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Board of Irish Colleges and Societies awards event will be a first for Belfast

Students from all over Ireland will be flocking to Belfast next month for the annual Board of Irish Colleges and Societies (BICS) Awards.

It is the first time the event has been held in Northern Ireland in its 19-year history.

Building on the ongoing GAA Festival at Queen’s, which has seen thousands of students from across the UK and Ireland congregate in Belfast, the BICS showcase at Titanic Belfast on April 10 will host upwards of 400 students and 60 judges from all over Ireland.

Last year at the BICS Awards in Athlone, Co Westmeath, Queen’s scooped the top prize of the night — that of overall Best Student Society, which was won by SWOT.

The charity, run by fourth-year medical students at Queen’s aims to raise money for hospitals in the developing world and to buy much-needed medical supplies and equipment for the same.

Queen’s currently has 125 societies with approximately 8,000 members.

There are approximately 2,000 societies with more than 100,000 students and associate members across the island of Ireland.

David Bradley, clubs and societies co-ordinator at Queen’s who is also this year’s BICS chairman, said: “Queen’s University not only aims to make this a successful event, but to add the ‘wow factor’ and to change people’s perceptions of Belfast by showcasing the city at its best.

“Queen’s aims to host the best BICS Awards to date and provide a positive experience of Belfast, and the university, that will have delegates returning to visit in the future as well as making an impression on potential post-graduate students.

“Our view is that if we are going to be hosts, then we need to ensure that they are the best BICS Awards to date and our rivals need to live up to the legacy of our awards in 2014.”

The BICS Awards recognise excellence in student societies in colleges and universities.

For more information on the event see www.bics.ie

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