Trinity development to create 1,600 new STEM student places

29 Jul 2021

From left: Trinity provost Dr Patrick Prendergast, Dr Martin Naughton of Glen Dimplex, and Trinity provost-elect Prof Linda Doyle. Image: Chris Bellew/Fennell Photography

The new building on Trinity’s city centre campus will focus on STEM subjects and research that can help tackle issues such as the climate crisis.

Trinity College Dublin has started work on a project that is expected to create 1,600 new student places in STEM subjects in the coming years.

The new Martin Naughton E3 Learning Foundry is being built on the university’s campus in Dublin city centre.

It will expand education and research activities across Trinity’s School of Engineering, School of Natural Sciences and School of Computer Science and Statistics.

Trinity said that its research indicated “strong demand” at undergraduate and postgraduate levels for STEM courses. It added that the new 7,300 sq m building will enable the university to teach in “new ways”, encouraging teamwork, design and project-based activities.

‘It will enable Trinity to increase the number of students studying STEM subjects and hire excellent academics in emerging disciplines’

There will be a focus on subjects that help tackle societal challenges such as the climate crisis. Sustainability has also been a consideration in the design of the building.

“This new building will further strengthen Trinity’s reputation for excellence and will provide cutting-edge facilities for students and staff,” said Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris, TD, who attended a ceremony at the university today (29 July).

“Climate action is the defining challenge of our times and it is great to see this focus reflected both in the sustainable design of the building itself and in the learning and research that will take place within it.”

The Martin Naughton E3 Learning Foundry is being funded with support from entrepreneur and philanthropist Dr Martin Naughton of Glen Dimplex. It is also being funded under Project Ireland 2040, with €15m made available through the Higher Education Authority.

Naughton said the new development would represent a “real step change” in education that will benefit future generations.

“The innovative E3 Learning Foundry will enable Trinity to increase the number of students studying STEM subjects and hire excellent academics in emerging disciplines such as climate science and environmental microbiology,” he added.

Trinity provost Dr Patrick Prendergast commented that we need to “remodel our educational systems” and that the new development would be a “very tangible step to produce excellent graduates” that could help tackle today’s environmental and societal problems.

The ceremony today was also attended by Prof Linda Doyle, who is set to replace Prendergast as provost at the start of August.

This week, Doyle sat down with Silicon Republic’s Ann O’Dea as part of a new Future Human series, where she discussed her vision for the future of Trinity and her intention to make it a ‘climate-first’ university.

Sarah Harford was sub-editor of Silicon Republic