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From the Bronx to Berkeley - 23 Irish Fulbright Awardees off to the US

The Minister for European Affairs, Dick Roche T.D., and the U.S. Ambassador Dan Rooney officially announced details of the 23 successful Irish Fulbright Awardees for 2010-2011, at a ceremony in Iveagh House, Dublin. These scholarships have provided Irish students, scholars and professionals with the opportunity to study, lecture and research at top universities and institutions in the U.S. since 1957.

This year’s Irish recipients have been accepted to prestigious institutions including Columbia University, the University of Notre Dame, Princeton, Yale and Berkeley. Out of the 23 scholarships and awards, 9 are for research projects in the areas of science, technology, environment, health and medicine. The demand for Irish language teachers in the U.S. continues to grow and this year 8 Irish awardees will spend time teaching the language and lecturing in Irish culture. The remaining 6 recipients will conduct study and research in law, music and other humanities and social science disciplines.

One of the most prestigious awards being given is the Fulbright International Science and Technology Award to Mr Ronan McGovern who will enrol on a fully funded PhD in Engineering worth $300,000 at the highly acclaimed Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Speaking at the event, Dick Roche T.D, Minister for European Affairs said:

“Diversity is at the heart of the Fulbright Programme and the broad range of disciplines represented - science, music, Irish language and Heritage, medicine, law, technology and art history – is a credit to the many talents of the Irish scholars. Educational exchanges are key to strengthening the close and friendly ties between countries and I am delighted to see so many Irish Scholars raising interest abroad in our values, our language, our heritage and our culture.”

Speaking about the Fulbright Scholarships and Awards, Ambassador Rooney said:

“The U.S. and Ireland have had a proud tradition of collaboration through the Fulbright Scholarship for over 50 years. I congratulate the 23 Irish recipients here today and encourage each of you to make the most of your time in the U.S. As Fulbright Scholars, your experience will not only be a valuable resource for you but for also for your country on your return.”

Una Halligan, Chairperson of the Fulbright Commission of Ireland said:

“Education and innovation are crucial to the future growth of Ireland’s economy. The U.S. remains the premier destination for scientific study and research and these Fulbright scholarships offer recipients the opportunity to collaborate with some of the finest minds in the world. We were extremely impressed with the high calibre of applications this year which made the selection process particularly difficult. However, we are confident the 23 successful candidates will do an exceptional job in each of their respective universities and representing Ireland.”

The Fulbright Scholarships and Awards are presented on an annual basis to Irish students, scholars and professionals to undertake postgraduate study and research at higher education, cultural and related institutions in the United States. Applications are encouraged in all disciplines including the visual and performing arts.

For further information please contact:
Colleen Dube,
Executive Director,
Fulbright Commission
01-660 7670
087 – 905 1222

Notes to Editor:

Irish Fulbright Recipients 2010-2011:

  • Mr. Paul Alexander is undertaking a research masters in University College Dublin in the area of Climatology, Urban Climates and Climate change. While on his Fulbright he will conduct research in the area of urban climatology at the School of Geographical Sciences + Urban Planning at Arizona State University. He is the recipient of the Fulbright – Environmental Protection Agency Award in Environmental Science & Policy.
  • Ms. Marie-Louise Bowe is currently a Music Methodology lecturer at NUI Maynooth and Music Teacher at Belvedere College Dublin and also the founder and director of the Wind Band Programme. Ms. Bowe will undertake an Ed.D at Columbia College in New York City in music and music education. Her main area of research is the ‘examination of Instrumental Music Education in Ireland’.
  • Mr. Michael Casey has just completed his M.A in Modern Irish at University College Dublin. He will be a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant at Haskell Indian Nations University in Kansas.
  • Mr. David Comerford is a third year Doctoral student of Economics at University College Dublin. David will undertake research as part of his Ph.D. in the area of Consumer judgment and Decision Making at Duke University, North Carolina.
  • Dr. Katherine Curran is based at School of Chemistry and Chemical Biology in University College Dublin. Dr. Curran will undertake research at University of Illinois in the area of – Design Rules for Dynamic Macrocyclisation and the potential applications.
  • Ms. Marie Darmody has completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Education at National University of Ireland - Galway. Marie will be a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant at University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana.
  • Mr. Maitiú de Hál is currently undertaking a Masters in Irish at the National University of Ireland – Galway. Maitiú will be a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant at Elms College, Massachusetts.
  • Dr. Liam Delaney is currently a lecturer in Economics and Deputy Director of the Geary Institute in University College Dublin. Dr. Delaney will undertake research at Princeton University in the area of Historical and Policy Determinants of Irish Health and Well Being.
  • Mr. Paul Duffy is a Ph.D. candidate at the Dublin Institute of Technology. Paul intends to develop and test an automated biosensor capable of detecting specific DNA target sequences during his Fulbright research project at Purdue University in Indiana. This research will be integrated into his current research to develop a water quality monitoring and control system.
  • Mr. Ian Hastings will receive a Bachelor of Civil Law from University College Dublin’s School of Law. Ian has been accepted onto the University of Chicago’s LLM programme where he intends to focus on constitutional and tort law.
  • Dr. Michael Geary is a Lecturer in History of European Integration at Maastricht University in the Netherlands. He is Ireland’s first recipient of a Fulbright – Schuman Award that promotes research and teaching in EU – US Studies.
  • Ms. Mary Healy is a Ph.D. Research Scholar specialising in Art History at the University of Limerick. Mary has constructed the first database which uncovers and records almost 100 French women orientalist artists. She will conduct further research and analysis of her field at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut.
  • Dr. Peter Lonergan is a graduate in physiology and medicine from Trinity College, Dublin. He recently completed his Basic Surgical Training with the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and will be pursuing research at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota on hormone resistant prostate cancer.
  • Mr. Ronan McGovern is Ireland’s third recipient of the Fulbright International Science & Technology Award in four years. Ronan has recently completed his B.A. in Engineering at UCD and will enrol on a fully funded Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in August 2010.
  • Dr. Mark McKinney is this year’s recipient of the Fulbright Irish Language Scholar Award. A lecturer in Irish at Queen’s University Belfast, Mark will teach Irish at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana and produce a comprehensive dictionary of modern Irish proverbs spanning the years 1856-1952.
  • Mr. Paul May is receiving the Fulbright – Enterprise Ireland Award in Science, Technology and Innovation. Paul received a BSc in Multimedia from Dublin City University and has been working in the field for 5 years. Paul will study for a Masters in Interactive Telecommunications at the Tisch School of Arts in New York University.
  • Ms. Anna Moynihan is this year’s recipient of the Fulbright – Teagasc Award in Agriculture. Anna is a Ph.D. candidate in Food Chemistry in University College Cork. She will research the use of nanoparticles to improve the flavour and texture of low-fat cheddar cheese at the University of Wisconsin.
  • Ms. Sinead Murnane is the Fulbright – CRH Awardee in Business Studies. A Ph.D. candidate in business at the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School, Sinead will conduct research into management information and knowledge management systems at the Intermountain Institute for Health Care Delivery Research in Salt Lake City, Utah.
  • Ms. Siobhán Ní Mhaolagáin has a Masters in Irish and Communications from UCD and has been a teaching Irish at UCD since 2008. Siobhán will now teach Irish as a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant in Lehman College, City University of New York in the Bronx.
  • Mr. Seán Ó Curraighín has recently completed his BA in Irish and Journalism from Dublin City University. Seán will be a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant at the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minnesota.
  • Dr. Felix Ó Murchadha is a Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the National University of Ireland Galway. Dr. Ó Murchadha will spend his Fulbright year at Fordham University, Bronx, New York teaching two courses and researching the phenomenology of religion with a view to producing a monograph showing how the limits of reason are marked by the conflicting universal claims of skepticism, on the one hand, and of faith, on the other.
  • Dr. Emilie Pine is a Lecturer in Modern Drama in the School of English, Drama and Film in University College Dublin. As this year’s Fulbright Irish Studies Scholar at the University of California – Berkeley, Dr. Pine will teach a graduate seminar on Irish culture and conduct research towards a cultural history of Ireland in the 1930s.
  • Ms. Ciara Ryan holds Masters in Translation Studies from Dublin City University where she is currently employed as an Assistant Research Editor. Ciara will be a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant at the University of Montana, Missoula, Montana.

Overview of the Fulbright Programme and Commission:

"The Fulbright Program aims to bring a little more knowledge, a little more reason, and a little more compassion into world affairs and thereby to increase the chance that nations will learn at last to live in peace and friendship." J.William Fulbright

“The simple purpose of the exchange program…is to erode the culturally rooted mistrust that sets nations against one another. – J. William Fulbright

  • The Fulbright Program was established in 1946 under legislation sponsored by Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas whose vision was to build an alternative to armed conflict by providing a structured network for dialogue and exchange between individuals and cultures.
  • The purpose of the Program world-wide is to increase mutual respect and understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries through educational and cultural exchanges. The Fulbright Program awards approximately 6,000 new grants annually and operates in over 150 countries worldwide.
  • Fulbright grants which include a monetary award, visa administration, health insurance and cultural and professional programs are awarded through a process of national recruitment, open merit-based competition, stringent selection and approval by the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board in Washington, DC.
  • The primary function of the Fulbright Commission in Ireland is to administer the Fulbright Program which was established in Ireland in 1957 to provide scholarships to Irish citizens to lecture, research or study in the United States and for the US citizens to lecture, research or study in Ireland. Since that time more than 1,600 Irish postgraduate students, academics and professionals have studied in top US colleges and research institutes and more than 600 US students and scholars have come to Ireland. According to one US Grantee to Ireland, his Fulbright grant was “Truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience and a priceless gift.”