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Chief Executive Officer - CEO

Kevin Hickey

Kevin has worked in the intercultural exchange field for over 25 years, he has lived and worked as an English teacher in Mexico and was as an election observer in South Africa during the first democratic elections in 1994. He served as President of the National Youth Council of Ireland from 2002 – 2004 and was President of the EIL Worldwide Federation from 1998 – 2002 and again from 2006 – 2008. An avid traveller and student of world issues and other cultures he lives in Cork with his wife Cecilia who is from Mexico.

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Head of Administration & Finance

Mary Martin

Mary recently joined EIL Ireland & has over 20 years experience in the education sector.  She holds a bachelor’s degree in Business in Accounting & is currently studying the final accountancy exams with CPA Ireland.

A native of Cork, Mary has travelled to France, Spain, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Hungary, The Netherlands, North America & The West Indies however Italy has her heart.

In her spare time, Mary enjoys swimming, gym, hiking, reading & gardening. Mary lives in Cork and has 3 daughters.

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Head of Programmes

Neil O'Mahony

Neil has been working in International Education in Ireland and abroad since 2007. He has post graduate qualifications in teaching English language and English for Academic Purposes. He is currently studying a Masters in Education Leadership and Management.

Neil is originally from Skibbereen in West Cork but has travelled and worked abroad in China, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand and Poland before returning to Ireland and joining the EIL team in 2023. He loves playing football, music, going to gigs and festivals, DIY, gardening and the outdoors.

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Manager - Global Citizenship Department

Adam Peerbux

Adam has backgrounds in Social Care and Innovation & Enterprise and worked as a youth worker with a keen interest in wellbeing. Adam first got involved with EIL Ireland in 2013 when he won an award with C.I.T’s Volunteer Abroad Programme where he spent a summer working in Jaipur, India in a Women Empowerment project. Adam has stated that his journey and experience in India was “without any doubt, the greatest learning of my life to date”.

Since then Adam went on to become a member of the Global Education Committee with the rest of “The Dream Team”, and has led inbound and outbound groups from Ireland, Hong Kong and the USA.

A travel lover, son of a Cork “mammy”, a Mauritian father, and living the first 11 years of his life in Britwell, Slough, England – cultures and diversity is something Adam is accustomed to and he loves meeting new people, from new places, with new insights and believes everyone has something special to bring to the party! Being an active role model is something Adam brings to the work and volunteer work he does with the mission – “aspire to inspire.”

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Programme Co-Ordinator - Global Citizenship Department

Carolin Chucholowski

Carolin was born and raised in Germany and has a background in teaching English and Mathematics. During her assistant teaching experience in Cork she fell in love with Ireland. When she finally decided to come back to Cork and try something new she started working with EIL in October 2022.

Carolin has always enjoyed exploring different cultures, whether it was through travelling or staying abroad as an exchange student in the US, an au-pair in Spain, or an assistant teacher in Ireland. She’s a fan of the outdoors and enjoys hiking, climbing, trying to surf and playing disc golf.

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Manager - Cultural Groups Department

Aidan Carrig

Aidan is from North East Galway and joined EIL in 2016 as Road Scholar Group Leader. Aidan has led all the Road Scholar programs in Ireland. In 2019 Aidan became the Group Leader Coordinator. During the Covid Pandemic, he was involved with delivering online Road Scholar Programs. Aidan re-joined EIL as manager of the Cultural Groups department in April 2023 following a brief period working in Tax.

Aidan got involved with heritage in his local community as a teenager volunteering in his local heritage centre which he is now a director of. Aidan has been involved in his local community as Chairperson of the Community Employment Scheme and the tidy towns in his local village.

Aidan’s educational background consists of a BA in Media Studies and History, an MA in European History from Maynooth University, a diploma in Archaeology from National University of Galway, a professional diploma in Digital Marketing from UCD and a postgraduate degree in Accountancy from Atlantic Technological University. Aidan also is a qualified Failte Ireland certified tour guide.

Aidan’s hobbies include swimming, reading, exploring Ireland, photography, and running. In his spare time he can be found coaching his local athletics club or shouting at a GAA match.

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Programme Coordinator - Cultural Groups Department

Mary Watson

Mary joined EIL in the Cultural Department team as a Programme Coordinator in November 2022. With a BA in Film Studies & Italian, Mary began her career in animation sales and distribution but with a keen interest in travel and culture she moved to Seoul, South Korea where she worked as a TEFL teacher for two years in a unique environment that focused on delivering educational content in an entertaining manner. When she finished teaching, Mary took the opportunity to travel through Asia before returning home and completing an MA in PR & New Media at MTU Cork.

In the PR & Marketing industry she worked with many arts organisations and charities and she has also been on the events management team of numerous festivals and events in Cork and beyond that showcase the various talent, cultural and entertaining experiences on offer throughout Ireland.

With a background in arts, culture, entertainment, and education, Mary enjoys the opportunity to combine elements of all of these sectors creatively and practically to create truly unique experiences.
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Group Leader Coordinator

Antoinette O'Sullivan

Antoinette recently joined EIL as Group Leader Coordinator, having led groups of Road Scholar programmes. She grew up in the well-oiled tourism machine of Killarney, so it’s no surprise that after years of teaching English as a Foreign Language, she followed her parents’ footsteps into the world of tour guiding. Antoinette is passionate about travel, and has lived in New York, Australia, Italy, and all over Spain (although she never quite managed to grasp the language!)

With a background in Classics and English, and an MA in Journalism, Antoinette likes to write during her free time, and is an Irish history and mythology fanatic. She loves leading tours around Ireland, and delights in showing visitors the time of their lives while travelling. When not travelling, working, or writing, you’ll find her at a gig, or camping in the Irish countryside.
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Manager - Study Abroad Department

Petra Milan

Petra recently joined EIL Ireland and became the Study Abroad Programme Manager. She was born and raised in Croatia, where she completed a Master’s Degree in Teacher Education. During her university years, she was awarded Erasmus+ Scholarship twice to study abroad at the Social Sciences department at the University of Wrocław and work as an English teacher both at Niepubliczna Szkoła Podstawowa Pro Futuro school and at the University of the Third Age in Poland. Petra has long-term experience working both as a teacher and a consultant for the Croatian Ministry of Science and Education as well as for Školska knjiga, one of the largest publishing companies in Croatia. A versatile person, she worked in various fields of education, working with all age groups. Petra decided to broaden her knowledge and skills by working on ESF projects as a Project Program Coordinator in the Association of People with Disabilities TOMS, improving employment and education opportunities for long-term unemployed and socially excluded people. As soon as she moved to Cork, Ireland, she started to work as a Student Welfare Officer, providing support assistance to students and ensuring that services are delivered to the highest standard.

Petra speaks Croatian, English, Polish and is currently learning Portuguese. Besides, she uses every opportunity to discover other languages and cultures. Petra is exceptionally passionate about traveling, cooking, ethnic music, traditional dances, and photography. Visiting family and friends bring her immense joy, so she uses every opportunity to spend time with them and enjoy the sun and endless coffees.”

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Programme Co-ordinator - Study Abroad Department

Therese Casey

Therese studied English and archaeology in University College Cork. After college she worked for a number of years on archaeological excavations on the highways and byways around Ireland. She then went on to work within the English language teaching sector for over a decade. This role allowed her to meet people from the four corners of the world within her classroom. She enjoys keeping fit(despite the weather), travelling (to escape the aforementioned weather), getting involved in community groups, attending cultural events and quietly noting wandering apostrophes.

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PROGRAMME CO-ORDINATOR - STUDY ABROAD DEPARTMENT

Laila Dajani

Laila recently joined EIL as Coordinator for the Study Abroad Programme and is excited to be part of such a diverse environment in Ireland. Laila grew up as an expat in the UAE and is of Croatian and Palestinian origin. During her university years, she immigrated to Canada to lay down roots and appreciated her life experiences whilst immersing herself in a new culture.

Laila has a background and passion in Early Years Education, she taught in several schools in Abu Dhabi, UAE. A life long learner, she is also an endorsed Insight Yoga teacher integrating yoga, mindfulness and psychology. She has led retreats globally and facilitated mindfulness trainings as part of Wellbeing for staff members in several schools throughout the UAE and Oman.

Laila has been visiting Ireland since the late 90’s and now proudly calls Kinsale, home where she lives with her daughter, 2 dogs and cat. Whenever the opportunity arises Laila loves to take walks in nature, going to live music events, going on retreats, and exploring historical sites.

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PROGRAMME CO-ORDINATOR - STUDY ABROAD DEPARTMENT

Shannon Coetzer

Shannon was born and raised in South Africa by her Irish mother but later returned to Cork Ireland in March 2022 with her husband. Shannon obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Corporate Law but her passion for assisting people was present from a young age. Shannon was the lead Project Manager for a large South African NPO which targeted the most vulnerable individuals through various sustainable projects. Not only does she obtain the correct humanitarian and corporate skills but Shannon also has vast administrational skills which can be linked back to her part-time work throughout her high school and college career.

Shannon is passionate about all things people and assisting wherever possible.
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IT CO-ORDINATOR - IT DEPARTMENT

Richard Nixon

Richard joined EIL in March 2022. He graduated in Computer Science with +15 years of previous experience in IT, worked as a police officer at the command and control center of Brazil as a technical leader for information security at the FIFA World Cup in 2014. Joined the Brazilian federal government at the Ministry of Justice of Brazil between 2016 and 2021 was part of the team RIO 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games accreditation, had the opportunity to act as technology consultant for the presidency of the republic of Brazil, compose as a member of the crisis management committee, served as a teacher for more than +1000 police officers throughout Brazil.

Alongside his work in EIL, Richard is busy studying English in Cork. In his spare time he likes jog, learn new things, code, and play with his dog.

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Finance Officer

Lisa Tetteh

Lisa joined EIL in March 2021 as Finance Officer.

She has an MSc in Management Information and Managerial Accounting Systems from UCC and has worked in several finance role before landing the role in EIL. What drew Lisa to this role is the culture of the organisation and the wonderful work being carried out daily.

Lisa loves travelling to different countries to experience new cultures and, in her spare time, you can find her rollerblading around Cork.

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finance assistant

Andrew Choe

Andrew  joined EIL in June 2022 as a Finance Intern during his studies at Accounting Technician Ireland.

He travelled to Europe more than a decade ago and was working in sales and distribution, restaurants and pubs in Singapore, Malaysia and Ireland before he became an Accounting Technician. He is originally from Malaysia and enjoys living with his spouse and two children in Cork by exploring Irish culture and natural habitat in his spare time.