The Ireland-U.S. Council’s annual student work experience scholarships were presented today at an awards luncheon held at The Metropolitan Club in New York City.

The Council, which was founded  to strengthen the business relationship between Ireland and America, has been giving Irish students the chance to gain valuable work experience at American businesses for 25 years.

“The program provides opportunities to student undergraduates from third-level educational institutions on the island of Ireland to travel to the United States and to work temporarily in American corporations," said Council President Dennis D. Swanson.

"The scholarships provide work assignments in business corporations of all sizes in America. The assignments are linked to the fields of study and academic disciplines which the undergraduate scholars are pursuing in Ireland.”

The scholarship candidates are usually undergraduate university students in their third year of college. The scholarship term lasts from early June to late September. 

With the help of program-partner Fordham University, candidates will be accommodated at the Lincoln Center campus residence halls during their time in Manhattan.

The students selected by their colleges as the Council’s 2009 participating scholars were Aidan O’Hare (Trinity College, Dublin), Mairtin O Rabhartaigh (NUI Galway), Bronagh McCann (Queen's University, Belfast), Jennifer Critchley (University of Limerick) and Mary Ryan (University College Cork).

The companies providing jobs for the students in the placement program are Mutual of America, Allied Irish Bank, Merck and Company, News Corporation and Pfizer, Inc.