...de la Bronx Beat:
Dierdre O’Boy, 41, was born of an Irish father and Irish-American mother in New York. Despite coming from such a strong Irish background, she said she wondered why the English-speaking Irish sound so “poetic.”
“It seems that so many phrases are simply a mirror of the literal in Irish, if that makes any sense,” she said. “For example ‘Tá ocras orm’ literally means ‘I have hunger on me.’”
O’Boy is one of the 120 students studying at Lehman’s Irish language program begun three years ago.
At a recent visit to the college, Brian Ó Cuív, Ireland’s Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs minister, noted that students like O’Boy are contributing to the revival of Irish language and heritage.
Ó Cuív said that there is an increased thirst for learning and teaching Irish due to Ireland's growing economy. “
The Celtic Tiger years saw Ireland increase its economic influence in the world,” he said. “In addition, we have seen an international renaissance where Irish culture is concerned.”
He was at Lehman College to launch the Fulbright Irish Language Program, which is being funded by a €660,000 ($1 million) grant from the Irish government. The City University of New York will share the grant with other colleges and universities in the country to fund Irish language teaching assistants and scholars over the next three years.