Shannon College of Hotel Management, University of Galway
Shannon College of Hotel Management (Shannon College) was founded in 1951 by Dr Brendan O’Regan, who saw Ireland’s tourism opportunity and the role that well trained and educated Hotel Managers would play in developing it. Dr O’Regan was an expert in and lobbyist for regional development and almost singlehandedly developed the Shannon Tax Free Industrial Region. He asked for Government support to found a hotel school but was refused. He was told by a senior official: ‘that there were not enough jobs in Ireland for 12 qualified Hotel Managers’. Despite this, he decided to start a School of Hotel Management. Soon Shannon College graduates were making a major contribution to the development of the Irish Hotel and Tourism Industry and they were also making their mark internationally. Proprietors, General Managers, Managing Directors, Tourism Planners, Restaurateurs, Educationalists, Chairmen of Professional Organisations – all graduates of Shannon College. ‘Time and time again in my travels I have met people who have reflected on the story of Shannon College. I have heard it spoken of in so many diverse places with deep respect and every time its name has been mentioned, I have felt that lovely glow of pride that comes from being associated with something so highly respected.’ – Former President of Ireland, Mary McAleese speaking at the 50th Anniversary celebration of the College.
Shannon College, since its founding in 1951, has progressed from being a small private college to a School of a top 2% worldwide university. In 2015 , Shannon College amalgamated with the University of Galway and became one of the three Schools of the University’s College of Business, Public Policy and Law.