Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT) is an institution of higher education in Limerick, Ireland and is one of 13 institutes that are members of the Institutes of Technology Ireland (IOTI). The Institute has five campuses and a learning centre across Limerick City, Tipperary and Clare. The main campus is located at Moylish Park on the north of the city and houses the School of the Built Environment, the School of Business and Humanities and the School of Science, Engineering and Information Technology. The School of Art & Design is located at the Clare Street and George's Quay campuses. The LIT Tipperary School is based in the two Tipperary Campuses, in Thurles and Clonmel. The LIT Ennis Learning Centre is based in the Museum in Ennis Town Centre.
Similar to the other institutes of technology, LIT offers courses at Level 6 (certificate) through Level 10 (Ph.D) whilst also catering for craft apprentices and adult and continuing education. The Institute was named as The Sunday Times Institute of Technology of the Year for 2008 & 2013, as published in The Sunday Times University Guide.
A series of technical colleges, to be known as Regional Technical Colleges (RTCs) was announced by the Minister for Education, Patrick Hillery in 1963 and the first of the RTCs were opened in Athlone, Carlow, Dundalk, Sligo and Waterford in 1970. A Regional Technical College for Limerick was cancelled after a National Institute for Higher Education was announced for the city in 1972.
The Limerick City Vocational Education Committee (VEC) independently planned to build Limerick Technical College and acquired land at Moylish Park to do this. The college was opened in 1975 and has since developed into the main campus of Limerick Institute of Technology. In 1980 the VEC established Limerick College of Art, Commerce and Technology (Limerick CoACT) to include the newly established Limerick School of Art and Design, the School of Professional Studies, located on O'Connell Avenue and the Limerick Technical College at Moylish Park.
CoACT finally became a Regional Technical College in 1993 and was finally upgraded to Institute of Technology status in 1997, along with the rest of the RTCs. In 1999 LIT was awarded delegated authority by the Higher Education and Training Awards Council, which allows the Institute to award its own bachelors, masters and doctorate degrees. In 2009 following a government decision, the former Tipperary Institute was integrated into LIT. It has been renamed LIT Tipperary and became the fifth school in September 2011.
The Institute has five faculties, which are known in LIT as "Schools".
- Art & Design
- Department of Design
- Department of Fine Art
- The Built Environment
- Department of Built Environment Management
- Department of Construction Engineering
- Business & Humanities
- Department of Business Management
- Department of Finance & Professional Studies
- Department of Humanities
- Science, Engineering & Information Technology
- Department of Applied Science
- Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering
- Department of Mechanical & Automobile Engineering
- Department of Information Technology
- LIT Tipperary
- Department of Business, Education & Social Science
- Department of Technology, Media & Science
The Development Office works with the Registrar and Heads of School/Department to address the widening participation agenda in the broadest sense from Level 5 to Level 10 as per the National Framework of Qualifications by piloting new initiatives and then assisting to mainstream these initiatives within LIT. The Development Office activity includes: enhancing R&D and Technology Transfer; managing relationships with second level education providers; Lifelong Learning; and liaison with enterprise and employment development agencies in the Mid-West region.
Enterprise and research
Limerick Institute of Technology engages with both established industries and start-up businesses. The Enterprise Acceleration Centre (EAC) is an incubation facility for start-up companies, with particular emphasis on export and growth-focused businesses. The centre is located on the Moylish Park campus and is 1,350 m2 with 18 self-contained units. Client companies can rent office suites and avail of management development supports, including one-to-one business coaching, peer networking and research collaboration. The centre works with enterprise support agencies, including Enterprise Ireland and County & City Enterprise Boards and is a Microsoft BizSpark Network Partner.
The Limerick Enterprise Acceleration Platform (LEAP) is an annual programme run in the EAC. It is designed to support entrepreneurs in their quest to establish sustainable businesses. The 12 month programme provides supports to ten entrepreneurs to challenge and guide them to develop an investor-ready business plan while also supporting them to win the sales that will make their business viable. LEAP is an Enterprise Platform Programme, funded by the Higher Education Authority.
The Shannon Applied Biotechnology Centre (SABC) is based on the main campus and is a joint venture between LIT and the Institute of Technology, Tralee. It provides applied scientific services to industry in the area of integrated approaches to problem solving associated with the better utilisation of natural materials and the novel bio-resources they contain.
LIT has a very strong focus on sport with hurling and rugby being the most dominant. This is hardly surprising as the main campus is located next to the world famous Thomond Park, home of Munster Rugby and only a few hundred yards from the Gaelic Grounds, home of Limerick GAA. The Institute senior hurling team captured the Fitzgibbon Cup in 2005 and 2007 and the senior rugby team captured the All-Ireland Colleges Championship in 1998, 1999 and 2005.
One of the largest sports club in the Institute is the Outdoor Club. This was founded in 2002 and runs on the philosophy "activity for all". It caters for all students/staff, past and present interested in non-competitive activities such as Hillwalking, Orienteering, Mountaineering, Canoeing/Kayaking, Rock Climbing, Windsurfing, Surfing, Caving, Sailing and Mountain Biking.
The Millennium Theatre is located at Moylish Park and is host to a variety of live entertainment, concerts, recitals, drama, comedy and dance, with a capacity of 350. It also doubles as the largest lecture theatre on the Moylish Park campus.