Fionnbharr Brady named Queen's University student of the year
QUEEN'S University Belfast has honoured a graduate for his contribution to student life and his role as an engineering volunteer.
Fionnbharr Brady from Newry, who achieved a MEng in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, was named winner of the Queen's Student of the Year Award.
Now in its twentieth year, it recognises exceptional students for excellence, achievement or service either to the university or wider community.
Fionnbharr was nominated by his friend and fellow Queen's graduate Colm Kelly.
In his submission Colm said: "I have lived with Fionnbharr for the past few years and watched as he balanced his master's degree with starting up the award-winning Queen's Robotics Society.
"He started the society almost three years ago. As president he led it to secure funding from Queen's Annual Fund and to go on to win most improved society in its first year."
In the past 12 months, Fionnbharr helped the society secure more than £6,000 from external companies. He also organised the first ever Northern Ireland Robotics League – a hugely successful competition between Queen's and Ulster University.
The Robotics Society was awarded the Best Academic Society in the Students' Union Awards.
Fionnbharr has represented Queen's at the British Junior Rowing Championships, volunteered with the international student exchange organisation to rebuild homes for earthquake victims in Laprak Village in Nepal and served as an ambassador at events for prospective engineering students.
"I am delighted and truly humbled to have been selected as student of the year. I've really enjoyed my time at Queen's. Getting involved with university life and giving back to others is hugely fulfilling," he said.
"Queen's has equipped me with a broad range of skills, not to mention an excellent engineering education, which I hope will stand me in good stead in my future career."
Fergal McFerran, President of the Queen's Graduates' Association said Fionnbharr was a highly driven and motivated individual and "someone who is widely respected by his fellow students and university colleagues".
"For his tenacity and commitment to the Robotics Society and his service to others he richly deserves recognition this year," he added.