December 6, 2015

Thurles Sports Person of the Year – Gemma Dunican

Congratulations to Leaving Certificate student Gemma Dunican who was awarded Thurles Sports Person of the Year for her achievements in Rugby. Gemma was first introduced to rugby in Rahealty National School. She later joined Thurles Rugby Club and has played for them at various grades. She has played U18 for Munster since she was 15. Gemma plays on the Ireland U18 7’s being selected to take her place out of 800 girls who attended trials. Gemma got her first International cap for Ireland playing against Italy helping the Irish Girls to come away with a massive win. Gemma was also on the starting side against Spain, Wales, England and Holland. Following discussions with the Ireland, Senior Women’s Coaches, the next phase of Gemma’s rugby career will see her training with the Irish Senior Women’s Team, a spectacular achievement at such a young age and indeed she deserves every success that will come her way for her talent, hard work and commitment. Well done Gemma we are immensely proud of you.

Intermediate All Ireland Club Final

We were all rooting for Leaving Certificate student Caral Casey and business studies teacher Orla Casey who played in the Ladies Football All Ireland Intermediate Club final last weekend. They togged out for their club, Cahir against Miltown from Westmeath in Parnell Park. Despite a monumental effort from the Cahir side it was not to be their day with Miltown lifting the silverware. Well done to Caral and Orla on their superb achievement in making it as far as the All Ireland Final.

Hockey Results

The Senior A’s beat their fellow Ursulines St. Angela’s from Cork on Thursday. The result was UCT 4 St. Angela’s 0.

The Senior B’s won in their Cup game against Middleton. The result was 4-0. The Minor A’s were in action against Villiers and had a great win beating them by 7 goals to nil. The Minor B’s also had a win against Villiers with an impressive final score of 6-0. The Junior A’s played Scoil Mhuire in the first round of a combined Cup/League game. The result was a 3 all draw.

Well done to all the players and coaches on their wins.


On Monday Ursuline camogie players faced for Mahon in Cork to play Coachford in the next round of the Munster Junior A cup. Leaving a very wet Thurles behind them, the day was better in Cork. However the conditions under foot were not good. Despite playing doggedly until the end UCT lost the game by a point, the final result being 2-4 to 2-5. Despite the narrow defeat on Monday Ursuline have qualified to the semi final where we meet St. Joseph’s Tulla , the same school the seniors play in their Munster semi final Senior A. On the same day our second years recorded a win over Coachford 5-2 to 2-1

Dáil na nÓg

Nicole Patan, 5th year, travelled to Dublin on Friday, 27th of November for Dáil na nÓg in Croke Park. This is a Dáil for young people organised by Comhairle na nÓg and at this recent sitting the representatives debated some of the issues that affect them. They discussed TY, subject choice, uniform and what happens in the classroom. The group voted to focus on what happens in the classroom as their topic for the coming year. Dáil na nÓg has representatives from 31 Comhairle involving 200 students from around the country. Nicole met ministers Jan O’Sullivan and James O’Reilly at the meeting in Dublin and through Dáil na nÓg has got a taste of the workings of government and what being a public representative entails.

6th Year Art Trip

On Thursday the Leaving Cert Art class headed off to Dublin to explore two of the nations galleries in preparation for their written paper in June. They were accompanied by the Art teachers Ms. Lawlor and Ms. Hackett. First on the agenda was a visit to the Hugh Lane Gallery to see the world famous Sean Scully Room. Sean Scully is one of the most distinguished and acclaimed contemporary artists working today. The 8 paintings are imposing, being over two meters in height, and hung at eye level. The next stop in the afternoon was the IMMA, Irish Museum of Modern Art. They visited several exhibitions including one entitled ‘What is Love?’ They wandered around the cobbled courtyard admiring the stunning, old building that is the Royal Hospital Kilmainham, one of the finest 17th-century buildings in Ireland. The Museum was officially opened on the 25 May 1991 by the, then Taoiseach Charles J Haughey. Attracting more than 400,000 Irish and overseas visitors each year the IMMA has proved to be a valuable and popular addition to the country’s cultural infrastructure. The students learned a lot from the trip not least to value and appreciate some of the country’s most important artistic collections.


Michael O’Sullivan came to the school to perform his one man show ‘Message from a bottle’ for 5th years and 6th years. Michael sheds light on many important social issues in a humorous way and has come to the school previously to perform a play on bullying. The play he presented to the students was about alcohol and the hazards of underage drinking. Before he began the drama he spoke to the students about alcohol and problem drinking. He informed them that one bottle of wine is the equivalent to 9 pints. He pointed out that there had been a cultural shift in people’s attitude towards drinking. In the past people would go out to have a few drinks whereas nowadays young people, in particular, drink to go out. He asked them if they had ever wondered why the age limit for drinking was 18. He informed them that it was because a persons liver is not fully formed until they are 18. So the law is in place to stop children and adolescents from doing permanent damage to this vital organ. He then he got into the character of Benny and acted out the gradual descent of this young person into alcoholism during his teenage years. The students liked his approach to the subject and his dramatisation gave them a lot of food for thought. They reflected on the play and discussed what they had learned from it in Religion classes afterwards.

Concern Debating

Last week the Ursuline Concern Debating team, composed of Aisling Brennan, Ruth Everard, Anne Spillane and Róisín Russell, faced Scoil Chríost Rí Portlaoise in their second debate. The motion debated was that “COP 21 climate agreement will succeed where other agreements have failed”. This was a most contentious topic as the conference is taking place in Paris at present and has garnered considerable media attention. The Ursuline team proposed the motion and defended their arguments eloquently and effectively. The girls had done vast research and were able to refute the opposition’s points beautifully. The motion was defeated by the Ursuline team and the girls are now preparing for their next debate in early January.

Christmas Lunchtime Fun

The lunchtime fun continued this week in the Sports hall on Thursday. UCT TV is being organised by the 5th Year student councillors to spread the spirit of Christmas and generate some laughs. We have been entertained over the past few weeks with ‘I’m a teacher, get me out of here’, teachers Blind Date and this week there was a Lip Sync battle. There were four groups who put themselves forward for this miming challenge. The songs performed were ‘Best Song Ever’ from One Direction, Tick Tock by Keisha, the Proud Mary’s was acted out by a troupe of Leaving Certs and the 5th years did a hilarious take on Jingle Bell Rock from Mean Girls complete with ‘cool mom’ directing from the aisles, just like the movie. Well done to all involved in the organisation.

Written By Nora Tuohy