The CAO's latest figures for third level applications show that NUI Galway’s popularity among Leaving Certificate students as their first choice for university continues to grow for the third consecutive year. The university has seen a further increase of almost 10 per cent in the number of students selecting NUIG as their first choice institution through the change of mind and late application process. NUI Galway is now in the top two universities for growth in first preference applications through both application processes. Over the past three years, first preference applications for undergraduate degrees at NUI Galway have increased significantly as the university’s popularity continues to soar.
One of the most popular courses for students to date is biomedical science and as Galway is one of four global hubs for biomedicine and has the largest concentration of biomedical device companies in the country, career prospects for NUI Galway's biomedical science graduates are excellent. At present, NUI Galway is the only Irish university offering a denominated degree in marine science and it now has the highest concentration of marine scientists of any institution in Ireland. This degree also offers training on board national training vessels in the third year of study. This is a course that has excellent career prospects for graduates.
The university's new BA CONNECT degrees, especially the theatre and performance, creative writing, human rights, and film studies options are hugely popular. Science and engineering courses have also seen a jump in popularity this year, with NUI Galway outperforming the national trend in both, but especially in engineering where the opening of a new engineering building in September is a big draw for CAO applicants. Medicine at NUI Galway is always very popular and an additional 18 places have being allocated this year.
Director of marketing and communications at NUI Galway, Caroline Loughnane has this advice for students: “Always follow your interests. Consider an arts degree that connects specialist learning with practical opportunities, like the new BA CONNECT courses with specialist learning in film studies, human rights, creative writing, theatre and performance, children’s studies, Latin American studies, global women’s studies, or Irish studies. If you have an interest in engineering, we are about to open the largest school of engineering in the country, the building itself is a living laboratory and an architectural gem.”