Trustee Kevin Conlisk '66 Honored by Irish University
Kevin M. Conlisk '66, a member of Fairfield University’s Board of Trustees, was recently presented with the President’s Medal by the University of Limerick in Ireland for establishing a scholarship that has educated Irish business students at Fairfield for 25 years.
The Rev. John M. Conlisk Irish Scholarship was founded by Mr. Conlisk in memory of his late brother, a 1954 Fairfield Prep graduate who was pastor of Sacred Heart Church in Georgetown, St. Patrick Church in Redding and St. Jerome Church in Norwalk. Mr. Conlisk, principal and chief financial officer of Milford, Connecticut-based Alinabal Holdings Corporation, is the driving force behind the Conlisk Scholarship which was established in 1981 at the University of Bridgeport, and moved to Fairfield University in 1990. It is dedicated to the purpose of perpetuating Irish culture and of strengthening educational and cultural relationships between Ireland and the Fairfield community in Connecticut.
The full scholarship was founded when the Irish economy was struggling. A group of Irish Americans led by Mr. Conlisk believed it would enhance the job prospects of young people from Ireland, while enabling them to further their education in America and make business contacts. It covers all tuition, housing and medical insurance expenses for the time it takes to earn a master’s degree from Fairfield University’s Dolan School of Business. It is awarded annually.
“It is a very special award and as such has only been presented to a very select few,” a University official said of the President's Medal that was established in 2002 to honor individuals who have provided outstanding support and service to the University of Limerick where dozens of Conlisk scholars earned their undergraduate degrees.
Donald E. Gibson, Ph.D., Professor and Dean of the Dolan School of Business, described the scholarship as “a game-changer” for deserving students from Ireland to advance their business studies in the U.S. “The students benefit from our strong curriculum, and we benefit—students and faculty—from the opportunity to interact with smart folks who are going to make a difference, both here and in Ireland.”
Mark Ligas, Ph.D., Associate Dean and Director of Graduate Programs, concurred. “Each scholar I have worked with has seen this opportunity as a life-changer,” he said.
A current Conlisk scholar is Sean Donovan, of Callan, County Kilkenny, who is pursuing an MBA, with a concentration in accounting. “Receiving the scholarship has brightened my future,” said Donovan. “It means I will have more choices and possibilities in my career.”
Pictured is Kevin M. Conlisk, right, receiving the President’s Medal from President Don Barry at the University of Limerick honoring his commitment to the accessibility of higher education and 34 years of the Rev. John M. Conlisk Irish Scholarship.