independent

Monday 22 July 2019

Wexford student addresses national education event

Pádraig Byrne

Wexford postgraduate student Charlene Somers played a central role in a national higher education event recently, having been invited to take part by Minister of State with Special Responsibility for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O'Connor.

Charlene Somers from Our Lady's Island was invited to speak at the Senior Academic Leadership Initiative (SALI) on the subject of promoting more female academics in higher education.

Charlene returned to college as a mature student at IT Carlow's Wexford campus before graduating with an honours degree in Applied Social Studies. In her final year, she applied for and received the President's Fellowship Masters that funded her two-year Masters by Research in Palliative Care, which she is in the process of completing. Her goal is to continue in higher education and lecture.

Charlene was one of three postgraduates chosen to take part in the event and spoke extremely about her educational journey in front of leading academics and members of the media.

'It was a fantastic experience and one I won't forget,' she said afterwards.

'I really enjoyed telling my academic story at the event and being part of this drive to ensure there are more women represented at senior level in higher education.'

'I am grateful to IT Carlow for the opportunities I have been given along the way, such as the financial and academic support that allowed me to undertake and complete my Masters.'

'In particular, the support I received from the president of IT Carlow Dr. Patricia Mulcahy, and from Dr. Karen Hennessy and Dr. Janette Davies at the Wexford campus has been tremendous.

They have given me opportunities, as a mature student and a mother, and have really shown me that I can go on to achieve my goals.'

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