South East Technological University (SETU) is launching Foundation Day, a new annual tradition of events, commemorating the University’s establishment on 1 May, 2022. 

Scheduled from 23-28 May, Foundation Day 2024 will feature a ‘multi-campus’ conference held at SETU’s campuses in Waterford and Carlow, and at the Wexford County Council offices in Wexford town. 

Each conference will focus on a specific theme from SETU’s strategic plan, ‘Connecting for Impact,’ aligning with the objectives of the 'Grand Challenges of the South East Programme.’

Speaking ahead of the Foundation Day events, Professor Veronica Campbell, President of SETU, stated, “Foundation Day 2024 is a wonderful opportunity for the SETU community to come together to celebrate our achievements to date, while looking to the future for the exciting possibilities that lie ahead. At these events in Waterford, Carlow, and Wexford, we will hear from our partners, stakeholders, staff, and students on the vision for SETU’s future. Our strategic plan 2023-2028, ‘Connecting for Impact’ outlined our ambitions to become a leading global university with strong roots here in the south east region, positively impacting development and quality of life for our students and the wider community. These Foundation Day events specifically focus on how we can connect on the themes of health, workforce skills, and sustainability. I look forward to hearing from our expert partners, and our accomplished staff and students, who are making an impact in these areas, on how SETU can continue to fulfil its strategic aims.” 

The Foundation Day events kick off on Thursday, 23 May, with ‘Connecting for Health’ at the O’Connell Bianconi Health Sciences Building on SETU’s Cork Road Campus in Waterford. Director of Kinetic Labs, Patsy Carney, who has over 30 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, will be the keynote speaker. 

The event will feature two discussion panels. The first panel will address “Collaborating to meet the challenges of the health sector in the south east,” while the second will examine the following theme, “A focus on health in the south east: developing the interdisciplinary relationship between animal, planetary, and human health.”

The celebrations continue with ‘Connecting for Workforce Skills’ on Monday, 27 May, at the Haughton Building on the Kilkenny Road Campus in Carlow. Mairéad Crosby, Regional Director South East at Ibec, will deliver the keynote address, followed by a panel discussion with participants representing industry, some of the region’s Education and Training Boards, and SETU graduates.  

The ‘Connecting for Sustainability’ event, hosted at Wexford County Council offices, County Hall, Carricklawn, on Tuesday, 28 May, will bring Foundation Day events to a close. Oonagh Buckley, Secretary General of the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications, will provide the keynote address, while panellists from SETU, the Maritime Area Regulatory Authority (MARA), the High Performance Building Alliance, Wexford County Council, alongside student representatives from SETU, will discuss sustainability and the potential of offshore renewable energy for the south east region.

Each event will also feature think-tank sessions in which staff and students can engage on the theme of ‘Empowering People to Thrive Amidst Change – Communication and Decision-making at SETU’. These sessions will provide feedback and discussion on SETU’s progress, achievements, and future priorities.

Foundation Day represents a milestone in SETU’s journey, and staff, students, graduates, partners, and stakeholders are invited to join the celebration of innovation, collaboration, and impact.