Mature student, 91, set for second term at university

A 91-YEAR-OLD woman who was told by nuns that she would never amount to anything is preparing for a second term at university.

Nancy Ó Broin, the oldest student at NUI Maynooth, has signed up for another course after studying alongside her son, Sean.

The mother-of-three studied local history and is completing a project on the demise of the Connor Family from the Protestant village of Drumcar, Co Louth, from where her mother’s family originally came.

“The nuns always said that where I was going I wouldn’t need an education,” she said. “But it’s been one of the best experiences of my life. I would recommend it to anyone.”

Ms Ó Broin took the classes as part of NUI’s Adult and Community Education programme.

Ms Ó Broin said she intends to return to the university in the autumn to take a module on Irish place names.

“Sure, what else would I do? I’m not going to sit miserably at home. My brain isn’t made for that,” she said.

Ms Ó Broin, believed to be the oldest mature student in the country, has been awarded a part-time Certificate in Local History after completing 100 hours of taught classes at NUI Maynooth.

Born in Fairview, Dublin in 1919, she now lives in Maynooth, Co Kildare. She took 14 subjects in her primary certificate and later commercial training to be a typist before working as a shorthand typist with Pearson’s on North Richmond Street from 1937 until she married in 1945.

NUI Maynooth is holding an open evening for adult education on May 19.


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