President Michael D. Higgins and Ruairi Quinn TD, Minister for Education & Skills were quick to acknowledge and congratulate the EQUAL Ireland participants on their fabulous achievement. The well attended and intimate ceremony held in the Athlone Institute of Technology was a credit to all involved and demonstrated AIT’s particular understanding and appreciation of Adult Learners. Managed by the AIT Registrar, Joseph Ryan the whole affair was carried off with excellent aplomb. In particular the speech of the President, Ciarán O’Catháin,
himself a returnee to adult education, touched a positive nerve with the graduates present and keenly helped to make the event an undoubted success.
Eoin Langan and Peter MeLinn of AIT made key contributions during the afternoon and Nuala Keher, Executive Director of EQUAL Ireland, represented our own organisation, Participants and Staff. Nuala, while not speaking at the ceremony itself , much to the disappointment of a number of our graduates, more than made up for this with a keynote speech at the Celebratory Graduation Dinner later that evening where she was joined by participant speeches from Maura D’Arcy of Ballinasloe, Marie Keogh from Galway City, Emyvale’s Alice Daly and the one and only Tommy Murray from Trim/Ballivor.
Once the formal proceedings were complete there was time for light refreshments, photographs, endless congralulatory handshakes, hugs and backslaps, all of which were well and trully deserved.
SO WELL DONE GRADUATES! WELL DONE AIT!
The gathering then began the move to the Shamrock Lodge Hotel for a Reception and Dinner but sin sceal eile…….
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