03 Oct 2022

Thomas D’Arcy McGee Annual Summer School returns to Carlingford

Takes place on 31 August and 1 September 2022

Thomas D’Arcy McGee Annual Summer School returns to Carlingford

Thomas D’Arcy McGee Annual Summer School returns to Carlingford Heritage Centre

The Thomas D’Arcy McGee Annual Summer School is back onsite in the idyllic setting of Carlingford Heritage centre. East meets West every summer at the Summer School where issues of contemporary politics are debated in the historic context of McGee and his pioneering views on multiculturalism, ethnicity and accommodation. 

The Summer School has established itself as a popular forum for politicians, government ministers, ambassadors, academics, historians and community activists to exchange views and seek direction.

This year, as war rages in Eastern Europe, the pressing issues of ethnicity, conflict and resolution still dominate global discourse.  The framework for governance and the lasting peace established under the Good Friday Agreement have never been more important as Brexit challenges the European project. 

The 2022 Summer School looks through the perspective of D’Arcy McGee to understand better the significance of these current events as we bring together great minds and thinkers and activists from across Ireland, Europe and Canada to promoting dialogue and reconciliation. 

Through a range of keynote and panel sessions, we are delighted to welcome back to Carlingford old favourites and present new voices drawn from the academic, diplomatic, political and social fields who will share thoughts and perspectives on how past lessons can inform the creation of peaceful, lasting and just solutions to contemporary issues.

A range of networking opportunities throughout the conference allow participants to enjoy the charms of this historic town, establish new friendships and copper fasten old ones. The schedule is as follows:

Programme Day 1 – August 31st 1.30pm

Opening address – Dr. Michael Mulvey


  • 1.50pm – 2.30pm       Professor David Wilson, University of Toronto (online)
  • 2.30pm – 3.15pm       Bobby McDonagh, Former Irish Ambassador to the European Union and theUnited Kingdom.    The European Union: Identity, Challenges and Truth
  • 3.15pm – 3.30pm       HE Larysa Gerasko, Ukrainian Ambassador to Ireland
  • 3.30pm – 4pm            Tea/Coffee
  • 4pm – 4.50pm            Panel:  Reflections upon 25 years since the Good Friday Agreement and European Dimension
    • Moderated by Tommy Sands – The Songman
    • Jackie McDonald – Spokesperson – South Belfast Ulster Political Research Group
    • Sean Murray – Special Adviser Sinn Féin and Community Activist
  • 4.50pm – 5.30pm         General (Retired) John De Chastelain (online) – Reflections 


  • 6pm – 7.15pm Reception at the station House and Irish Canadian International Person of the Year Award Presentation
    • Carlingford Pipe Band
    • Altnaveigh Memorial Pipe Band
  • 9pm   Songs and Stories” with Len Graham and Jack Lynch 

Day 2 – September 1st 10am

  • 10.15 am  Keynote Speaker:  Professor Brigid Laffan, Emeritus Professor, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced studies
  • 11.00 am  Panel:  Unity in Diversity – the Relevance of Europe
    • Chair – Joan Martin, CEO Louth County Council

Panel Members:

    • Robert Kearns, Chairman Canada Ireland Foundation
    • Noirín O’Sullivan, Retired Garda Commissioner
    • Alex Kane, Journalist and former Director of Communications UUP and
    • Gerry McAlinden, International Development and Governance Consultant
  • 12.45pm    Closing Remarks

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