The Department of Sustainable Biomaterials welcomed its first intern from the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT) in Letterfrack, Ireland. Muiris O’Sullivan spent the spring semester in Blacksburg as part of GMIT’s on-the-job placement for its third-year students. The college established a partnership with GMIT — home to Ireland’s leading furniture and woodworking design program and one of the top programs in Europe — that facilitates the exchange of students and faculty as well as collaboration on research projects and distance learning modules.

O’Sullivan worked with Professors Joe Loferski and Earl Kline as well as woodshop manager David Jones, teaching students in the Introduction to Wood Design and Craftsmanship course woodworking techniques and the safe use of equipment while helping them design and complete their projects. He also lent his wood manufacturing expertise to the students in the Wood Enterprise Institute.

“We are extremely pleased to further our relationship with GMIT-Letterfrack by hosting Muiris O’Sullivan,” said Professor Robert Bush, who arranged the placement and advised O’Sullivan. “Muiris made wonderful contributions to our program and we hope that he is the first of many GMIT student placements with the department. I am looking forward to working with Muiris again when our third study abroad class visits GMIT in spring 2013.”