Awards Day NUI Galway, Feb 2019


Josiah Burke receives Labhras O Nuallain’s book from from Niamh O Dochartaigh, flanked by sister Esther on left and his mother Martina and sister Jemima on right.  

The National University of Ireland Galway, named ‘University of the Year 2018’ in the Sunday Times University Guide, now caters for 17,000 students. On 9th February 2019,at the University annual  Awards Day, all  ‘scholars of excellence’, were presented with their prizes. They and their families filled the Bailey Allen Hall to capacity as Vice President Pól Ó Dochartaigh presented Awards and Prizes.

This year the Labhrás Ó Nualláin prize was presented to top student Josiah Burke from Castlebar County Mayo. Labhrás was a former Professor of Economics in the University with a special interest in Development Economics. Having left school in Manchester for work at age 15, by the age of 21 he had educated himself to a higher level, succeeded in obtaining the Matriculation Exam, a job in the Irish Civil Service  and entry to night classes at University College Dublin and Trinity College. His story is recorded in ‘Memoir of an Irish Economist – Working Class Manchester to Irish Academia’.  Labhrás’ daughter Niamh presented This book to Josiah.
Josiah  began studying at NUI Galway in 2015 and graduated in 2018 with a first-class Bachelor of Commerce degree. Having a deep interest in Economics, his final year studies were heavily biased towards that subject. Josiah was top of his class in Health Economics and Development Economics, and was twice awarded a University Scholarship for Academic Excellence. Josiah is currently pursuing a Masters in Economic History at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

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