The creation of Ireland’s new Munster Technology University (MTU), has been hailed for both the education sector and the economy.

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The creation of Ireland’s newest university, Munster Technology University (MTU), has been hailed as a historic development for both the education sector and the economy.

MTU is formally created today through the merger of Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) and Institute of Technology Tralee (ITT).

The new university will boast six campus facilities across Cork and Kerry and almost 20,000 students.

It aims to develop and expand already deep ties between both Cork and Kerry facilities and high-tech industries in the engineering, IT and pharmaceutical-biotech areas.

Higher Education Minister Simon Harris said the creation of Ireland’s second technology university – after Technological University Dublin opened on January 1, 2019 – was a landmark event.

“The establishment of only the second technological university in the State, the first outside the capital, is another important milestone for higher education in Ireland and, in particular, for the south west,” he said.

“From today MTU will start its journey and drive access, excellence, and regional development. It will strengthen the links with businesses, all of which will greatly enrich and enhance the south-west region,” he added.

It represents Kerry’s first university and the first created in Cork since 1845.

MTU Governing Body member Bob Savage said everyone was aware of the importance of the venture.

“MTU has the potential to be groundbreaking for the south-west region by providing a new, flexible teaching and learning framework to students that is informed by research and offers opportunities for students to pursue diverse programmes across the range of levels.”

New MTU president Professor Maggie Cusack said it was an exciting day for Ireland and for the south-west region.

“This is an auspicious day for the region with the formation of MTU that will benefit students, staff, and stakeholders for generations,” she said.

The Cork and Kerry colleges boast a total of six campuses and the proposal to merge them to create a university was first mooted in 2009.

CIT had 17,000 full and part-time students, while ITT had almost 4,000.

Originally Published at Independent