad in Wesleyan University Connecticut, during which time I studied and performed with internationally renowned Ethnomusicologists, such as Professor Sumarsam and Professor Su Zhen. I now focus on the blending of world music with my vocally classical background.
My final year Major Study Project consisted of the arrangement of western choral works with the music of the Javanese Gamelan, and my Masters thesis focussed on the indigenous music of Australia.
I will be traveling to Krakow in Poland this coming November as a finalist in the Lions World Song Festival for the Blind. I will perform an original song written for classical voice, North Indian Sitar and Irish Tin Whistle.
My name is Mingfeng Lyu and I am currently in my final year of the BA (Hons) Economics at UCC. Prior to coming to UCC in 2018, I studied Financial Management at Beijing Information Science and Technology University (BISTU).
Since coming to UCC, I have joined the UCC International Society and have taken on the role of Finance Officer for the Society. This is a big challenge for me since it’s an essential and important position in the society committee team. By handing all the emails, doing budgets, payments as well as risk assessments, I have really learned a lot about finance and how to work well under pressure. We also have lots of fun!
With regard to the core value of respect, being in the International Society has given me the opportunity to meet a lot of people from different backgrounds. Interacting with lots of students from different countries has increased my respect for the value of diversity and different cultures. Making friends from all over the world has broadened my perspectives and really developed and nurtured my core value of respect.
While study and good grades in exams are very important, my time in UCC is not only for study. I have gained more than knowledge. I have learned that the core value of respect for your friends and teachers as well as respect for knowledge is the key to creating a good learning environment here at UCC and in the future.
Begin. Belong. Become.
启程 归属 蜕变
Aisling is ainm dom agus faoi láthair tá iarchéim ar siúl agam i Stiúradh na hEalaíona agus Léirtheoireacht Cruthaitheach. Tá sé curtha ar siúl ag Roinn na hAmharclannaíochta, COC leis an Cork Opera House. Bliain amháin a bhíonn i gceist leis an gcúrsa seo.
Bhí mé in ann na scileanna agus an taithí a fháilt ó Coláiste na hOllscoile, Corcaigh chun an bua seo a chruthú. Faoi láthair, tá céim 1.1 agam sa Ghaeilge agus Stair. Rinne mé forbairt ar mo scileanna macnamh néamhspléach nuair a bhíos i mo bhunchéim. Rinne mé forbairt ar mo scileanna macnacmh cruthaitheach le linn mo chuid oibre ar na gcumainn. Ach go háirithe An Cumann Drámaíochta agus an Chuallacht. Anois, tá an t-ádh orm mar tá iarchéim ar siúl agam a dhéanann céiliúradh ar na dhá buanna.
Seasann m’am ar an gCumann Drámaíochta amach dom nuair a smaoinaím ar an mbua seo. Táim mar bhall den Chumann ó bhíos sa chéad bhliain. Lig sé dom mo dhá paisean a chur le chéile: cúrsaí drámaíochta agus an Ghaeilge. Bhíos mar Chathaoirleach dhá bhliain anuas agus chabhair sé liom mo mhachnamh néamhspléach agus cruthaitheach a chur cun cinn. Le linn mo am ar an gcumann, bhíos mar léirthoir/ stiúrthóir ar chúpla dráma. Lig na rólanna seo dom forbairt a chur an na buanna seo. Seasann an dráma Gríosach na Luatha le hAntón Ó Dúllaing amach dom. Bhí sé ar siúl i mí Mhárta 2019. Leis an dráma seo, bhíos mar léirtheoir ar phíosa scríobhneoireacht nach raibh feicthe ag éinne roimhe. Freisin, rud éigean ar leith é cursaí drámaíochta de bharr go mbíonn tú ag obair i ngrúpa, bíonn tú ag déanamh macnamh néamhspléach go laethúil. Bhí mo smaoineamh cruthaitheach in ann fás leis an dráma seo de bharr go rabhas bainte leis ón dtús.
My years in UCC have really allowed me to develop the skills and experiences needed to embody this attribute. I have a first-class honours degree in Irish and History. My time in my undergrad really pushed me to develop my independent thinking. My work in societies helped me to develop my creative thinking. Primarily, An Cumann Drámaíochta and An Chuallacht. I am now fortunate to be in a postgraduate programme that celebrates both.
My work with UCC’s An Cumann Drámaíochta best speaks to this graduate attribute of being an independent and creative thinker. I have been a member of the society from my first year in UCC and it has allowed me to bring my two passions together: theatre and the Irish language. Being the chairperson for the last two years has really pushed me to nurture my independent and creative thinking. During my time in the society I’ve produced/ directed many shows. Taking on these roles within a production really helped me to develop these attributes. One achievement that sticks out to me is when I produced/ co-directed Gríosach na Luatha by Antóin Ó Dúllaing in March 2019. This particular production allowed me to produce a piece of writing that had never been seen before. Also, working on a production is an unique experience because while you are constantly working in a team, you’re still practicing independent thinking daily. Helping to develop the drama from its birth really allowed me to let my creativity flourish.
My name is Lina Skarabis I am a final year Bachelor of Arts student majoring in Geography and having Economics as a minor.
I believe that respect for our fellow human beings as well as all other living forms on Earth and for our planet itself is vital to build a flourishing community and a sustainable future. In everyday life, I try to treat everybody with respect and tolerance and without prejudice or judgement. I strive to help people to be content with who they are and want to help them to fulfil their potential.
With my activism, I try to increase students’ respect for and awareness of our planet Earth. I think it is vital for humanity to reconnect to nature and to learn to respect it in order to protect it. Last year as the UCC Environmental Society’s Campaigns Officer I ran a campaign around sustainable eating habits. At the core of sustainable eating is respect, in my view. Respect for the people who work the soil and produce our food at home and overseas, respect for the Earth from which our food ultimately comes and also respect for the flora and fauna as biodiversity is vital to ensure future food supply.
With the campaign, I aimed to make students aware of the relationships between the Earth, all living things and the food we eat daily. Appreciating and respecting these relationships is essential to become good global citizens.
My name is Cuizhu Wang and I am currently undertaking a PhD in Philosophy in the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies at UCC. Prior to this, I completed a MA in Asian Studies in UCC. I also hold a BA in English and a BA in Business Administration in China Three Gorges University and I also studied World Literature (English) at Ferrum College in the USA.
With regard to my independent and creative thinking, I am a PhD candidate in the Department of Philosophy at UCC and , as a young entrepreneur, have also founded my own company - Dawn Education. As a researcher at UCC, I do not only learn but also contribute my value to UCC. I work as a teaching assistant at the Department of Philosophy and I am an Academic Support Officer at the Centre for Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning, UCC. Having previously worked in the USA as a professional interpreter I work as a part-time interpreter, supporting international events at the UCC International office, UCC and the Irish and Chinese governments.
In addition to my studies and translation/interpretation work, I am also a part-time dance teacher and have been teaching dance since 2009. The genres I teach include: aerobic dance, jazz, hip pop, latin dance, ballet, modern dance, and oriental dance. This also very much speaks to my creativity and creative thinking skills.
One of my key achievements is being asked to participate in a UCC campaign for International Women’s Day (March 8th 2019) called Celebrating Inspiring Women of UCC which featured amazing female role models in their fields, from science to the arts.
Begin. Belong. Become. 启程 归属 蜕变
My name is Maria Nagle and I am a 2nd Year BA student.
Ambition is a value that is essential to success. I feel I embody this attribute as I am driven to advance and accomplish my goals. I thrive on challenge and constantly set goals for myself, so I have something to strive towards. I believe I am an enthusiastic, hardworking and motivated individual who sets high expectations for everything I do. I think outside the box and do everything necessary to achieve my goals. I surround myself with other ambitious people and I expose myself to new ways of thinking. I will consistently seek ways to improve myself and keep my eyes firmly set on achieving my next goal.
At the age of 20, I launched my own business, Pure Sonas which is helping people to overcome illness and discomfort and be the best version of themselves. I believe this is the embodiment of ambition. Starting your own business is not the path a 20 year old college student is ‘supposed’ to follow, but this did not dampen my aspirations.
Being a business owner is not an easy task, it’s not something that’s done on a whim or without commitment. A burning desire, a long-term plan and an open mind are required to execute the transition from an idea to a fully operational business. I believe my ambitious and passionate nature drove me to start my own business, it allowed me to surf the inevitable lows and build upon my successes.
A business can fail for many reasons, but without ambition it never stands a chance. This is why I believe starting my own business is my most ambitious feat to date.
My name is Darragh and I am in my second year of Law and Irish (BCLGA).
Through my work as Cathaoirleach of An Chuallacht, UCC's Irish society, I work to promote the Irish-language on campus and among the student population. Promoting multilingualism is important to effective global citizenship as it helps us to see the world from a different perspective and to understand other cultures, and in my view there is no better way to start doing this than by learning and using our own language.
I recently won Bréagchúirt Uí Dhálaigh (an Irish-language moot-court competition) along with my friend and colleague Cárthach Ó Faoláin; I would like to think that the advocacy skills that I am developing through my study of law will help me in becoming an effective global citizen that challenges inequality.
Secondly, An Chuallacht is currently working with a DEIS school in Cork to provide the students with extra tuition to improve their written and spoken Irish skills. While this project has not yet come to full fruition, it is an example of active citizenship that will reap many personal and collective benefits for both the students and the members of An Chuallacht.
Meet David who, along with his teammates, represents the core value of Integrity.
My name is David O’Shea and I am in my final year of the BA of Arts (Joint Honours), Studying Maths and Economics.
I am the Chairperson of the UCC Ultimate Frisbee Club. In Ultimate Frisbee there are no referees; each player is responsible for knowing and upholding all the rules and making calls and deciding the outcome of infraction. Each player must have and display the utmost integrity when playing the sport as it is highly important to embody the Spirit of the game and to play and, by extension, win and lose, fairly. To be an Ultimate Frisbee player, integrity is as important the ability to run, jump and throw.
At every tournament, the teams score each other after each game based on five categories in Spirit of the Game: Rules knowledge and use; Physical contact; Fair mindedness; Positive attitude and self control and Communication. In order to score highly in these categories, each individual needs to embody the core value of integrity to put the essence of the game ahead of winning. At the end, the team with the highest spirit average is awarded a spirit trophy. The awards I have at home are tangible proof of exhibiting this core value. The award that sticks out the most was the Spirit Trophy we won for Men's Indoor IVs 2017, as the team placed first at the tournament and won Spirit. This is incredibly difficult to achieve as to win a tournament with the most integrity at the tournament is rarely seen and is a proud moment in the club’s history.
My name is Fayza Baslaim and I am a second year student of the BSc (Hons) Medical and Health Sciences.
As much as some people may think that they could live alone and do a good job at it, we are designed by nature to live together as social beings, in harmony with each other. Each one amongst us has a responsibility to the members of the society we live in, and it is we who shape our societies, for better or for worse.
I find pleasure and happiness in simple acts that cost nothing whether it is smiling and saying hello to passers-by, engaging with and getting to know the person who serves me coffee and other people who are often overlooked, helping someone cross the road, removing trash or harmful objects from public paths or from public buses, assisting a drunk person on the road, making time to chat with the elderly and those who may be lonely and longing for human interaction, supporting causes that improve the welfare of animals, students, the evicted, the homeless, the abused, the elderly, the marginalized; standing up to injustice, racism and discrimination, volunteering with UCC in any opportunities that come my way so as to give back to the community; little acts all done in the hopes of leaving a better society for tomorrow than the one I’m in today.
My name is Cuizhu and I am currently undertaking a PhD in Philosophy in the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies at UCC. Prior to this, I completed a MA in Asian Studies in UCC. I also hold a BA in English and a BA in Business Administration from China Three Gorges University and I also studied World Literature (English) at Ferrum College in the USA.
With regard to my ambition, my PhD is a very ambitious project as an exercise in social philosophy. My thesis is entitled: Normative Expectations, Subjective beliefs, and risk: an incentivized study. It crosses the disciplines of philosophy, behavioural economy, sociology and data analysis and requires me to learn and master skills in these different disciplines. The challenges in this project have never stopped me; it is my ambition to climb to the summit of my learning journey with action, courage and resilience by succeeding in this PhD.
One of my key achievements in terms of being an ambassador for ambition is being asked to participate in a UCC campaign for International Women’s Day (March 8th 2019) called Celebrating Inspiring Women of UCC which featured amazing female role models in their fields, from science to the arts.
Begin. Belong. Become.
启程 归属 蜕变
My name is Amy Sinnott and I am a third year BComm student.
As I am visually impaired, I believe I challenge inequality almost every day when using my problem-solving skills to find ways to carry out the necessary activities that a sighted person would be able to do in a more common way. If I find that these ways are beneficial to me, I will then share them with anyone who I think would also benefit. I also challenge inequality by volunteering with different organisations such as Camp Abilities which have helped me to become the person I am and showing the younger people in these organisations that a disability will not define them or hold them back from achieving their dreams.
I believe that my biggest achievement to date that best illustrates the Global Citizen who recognises and challenges inequality attribute is moving away from home for college. This has made me more confident as I am living a healthy balanced lifestyle independently. I also view my volunteering as an achievement. it is very rewarding to see young people become more confident about themselves and their abilities after helping them with little things along the way.
Is mise Áine agus táim sa tarna bhliain ag gabháilt do BA sna hEalaíona (idirnáisiúnta), ag deanamh staidéar ar spáinnis agus ghearmáinis.
Ionracas - cad a ciallaíonn sé sin domsa? Ciallaíonn ionracas domsa a bheith cneasta agus macánta. Macánta le gach duine ar a casann tú agus go háirithe leat fhéin. Ceapaim go mbím i gcónaí ag iarraidh mo dhícheall a dhéanamh chun an rud ceart a dhéanamh agus sin an fáth gur roghnaigh mé an ábhar seo.
Tá leathanach nua Instagram cruthaithe agam darb ainm @TonguistiK agus sin an rud as a bhfuilim is brodúila faoi láthair. Sin leathanach ar a cabhraím le daoine, má tá aon ceisteanna acu faoi rud éicint sna teangacha a bhfuil ar eolas agam (agus tá sé saor in aisce)! Is maith liom cabhrú le daoine agus toisc go bhfuil suim ollmhór agam sna teangacha, cuirim an dá rud le chéile!
My name is Áine and I am in Year 2 of the BA (International), taking Spanish and German as joint honours subjects.
Integrity. What does it mean to me? Integrity, to me, means being kind and honest. Honest with everyone you meet and especially with yourself. I would say I’m always trying to do my best to do the right thing and that’s the reason I chose this topic.
I created a new Instagram page called @TonguistiK and that’s probably the thing I’m most proud of so far. It’s a page that I help people on, if they have any questions about any of the languages I’m studying (and it’s free)! I like helping people and seeing as I have such a great interest in languages, it’s a platform where I can put the two together!
Meet Dion who embodies the graduate attribute of being an Effective Global Citizen who recognises and challenges inequality.
My name is Dion Davis, I am a secondary school teacher and a proud graduate of University College Cork with a BA in English and Politics and a Professional Masters in Education. During my studies, I was chairperson of the Journalism society and became heavily involved in student politics, both in political societies and the Europa society. I think I embody the attribute of being an Effective Global Citizen who recognises and challenges inequality.
“Education is the key to the door of opportunity”. I loved school and loved learning, but I knew to get into college was going to be a struggle financially. UCC PLUS+ and the HEAR Access route allowed me to flourish in University and challenge the inequality that socioeconomically disadvantaged students face in education. I was one of the first in my family to go to college and learned about applying for the HEAR programme whilst in a homework club as part of an Outreach programme in Limerick. I was so grateful to be in UCC and became involved in as many societies and initiatives as possible. I was lucky enough to be chosen for the Washington Ireland Programme in 2018 and the recipient of the NUI Equal Opportunities Award in 2017. Whilst studying in UCC I learned that I had two invisible disabilities. The support from UCC Plus+ and the Disability Support Services was second to none. Along with financial help, they gave me personal support to make sure I was settling in. Throughout my time there, I had a community of mentors making sure I was OK. At times, reaching the finish line seemed like an impossible feat but, the mentors I had in UCC Plus+ and the DSS, ensured that I was resilient. Knowing I had a group I could trust behind me was so important because it’s hard to ask for extra support in the first place.
The staff in UCC Plus+ had helped me so much over the years, I wanted to start giving back so I volunteered with homework clubs in DEIS schools. It was in those classrooms tutoring students that I realised my love for teaching. I was finally able to inspire students that college was for them too, that financial barriers can be broken and that there is a huge community of people waiting in UCC to help you succeed. I had come full circle, from being encouraged in a homework club myself to apply for University, to sharing my story with students that are walking in the same shoes as I was. My work with homework clubs, and outreach programmes in UCC Plus+ encouraged me to apply for a Masters in secondary school teaching. As a postgraduate student, the staff still continued to go above and beyond for me, and I would not be a qualified secondary school teacher today if it was not for the experiences I learned volunteering, or the help that I got from everyone in UCC Plus+ along the way. They helped me reach the finish line. Challenging inequality in the education system was hugely important for me and is still something I strive to tackle in my teaching career.
Begin. Belong. Become.
Meet Andrea who represents our core value of Resilience.
My name is Andrea Diaz Diaz and I am currently a PhD Candidate in Pharmacy and Pharmacology.
I embody resilience because over the years I have overcome many difficulties, including moving away from Venezuela at a young age to a new country with a new language. Since then I have learned to adapt to new environments and integrate into new communities, these have been key tools for me to build the resilience I have now. As a graduate student resilience has been instrumental in me reaching my goals and being creative at problem solving. Every day is a fresh opportunity to grow and learn new and better ways to persevere and reach my goals.
My resilience has grown over the years, learning and cultivating tools to help me succeed. One of the most difficult things that I have had to endure while living abroad is losing loved ones. Not being with my family while we all go through such difficult times such as losing a family member has required every ounce of resilience that I have. It is much easier to fall into despair and it takes so much strength to push through to continue working on your goals and making your loved ones proud. My resilience comes from showing up every day and trying to do my best. I continue to grow and work on my personal development and strive to be a role model for others. The best we can do is bring down the barriers that we make for ourselves and remain adaptable to new challenges.
My name is Tianshu Xu and I have just completed the MSc Interactive Media degree in the School of Computer Science and Information Technology at UCC. Prior to this, I undertook a BSc in Food Quality and Safety in JilLin Agricultural University in China. While at JiLin Agricultural University, I spent most of my extra-curricular time participating in the activities of the network department of the students' union. Since I am good at video editing and putting slides together, I was assigned to make video clips and slides for many events and lectures. With this experience, I came across numerous approaches to make media content engaging and appealing and this made me choose to go on to do further studies in this field to increase my knowledge and skills.
As a demonstrator in UCC, my duty is providing guidance and assistance to students conducting laboratory sessions. Since I am supposed to answer student questions during Lab sessions, I need to prepare and be familiar with the knowledge of the practical exercises being undertaken and I really enjoy this demonstrator job a lot. Due to my programming skills, I can easily help others with their script issues and help them to also increase their own digital fluency.
Begin. Belong. Become.
启程 归属 蜕变