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04 April 2011
The University has secured two of the first fully-funded Welsh medium academic posts set up by the newly established Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol to provide new opportunities for students to study through the medium of Welsh.
Created through the Coleg’s Academic Staffing Scheme the five-year posts will be based in the School of Mathematics and Cardiff Law School. The post holders will be responsible for teaching and developing Welsh medium provision within their respective subject areas.
The School of Mathematics post will specifically address the need for a better supply of highly trained Welsh medium mathematics teachers for the secondary education sector in Wales. The School will develop a new module, the first of its kind, to inspire and enthuse bright mathematics graduates from Cardiff to consider careers in Welsh medium mathematics teaching.
It is also envisaged that collaboration with other institutions in the south east regional sector, specialising in mathematics education, will play a strong part in delivering this objective.
The University is part of a national programme of universities developing Welsh medium provision with support from the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol funding schemes. The University’s Pro Vice Chancellor for International and Engagement, Professor Hywel Thomas has recently been appointed to the Coleg’s Board of Directors and Dr Hefin Jones from the School of Biosciences is also on the Board representing academic staff.
Professor Hywel Thomas said: "We are pleased to be among the first to play a key role in supporting staff and students’ study through the Welsh language. In line with the Welsh Assembly Government’s priorities in For our Future, these new posts will enable both schools to offer high quality provision and develop more modules through the medium of Welsh, as well as contribute to promote the Welsh language within their subject areas and across the University. We aim to encourage other Schools to apply for more of these academic posts in the future, in order to develop our Welsh medium provision."
Steffan Lewis from Cardiff Law School received a Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol scholarship to study a module through the medium of Welsh as part of his Law degree. He said: "Studying through the medium of Welsh increases my employability. The best thing about the scholarship is the work experience we are given in the second year in law firms so we get some experience of working through the medium of Welsh."
Manon George, tutor in Public Law through the medium of Welsh at Cardiff Law School, said: "This will embed the provision of Law modules being taught in Welsh which had been started in 2009. It will enable us to increase and improve valuable skills which are now fundamental for young professionals in Wales."
The Academic Staffing Scheme provides funding to higher education institutions in Wales to employ academic staff and to foster world-class lecturers who are known for innovation and excellence in teaching and research. Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol is providing £1M annually for a period of five years in the first place to support Welsh medium academic posts. It is anticipated that this scheme will provide over 100 Welsh medium academic posts by the 2015-16 academic year.
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