A law and philosophy graduate from Doocastle has been elected to the most prominent role in student politics in Ireland.
Kevin Donoghue, son of Tom and Noreen Donoghue, was elected president of the Union of Students in Ireland at the body’s national congress in Athlone last Wednesday (March 25 ).
He now represents the interests of some 354,000 student members across Ireland, both North and South, on a wide range of education and social issues.
Mr Donoghue, who studied at the National University of Ireland Galway, has been working with the USI since he graduated two years ago.
He previously served as deputy president of the organisation.
Mr Donoghue said he was “over the moon” with his election success but he was also keen to get straight to work as he has a “very challenging and exciting year ahead”.
One of his main priorities will be to ensure free third-level education stays in place and is properly funded in the Republic of Ireland.
The Higher Education Funding Group is due to make its recommendations to the Government at the end of this year on how third-level education should be sustainably funded for the future.
Mr Donoghue said the USI will be engaging on this issue “at every possible point”.
He said he also hopes to engage with the various political parties in the build-up to the next general election.
“We will be making representations to make sure that education is a core part of their manifesto,” he outlined.
“It is important that we recognise that education is about the public good, as well as the private good. We will be working to ensure that investing in education is a key priority for all of the parties.”
Mr Donoghue officially takes up his role on July 1.