Cork native is the first female Provost in Trinity's 429-year history

Cork native is the first female Provost in Trinity's 429-year history

Cork academic and Trinity professor, Linda Doyle is Trinity College Dublin’s provost-elect.

One of Europe's most respected engineering academics, Cork native Linda Doyle, has made history by becoming Trinity College Dublin's (TCD) first female Provost in its almost 430 years.

The professor of engineering and the arts at TCD said it was "exhilarating" to be named to the position after an election among staff and student representatives.

She will be the 45th Provost and take over from the current Provost, Dr Patrick Prendergast, on August 1 for a term of 10 years.

TCD said Prof Doyle will lead TCD "in achieving its core mission in education, research and innovation, and in strengthening its position as Ireland’s leading university on the world stage".

She will also be critical in promoting the university’s "collegial way of life and cultural climate, continuing Trinity’s active engagement with society as well as taking the lead role in implementing the university’s strategic plan, fundraising for the University and advancing gender equality", TCD said. 

The Cork woman initially studied electrical engineering at UCC, before completing a Masters and PhD in Trinity.

Originally from Togher, her father Oliver worked at the Irish Examiner over a decades-long career. 

She has been dean of research at Trinity and was the founder Director of CONNECT, the Science Foundation Ireland national research centre for Future Networks and Communications. 

Her expertise is in the fields of wireless communications, cognitive radio, reconfigurable networks, spectrum management and creative arts practices. 

The main gates of Trinity College, College Green,  Dublin. Picture: Sam Boal/  
The main gates of Trinity College, College Green,  Dublin. Picture: Sam Boal/  

Prof Doyle has been Chair of the Douglas Hyde Gallery and is Chair of the Ofcom Spectrum Advisory Board in the UK.

She said: "I am exhilarated to take on this role and to be part of this historic development in Trinity's history. Trinity is an extraordinary institution filled with exceptionally talented staff and students but I believe we can set our ambitions for it even higher."

Prof Doyle said she aims for Trinity to be "the most open, productive, and creative place to teach, learn and to do research".

"I want Trinity to be a public university that is fearless in its pursuit of a deep-rooted fairness.” 

Current provost Dr Patrick Prendergast, said there were "three excellent candidates" for the position.

"Trinity will now have its first woman Provost and on behalf of staff, students, and alumni I wish Linda the very best in leading the college at this crucial time in its history."

The position of Provost was advertised internationally in 2020. Interviews took place in January after which successful applicants proceeded to the second stage and were asked to seek 12 nominations from the electorate. The third stage was a formal campaign period culminating in the ballot from which Professor Doyle emerged as the choice of the electorate.

Prof Doyle will be appointed Provost by the Trinity board at its next meeting.

The position of Provost includes a residence at No 1 Grafton street, a house with an impressive art collection including works by Jack B Yeats.

The position also includes a salary of €200,000.

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