Dundalk Institute of Technology will not be pursuing Technological University (TU) status it said this week. The Institute say that its position in a Regional Cluster would be of most benefit to all the stakeholders in the region.
The issue of the local college seeking to attain university status has been discussed on many occasions over the past number of years, but this development sees that debate now put to bed.
Last week, the presidents of Ireland’s universities who are opposed to the establishment of TUs, proposed that Dundalk Institute of Technology become part of a regional cluster also. The proposals came from the Irish Universities Association responding to calls from Education Minister Ruairi Quinn for rationalisation among the Universities and third level institutes.
College representatives say that it gave careful consideration prior to making its submission to the High Education Authority in July and feel that a cluster in the north east would be best for the college and the area as whole.
DkIT’s president Denis Cummins says that the IT is in a prime location to take full advantage of the Dublin-Belfast Economic Corridor which is one of the key axes of economic development in Ireland.
“North-South political progress, the development of the all-island economy and the emergence of the Dublin-Belfast Corridor as Ireland’s main economic driver provide the impetus for a significant partnership between DCU and DkIT so as to provide the primary education and research foundations for this economic region,” he said.
The relationship with the research-intensive Dublin City University which DkIT formalised in July should help the development of the regional cluster.
Mr Cummins said that this in turn will provide pathways of progression for DkIT students and will allow for DkIT to continue to maintain its University Level Activity.
“Both institutions share a key focus in the areas of innovation and entrepreneurship and have an established track record of collaboration in a number of areas,” said Mr Cummins.
DkIT in conjunction with DCU recently announced recruitment for their entrepreneurial programme New Frontiers in March. The programme that aims to help people start their own company.