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Part of the DSU Community: Irish Study Abroad Students Invited to Walk at Commencement

by Paige Hawk May 31, 2022

When Domhnall Lynam (pictured above, left) and Oisin Corrigan (pictured above, right) received a Study USA scholarship from the British Council, they were eager to study abroad at DeSales. 

What they didn’t expect was for the program to be delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic—meaning, if they chose to participate, they’d miss walking at their commencement ceremonies in their home country, Ireland. 

Undeterred, Lynam and Corrigan began their yearlong study abroad experience in August 2021. Moved by their resolve, DeSales invited them to its 2022 Commencement ceremony—all so that they wouldn’t miss the once-in-a-lifetime experience of walking at graduation.

“I thought it was important for them to be a part of it because they have clearly sacrificed their own graduation to be at DeSales,” says Brian MacDonald ’04, director of international learning. “Oisin and Domhnall were excellent students while at DeSales. They were highly involved and really embraced the idea of immersing themselves in another culture.”

From the very beginning of his journey at DeSales, Lynam, a law graduate from Queen’s University Belfast, described feeling welcome. He embraced what he refers to as his “adopted community” through participating in track and field, building a house via Habitat for Humanity, and visiting landmarks such as New York City and Philadelphia. 

“I loved representing the college and it made me feel truly part of the DeSales community,” says Lynam.

Like Lynam, Corrigan, a sociology graduate from the University of Ulster, was highly involved during his time on campus and was a valued addition to the rugby team. The two also embraced academics. 

“I enjoyed challenging myself in a new and diverse educational environment, which was quite different from what I was used to at home,” says Lynam. “This experience has equipped me with the leadership and teamwork skills to contribute positively to Northern Ireland upon my return, in both my professional and personal life.”