'Appalled' at decision to close GMIT Mayo business department
THE GMIT campus in Castlebar has been dealt a severe blow with staff in the business department being told their department is closing.
Mayo Fine Gael TD Alan Dillon has called on the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Simon Harris, to make a statement as to why GMIT Mayo campus business staff were issued letters Sunday night stating the business department at the Castlebar campus was to close and advising staff they now report to the Galway campus.
Said Deputy Dillon: “The decision was obviously made without consultation with staff and students.
“No business subjects appeared on the CAO application form 2020 for the GMIT Mayo campus.
“I am appalled at this turn of events and it’s a further blow to the campus and the students who have gone through a very stressful year so far.”
Added Deputy Dillon: “In light of the current situation with Covid-19 there is a huge opportunity to develop extra courses at the Mayo campus instead of reducing them.
“I am awaiting a response from Minister Harris and this decision has to be reversed as a matter of urgency.”
STATEMENT BY GMIT
In a statement, GMIT said it will be joining with partners in IT Sligo and Letterkenny IT in making a submission to become a Technological University.
"This will provide enormous opportunities for the stakeholders of the region.
"GMIT, following engagement with Mayo campus staff over an extended period, is seeking to reorganise itself to be better positioned for this transition.
"GMIT staff across all five campuses have proven themselves to be very agile in adapting to the constraints arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, proving that location is no barrier to effective delivery of services.
GMIT has already articulated its full commitment to multi-disciplinary provision at its Mayo campus, including business, but also sees exciting opportunities arising from the growing critical mass and expertise on the campus in health care and wellbeing.
"A more complete description of the reorganisation includes the proposed establishment of a new academic school for GMIT, led from the focused expertise that has been quietly growing at the Mayo campus.
"The challenge for GMIT will be to ensure that all academic Schools in GMIT are enabled to support all our stakeholders in Galway, Mayo and beyond."
GMIT President Dr. Orla Flynn stated: “I am very happy to engage with all stakeholders as to the exciting opportunities that arise from what is an ongoing internal reorganisation.
"It is intended that this reorganisation will enhance our offerings and services, not diminish them. What we are trying to do is to enable the full range of expertise across all of GMIT to be harnessed in service of the wider region.
"This challenge is one that will also be faced by our new Technological University.
"I hope to follow through on the establishment of the new school in the coming months, and this will no doubt see additional opportunities emerging for the Mayo campus.”