News and Events

School of Law Success at UCC Staff Recognition Awards

13 Oct 2020

Dr Louise Crowley wins the President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and the Irish Legal Information Initiative scoops the Enhancing the Student Experience Award at this year’s online ceremony.

The UCC School of Law is delighted to announce that members of our faculty have achieved success at the university’s Staff Recognition Awards. The awards ceremony took place online on Thursday 8 October, with twelve awards in total presented to UCC staff across six categories. The School of Law was well represented on the night, with Dr Louise Crowley winning the President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and the Irish Legal Information Initiative awarded for Enhancing the Student Experience.

Dr Louise Crowley was awarded for her work leading the Family Law Clinic at UCC. The Clinic provides students with the opportunity to conduct research and provide legal information and supports to people and groups who may otherwise struggle to navigate the justice system. LLM students get involved with four specific aspects of activity as part of the Clinic, all of which help to hone their practical skills: contributing to the development and publication of the web-based family law information hub; writing individual student blogs on contemporary family law issues, contributing to research projects including live family law cases; and writing reflective learning journals on the student clinic experience.

Commenting on her award, Dr Louise Crowley said:

“Receiving the 2020 President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and Learning is a huge honour and a tremendous endorsement of the Family Law Clinic at UCC. The Clinic design and delivery recognises that learning lies not only in understanding the law and legal principles in their own right, but elevates that knowledge to an engagement with its application in practice. This unique approach to learning contributes to the first-class student experience on the LLM (Children’s Rights and Family Law) at the School of Law, UCC.”

Also successful on awards night was the Irish Legal Information Initiative (IRLII), the Irish hub of the international Free Access to Law Movement (FALM) a global association of lawyers committed to ensuring that legal decisions are made available to all, on a non-profit basis and free of charge. IRLII is hosted by the School of Law under the leadership of Project Directors Dr Patrick O’Callaghan, Professor Maria Cahill and Luke Noonan. It is unique among FALM members internationally in the way it empowers and champions student leaders in the promotion of the FALM goals. It is the student researchers – now a team of almost fifty – who undertake all the research and make decisions of the superior courts and scholarship on Irish law available free of charge on the IRLII website for anyone from fellow UCC students researching for essays to barristers working on briefs. It is no surprise, then, that the directors of IRLII received a Staff Recognition Award for Enhancing the Student Experience.

Commenting on the team’s award, Luke Noonan said:

“It is a tremendous honour to receive this award and we are extremely grateful to the Academic Council Staff Development Committee and UCC for this recognition. The success of the project is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our team of student researchers. At every level of the project, our researchers have an essential role in achieving the Free Access to Law Movement’s goal of ensuring accessibility to legal decisions and promoting justice, equality, inclusion and the rule of law, whilst also learning valuable skills that will assist them in their legal studies and careers. This valuable acknowledgment of IRLII’s contribution to the student experience will help us to further develop the project and reach a wider audience with our services.”

Congratulations to Dr Louise Crowley, Dr Patrick O’Callaghan, Professor Maria Cahill and Luke Noonan from all your colleagues at the UCC School of Law!


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