Glamour's editor Samantha Barry and 104-year-old UCC graduate to be honoured at Alumni Awards

Cork native Samantha Barry, who recently became editor-in-chief of Glamour magazine, will be will be honoured at UCC’s Alumni Achievement Awards today.

Glamour's editor Samantha Barry and 104-year-old UCC graduate to be honoured at Alumni Awards

Cork native Samantha Barry, who recently became editor-in-chief of Glamour magazine, will be will be honoured at UCC’s Alumni Achievement Awards today.

Previously the executive producer for social and emerging media at CNN Worldwide where she spearheaded CNN’s 2016 Election coverage across social platforms, Ms Barry was hired by Condé Nast as Glamour's editor-in-chief in January of this year.

Anna Wintour, artistic director of Condé Nast, said: “Sam is Glamour’s first digital-native editor, which is to say she arrives from the future rather than the past.”

Ms Barry said that the skills and passion discovered and developed during her time as an undergraduate student at UCC have impacted every job she’s had since graduation "from leading the social media expansion of CNN to steering Glamour Magazine’s American edition into a new digital age.”

She will be honoured at the University’s Alumni Achievement Awards this evening alongside Ireland's Professor of Poetry, one of the country’s best-known technology executives, a Cork District Court Judge and the oldest UCC science graduate.

Ms Barry said:

The technology may have evolved as I jumped from Ireland to London to Papua New Guinea to New York, but at the heart of my job are the fundamentals I learned at UCC and the newsroom of the University Examiner: talk to people, share their stories, and offer opinions.

Barry, who is originally from Ballincollig and has worked in more than 25 countries, also served as a social media producer and journalist at BBC World News in London, and as a reporter and producer for RTÉ and Newstalk.

Ms Barry graduated from UCC with an Arts degree (English and Psychology) in 2002.

Also receiving an Alumni Achievement award this evening is 104-year-old graduate of Science at UCC, Máirín Hughes, who graduated from the campus in the 1930s.

Máirín qualified with a BSc in an era when Science and STEM subjects were not widely studied by women.

Máirín Hughes is to receive a UCC Alumni Achievement Award tonight at the Aula Maxima UCC.
Máirín Hughes is to receive a UCC Alumni Achievement Award tonight at the Aula Maxima UCC.

The importance of having female role models in the same field was evident even then with Máirín being inspired by a student called Nancy Hayes who worked in the UCC Physics department.

"She had been ahead of me in St Aloysius School and went on to study Science at UCC. She inspired me to follow the same path.

"Our school did not offer science subjects but I always had a keen interest in the natural world growing up."

Máirín also received the backing of her family.

"My father was an outdoors man, I would go walking with him and learn about the local plants, trees and rocks – I knew the difference between sandstone and limestone from an early age."

Mairín has fond memories of her time at UCC. She threw herself into college life; attending the Philosoph debates, joining An Chuallacht and participating in Professor Alfred O’Rahilly’s Theology Group. She urges college students to "make the most of it" and encourages women to sign up for STEM subjects.

I loved every minute of my BSc at UCC, especially the lab work. There are far more openings for science graduates now than there were in previous years and women have more access to jobs in science than ever before.

After graduation, Mairín worked in the Pathology Lab in UCC’s Department of Medicine for 14 years. At that time, hospitals did not have on-site pathologists so Máirín and her colleagues would run the blood tests for them.

After meeting her late husband, Frank, Máirín moved to Dublin and the couple settled in Palmerstown. She took a job teaching chemistry, physics and maths at Ballyfermot Vocational School and spent many happy years there passing on her love of science to her students.

After a full and enjoyable life, pursuing a career in science and education, Máirín is now enjoying her retirement years.

- Digital Desk

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