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ICSA Graduation Day

19 November 2015 by Conor Ryan

Back in the day it was said that praise from Caesar was praise indeed. The origin of the phrase goes back to the times when Caesar ruled most of the known world and therefore to be complimented by him was one the greatest honours possible. We might not have any latter day Caesars at ICSA, but we do like giving as high a praise as possible to our latest graduates in recognition of the hard work and effort put in by both graduates and members alike.

I attended my own ICSA graduation ceremony a little under ten years ago and remember just how important it was to me and my fellow graduates to have our efforts recognised by the Institute here in Ireland. Therefore I’m delighted that the latest batch of graduates is to be honoured at a graduation ceremony on 19 November at the prestigious Merrion Hotel in Dublin. The Irish Region and Northern Ireland Branch of ICSA will jointly host the ceremony for newly qualified graduates and for those members who have progressed through the ranks of the Institute by obtaining Associate or Fellowship status.

This is the first time that ICSA has run a graduation event of this type on an all-Ireland basis. I am particularly delighted that we will have in attendance both University of Ulster graduates and those graduates who have completed ICSA’s Chartered Secretary Qualifying Scheme exams (in addition to our new Associates and Fellows). Siobhan O’Neill, Chair of the Northern Ireland Branch, and I are looking forward to welcoming Simon Osborne ICSA CEO and Frank Curtiss, ICSA UKRIAT President to this event.

I am also especially pleased that our good friend and colleague, John Thompson of the University of Ulster will be in attendance. John has been a tremendous supporter of the Institute over many years, and we owe him a great deal of thanks for the many ICSA members that the University of Ulster has produced over the years.

The future of ICSA in Ireland is strong, with membership and student numbers increasing. We are looking to grow the organisation by promoting the quality of our qualifications for those working here but also highlighting the versatility and portability of the qualification to potential students who wish to travel or for people coming to work in Ireland.

I believe there has never been a more exciting time to be a chartered secretary. The role is changing, becoming more relevant, recognised and respected. We are on a journey to becoming the ‘go to’ profession for good governance both in Ireland and the UK. Finally, to those graduates and members who will take part in our event on 19 November, I would encourage them all to be vocal advocates for our profession and to become involved with their local branch. Find a voice and in doing so, we will continue to influence the governance agenda both here in Ireland and the UK.