World Youth Skills Day 2020 – Generation COVID-19 Irish University Students Supporting the Most Vulnerable in our Communities

Irish University Students Supporting the Most Vulnerable in our Communities

The current health crisis, COVID-19, has shone a light on the civic spirit and hands-on approach of our third-level students to help fight the pandemic. It has had a profound impact on the student learning experience, many of whom have headed straight to the frontline to save lives, support statistical modelling, or contact trace. Students have, and are still responding with courage, agility and resilience.

Today, on World Youth Skills Day Campus Engage responds to their civic actions by documenting some of the innovative and creative approaches of students, putting their twenty-first century skills into practice in their communities. Collating these stories is important in terms of recognising their achievements, and the social and economic value of workplace ready skills gained through higher education – particularly when applied in times of crisis.

Skills and jobs for youth are a key feature in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and UN Sustainable Development Goals. Target 4.4 specifically calls for a substantial increase in the number of youth and adults who have access to pathways to acquire relevant skills. In the current context of significant future economic uncertainty, Campus Engage advocates that the new Department of Further and Higher Education invest in creative solutions for students to transition to the work place.

Some of the students putting their skills to use during the pandemic include:

Máiréad Cleary, Journalism and Digital Communications, University of Limerick

Jacques Kinane, Business Information Systems, UCC

Orlaith Lyons, Speech and Language Therapy, NUI Galway

Rory Holohan, Medicine, University College Cork

Chloe O’Malley, Social Science, Community and Youth Work, Maynooth University

Medb O’Keane, Physiotherapy, University College Dublin

Alice Dunne, Midwifery, University College Dublin


For further information please contact Kate Morris, Campus Engage National Coordinator, 01 6764948