Mary Immaculate College

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Mary Immaculate College, University of Limerick
Irish: Coláiste Mhuire gan Smál
Mary I crest.png
Crest of Mary Immaculate College
Latin: Collegium Mariae Immaculatae
Motto Briathar Dé Mo Lóchrann
Motto in English
The Word of God as my light
Type College of Education
Established 1898
Affiliation Roman Catholic
President Professor Eugene Wall, Acting President
Students 3,600
Address South Circular Road, Limerick, Ireland, Limerick, Ireland
Partner university University of Limerick
Colours Blue and Orange         
Nickname Mary I
Affiliations ACCU[1]

Mary Immaculate College (Irish: Coláiste Mhuire gan Smál), also known as MIC, is a College of Education and Liberal Arts. Founded in 1898, the university level College of Education and the Liberal Arts is academically linked with the University of Limerick. The College now has a student population of over 3,600, enrolled in undergraduate programmes for B.Ed and BA degrees, an innovative new Contemporary and Applied Theatre Studies programme and a range of postgraduate programmes at Diploma, MA and Ph.D level. The college has a student retention rate of 96% - one of the highest in Ireland.

Current Developments[edit]

MIC is currently undergoing one of the most industrious phases of growth and development in the history of the college with the overall student population witnessing a tenfold increase since 1992. This remarkable rate of expansion has brought with it a significant expansion and broadening of MIC’s academic provision, as well as a re-development of the campus which now offers state-of-the-art teaching, learning and research facilities as well as excellent events and conferencing facilities. MIC has recently expanded its geographical footprint following the incorporation of St. Patrick’s College in Thurles—another well-established college offering four degree programmes preparing students to become second-level teachers. As a result of the incorporation of St. Patrick’s College Thurles, MIC is now a multi-campus institution offering 9 undergraduate degree programmes in Education and the Liberal Arts, as well as a wide range of Continuing Professional Development offerings for teachers and numerous postgraduate opportunities to Masters and PhD level. More recently a consortium led by MIC was awarded the contract from the Higher Education Authority for the delivery of the National Higher Education Programme for Inclusion Coordinators in Early Years Settings.

Foundation building at Mary Immaculate College

Degree programmes[edit]

MIC offers nine undergraduate degree programmes.

MIC Limerick programmes: *Bachelor of Education (MI005, MI006) *Bachelor of Arts (MI002) *B Ed in Education and Psychology (MI008) *BA in Early Childhood Care and Education (MI007) *BA in Contemporary and Applied Theatre Studies (MI001)

MIC St Patrick's Campus, Thurles programmes: *BA in Education, Business Studies and Accounting (MI009) *BA in Education, Business Studies and religious Studies (MI010) *BA in Education, Irish and Religious Studies (MI011) *BA in Education, Irish and Business Studies (MI012)

From 2017 the College's BA in Liberal Arts will be delivered jointly with the University of Limerick with Drama &Theatre Studies, Economics, Sociology, Politics, Public Administration, Linguistics/TESOL, and Spanish now being offered.

MIC also offers a host of postgraduate programmes to doctoral level in Education and the Liberal Arts, Continuing Professional Development (CPD) courses and numerous access and inclusion pathways. To find out more visit

Student Life at MIC[edit]

The programmes on offer at MIC continue to be amongst the most highly sought-after in Ireland as the College has a long standing reputation for excellence in teaching, learning and research and is known for the high calibre of students it has attracted since its establishment over a century ago. The most distinctive aspect of student life at MIC is the emphasis that is placed on providing students with a range of supports and opportunities that correspond to their individual and diverse needs, enabling them to enjoy a rich and rounded learning experience within a relaxed, harmonious environment in which to study. The College is characterised by an informal atmosphere, friendly rapport between students and staff, concern for the individual student and a warm welcome for new students from Ireland and abroad. The college has a student retention rate of 96% - one of the highest in Ireland.

Campus Facilities and Events[edit]

As well as its excellent programme provision MIC is now recognised as one of the leading event locations in the Limerick region for meetings, seminars, conferences, shows, exhibitions and sporting events. With an attractive campus just a 10 minute walk from the city centre, Mary Immaculate College (MIC) Limerick has a rich history as well as an exciting future.The campus boasts a range of unique facilities from period rooms to modern state-of-the-art lecture theatres and conference facilities. The impressive 510-seat Lime Tree Theatre, along with an award-winning sports complex, attracts conferences from all over the country and abroad. All lecture theatres, classrooms, seminar and meeting rooms are equipped with the latest audio-visual facilities and Wi-Fi Access. There are also a number of exhibition and display spaces available to hire. In addition, its popularity as a venue is boosted by the fact the college is based on a leafy 25-acre campus, which includes a sculpture trail. It is also equipped with restaurant and catering facilities, is close to cultural and social amenities in Limerick City and beyond and it is easily accessible via public transport and from Shannon Airport.

Student composition[edit]

About 15% of students on campus are mature students, a relatively high figure when compared to other third level institutions. The College, in addition to catering for mature students, also offers special entry to disadvantaged students, students with disabilities, refugees, members of ethnic minorities and Travellers. MIC also offers Continuing Professional Development (CPD) courses and is committed to improving access to higher education for adults—a range of tailored programmes and supports that make the journey for adult learners as easy as possible.

Through its Erasmus and student exchange programmes, the College also has a vibrant overseas complement in its student body. Students come from England, Wales, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain, Nigeria, Italy, Sudan, Sweden, Finland, Latvia, Poland, Lithuania, China, United States, Indonesia, Norway, Denmark, Ghana, Zimbabwe, and Iceland.

The College has recently expand into Mount Convent, a former Sisters of Mercy convent in O'Connell Avenue in Limerick, where it houses postgraduate students.[2]

Wired FM[edit]

The College is home to a radio station, Wired FM, Limerick's only student radio station with a broadcast licence, run in partnership with another Limerick college, Limerick Institute of Technology.

Lime Tree Theatre[edit]

Mary Immaculate College is also the location of the state-of-the-art 510 seat theatre known as the Lime Tree Theatre.[3] It was officially opened on 30 October 2012.[3] The venue is host to a wide range of performances, including theatre, music, comedy, traditional arts, schools’ performances and conferences.[3] The venue is rapidly becoming a significant addition to the national cultural infrastructure and, most especially to the cultural, social and economic life of Limerick and the greater mid-west as Limerick City centre lacked a major cultural venue since the closure of the illustrious Savoy Theatre on Bedford Row and the closure of the Theatre Royal on Cecil Street.

Notable alumni[edit]

Presidents of Mary Immaculate College Since its founding in 1898 the Sisters of Mercy presided over the College up until 1999. The term principal was used for the position of head of the college in earlier years.

  • Sr. Mary Paul Quinlan (1901 -1923) first principal of the College.[7]
  • Sr. Mary Veronica (1923-19??) she served as vice-principal to Sr. Quinlan.
  • Sr. Loretto O'Connor CSM (1959-1979)
  • Sr. Cabrini Moloney (Siúr Carbiní Ni Mhaoldomhnaigh) CSM[8]
  • Sr. Angela Bulger (1988-1999)
  • Prof. Peadar Cremin (1999-2011)
  • Prof. Michael A Hayes (2011- 2017)
  • Prof. Eugene Wall (Acting President) 2017 to present

Partner institutions In addition to institutions throughout Europe, the College exchanges students and staff yearly with the following colleges and universities:


  1. ^ "ACCU Member Institutions" (PDF). ACCU. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 March 2014. 
  2. ^ Rabbitts, Nick (9 June 2014). "Expansion of Limerick's Mary Immaculate College moves closer". Limerick Leader. Retrieved 9 June 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 30 November 2012. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ Mary Immaculate Training College
  8. ^ Mary Immaculate College - Historical Perspective By Siúr Carbiní Ni Mhaoldomhnaigh, Uachtarán, Education Vol.2 No.5, 1987.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 52°39′11″N 8°38′22″W / 52.65306°N 8.63944°W / 52.65306; -8.63944