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McEntee presents Third Level Student Wood Awards

Shane McEntee, T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine with responsibility for forestry, presented the Wood Marketing Federation’s 3rd Level Student Wood Awards last evening at a function in Farmleigh House, Dublin.

The awards, organised by the Wood Marketing Federation, in association with Wood-ni, are supported by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine through COFORD – the National Council for Forest Research & Development. The main sponsor is Coillte while additional funding is provided by the Wood Marketing Federation, Wood-ni and the Society of Irish Foresters.  The objective is to encourage and reward architectural, engineering and design students who use wood as an inherent element in their projects.

Speaking at the presentation, the Minister of State commented, "My Department’s involvement in supporting this work stems from the need to grow the use of wood products in home and export markets. As Irish forests grow and mature, the level of wood production is set to double over the coming two decades. In this light it is important that our future architects, engineers and designers are familiar with wood products and their properties and have a knowledge on where and how to specify and use wood and wood products". Referring to the organisers of the competition, he added, "The wider efforts of the Wood Marketing Federation and Wood-ni are contributing to the development of a green and sustainable construction sector into the future."

Ten universities and institutes of technology throughout Ireland, north and south, took part in this year’s competition - the seventh Irish Third Level Student Wood Awards. Judging took place in June in NUI Galway and Queen's University Belfast after 10 colleges picked their own individual winners to go forward to the national finals in the following three categories: Architecture, Engineering in construction and Innovative use of timber in design.

The awards were presented by Minister of State McEntee with Mr. Duncan Stewart, architect and television producer, presenting an outline of the projects and their objectives on behalf of the judging panel.

In his speech, Minister of State welcomed the participation of such a wide range of third level institutions, both North and South, in the competition and acknowledged the time and effort put into each and every one of the project.  He also thanked the judging panel for their work in examining all of the submissions and selecting the winning projects.

Notes for editors

Projects were received from students of architecture, engineering and design representing the following colleges:

  • Queen’s University Belfast
  • University College Dublin
  • NUI Galway
  • University of Ulster
  • Limerick IT
  • Cork IT
  • National College of Art and Design
  • Galway-Mayo IT
  • Dublin IT
  • Waterford IT

This year, 16 entries made it to the national adjudication session with six students shortlisted for the national awards.

The awards are judged by top professionals in the fields of architecture, engineering and design. This year, in addition to Duncan Stewart, the adjudicating panel comprised Simon O’Driscoll, O’Driscoll Furniture and Des O’Toole, engineer with Coillte while the facilitator was Maurice Brooks, Director Wood-ni.

In addition to a €10,000 prize fund, the winning students receive a specially commissioned wood sculpture and certificates. Places may also be offered to some students with architectural and engineering practices as well as companies involved in timber processing, design and manufacture.

The awards are compatible with the Wood Marketing Federation mission:  to promote wood as a renewable, sustainable and versatile natural material.

Launched in 2006, the awards are now much sought after by third level students of architecture, engineering and design in Ireland who incorporate wood as an inherent element in their projects.

Award winners have gone on to pursue successful careers in wood and related businesses and have exhibited at Irish and international shows. The objective of the awards is to encourage students to explore functional, aesthetic and design aspects of wood and wood products.

Wood-ni is the only trade organisation in Northern Ireland whose purpose is to promote and encourage the greater use of wood and wood products in sustainable, construction and design.  Wood-ni's purpose is to educate the market about its products and to promote timber and wood based products to architects, specifiers and end users.  It is a marketing-led organisation representing the leading companies in the timber industry in Northern Ireland.  It organises and supports a wide range of events including the RSUA Design Awards.  Further information:


Date Released: 05 July 2012