Mary McAleese, the former president of Ireland, will join Boston College as a visiting scholar this fall, university announced Monday. A BC statement quoted McAleese, who will serve as the Burns Library Visiting Scholar in Irish Studies, as saying that “coming to Boston, using that wonderful Burns Library, talking with students and faculty members from a variety of disciplines, including my beloved Irish studies, will be for me a seminal opportunity to enrich and deepen the insights I can bring to my own research and also hopefully to add a little to the insights of others.” A native of Belfast, McAleese became the first Northern Irish native to be elected president, a mostly ceremonial position. A former law professor, she held the post from 1997 to 2011 and was a signatory of the Good Friday accords that enshrined, after decades of sectarian violence, a political settlement in Northern Ireland.

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