WITSWORDS December  2015
December 2015

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WITS Update

Welcome to WITSWORDS December 2015.
Happy Christmas and best wishes for 2016. 


WITS AGM 5 December 2015

5 December WITS 2015 AGM at the Science Gallery. 
Thanks to all who came to the AGM. We had a lot to report for 2015 and an overview of the year will be sent to members with your membership renewal. It was a most enjoyable meeting, thanks to all  for the feedback and discussion. It was such a busy meeting we didn't get to the Women in STEM report 2015. We plan to put it on the WITS website.

The new Executive for 2016 is: Marion Palmer Chair, Mary Carroll Vice-Chair, Julie Hogan Secretary, Marie Barrett Treasurer, Jaine Blayney, Vicky Twomey Lee, Eithne McCabe, Laura Tobin, Maria Delaney and our three new members Lara Cutlar, Lisa Cavern and Kate Reidy. Watch out for the photos and bios on the WITS website.

Thanks to Hilda Martin and Andreea Wade who stepped down from the WTIS Executive. The meeting also thanked Triona O'Connell who stepped down in October 2015. A gift of thanks was presented to Hilda Martin for her work as Treasurer.

New Honorary Member
By acclaim Professor Dervilla Donnelly became a WITS Honorary member at the AGM. Dervilla is Professor of Chemistry and Chair of the Foundation of Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies. A WITS member since 1990 Dervillla was the WITS 2011 Lifetime Achievement Award winner, and was a member of the WITS Panel at the Inspirefest2015 fringe. WITS is delighted to honour and thank Dervilla for her contribution to WITS over the last 25 years. Professor Dervilla Donnelly joins Jane Hanly and Kitty Kelly as a WITS Honorary Member.

National Committee for Commemorative Plaques for Science and Technology
Caitriona Lambert has stepped down as the WITS member on the
National Committee for Commemorative Plaques for Science and Technology. At the AGM Caitriona's long service was noted and she were thanked unanimously by the meeting.  WITS appreciates all the passion and hard work she brought to the project and her many years of service. There are plaques to our 'scientific grandmothers' where there should be thanks to Caitriona and the National Plaques Committee. Rebecca O'Neill is taking over as the WITS member on the Committee, thank you Rebecca.

WITS Corporate Members 2015
The AGM thanked our 2015 corporate members ESB, Silicon Republic, The Science Gallery and Growth Potential for their membership and support. We look forward to working with them in 2016.



Launch of Successor to Strategy for Science, Technology and Innovation
The new strategy for science, technology and iinnovation Innovation2020 was launched by An Taoiseach at the Innovation EXPO in the Convention Centre in Dublin on 8 December.  WITS members Catriona Ward, Ena Prosser and Megan Prado attended.

Maria Delaney chair of the WITS Policy Sub-committee has reviewed the policy and notes that it
has one specific gender equality action as shown. WITS will be reviewing the policy in January 2016.

Making tech news and EU Digital Girl of the Year
Congratulations to Niamh Scanlon who at the age of 13 is one of Silicon Republic's 20 top tech newsmakers, she is #4 on the list. Niamh was named as the EU Digital Girl of the Year on 14 December. Niamh tweets at
@niamhscanlonirl. Niamh is one to follow.


Ada Lovelace Initiative
Congratulations to Verify recruitment for the Ada Lovelace Initiative that connects industry professionals with Transition Year students. The initiative aims to enable girls to meet women working in STEM and to support them to choose careers in technology.  Since September 2015 over 100 role models have visited 2000 students in 10 counties, a great achievement. For more click on the link or watch this video.

FACE Entrepreneurship

FACE Entrepreneurship is a project  funded by the European Commission under the Horizon 2020  to encourage ICT entrepreneurship among young Europeans. Click on the link to find out more. There is an event in Dublin on 21 January 2016. Register on the site to become a FACE Entrepreneur, take part in the stories and attend the event.

Gender news

NWCI #FemFest and the Feminist Pledge 
Congratulations to the National Women's Council for #FemFest on 3 December. The event was for women aged 16-24 and participants signed the Feminist Pledge. It's great to see women in STEM as part of the pledge. You might enjoy the video created by the participants here. 

Inspirefest2016 update
Great to see Brenda Romero among the Inspirefest2016 speakers. She is an amazing games developer and well worth hearing.  #inspirefest2016.

Membership 2016

WITS membership is now due for 2016. Membership fees for 2016 will remain the same as for 2015. Renew your membership here.
Membership is:
  • €40 for ordinary members. 
  • €25 for new members.
  • €15 for retired, unemployed and students (voting members).
  • €0 for student affiliate members.
We will be sending renewal emails this week. Your membership fee supports WITS activities and our free student affiliate membership. Thank you for your support this year.

Members' News

Thanks Coleen Griffin WITS Galway member for the following events in Galway that may interest members.
  • 14 January. Women in Tech, Galway Meetup click here for information.
  • 15, 16 January. Google for Education, NUI Galway, and Lero Institute are hosting a 2 day hands-on Information Systems Innovation Workshop for 50 female TY students in Galway schools. Working in teams and supported by a mentor the students will design and build a prototype of a mobile app. For the programme and information contact  Ann O'Brien,
We welcome news and profiles from members. If you have events, initiatives or just something you think of interest to WITS members please email WITS and we'll include it in the next newsletter.
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