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Students urged to bunk-up – as NUIG seeks to make room for more

NUI Galway has come in for sharp criticism this week as it unveiled a plan to lure international students to Galway – at a time when students are being forced into bunkbeds due to a critical housing shortage.

And with the university actively promoting places as far out as Oughterard, An Spidéal and Tuam for accommodation, student representatives have been left scratching their heads at the move.

In the past few days, NUIG signed an agreement with Cialfo – a Singapore-based organisation – to promote the university to students in 105 countries in Asia and elsewhere.

The signing was witnessed by the Taoiseach on a visit to Singapore and commits both organisations to selling NUIG to students across South East Asia, China, India and beyond for a period of 13 months.

This comes as one of the major student-specific accommodation providers in Galway has written to students who had booked single-occupancy rooms to inform them they either must accept a ‘twin or bunk’ room, or face losing their place.

In correspondence seen by the Connacht Tribune, the provider based in the city states it is doing so to “satisfy the current demand as best we can”.

Postgraduate student representative on the NUIG Governing Authority, Criodán Ó Murchú, said this week that he was “astounded by the gall” of the university seeking additional international students when there was already an endemic accommodation shortage.

“The issue here is that the university will never say no to more students if they have the teaching capacity and the space on campus – because they want the money. But they seem to have no consideration for the students’ lives and the impact it has on the city,” said Mr Ó Murchú.

Get the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or you can download the digital edition from You can also download our Connacht Tribune App from Apple’s App Store or get the Android Version from Google Play.

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