President Marrero, Georgia Southern delegation travels to Ireland to open the learning center

Nathan Woodruff

WEXFORD, IRELAND — A delegation from Georgia Southern traveled to Ireland over the Thanksgiving holiday week to officially open a learning center in Ireland.

GS is the first American university to open an outreach facility in Ireland.

“Visiting with Irish President Michael D. Higgins, opening our new center and meeting with a number of important Irish partners made for a moving, once-in-a-lifetime visit,” Georgia Southern University President Kyle Marrero said in a university press release. “The excitement from Irish leaders in Wexford was overwhelming – we heard repeatedly that having our delegation visit in person sent an important message about our commitment to this learning center and our intent to expand the scope of our new partnership.”

This is the first meeting between a GS president and a foreign head of state. Higgins is the incumbent President of Ireland, taking office in 2011. President Higgins also received  a plaque on behalf of the Hibernian Society of Savannah commemorating the establishment of the organization in 1812 to provide aid and assistance to needy Irish immigrants to Savannah.

The deputy Prime Minister, Simon Coveney, was also in attendance, saying that he hoped other American universities, would follow GS’s example.

“This is going to work for everybody, and in my view, it may become a template for other universities in the US to build a footprint and create an international hub in Ireland based on partnership, on trust, on friendship, and on research and education,” Simon Coveney, TD, deputy prime minister of Ireland and minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade said.

Marrero said in the university press release that he expects the Wexford learning center to be not just an instructional facility but also a community space, where people from across Ireland can enjoy activities such as performances by faculty members and students from the music and theatre programs, as well as lively public lectures, workshops, and symposia. 

Nathan Woodruff, The George-Anne Interim Editor-in-Chief,