Under the Official Languages Act 2003, state bodies have a statutory obligation to ensure better availability and higher standard of public services through Irish.
Irish is a recognised language within the EU.
24,000 young people attend Irish summer courses annually in Irish speaking or Gaeltacht areas in seven counties.
Irish speakers have their own radio station, television service and weekly newspaper.
There are 159 all-Irish primary schools and 36 all-Irish post primary schools.
An Irish language version of Microsoft Office, Word, Excel, Powerpoint and Outlook is available.
59 universities worldwide, including Harvard, Notre Dame, California, Moscow, Sydney and Toronto, now offer Irish language courses.
Seán Óg Ó hAilpín, Cork hurling captain and Dara Ó Cinnéide, Kerry football captain, made their speeches exclusively through Irish before 80,000 spectators in Croke Park when their respective counties won all-Ireland senior titles in recent years.
Mobile phone users can select predictive text through Irish and also select Irish as the programme language on the Samsung Tocco phone.
All the traditional universities, both north and south of the border, offer Irish as a subject leading to a B.A. degree. In Trinity College Dublin it is also possible to do a single subject degree in Irish. Trinity also offers Irish as one of three languages in the B.Sc. in Computing, Linguistics and Language. In UCD the Commerce faculty offers Irish as one of a choice of six languages in the B.Comm (International) with a Language. Likewise NUI Cork offers Irish as one of a choice of five languages in the B.Comm. European with a Language. They also offer the B.A. in Irish and Music.
Irish plays an important role in the training of primary teachers. A C3 minimum in Higher level Irish is required to gain entry to primary teacher-training in the south, while St. Mary’s College, Belfast, offers Irish as an optional subject for primary teacher-training. St. Mary’s College, Marino has a B.Ed. through Irish.
The growth of Raidio na Gaeltachta and TG4, coupled with the enactment of the Official Languages Act have all contributed to the development of Irish in communications. The B.A. in journalism in Dublin City University has an optional module in Irish, while Dublin Institute of Technology offers Irish as one of a choice of six languages in their journalism and media courses. Coláiste Mhuire, Marino offer the B.Ed. course through Irish.
DCU has pioneered the study of business through Irish. They offer a very prestigious B.Sc. in Finance, Computing and Enterprise through Irish. DCU also offers the M.Sc. in Business and Information Technology entirely through Irish. They also offer Irish as one of a choice of languages in the M.A. Conference Interpreting and in the M.A. in Conference Interpreting. For students who would like to combine Law and Irish, UCC offers BCL and Irish.
Since NUI Galway has a statutory obligation to provide courses through Irish, students of History, Geography, Commerce, French and Science can take part or all of their studies through Irish. It is also possible to do the Higher Diploma in Education through the medium of Irish in NUI Galway.
NUI Galway, DCU and Queen’s University, Belfast offers Irish as one of a choice of languages in the M.A. in Translation Studies. IT Tralee’s National Certificate in Business and IT Letterkenny’s National Certificate in Office Information Systems have Irish modules. Galway-Mayo IT offers a BA in Business and Communication through Irish. Dublin IT’s B.Sc. in Tourism Marketing and BA in Leisure Management both have Irish modules.