Emer Gilmore: From Ireland to Annville

Emer Gilmore converses with other LVC students

This upcoming year, Lebanon Valley will host an international exchange student from 3,200 miles away. Emer Gilmore will join the LVC community from Northern Ireland, near Belfast, and is very excited for all the opportunities that await her. 

“LVC appears to cater to everyone’s individual needs and that really appeals to me,” said Gilmore. “I am also excited to explore the area and travel about America during holidays and I think LVC is perfectly placed for those types of opportunities.”

Gilmore has been studying law and politics at Queens University in Belfast, which is the host school for LVC’s audio and music production study abroad program. She will shift fields of study here, majoring in business. Gilmore also plans to take an acting course as an elective in order to experience something different in America. 

The study abroad program Study USA facilitated Gilmore’s arrival at The Valley by providing a scholarship to cover her tuition. She explained that the program was established to strengthen Irish and American relations as part of the peace process that followed the Northern Ireland Troubles.

“In order to secure my place, I had to go through an application process and then interviews,” said Gilmore, who wants to pursue a career in corporate law. “We took part in a matching interview whereby we talked about our hobbies and interests, and, as a result, we were matched with an American college that would best suit us. Other factors included our extra-curricular activities, academics, and a desire to study business internationally.” 

In addition to new academic endeavors, Gilmore looks forward to open mic nights at MJ’s Coffeehouse, a popular spot in downtown Annville. 

“I’ve sang since a pretty young age, my family is musical so I suppose I’ve grown up in that kind of environment,” said Gilmore. “I can get quite shy when it comes to singing so I need to push myself outside of my comfort zone at LVC and introduce everyone to some Irish songs.”

Singing is not Gilmore’s only hobby. Since age 8 she has played camogie, an Irish stick-and-ball sport, played by more than 100,00 women around the world. It is a mix between American lacrosse and Irish hurling. Who knows, maybe she’ll start a club time during her time at The Valley.