Staff call on DkIT’s Governing Body to intervene to avoid graduation ceremony being held off campus
Calls by students and staff for the President of Dundalk IT to reverse his decision to move the annual graduation ceremony off campus appear to have fallen on deaf ears, according to the Teachers’ Union of Ireland.
Staff and students at the Dublin Road institute were informed on Friday morning via email by DkIT President Michael Mulvey that he planned to proceed with moving the conferring ceremony at the end of the month to An Táin Theatre after plans to hold the graduation in St Patrick’s Cathedral fell through.
Reacting to the news, DkIT’s Teachers Union of Ireland Secretary Kevin Howard said there was “no logic” in moving the graduation away from Dundalk IT’s campus.
He said: “The effort which the staff put into graduation, the pride they feel in DkIT, on this most special of occasions, is immense. To move this celebration away from our campus is an idea that has no logic and no support. The idea that students and their families will have to walk from the town hall through the road works, traffic and weather to a hall at the rear of the Imperial Hotel makes this proposal seem quite bizarre – more so when adequate facilities exist on campus.”
DkIT Teachers Union of Ireland Chair Kenneth Sloane added: “While staff and students fully support initiatives which forge a greater bond between DkIT and the wider town of Dundalk, the decision to move the graduation ceremony has been made without any consultation with students or staff and clearly does not have the support of the college community.
“While we have not been privy to the process by which this decision was made, we find it hard to see any justification in DkIT’s management spending taxpayers money on hiring town centre venues when more suitable facilities already exist on campus. It also appears deeply contrary to our aspiration to be a Green campus that the thousands who attend graduation will, under the President’s plan, be required to be transported by a fleet of shuttle buses to and from the campus during the three day period of graduation.
“In addition to many other logistical, cost and environmental concerns, the decision is evidently causing deep disappointment to students who should be preparing for a day of celebration with their families. Students, as expressed through their democratically elected representatives, clearly want the graduation returned to its traditional venue on campus. Graduation is a day for students and their families and we hoped the President would listen to and respect their views.
“However, as it now appears the wishes and concerns of both students and staff are to be disregarded, the Dundalk IT Branch of the TUI are calling upon the Institute’s Governing body to intervene, and to direct the President to reverse his decision and return the graduation ceremony to DkIT’s campus, where it has been hosted successfully for almost 50 years,” said Mr Sloane.