July 5, 2004
(Innovation, Trade and Rural Development)
Premier Williams exchanges ideas, builds relationships on mission to Ireland
Today, Danny Williams, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, visited the Centre for Newfoundland and Labrador Studies in Waterford and was the recipient of an Honorary Fellowship from the Waterford Institute of Technology.
"The City of Waterford, Ireland is twinned with the city of St. John’s, and we see tangible results of this partnership through the collaborative relationships between our educational institutes," said Premier Williams. "The Waterford Institute of Technology’s School of Business has recently signed an agreement with the Faculty of Business at Memorial University of Newfoundland for a student exchange program. This will provide a means for studying Ireland’s recent economic growth, and will facilitate an exchange of business and economic development ideas."
Waterford is the cultural, economic, educational, technological and industrial capital of the South East region of Ireland and also the principal port and shipping centre for goods to Europe. It is famous for the manufacture of Waterford crystal.
The Waterford Institute of Technology’s Centre for Newfoundland and Labrador Studies was established in 2002 to develop and sustain a vibrant learning community between Ireland and Newfoundland and Labrador, with particular emphasis on cultural, social, commercial, technological and scientific exchanges.
The Waterford Institute bestowed an Honorary Fellowship on the premier in recognition of the tremendous historical and cultural ties between the Waterford area and the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador.
The premier was honoured to have the Honourary Fellowship conferred upon him. "I am deeply touched and humbled to be receiving this Honorary Fellowship Award today. I accept this honour on behalf of the people of Newfoundland and Labrador and dedicate it to the great things that we are going to accomplish together."
Premier Williams also visited the Waterford Museum of Treasures housed in a six-storey 19th century granary which opened a Newfoundland and Labrador exhibit on June 3, 2004. The exhibit contains photos of the province, a silver urn that belonged to Bishop O’Donnell, the first Catholic Bishop of Newfoundland, and a painting of Newfoundland-born Thomas Maher who moved to Ireland and became mayor of Waterford in 1843, the only North American born mayor of the city.
"While many people know of the great exodus of Irish people to the United States, what this exhibition points out is that the biggest migration from Ireland in the late eighteenth century to a single place was from the southeast of Ireland through Waterford to Newfoundland and Labrador," says Premier Williams. "It is obvious from this exhibit that Waterford and our province are closely historically tied. I am pleased that we are able to renew those ties."
2004 07 05 1:45 p.m.