Together with former UCD Presidents Dr Patrick Masterson and Dr Art Cosgrove, President Andrew Deeks welcomed over 160 Fellows, academic mentors and donors who have been involved with the programme over the years. During the evening, Dr Patrick Masterson spoke of how the programme was founded to attract and retain high-potential, early-career researchers in the midst of a deep economic recession. Since 1989, over 193 Fellowships have been awarded, €12.5 million has been raised in philanthropic funding and our Fellows have achieved phenomenal career successes. The programme continues apace with the award of a number of new Fellowships in creative writing, education, medieval history and plant sciences.
Following dinner, Professor Patrick Wall facilitated a very entertaining panel discussion with current and former Fellows and mentors: Professor Glen Doherty, Professor Ursula Fearon, Professor Brigid Laffan and Dr Christine Liran Shan. The evening also saw the launch of ‘Exceptional Minds’, a book commemorating the first thirty years of the programme.