Saturday, May 17, 2008


I thought that I would show you a glimpse of the place that I am working....University College Cork.
I work as an examinations invigilator...well someone has to do it!!

The photos were all taken with my camera phone so don't expect too much.
the University was founded in 1845 and was called Queens University part of Queens University Ireland until 1908. It is now a constituent College of The National University of Ireland.
The campus with its Tudor Gothic Quadrangle has to be on of the most beautiful places to learn that I have ever seen.

The lawn is cut into 4 sections by paths but rarely do you see anybody walking along the. To do so is said to be bad in failing ones exams!! The one time that they are used is on graduation day when the graduands walk along them in their gowns to the ceremony.

Lots more buildings joined the quad as the university expanded, some architecturally uninspiring but more recent ones compliment the quad and are architectually stunning I think.

This is the new students union building. I often supervise in the De Vere Hall at the top of the building used also nowadays for graduation ceremonies as the Aula Maxima can no longer cope with the numbers.

There are two cafes on the ground and first floors and looking out from the upper one you can see the new building the O'Rahilly Building housing the language departments.

This new area with it's circular amphitheatre incorporates another old building the Honan Chapel

Built in 1916 and named after the Honan family it has the most stunning mosaic floor

and stained glass windows by Harry Clarke.

There is frequently a wedding to be seen from the cafe on a well earned coffee break. Nowadays both bride and groom have to be graduates of UCC. I had thought my daughter might get married here but they opted for the College Chapel at University College Galway...see the very beginning of this blog!

This week I was suprised to see crocodile files of primary school children walking round the campus. Nothing suprising in that except that they were all wearing gowns, an academic experience very reminiscent of Hogwarts. I am sure the kids loved it.

Strange because this academic experience is not as true as it used to be as gradualtes don't see a gown until the day that they graduate and rarely own one.

In my another life in another University we had to buy an undergraduate gown, very plain..hard wearing material and not at all fancy.
Those in halls of residence had to wear the gown for meals but for me the only time I wore it was for the lectures of a certain Professor who insisted on was rather nice really except when you forgot to bring it and were turfed out of the lecture!!

My gown has come in handy on several occasions tho'. I used to have a flair for dressing my children up for the local fancy dress competition and this is what I dressed my daughter in when she was tiny. Shortened the gown to fit and made pipe cleaner spectacles and a papier mache mortar board. Complete with degree certificate and a copy of one of her dad's books .. she was following in father's footsteps!

Little did I know she would almost equal her dad (still one degree behind him!) and finally graduate with a PhD leaving her black gowns behind.

This is her dad at his D.Sc conferring in his glitzy gown,

'twas the only one of his conferrings that he ever attended and he did that only to please his mum and dad who were so proud of him ( we were too!!)
Now isn't he just something!!

Oh, and I did dress my son up once as a smurf..his favorite..good job that wasn't prophetic and he didn't turn blue and end up as one!