Fellowships have been awarded to Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton TD, Silicon Republic’s Ann O’Dea and Cpl’s Anne Heraty, by the Irish Computer Society. The fellowships were awarded in celebration of their contributions to the ICT sector in Ireland, and to mark Tech Week and IT Professionals Day 2015.
Minister Richard Bruton presented the first ECDL certificates in Ireland almost 20 years ago. In his current role the Minister has championed the ICT industry in Ireland, working to increase the number of jobs in the sector, and the number of college places available for those who want to study computing.
Ann O’Dea is co-founder and CEO of online technology magazine Silicon Republic. She has championed women in the technology sector, co-ordinating the Women Invent Tomorrow campaign which promotes role models in science, technology engineering and maths.
Anne Heraty is founder and Chief Executive of Cpl Resources. The first female CEO of a publicly quoted company on the Irish Stock Exchange, Anne is a strong advocate for science, maths and IT education in Ireland.
Minister Bruton said: “ICT is an area where there have been major opportunities for Ireland over recent decades, and when I was in this job 20 years ago we worked hard to develop the early phases of what has become a major strength for the Irish economy. More recently, we specifically targeted ICT for employment growth as part of the Action Plan for Jobs, and thankfully we have seen major progress in this area over the past four years. This is a sector which continues to evolve and develop and offer massive opportunities for employment growth in Ireland, and I am determined that we will continue to take the policy actions necessary to exploit these opportunities and create jobs in Ireland”.
Jim Friars, CEO, Irish Computer Society said, “Minister Bruton, Ann O’Dea and Anne Heraty have each made a unique contribution Ireland’s ICT sector, a sector which is a significant driver in the country’s economic recovery. Ireland needs over 45,000 skilled new ICT professionals by 2018 to fuel the continuing growth of our economy. We need IT professionals to act as ambassadors for their profession, to inspire young people and help them understand the range of opportunities open to them if they chose to study computing at third level.”
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“Currently, only 20% of computing students are female. We want girls to understand the range of opportunities open to them if they chose to study computing at third level. Ann O’Dea and Anne Heraty are fantastic champions for women in the industry, and we hope their example will encourage more girls to explore technology as a career”.