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HCI Pillar 3 Mid-term evaluation report exceeds targets

Shauna Kelly

On 29th June, the Higher Education Authority (HEA) released its mid-term evaluation report on the Human Capital Initiative (HCI) Pillar 3 projects at the Convention Centre Dublin.

HCI Pillar 3 Mid-term evaluation report exceeds targets

CFA joined 23 other HCI Pillar 3-funded projects in the Convention Centre Dublin on Thursday 29 June 2023, for the Collaboration Nation: Linking Higher Education and Enterprise event. As part of this event, the HEA  released its mid-term evaluation report on the progress made by the projects including CFA, so far.


Aligned with the aims of the National Skills Strategy 2025, the HCI aims to increase capacity in higher education to provide skills-focused programmes designed to meet priority skills needs, by increasing collaboration between higher education and enterprise, with a focus on innovations in teaching and learning.


The report shows that the programme is exceeding targets on the creation of new courses, with over 1,000 created – 800 more than the initial target. Over 4,000 additional student places have been achieved through direct funding, with a significant number still expected as projects mature:

  • 1,000 new courses across 34 disciplines
  • 4,276 additional student places
  • 23,301 learners impacted
  • 33,352 engagements with 427 enterprise/industry partners

HCI Pillar 3 Mid-term evaluation report exceeds targets

CFA was excited to participate in the conference and to be represented by our student and spoken word artist Faith Olasogba. Faith is a student at UCD studying English, Drama and Film Studies aspiring to have a career in any of the three in her future. In October 2022, Faith took a Creative Futures Academy module in Creativity. The spoken word piece Faith performed at the conference was developed as part of this CFA module. It is from a short play called “BLACK not Irish” she wrote about three individual experiences of being black and living in Ireland, titled “Outsider from the Inside” “Anxiety hides me” and “Black before Irish”.


HCI Pillar 3 Mid-term evaluation report exceeds targets

Speaking at the event, Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science (DFHERIS), Simon Harris TD, said:

“It is imperative that we remain agile and open to new solutions as an economy, and projects such as the 24 on display in Dublin today are testament to what can be achieved with proper support and serious ambition. Ireland is uniquely positioned to become a world leader in educational innovation and the collaboration fostered by HCI Pillar 3 between higher education institutions, local SMEs and global multinationals shows we are on the right path. This collaboration is key, as companies know best what they need, and as we match these needs with individual upskilling and learning, we empower all sides to thrive. It is satisfying to see the bravery and ambition of those involved in funding Pillar 3 rewarded with such early promise.
I congratulate the HEA, the higher education institutions and all of their enterprise partners on their early returns, and wish them continued success.”


To review the full Mid-Term Evaluation report, please visit HEA.ie