Archive for April, 2009

The AGM and closing of the 324th Session of the University Philosophical Society…

April 29, 2009


On Thursday 29th April 2008, the society gathered for the final meeting of the 324th session – the Annual General Meeting. The first part of business was the Election Overseer’s Report (EOR), presented by HMC Joe McCaffery, detailing the results of the elections. The second piece of business was the Officers Conduct Report (OCR), presented by Vice President Declan Meehan.

As the report indicated, the 324th session has been an enormous success, one of the greatest years of the society in recent memory. For further details, see the rest of this blog…

After both reports had been read, outgoing members of council (Officers, HMCs and MCs) delivered advisory speeches to the newly elected council. The final piece of business was the exchanging of keys and office to the new council, thus closing the 324th Session.


Elections to the 325th Session…

April 27, 2009

Elections to the council of the 325th Session took place in the eventing on Tuesday the 27th of April. The elections were overseen by HMC (Ex-Librarian) Mr Joe McCaffery. The only officership contested was for the position of Steward. Nikki Wong (MC) and ordinary member Catlin Sherry both ran for the position and after a close count, Catlin Sherry was deemed elected. For MC positions there were 19 candidates. Below is a list of those elected/co-opted along with details of their future positions on the 325th council:

Hannah Cagney – Pro Librarian

Anna Cosgrave – Vice President

Hannah Cogan – Pro Debates Convenor

Cathal Dunne – Pro Treasurer

John Engle – Pro Secretary

Keith Grehan – Pro Librarian

Olivia Headon – Pro Steward

Howard Helen – Pro Registrar

Paul Logue – Pro Treasurer

Shauna Maguire – Pro Debates Convenor

Sam Mealey – Pro Schools Convenor

Eoin O’Liathan – Pro Secretary

Alanna Ni Phaidin – Pro Schools Convenor

After the elections, the society adjourned to celebrate at the Stages Head, our traditional haunt.

Nominations to the 325th Council…

April 24, 2009

Nominations for the council of the 325th session of the Phil took place at an extraordinary private business meeting on Friday the 24th of April 2009. Several candidates for the Officer postions were unopposed, and have been deemed elected: Brendan Curran (Secretary) will be President, Declan Meehan (Vice-President) will be Secretary, Sinead Waldron (MC) will be Treasurer, David Barrett will be Registrar, Kiera Healy (Registrar) will be Debates Convenor, and Dominique English (MC) will be Librarian. There is to be an election between Caitlin Sherry and Nikki Wong (MC) for the office of Steward.

Officer elections aside, there will be an election for Members of Council, where the following nineteen candidates are running.

Hannah Cagney

Anna Cosgrave

Hannah Cogan

James Doyle

Cathal Dunne

John Engle

Keith Grehan

Frank Harte

Olivia Headon

Howard Helen

Paul Logue

Shauna Maguire

Sam Mealey

Laura O’Farrell

Eoin O’Liathan

Alanna Ni Phaidin

Fergus Rattigan

Catlin Sherry

Andrea Waitz

These elections will take place on Tuesday the 28th of April, overseen by Joe McCaffrey (HMC, ex-Librarian). All Phil members not indebted to the society are eligible to vote.

Nominees for the future Phil Council, with members of the current Phil Council (including President-Elect Brendan Curran…who is about to have his legs waxed to raise money to send two Phil Teams to the European Debating Championships in the summer)

John Boyne speaks to The Phil…

April 21, 2009

John Boyne, author of ‘The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas’ made an address in the GMB on Wednesday the 21st of April. Boyne was educated at our very own Trinity College and also studied Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia, where he was awarded the Curtis Brown prize. But it was during his time at Trinity that he began to get published. To pay his way at that stage of his career, he worked at Waterstone’s on Dawson Street, typing up his drafts by night. He is the author of six novels in over 40 languages, as well as a number of short stories which have been published in various anthologies and broadcast on radio and television. The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, which to date has sold more than 5 million copies worldwide, is a #1 New York Times Bestseller and a film adaptation was released in September 2008.

We were delighted to welcome Mr Boyne to the GMB, where he spoke to an eager audience on launching a literary career, his experience writing ‘The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas’, the public reaction to the book and overseeing it’s adaptation into a film. We were also privileged to hear a reading from his soon to be published book ‘The House of Special Purpose’.

The ‘Maggies’ Grand Final…

April 15, 2009

The Phil’s largest internal debating competition, the satirically-named Margaret Thatcher Memorial, reached its climax on the Thursday the 23rd of April, when the grand final was held in the Chamber. The competition had run throughout the year, with thrice-weekly rounds taking place since January. Over 30 individual competitive rounds,  more experienced orators and novice speakers alike clashed over a number of issues. The grand final, on the topic of whether it is ever legitimate for a government to lie to its people during war, pitted the four best teams in the competition against each other. The team of Huw Duffy and Catherine Murphy eventually won the competition and were awarded the Maggies Sword. They beat off stiff competition from Anthony McDonnell and Chris Benedik, Harry McEvansoneya and Brendan Curran (Secretary), and Niall Sherry and Niamh ni Mhaoileoin. Harry was named as the best speaker in the final. Congratulations to all competitors, and to MCs Sinead Waldron and Conor Sullivan for running the competition.

The Phil wins National Student Award…

April 14, 2009

The Phil was chosen to represent Trinity College at the 2009 National Student Awards in Athlone on Wednesday 14th of April. Hosted by the Board of Irish Colleges, the awards bring together representatives from all the educational institutions of Ireland in order to recognise their efforts and endeavours in their various society activities over the previous year. The society Librarian David Adamson and former President Ruth Faller, attended the awards to represent the Phil and Trinity College in the category of ‘Event of the Year’. On the day of the awards, they were interviewed by a panel of judges and had to give a presentation detailing the event. Beforehand an extensive application had been completed and a portfolio was submitted.

The Phil won the award, defeating some impressive competition.

Congratulations and thanks go to all those who were involved in the event, and in particular to the phenominally talented Marianne Cassidy and Davey Kelleher who unfortunately could not be at the awards (as they were preparing for their next production).

The Honorary Patronage of Tom Stoppard and the Honorary Members’ Dinner…

April 8, 2009

On the 9th of April, the Phil held its Honorary Members’ Dinner, inviting former officers of the society back to the GMB to meet the members of the 324th session. The event coincided with our series of literary Honorary Patronages as part of our Great Authors initiative, so we were delighted to welcome our guest of honour, playwright Tom Stoppard (author of Rosencrantz and Guilderstern are Dead, and co-screenwriter of Shakespear in Love). The dinner, at which Mr Stoppard joined us, took place in the grand surroundings of the Kildare Street and University Club, where former and current officers enjoyed the chance to get to know each other. After a pleasant meal, we adjourned to the Chamber where former Librarians Paul Brennan and Iseult Kirwan were awarded honorary membership, and Mr Stoppard received his Honorary Patronage, addressing a huge crowd of society members on matters relating to the theatre and the philosophy thereof. After a lavish reception, members of the society retired to the Stag’s Head, our traditional haunt, to reminisce about sessions past and present. We’d like to thank Tom Stoppard and all our alumni who attended the dinner, and congratulate Registrar Kiera Healy for organising the event. We hope that the Honorary Members’ Dinner becomes an annual occasion, and will keep our members updated about future events!

Click on the image above to access the complete photogallery for the Hon Mems’ Dinner

The Phil wins College Award…

April 8, 2009

The Society of the Year awards took place on Wednesday 8th April at the Hilton Hotel. The annual event is hosted by the CSC (Central Societies Committee) of Trinity College and honours the work of societies throughout the college year.

The Phil was nominated as one of the 5 finalist in the categories of ‘Best Large Society’. This huge sucess is credited to the hard work and dedication of our council throughout the year. Phil Fresher, David Barrett was nominated as a finalist in the category of ‘Best Fresher‘ and society Librarian David Adamson was nominated as one of the 5 finalist in the category of ‘Best Individual‘.

More excitment was to come however, when the Phil won ‘Best Event’ for it’s re-enactment of The Trials of Oscar Wilde. For this great achievement the Phil was also chosen to represent Trinity College at the National Student Awards (BICS) in the category of ‘Best National Event of the Year‘.

John Banville’s visit to The Phil…

April 7, 2009

On Wednesday the 7th of April, respected Irish novelist and journalist John Banville became an Honorary Patron of the society. His novel, The Book of Evidence (1989), was shortlisted for the Booker Prize, and won the Guinness Peat Aviation award and his eighteenth novel, The Sea, won the Man Booker Prize in 2005. With a long and distingished carreer behind him, we were honoured to hear Mr Banville discuss his experience as a writer and the influences behind some of his greatest works.

The National Maidens Debating Competition…

April 3, 2009

National Maidens is the biggest novice debating competition in Ireland, where first years from all major institutions compete individually. Its location rotates each year, so every university in Ireland has a chance to host the contest. This year it came to Trinity, where it was co-hosted by the Phil and our friends in the Hist, and took place on Friday the 2nd and Saturday the 3rd of April. The Phil’s freshers performed strongly, with Andrew Linn and Shauna Maguire both reaching the semi-finals. Ultimately, the final – on the topic of microchipping individuals at birth – was won by Dearbhla O’Gorman from UCD’s Literary and Historical Society, with the runner-up prize going to UCC Philosoph’s John Beechinor. The competition was of a very high standard, and all speakers are to be congratulated!