Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

RCSI winner in 2010 Undergraduate Awards of Ireland & Northern Ireland

27 January 2011
Catherine Sweeney, from the School of Pharmacy, RCSI, was named as one of ‘Ireland's Top Undergraduates' at the Undergraduate Awards of Ireland & Northern Ireland at a recent ceremony which took place at the Royal Irish Academy in Dublin.

Catherine Sweeney
Mary Robinson presents a medal to Catherine Sweeney from the RCSI School of Pharmacy at the 2010 Undergraduate Awards of Ireland & Northern Ireland  

Catherine was presented with the award as the overall winner of the Pharmacy category by Mary Robinson, the first woman president of Ireland and former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights who attended the ceremony as guest of honour.

More than 1,600 essays were submitted for this Award, from every third level institution on the island of Ireland.

The judging panel commented that Catherine's research paper may be of potential advantage in the design of novel strategies for the treatment of inflammatory disorders such as inflammatory arthritis.

Both the judges and the chair of the judging panel, Professor David Jones from Queen's University, Belfast, remarked on the high quality of the project. "The technical difficulty associated with this project was noted. This is an excellent study that is well written as a research paper."

Catherine's project entitled "Notch Plays a Critical Role in Synovial Angiogenesis in Response to Hypoxia" was supervised by Dr. Ursula Fearon, Department of Rheumatology, Dublin Academic Medical Centre, St. Vincent's University Hospital, Dublin. Catherine undertook the research project as part of the module SC1 which is jointly co-ordinated by Drs. Marc Devocelle and Fiona O Brien, RCSI School of Pharmacy.

The Awards recognise independent thinking, innovation and excellence at the undergraduate level. The winners were chosen from 26 categories, ranging from titles such as Life Sciences, to Law, to Engineering & Mechanical Sciences.