NUI Galway is to hold two virtual conferring ceremonies for more than 300 medical graduates and their families.
The university took the decision to bring the final year medical examinations and graduation forward to ensure that the medical graduates would be available to enter the healthcare workforce.
Due to the movement restrictions arising from the Covid-19 pandemic, the university will, for the first time in its 175 year history, not hold physical conferring ceremonies. It will instead mark the occasion online.
On Monday next, the university will confer 190 future doctors with an Honours Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery, and Bachelor of Obstetrics (MB, BCh, BAO) degree.
Two days later, on Wednesday, it will hold the Research Conferring ceremony with over 110 students graduating.
Nearly 90 students will be conferred with a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), while a number of students will also be conferred with Masters and Doctor of Medicine degrees.
President of NUIG, Prof Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh said these are "extraordinary times and our graduates are extraordinary people" who will help fight the pandemic.
"While we are deeply disappointed that we cannot share this special day with our graduates in person, we are looking forward to marking the occasion and sharing good wishes online. We imagine together this day and, we hope, better days to come."
“During the 175 year history of NUI Galway, our staff and students have shaped many world events and we are filled with pride by those who are bravely battling the COVID-19 pandemic in Ireland and internationally. This community joins those who were involved in previous challenging times, by committing to the public good and the values we hold dear," he said.
The online ceremony will mark the achievements of students from across Ireland and Europe as well as Malaysia, Canada, Trinidad and Tobago, Brunei, Singapore, USA, China, South Korea, Nepal, India, Pakistan, Iraq, Brazil, Ecuador and Vietnam.