The National Forum recently welcomed two new members to the team, Brian Gormley (seconded from TU Dublin) and Caitriona McGrattan (seconded from Maynooth University). Caitriona and Brian will work closely with the National Forum’s new Student Associate Intern, Katie Deegan, to progress key student success actions outlined in the National Forum Strategy 2019-21. Student success is central among the National Forum’s four key strategic priorities.
The National Forum has always been committed to the promotion of quality educational experience for all students and its student success focus builds on scoping work conducted in partnership with the HEA in the context of the National Plan for Equity of Access to Higher Education 2015-19. The previous National Forum Student Success Lead, Lee O’Farrell, supported institutions across the country in their strategic engagement with data to enable student success. Further, a national review of student perspectives, institutional and national policies, and related literature, was conducted in 2019, resulting in Ireland’s first national understanding of student success and an overview of the factors that enable it in Irish higher education.
Key enablers of student success, such as student partnership and engagement, the professional development of those who teach, assessment practices, policies, evidence-based decisions, and successful transitions are not possible without enhanced teaching and learning structures and practices at local and national level. Brian and Caitriona will now collaborate to support institutions in the development and implementation of strategies for student success. The success of upcoming student success developments will also rely on continued partnership with policy partners, institutions across the sector and with those involved in important related national initiatives such as StudentSurvey.ie and the National Student Engagement Programme.
We extend a warm welcome to Caitriona and Brian and look forward to seeing the valuable contribution they make to the higher education community.