The Marine Institute, Ireland's national agency for marine research, technology, development and innovation welcomed over 250 visitors to its headquarters in Oranmore for its annual Open Day on the 23rd November, 2016.
Organised as part of the Galway Science & Technology Festival, the Open Day attracted visitors from far and wide, from Kerry to Kinvara and Dublin to Dunmore! Designed mainly for Transition year students, this year the Marine Institute decided to open its doors to all. This response was wonderful, and in addition to a number of groups of transition year students, the Marine Institute were delighted to welcome leaving certificate students, university groups, teachers, parents, and community groups from across the country.
Visitors had the opportunity to tour the state of the art facilities on offer in the Marine Institute in Oranmore and to meet with researchers and scientists and hear about their careers in the marine. The Institute also organised a series of interactive exhibitions which were designed to introduce visitors to some of the innovative work of the Marine Institute in areas including seabed mapping, research vessel operations and oceanography, as well as fisheries and the marine environment.
The options in maritime careers today are immense and the marine offers exciting future prospects within the associated industries. Indeed, the current marine economy in Ireland supports over 30,000 direct and indirect jobs, and that number actually has the potential to grow significantly, owing to growth in and support of the industry as a whole.
Speaking about the event, Marine Institute CEO, Dr Peter Heffernan said: The Marine Institute Open Day is a great opportunity to find out more about the wide range of marine careers and to meet with various scientists, researchers, engineers and experts already working in the sector.
The Marine Institute is responsible for promoting the sustainable development of Ireland's vast marine resource through coordinated and focussed research, the application of new technologies and by providing credible science based advice to industry, the Government and the EU. As part of its remit, the Institute strives to engage broader audiences to enhance Ireland's knowledge of our vast marine resource and the benefits and opportunities it affords us. According to Dr. Heffernan "The work we do reflects the importance of the Government Strategy in Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth. We aim to build on Ireland's marine and maritime heritage by increasing awareness of the value, opportunities and social benefits of our ocean wealth and identity. We do this through educational and engagement programmes including our Explorers Programme in national schools across the country, our TY Internships Programme, the Subsea Observatory, which gives us a unique view beneath the Wild Atlantic Way, and Seafest, Ireland's national maritime festival. "
Seafest returns to Galway on Friday 30th of June through to Sunday 2nd of July, 2017.
In the meantime, and for those of you interested in finding out more about the Marine Institute you can still catch us at the Galway and Science & Technology Festival Exhibition on Sunday 27th November at NUI Galway from 10am – 6pm. For details see http://www.galwayscience.ie/2016-festival-exhibition/
Watch the short video from The Open Day 2016