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Posted 10 March 2011

AIT Researcher Hosted at Leading Canadian Laboratory

Mike Broderick full size
Mike Broderick is presented with a recognition award by AIT Registrar, Dr Joseph Ryan, at a postgraduate poster fest at the institute. Also pictured are Mike’s research supervisors, Dr Andy Fogarty (left) and Dr Neil Rowan. The award was sponsored by Sigma Aldrich Limited.

A postgraduate researcher at Athlone Institute of Technology (AIT) has visited one of the world’s foremost laboratories in aquatic monitoring of freshwater pollutants.

Mike Broderick visited Environment Canada in Montreal where he had the opportunity to observe novel research methodologies used to assess the pollution status of rivers and lakes. Professor François Gagné of Environment Canada, who is a leading authority on freshwater pollution, hosted Mr Broderick during the visit.

The recipient of a Dobbin scholarship from the Ireland Canada University Foundation (ICUF), Mr Broderick was sponsored on the research visit by Atlantic Corridor, a local development agency which focuses on international links for education and business.

Formal research links are currently being established between Environment Canada and Athlone Institute of Technology. According to Dr Andy Fogarty of the Department of Life and Physical Science at AIT, “these links will enable AIT to more accurately investigate the ecotoxicological status of the Irish rivers and lakes”.

Mike Broderick hails from Rivervillage in Athlone and is in the later stages of his MSc by research at the Bioscience Research Institute in AIT. His frontier studies focus on the development of novel electrotechnologies for the destruction of unwanted pharmaceutically active compounds in water that are not destroyed by conventional wastewater treatment plants. He has presented findings from his research at three national conferences including Environ 2010 and Irish EPA Strive 2010. His thesis is being supervised by Dr Neil Rowan and Dr Andy Fogarty in AIT, along with Dr Eoghan Clifford at NUIG.

Commenting on the scholarship, Jackie Gorman, CEO of Atlantic Corridor said: “We are delighted to support this link between AIT and a leading Canadian university with respect to such an important issue. Since 2007, Atlantic Corridor has supported a variety of students from various disciplines in research scholarships through the ICUF and we value this opportunity as a unique way to develop links between the Midlands and Canada for education and research links.”

Prior to entering AIT, Mr Broderick ran his own successful business for six years after completing his Leaving Certificate. During his undergraduate studies in toxicology at AIT, he was also a successful exchange student on the EU-US biotechnology in healthcare programme, spending five months at Daemen College, New York.

Atlantic Corridor’s mission is to develop and support international links for business and education between the Irish Midlands and its various partner regions. It is funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs Promoting Ireland Abroad Division and it works with partners in Northern Ireland, the USA and Canada. Atlantic Corridor is organising an international conference in Tullamore on Thursday 10 March on science, technology, engineering and maths. Further information about Atlantic Corridor can be found online at www.atlanticcorridor.ie.

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