UCC to encourage students to blog

19 Jun 2006

University College Cork (UCC) is to become the first academic institution that will encourage all students to compile blogs, siliconrepublic.com has learned.

According to Damian Mulley, organiser of the Irish Blog Awards, with some 15,000 students coming back to Cork in October, the small but growing Irish blogging community could see a massive influx of new thoughts and opinions.

UCC Student’s Union communications officer Kris Mcelhinney commented: “Blogging is an easy way to get students into e-communications. It is essential that students develop these new skills. Additionally, blogging facilities offer clubs and societies — which provide the lifeblood of UCC student life — another option in their self promotion.

“Digital solutions are ever more important as the campus develops more rapidly across the city.”

UCC is no stranger to innovation and the web. The university is currently trialling video and audio podcasts for students.

So far the college has produced more than 80 videos from 10 different UCC departments. These have covered special public lectures, conferences, information for prospective students and special events such as Pierce Brosnan getting conferred. All are available on www.UCCInteractive.tv.

UCC also holds the honour of being the first university in Ireland to have a website which went live in 1991. It was also only the 9th website in the world at the time compared to the millions available today.

A prolific blogger himself, Mulley said he was delighted at seeing a university embracing blogging to such a large extent.

“Third-level institutions are a natural outlet for free thinking and debate about areas of academic and social interest,” said Mulley.

“Let’s hope that there’ll be a strong uptake and that other colleges follow UCC’s lead and encourage their students to blog.”

By John Kennedy