- UCC’s new Hub serves as ‘one-stop-shop’ service for 26,000 students
- Interview: Ryan Tubridy chats politics, history and his love of the arts on UCC visit
- UCC Emergency Care Society gets hands-on with life-saving skills
- Fitzgibbon Cup glory for UCC as hurlers beat IT Carlow in thrilling final
- GatewayUCC bridging the gap for research-entrepreneurs
- Pocket-sized brain injury monitor could be a game-changer for infant health
- Future of Irish hockey in safe hands with rising star Hannah
- Dr Eithne Hunt: Healthy habits for body and mind
- From Architecture to Web Development
- Nine APC Microbiome researchers make prestigious ‘highly cited’ list
- UCC honours five exceptional alumni at annual awards ceremony
- UCC spotlights four of its brightest up-and-coming female career scientists
- Rich Ferrie leads an exciting new era for UCC Innovation
- UCC honours its graduates with the official naming of the Alumni Bridge
- New UCC series explains how university research impacts daily life
- UCC's rising sports stars presented with scholarships
- UCC ranked among top universities in Europe for teaching excellence
Times Higher Education Europe Teaching Rankings 2019
- UCC makes Green Flag history…again!
The first university in the world to be awarded a fourth Green Flag
- Blazing a trail
Professor Helen Whelton charts her path to success, from curious dentistry student to global award-winner
- A Summer’s Evening on the Quad hits the right note for Cork charities
The fundraising event is now in its 14th year
- A curious mind
Paul Ross on his love of science, his greatest moments of discovery, and the exciting next chapter at APC Microbiome Ireland
- Mind your microbiome: 9 ways to boost your gut health
In honour of World Microbiome Day
- UCC hosts top wind energy experts at Cork’s largest ever conference
Scientists and engineers gathered to discuss the future of renewable energy
- Lord David Puttnam makes a passionate case for careers in the arts
He features in the latest episode of UCC’s podcast, Plain Speaking
- Funding announced for UCC SFI Research Centres
- Beekeeping makes life sweeter for Cork kids
- Saving Ireland's seals with GPS
- UCC celebrates a stellar year in sport
- Tommy Fleming headlines A Summer's Evening on the Quad
Tickets available now
- UCC ranked as global leader for sustainable social and economic impact
Times Higher Education University Impact Rankings
- Former UCC President Michael Murphy becomes first ever Irish President of EUA
Professor Murphy served as UCC President for 10 years
- MaREI researcher returns from epic adventure in search of blue whales
Dr Ailbhe Kavanagh spent seven weeks in Antarctica
- Doireann Ní Ghríofa among six new members elected to Aosdána at UCC ceremony
Writer Doireann is a UCC alumna
- Former White House drug advisor goes 'inside America’s opioid crisis'
Keith Humphreys is the latest guest on UCC's official podcast, Plain Speaking
- UCC launches Sports Strategy
Pride on our chest, belief in our heart, sport in our bones.
- How Nicole Ryan is powering change after tragedy
- Brainwave ‘donation’ research offers promise for dementia treatment
Research and innovation
- Full-circle for Paul as UCC extends partnership with Cork City FC
A perfect match
- Praise for The Irish Revolution as 'Atlas' documentary airs on RTÉ
Atlas of the Irish Revolution
- Pastures new
UCC launches its Food Institute
- Making waves at MaREI
Ireland's National Ocean Test Facility opens
- Research spotlight: APC Microbiome Ireland
10 researchers among Highly Cited
- Spin-out success
Atlantia Food Clinical Trials expanding stateside
- Billy Morgan: Pride of Cork
Marking a decade of UCC Sigerson Cup football
- The future is bright for soccer's Captain Fantastic
- The next phase for rugby's rising star
- RTÉ to air 'Atlas' documentary
The next step for the Atlas of the Irish Revolution
- Top business talent share their secrets to success
CUBS Conference 2019
- Green roots and flying boots: Cork Chamber project showcases ‘future’ of Cork
Future Forms is part of Cork Chamber’s 200th anniversary celebrations
- CEO and camogie star Mary O'Connor is leading change for women in sport
Moving the goalposts
- Mary Robinson is the first guest on UCC’s new podcast
Plain Speaking is now available to stream
Beekeeping makes life sweeter for Cork kids
UCC student Sarah Kearney is using beekeeping to teach mindfulness to students from Cork City Learning Support Centre. She shares her story with Jane Haynes
A University College Cork student is creating a buzz in one Cork City school, using beekeeping to teach mindfulness to vulnerable young people.
Laois woman Sarah Kearney, a fourth year Social Work student at UCC, has introduced beehives to help students at Cork City Learning Support Centre to develop essential coping skills for life within and beyond the classroom.
Sarah, who has spent years tending to her own honeybee hives, says the careful pace of beekeeping taught her the importance of mindfulness, helping her to manage stress and even overcome her fear of water.
“I’ve learned a lot of coping skills while managing hives. You have to be emotionally regulated; you can’t get panicked or run away – they’ll come after you!” she laughs.
“As a beekeeper, you have to go at a slow pace. I wasn’t, at the start – it was all rush, rush, rush. It was only through practicing that I learned the benefit of mindfulness.”
During her undergraduate course work placement, Sarah was keen to try a fresh and fun way of engaging her students, aged 13 to 23; many of whom are from war-torn countries, and all of whom are, sadly, processing some form of trauma.
A year-and-a-half ago, with protective suits for each student and epi-pens at the ready, Sarah introduced the first beehive – containing 120,000 bees – to the school. Thus began a journey that has proven transformative for the students.
From tending to the hives on the roof, to building the bee-boxes and creating a special garden to help the bees to thrive; this has become a labour of love for Sarah’s class.
“The hive is a community, and that’s helping the young people to realise that they’re not on their own; they’re not the only ones going through this experience, and by doing it together they might be able to achieve something,” Sarah explains.
“Things will happen over the year with the beehive – you lose a queen, a hive gets sick. It’s a way of teaching kids that things happen in life, but there are ways of working around it; you can focus on the positive over the negative.
“It has helped some of the young people in foster care to understand that you don’t have to have this perfect family; you can make your own family, and others can become your support system.”
Productivity and concentration levels in class have increased significantly, particularly for students dealing with Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) diagnoses.
“It is benefiting vulnerable children,” says Sarah.
“The teachers noticed a considerable improvement after the introduction of the bees. If they go to the bees in the morning and then, say, have a maths class, they are calm. They have all the jitters out of their system, and they’re more focused and relaxed.”
Now, with eight beehives in the school, beekeeping has become an integral part of the students’ lives, and one that they enjoy immensely. Indeed, many of them have, on occasion, come to school outside of hours to give Sarah an extra hand.
Sarah intends to continue her innovative work after graduation, and hopes to someday run a respite centre for vulnerable people of all ages.
“I’d love to see if it would work in men’s sheds, community centres… It’s not just tailored to young people or vulnerable people – it’s everyone,” she says.
“Businesses, for example, could really benefit from time spent getting back to nature, combating burnout and fatigue.
“It’s just a different kind of therapy, a new coping mechanism.”
Follow this link to find out about UCC's Green Campus initiatives.