Mary McAleese to take up legal professorship at Glasgow University

Mary McAleese to take up legal professorship at Glasgow University

Professor Mary McAleese at the University of Glasgow

Former President of Ireland, Mary McAleese, will be joining the University of Glasgow as a professor of children, law and religion.

Born in Belfast, Professor McAleese is the eldest of nine children and grew up in Ardoyne, a sectarian flashpoint where she experienced first-hand the violence of The Troubles.

Trained as a barrister and journalist, she was Uachtarán na hÉireann for two terms from 1997 until 2011 and is the first president of Ireland to have come from Northern Ireland.

Her work for peace and reconciliation culminated in the historic state visit to the Republic of Ireland by Her Majesty The Queen in May 2011.

For many years prior to her presidency, she was involved in social justice campaigning. She was a co-founder of Belfast Women’s Aid, the Campaign for Homosexual Law Reform, the Irish Commission for Prisoners Overseas and co-chair of the Working Party on Sectarianism set up by the Irish Council of Churches and the Catholic Church.

She has a masters degree and licentiate in Canon law and has completed a doctorate in Canon law at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. Her area of research is children’s rights in Canon law.

Profesor McAleese, MRIA, FTCD, FRCS, FRCA, FRCP, FRSA, FRSE, FRCM, HonFLS, holds honorary doctorates from more than 20 universities.

She said: “Joining the University of Glasgow opens up exciting prospects for collaboration in teaching and research on the subjects of children, law and religion.

“The university has a culture of innovation and cross-disciplinary engagement which augurs well for fresh and fascinating scholarly initiatives in these fields. I am looking forward to being part of these developments.”

Professor Sir Anton Muscatelli, principal and vice-chancellor of the University of Glasgow, commented: “I am absolutely delighted that Professor Mary McAleese is joining the University of Glasgow.

“As well as being well known on the international stage, she is an accomplished academic with vast experience in her field. I have no doubt her insights and wisdom will be of great benefit to our students and staff.”

Professor Roibeard Ó Maolalaigh, vice principal and head of the College of Arts, added: “As an inspiring and distinguished senior leader with an outstanding track record, we are delighted that Professor McAleese will be joining us.

“She will bring great energy, expertise, and experience to her new role within the Arts and Humanities and will enhance our reputation as a world class interdisciplinary University. We look forward to welcoming her to Glasgow.”

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