University College Dublin
Irish: Coláiste na hOllscoile, Baile Átha Cliath
Latin: Universitas Hiberniae Nationalis apud Dublinum
MottoAd Astra; Cothrom na Féinne
Motto in English
To the Stars; Justice and equality
TypePublic university
Established1854; 170 years ago (1854)
Endowment€554 million (2022)[1]
Budget€718 million (2021/22)[1]
PresidentOrla Feely[2]
Academic staff
Administrative staff
CampusUrban, 133 hectares (330 acres)
LanguageEnglish, Irish, others
NewspaperCollege Tribune
The University Observer
Universitas 21

University College Dublin (commonly referred to as UCD) (Irish: Coláiste na hOllscoile, Baile Átha Cliath) is a public research university in Dublin, Ireland, and a member institution of the National University of Ireland. With 38,417 students, it is Ireland's largest university,[4] and amongst the most prestigious universities in Europe.[5][6][7][8] Five Nobel Laureates are among UCD's alumni and current and former staff.[9][10] Additionally, four Taoisigh (Prime Ministers) and three Irish Presidents have graduated from UCD, along with one President of India.[11][12]

UCD originates in a body founded in 1854, which opened as the Catholic University of Ireland on the feast of St. Malachy with John Henry Newman as its first rector; it re-formed in 1880 and chartered in its own right in 1908. The Universities Act, 1997 renamed the constituent university as the "National University of Ireland, Dublin", and a ministerial order of 1998 renamed the institution as "University College Dublin – National University of Ireland, Dublin".[13]

Originally located at St Stephen's Green[14] and Earlsfort terrace in Dublin's city centre, all faculties have since relocated to a 133-hectare (330-acre)[15] campus at Belfield, six kilometres to the south of the city centre. In 1991, it purchased a second site in Blackrock.[16] This currently houses the Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School.

A report published in May 2015 showed the economic output generated by UCD and its students in Ireland amounted to €1.3 billion annually.[17]


UCD can trace its history to the institution founded in 1854 as the Catholic University of Ireland.[18] Renamed University College in 1883 and put under the control of the Jesuits in 1883,[19] It became University College Dublin in 1908, a constituent college of the National University of Ireland under the Universities Act.[18]

Catholic University of Ireland

See also: Catholic University of Ireland

Saint John Henry Newman, first rector of the then Catholic University of Ireland, out of which sprang the current UCD
Newman house, St Stephen's Green, Dublin. The original location of UCD
The Gardens located behind Earlsfort Terrace donated and renamed in his honour by UCD in 1908

After the Catholic Emancipation period of Irish history, Archbishop of Armagh attempted to provide for the first time in Ireland higher-level education for followers of the Catholic Church and taught by such people. The Catholic Hierarchy demanded a Catholic alternative to the University of Dublin's Trinity College, whose Anglican origins the Hierarchy refused to overlook. Since the 1780s, the University of Dublin had admitted Catholics to study; a religious test, however, hindered the efforts of Catholics in their desire to obtain membership in the university's governing bodies. Thus, in 1850 at the Synod of Thurles, it was decided to open a university in Dublin for Catholics.[20]

As a result of these efforts, a new "Catholic University of Ireland" opened in 1854 on St Stephen's Green, with John Henry Newman appointed as its first rector.[20] The Catholic University opened its doors on the feast of St Malachy, 3 November 1854.[14] In 1855, the Catholic University Medical School was opened on Cecilia Street.

As a private university, Catholic University was never given a royal charter, and so was unable to award recognised degrees and suffered from chronic financial difficulties. Newman left the university in 1857. In 1861, Bartholomew Woodlock was appointed Rector and served until he became Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnoise in 1879.[21] Henry Neville was appointed Rector to replace Woodlock.[citation needed]

In 1880, the Royal University of Ireland was established and allowed students from any college to take examinations for a degree.[22]

Foundation of University College Dublin

Government Buildings, Dublin. The former location of the UCD science and engineering faculties. Opened by King George V in 1905

In 1882, Catholic University reorganised, and the St. Stephen's Green institution (the former Arts school of the Catholic University) run by the Irish Jesuits,[23] was renamed University College,[24] and it began participating in the Royal University system. In 1883, Fr William Delany SJ was appointed the first president of University College. The college attracted academics from around Ireland, including Fr. Gerard Manley Hopkins and James Joyce. Some notable staff and students at the school during this period included Francis Sheehy-Skeffington, Patrick Pearse, Hugh Kennedy, Hannah O'Leary, Eoin MacNeill, Kevin O'Higgins, Tom Kettle, James Ryan, Douglas Hyde and John A. Costello.

Gerard Manley Hopkins, one of the leading Victorian poets of the 19th Century, Professor of Greek and Latin

In 1908, the National University of Ireland was founded and the following year the Royal University was dissolved.[25] This new university was brought into existence with three constituent University Colleges – Dublin, Galway and Cork.[25] Following the establishment of the NUI, D. J. Coffey, Professor of Physiology, Catholic University Medical School, became the first president of UCD. The Medical School in Cecilia Street became the UCD Medical Faculty and the Faculty of Commerce was established. Under the Universities Act, 1997, University College Dublin was established as a constituent university within the National University of Ireland framework.[26]

In 1911, land donated by Lord Iveagh helped the university expand in Earlsfort Terrace/Hatch Street/ St Stephen's Green.[27] Iveagh Gardens was part of this donation.

Coat of arms of University College Dublin
Granted 14 September 1911 by Nevile Wilkinson, Ulster King of Arms.[28]
Vert a harp Or stringed Argent on a chief of the second on a pale Argent between two trefoils slipped Vert three castles flamant Proper.
Ad Astra and Comtrom Féinne

UCD and the Irish War of Independence

The Tierny (Administration) and Newman (Arts) Buildings, Belfield campus, UCD.

UCD is a major holder of archives of national and international significance relating to the Irish War of Independence.[29]

In 1913, in response to the formation of the Ulster Volunteers, Eóin MacNeill, professor of early Irish history, called for the formation of an Irish nationalist force to counteract it.[30] The Irish Volunteers were formed later that year and MacNeill was elected its Chief-of-staff.[31][32] At the outbreak of World War I, in view of the Home Rule Act 1914 and the political perception that it might not be implemented, the leader of the Home Rule Party, John Redmond, urged the Irish Volunteers to support the British war effort as a way of supporting Irish Home Rule.[32] This effort on behalf of Home Rule included many UCD staff and students. Many of those who opposed this move later participated in the Easter Rising.

Several UCD staff and students participated in the rising, including Pádraig Pearse, Thomas MacDonagh, Michael Hayes and James Ryan, and a smaller number, including Tom Kettle and Willie Redmond, fought for the British in World War I.

Many UCD staff, students and alumni fought in the Irish War of Independence. Following the signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty, four UCD graduates joined the government of the Irish Free State.

UCD graduates have since participated in Irish political life – three of the nine Presidents of Ireland and six of the fourteen Taoisigh have been either former staff or graduates.


In 1926, the University Education (Agriculture and Dairy Science) Act transferred the Royal College of Science in Merrion Street and Albert Agricultural College in Glasnevin to UCD.[33][34] In 1933, Belfield House was purchased for sporting purposes.[27]

Move to Belfield

UCD graduates, 15 July 1944
'Noah's egg' outside the Veterinary School by Rachel Joynt (2004)

In 1940, Arthur Conway was appointed president.[22]

By the early 1940s, the college had become the largest third-level institution in the state and the college attempted to expand the existing city-centre campus. It was later decided that the best solution would be to move the college to a larger greenfield site outside of the city centre and create a modern campus university. This move started in the early 1960s when the faculty of science moved to the new 1.4 square kilometres (350 acres) park campus at Belfield in a suburb on the south side of Dublin.[33] The Belfield campus developed into a complex of modern buildings and inherited Georgian townhouses, accommodating the colleges of the university as well as its student residences and many leisure and sporting facilities.

One of UCD's previous locations, the Royal College of Science on Merrion Street is now the location of the renovated Irish Government Building, where the Department of the Taoiseach (Irish prime minister) is situated.[33] University College Dublin also had a site in Glasnevin for much of the last century, the Albert Agricultural College, the southern part of which is now occupied by Dublin City University, the northern part is where Ballymun town is located.[35]


The new campus was largely designed by A&D Wejchert & Partners Architects[36] and includes several notable structures, including the UCD Water Tower which was built in 1972 by John Paul Construction. The Tower won the 1979 Irish Concrete Society Award.[37] It stands 60 metres high with a dodecahedron tank atop a pentagonal pillar.[38][39] The Tower is part of the UCD Environmental Research Station.[40][41] O'Reilly Hall, opened in 1994, was designed by the Irish architecture firm Scott Tallon Walker.[citation needed]


In 1964, Jeremiah Hogan was appointed president and Thomas E. Nevin led the science faculty to move to a new campus at Belfield. Also that year, UCD became the first university in Europe to launch an MBA programme. In 1967, Donogh O'Malley proposed a plan to merge UCD and Trinity.[42] Between 1969 and 1970, the Faculties of Commerce, Arts and Law moved to Belfield.[27] In 1972, Thomas Murphy was appointed president.[43] In 1973, the library opened.[27] In 1980, the college purchased Richview and 17.4 acres and the architecture faculty moved there. In 1981, the Sports Complex opened. In 1986, Patrick Masterson was appointed president.[44]

During the 1990s, some of the students of Women's Studies, led by Niamh Nolan, petitioned to rename their Gender Studies building after Hanna Sheehy-Skeffington to honour her contribution to women's rights and equal access to third-level education. Her husband Francis Sheehy-Skeffington was himself an alumnus of the university and Hanna of the Royal University, a sister university of UCD. Their campaign was successful and the building was renamed the Hanna Sheehy-Skeffington Building. In 1990, the UCD purchased Carysfort College, Blackrock, and became the location of the Smurfit Graduate school of business.[45] The first student village, Belgrove, opened that year as well. In 1992, the second student village, Merville, opened and the Centre for Film studies was established. In 1993, Art Cosgrove was appointed president.[27] In 1994, O'Reilly Hall was opened.

In Malaysia, UCD, together with the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI), owns a branch campus within George Town, the capital city of the State of Penang. Established in 1996, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and University College Dublin Malaysia Campus (RUMC) offers a twinning programme in Medicine where students spend the first half of their course in either RCSI or UCD, before completing their clinical years at RUMC.[46]


In 2003, NovaUCD, a Euro Innovation and Technology Transfer Centre opened.[47][48] In 2004, Hugh Brady was appointed president.[27][49] In 2006, UCD Horizons begins. In 2009, Trinity and UCD announce the Innovation Alliance. In 2010, NCAD and UCD form an academic alliance. In 2012 the expanded Student and Sports Centre opened. In 2012, the college closed the athletics track and field facilities and students demanded an apology.[50] In 2013, the UCD O'Brien Centre for Science opened and the UCD Sutherland School of Law opened.[51] It is now the largest Common Law law school in the European Union. In 2015, UCD opened a global centre in the US.[52] In 2019, UCD became the first Irish university to launch a Black Studies module, coordinated by Dr Ebun Joseph and Prof Kathleen Lynch.[53] In March 2022 Prof Andrew Deeks resigned to take up the role of vice-Chancellor at Murdoch University, in Perth, Western Australia.[54] Prof Mark Rogers was appointed acting president.[55]


Colleges and schools

Health Sciences building, Belfield campus, UCD
Michael Smurfit Graduate School of Business, Blackrock
UCD Quinn School of Business

UCD consists of six colleges, their associated schools (37 in total)[56] and multiple research institutes and centres.[57] Each college also has its own Graduate School, for postgraduates.

List of colleges and their respective schools following restructuring in September 2015.[58]

UCD College of Arts and Humanities
UCD School of Art History and Cultural Policy
UCD School of Classics
UCD School of English, Drama and Film
UCD School of History and Archives
UCD School of Irish, Celtic Studies and Folklore
UCD School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics
UCD School of Music
UCD College of Business
UCD School of Business
UCD Lochlann Quinn School of Business
UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate School of Business
UCD College of Engineering and Architecture
UCD School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy
UCD School of Biosystems and Food Engineering
UCD School of Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering
UCD School of Civil Engineering
UCD School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering
UCD School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering
UCD College of Health and Agricultural Sciences
UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science
UCD School of Medicine
UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems
UCD School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sports Science
UCD School of Veterinary Medicine
UCD College of Social Sciences and Law
UCD School of Archaeology
UCD School of Economics
UCD School of Education
UCD School of Geography
UCD School of Information and Communication Studies
UCD School of Law
UCD School of Philosophy
UCD School of Politics and International Relations
UCD School of Psychology
UCD School of Social Policy, Social Work and Social Justice
UCD School of Sociology
UCD College of Science
UCD School of Biology and Environmental Science
UCD School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Science
UCD School of Chemistry
UCD School of Computer Science
UCD School of Earth Sciences
UCD School of Mathematics and Statistics
UCD School of Physics

UCD College of Business

See also: Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School

The UCD College of Business is made up of the Quinn School of Business, the Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School, and UCD Business International Campus.[59] The former constituent school, the UCD Quinn School of Business (commonly The Quinn School), is the building in which the UCD College of Business's undergraduate programme is based. It is located in a three-story building on the Belfield campus and is named after Lochlann Quinn, one of the main financial contributors to the school. Other donors included Bank of Ireland, AIB, Irish Life & Permanent, Accenture, KPMG, PwC, Dunnes Stores and Ernst & Young.[60] When first opened in 2002, it claimed to be the only business school in Europe with a specific focus on technology and e-learning.[60]

UCD Horizons

At the beginning of the 2005/2006 academic year, UCD introduced the Horizons curriculum,[61] which completely semesterised and modularised all undergraduate courses. Under the new curriculum, students choose ten core modules from their specific subject area and two other modules, which can be chosen from any other programme at the university.

UCD Professional Academy

UCD is also home to UCD Professional Academy, which offers career development through a range of professional diplomas.[62]  Subject areas include Business, IT, Management, Marketing and Design.


Undergraduate fees are funded in part by the Irish State (for EU citizens) and by students themselves under the "Free Fees Initiative".[63] Postgraduate fees vary depending on the student nationality, course and degree type, ranging from 7,000€ to 22,000€ per year.[64]


Patrons and benefactors

The initial patrons and benefactors of UCD were the Catholic Church.[citation needed]

Amongst the most recent patrons include actor Gregory Peck, who was a founding patron of the School of Film.[65] Other benefactors include Lochlann Quinn (UCD Quinn School of Business),[66] Michael Smurfit (Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School),[67][68] Peter Sutherland (Sutherland School of Law),[69] Tony O'Reilly (O'Reilly Hall)[68] and Denis O'Brien (O'Brien Science Centre).[69]


University rankings
Global – Overall
ARWU World[5]301–400 (2023)
QS World[70]=126 (2025)
QS Employability[71]87 (2022)
THE World[72]201–250 (2024)
USNWR Global[8]=236 (2023)
National – Overall
ARWU National[5]2–3 (2023)
QS National[73]2 (2025)
THE National[74]2 (2024)
USNWR National[8]2 (2023)

In the 2025 QS World University Rankings, UCD was ranked as 126nd in the world.[70] The 2022 QS World University Rankings for employability and reputation rate UCD as first in Ireland and 87th in the world.[75]

The 2023 Times Higher Education World University Rankings placed UCD in the range of 201–250.[72] It also ranked it 101–200th in the 2022 Impact Rankings.[72]

The QS Subject Ranking: Veterinary Science, 2018 ranked UCD 24th globally and first in Ireland.[76]

The 2023 U.S. News & World Report ranked UCD as the second best university in Ireland and 236th globally.[8]

UCD's Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School is ranked 22nd in the Financial Times' ranking of leading European Business Schools in 2022 and 1st in Ireland.[77]

UCD was The Sunday Times University of the Year 2006 and 2020.[78]

Research and innovation

UCD had a research income of €155.7 million during 2021/22.[79]

The School of Physics hosts research groups in Astrophysics, space science and relativity theory (members of the VERITAS[80] and INTEGRAL[81] experiments) and Experimental particle physics (participating in the Large Hadron Collider experiments LHCb[82] and CMS[83]).

Research institutes

The Conway Institute, Belfield campus, UCD
Front entrance, NovaUCD

Amongst the research institutes of the university are:

External collaborations

Wide partnerships in which UCD is involved include:

Current and former campus companies

The most prominent UCD-related company is the IE Domain Registry; many UCD academics continue to sit on the board of directors. UCD originally gained control of the .ie domain in the late 1980s.

The NovaUCD initiative is UCD's innovation and technology transfer centre, funded through a public-private partnership.[92] In 2004, Duolog relocated its Dublin headquarters to NovaUCD.[92]

Satellite development

The Educational Irish Research Satellite 1, or EIRSAT-1, is a 2U CubeSat under development at UCD and will be Ireland's first satellite.[citation needed]

Student life

Students' Union

Glenomena student residences, Belfield campus, UCD

Main article: University College Dublin Students' Union

The students' union in the college has been an active part of campaigns run by the National Union, USI, and has played a role in the life of the college since its foundation in 1974.

The Union has also taken stances on issues of human rights that have attracted attention in Ireland and around the world; in particular, it implemented a ban of Coca-Cola products in Student Union controlled shops on the basis of alleged human and trade union rights abuses in Colombia. This ban was overturned in 2010.[93]


UCD Student Centre 2012

UCD has over 60 sports clubs based on campus with 28 sports scholarships awarded annually.

UCD competes in the most popular Irish field sports of Gaelic Games, Hurling, Soccer and Rugby Union. UCD is the only Irish university to compete in both the major Irish leagues for rugby and soccer with University College Dublin A.F.C. and University College Dublin R.F.C. competing in the top leagues of their respective competitions. UCD GAA have won the most Sigerson Cup (Gaelic Football) whilst they have the second most Fitzgibbon Cup (hurling) wins, both the major university competitions in the sports in Ireland.

UCD sport annually compete in the Colours Match with Trinity College Dublin in a range of sports, most notably in rugby. The rugby side has won 35 of the 57 contests. UCD RFC has produced 13 British and Irish Lions as well 70 Irish Rugby International and 5 for other nations.

In 1985, UCD drew with Everton F.C. in the first round of the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, which Everton went on to win.

Other notable team sports in the college basketball side, UCD Marian, victors in the 2012 Irish Basketball Superleague.

UCD 50-metre pool

The Belfield campus is home to a wide range of sports facilities. Facilities include the National Hockey stadium (which has previously hosted the Women's Hockey World Cup Finals and the Men's Hockey European Championship Finals) and UCD Bowl a 3,000 capacity stadium used for rugby and soccer. UCD has one of the largest fitness centres in the country, squash courts, tennis courts, an indoor rifle range, over twenty sports pitches (for rugby, soccer and Gaelic games), an indoor climbing wall and two large sports halls. The Sportscenter was added to in 2012 with the competition of an Olympic-size swimming pool, a tepidarium and a revamped fitness center as part of the re-development of the UCD Student Centre.

UCD hosted the IFIUS World Interuniversity Games in October 2006.

UCD Boat Club represents the college in the sport of rowing. Crews train on the River Liffey at Islandbridge and on Poulaphouca Reservoir in Blessington, in addition to land-based training on campus. The UCD men's eight were victorious at the Henley Royal Regatta, the most prestigious global club regatta in 1974. In recent years, the club has achieved success in both ladies' and men's rowing. UCD ladies have won many National Senior Championships, most recently in 2015. As of 2023 UCD are current champions in the men's Senior 8 oar event, the most prestigious event in Irish rowing, having won this event for four consecutive years. UCD currently hold national titles also in men's Senior 4 oar and Novice 8 oar championships. Several members of the club have represented Ireland at the World Championships and Olympic Games. The club competes annually in the Gannon Cup – the colours race against Trinity College on the Liffey. The event was first contested in 1948. As of 2023, the record in the competition is 37 victories for Trinity versus 35 for UCD, with one dead heat. However, in recent years, UCD have dominated the event. UCD Ladies compete for the Corcoran cup for the colours with UCD having won 25 times to 17 by Trinity.

Leinster Rugby

Leinster Rugby's headquarters and training facility are located on campus, housing the academy, senior squad and administrative arms of the rugby club. Their facilities include an office block and a high performance facility, located next to the Institute of Sport and Health (ISH). It was completed in 2012 at a cost of 2.5 million euro. They also use UCD's pitches.


Tom Kettle, former Auditor of the Literary and Historical Society

As of 2022, UCD had more than seventy student societies,[94] including large-scale party societies such as Ag Soc, Arts Soc, Commerce and Economics Society, ISS (and its subgroup AfricaSoc), INDSoc (Indian Society) and MSoc (Malaysian Society) who have the largest student communities of Indian and Malaysian students in Ireland.[citation needed] There are also religiously interested groups such as the Christian Union, the Islamic Society, the Atheist and Secular Society, a television station Campus Television Network, academic-oriented societies like the Economic Society, UCD Philosophy Society, Mathsoc, Classical Society, and An Cumann Gaelach, an Irish-language society and such charities as St. Vincent de Paul, UCDSVP. There are two main societies for international students, ESN UCD (part of the Erasmus Student Network) and the International Student's Society. The UCD Dramsoc is the university's drama society.

Chris O'Dowd former member of UCD Dramsoc

The oldest societies include the Literary and Historical Society (known as the L&H and which dates itself to 1855), the Commerce & Economics Society (in its 110th session as of 2022),[95] and the Law Society (founded in 1911).[96] At the start of the 2012/13 Academic Year, the L&H had a membership of 5,143 becoming the largest student society in UCD and in Europe.[97]

The Commerce & Economics Society, which describes itself as "Ireland's largest and oldest business orientated university society", was originally a debating society.[95] By 1999 it was, according to an article in the Irish Times, the "largest college society in UCD, Ireland and the British Isles".[98] The society runs a number of events, including the formal black-tie 'Comm Ball', as well as mock interviews and networking events.[95] Its notable former auditors and members include ex-Taoisigh Charles Haughey[99] and Garret FitzGerald.[95]

In competitive debating, the L&H and Law Society have represented the college several times, with the L&H securing 11 team wins and 12 individual wins in the Irish Times Debate and the Law Society achieving 2 team wins and 2 individual wins. The two societies have also been successful at the UK and Ireland John Smith Memorial Mace (formerly The Observer Mace) with the L&H winning 5 titles and Law Society 2 titles. UCD has hosted the World University Debating Championships twice, including the 2006 event.[100]

A number of UCD societies engage in voluntary work on-campus and across Dublin. For example, the UCD Student Legal Service is a student-run society that provides free legal information clinics to the students of UCD.[101]

Irish political parties are also represented on campus, with chapters of Ógra Fianna Fáil, Young Fine Gael, Ógra Shinn Féin, the Young Greens, the Social Democrats, People Before Profit and Labour Youth.[citation needed] UCD's "flagship instrumental ensemble", the University College Dublin Symphony Orchestra, was celebrating its 20th anniversary season as of 2022/2023.[102]

Student publications and media


UCD has two student newspapers currently published on campus, the broadsheet University Observer and the tabloid College Tribune

The University Observer

The University Observer has won several awards, including five "newspaper of the year" awards at Ireland's National Student Media Awards.[103] Founded in 1994, its first editors were Pat Leahy and comedian Dara Ó Briain.[104][105] Several figures in Irish journalism have held the position of editor including The Irish Times political editor Pat Leahy, RTÉ News reporter Samantha Libreri, and Virgin Media News political correspondent Gavan Reilly.[104] In 2001, in addition to several Irish National Student Media Awards, the University Observer took the runner up prize for "Best Publication" at the Guardian Student Media Awards in London.[citation needed]

The main sections within the paper are campus, national and international news, comment, opinion and sport. Each issue is also accompanied by an arts and culture supplement called O-Two, with music interviews, travel, fashion and colour pieces.[citation needed]

College Tribune

The College Tribune was founded in 1989, with the assistance of political commentator Vincent Browne. Then an evening student at UCD, Browne noted the lack of an independent media outlet for students and staff and set about establishing a student newspaper. The paper was initially established with links to the Sunday Tribune, though over time these links faded and ultimately, the Tribune would outlast its national counterpart. The paper supports itself financially through commercial advertising in its print edition, and maintains editorial independence from both university authorities and the Students' Union.[citation needed] The Tribune has been recognised on a number of occasions at the National Student Media Awards, and won Student Newspaper of the Year at the 1996 USI & Irish Independent Media Awards.[citation needed]

College Tribune sections include news, sport, features, arts, film and entertainment, music, fashion, business, and politics & innovation. It also has an arts culture supplement, The Trib, and a satirical 'paper within a paper', The Evil Gerald.[citation needed]

Radio and television

UCD also has a student radio station, Belfield FM, broadcasting throughout the academic year online on the station's website. The station is independently run by the UCD Broadcasting Society and has produced well known Irish radio presenters such as Ryan Tubridy and Rick O'Shea (of RTÉ fame) and Barry Dunne of 98FM. Belfield FM is the successor to UCD FM, which was operated within the entertainment office of the students' union as a service for students. Initially launched in 1992, the station rebranded in 2000 and has operated since then under the current name. As a result of the implementation of the students' union's new constitution at the beginning of the 2012 / 2013 academic year, the station now operates as a student society.[106]

UCD scarf colours

Main article: Academic scarf § University College Dublin

In later years,[when?] students have been given a scarf of St Patrick's blue, navy and saffron at the President's Welcome Ceremony when they are officially welcomed. These colours have replaced "Faculty" colours and are now worn at graduation also.[107]

Notable people

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Main article: List of University College Dublin people

Former presidents of Ireland

Former Taoisigh (Prime Ministers) of Ireland

Contemporary politicians and current members of Cabinet

International affairs

In International affairs UCD's alumni include:

Seven of Ireland's former European Commissioners are alumni.

Irish revolutionaries Pádraig Pearse and Thomas MacDonagh, two of the leaders of the Easter Rising and signatories of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic were, respectively, a student and member of faculty at the university. As well as former president Douglas Hyde and Pádraig Pearse, UCD Professor Eóin MacNeill had a key role in the Gaelic revival in Ireland.

Since the foundation of the Irish state in 1922, UCD has produced the largest number of Justices of the Supreme Court of Ireland, the largest number of Chief Justices and the largest number of Attorneys General of Ireland of any Irish institution of higher education. Alumna Síofra O'Leary is Judge at the European Court of Human Rights and three of the six current justices of the Supreme Court are UCD alumni.


In 2008, Tony Holohan was appointed Chief Medical Officer for Ireland.

In 2010, UCD School of Medicine graduate and cardiothoracic surgeon Eilis McGovern was elected 168th President of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and thereby became the first female President of any surgical Royal College in the world.

Writers and artists

Notable writers include James Joyce, Kate O'Brien, Austin Clarke, Benedict Kiely, Pearse Hutchinson, Thomas Kinsella, John Jordan, John McGahern, Paul Lynch and Hugh McFadden. Dee Forbes, Director General RTÉ and Miriam O'Callaghan, presenter of RTÉ's leading current affairs show, Prime Time, are alumni, as are comedians Dermot Morgan (1952–1998) and Dara Ó Briain who were major figures in the university's debating scene for many years.


UCD has produced a number of notable athletes, including in field sports such as Gaelic games and rugby union. Many played within the university's club sides such as Brian O'Driscoll who played for University College Dublin R.F.C. The club has produced numerous British and Irish Lions including O'Driscoll, with several others attending as students. Notable GAA athletes include Rena Buckley, one of the most decorated players in GAA history, having won a total of 17 All-Ireland senior medals; Seán Murphy, a medical school graduate and member of the Gaelic Football Team of the Millennium; and Nicky Rackard, included in the Hurling Team of the Century. Kevin Moran, formerly a Gaelic football but also a soccer player for Manchester United, graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce in 1976. Alumni include Ireland's fastest man Israel Olatunde.[109]


Alumni involved in business include:

Religious figures

A number of catholic religious figures studied or played significant roles at UCD, including Cardinals Tomás Ó Fiaich and Desmond Connell, as well as the founding rector Cardinal Newman. Clerical students from Clonliffe College, All Hallows College, St. Joseph's, Blackrock (Vincentians), the Holy Ghost Fathers (Spiritans) in Blackrock College and Kimmage Manor, St. Mary's Priory (Dominicans) and the Jesuit Milltown Park (and Rathfarnham Castle) would have studied for degrees at UCD while studying theology in their seminaries, as theology prohibited by the Royal University and National University of Ireland until 1996.

Amongst the number of humanitarians to attend are John O'Shea founder of GOAL and Tom Arnold the CEO of Concern Worldwide.

Former faculty include Dennis Jennings of the School of Computing, considered to be an Internet pioneer for his leadership of NSFNET, the network that became the Internet backbone. Other notable faculty include Patrick Lynch, logician and philosopher Jan Łukasiewicz, Professor of Science and Society James Heckman who won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 2000, and geotechnical engineer Éamon Hanrahan.[110]

In popular culture

In literature

James Joyce's novel A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man is partially set in UCD (when it was sited on Earlsfort Terrace) where Stephen Dedalus (now the name of the IT building) is enrolled as a student. Joyce's posthumously published autobiographical novel Stephen Hero contains stories of his time in UCD. Flann O'Brien's novel At Swim-Two-Birds features a UCD student who writes a meta-novel wherein the author is put on trial by the characters of his novel. Maeve Binchy's novel, Circle of Friends, deals with three female friends starting college in UCD in the 1950s. However, shots of Trinity College were used in the 1995 film. The second Ross O'Carroll-Kelly novel, The Teenage Dirtbag Years, follows the titular character as he enters UCD.

In music and film

Christy Moore wrote a tongue in cheek song about UCD's Literary and Historical Society called "The Auditor of the L and H".[citation needed]

Conor McPherson's third film Saltwater was filmed in Belfield, UCD.[citation needed] In Boston Legal, Season 2, Episode 21 "Word Salad Day", there is a reference to a fictional study from University College Dublin that "found that the effects of divorce on children are far more damaging than the death of a parent".[111]

See also


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