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emad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 09:14 AM
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Irish students declare war on their US rite of passage
The Times
By David Lister

FOR years it was the dream of every self-respecting Irish student: after a year denouncing British oppression in the college bar, the only way to spend the summer was sipping Guinness surrounded by plastic leprechauns in a Boston pub.

Five years ago, thousands of students camped out overnight to get a visa to spend four months in the Irish-loving paradise of Bill Clinton and the Kennedys. Now George W. Bush is begging them to visit.

Days after the President was sworn in for his second term, his Ambassador to Ireland has embarked upon a charm offensive to persuade the youth of the Irish Republic that the US is not what they just see in the headlines every day.

Irelands youth is so out of love with America that the number of students applying for a summer visa scheme has halved within a year.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/newspaper/0,,175-1460612,0...
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emad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 09:15 AM
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1. Irish Ambassador mourns numbers slump:
As he embarked on a tour of universities and colleges last week, James Kenny, the US Ambassador, said that recapturing Irelands youth was hugely important for us and admitted that a wave of anti-Americanism was stopping many students visiting the US.

Referring to a slump in applications for the J1 summer visa programme, from 6,500 in 2003 to 2,800 last year, Mr Kenny said: We were pretty disappointed. What we hope to do is get the numbers back up to where they were previously to 2004. I hope that we can make it easier and more welcoming for people.

Until recently, a summer in the US was a rite of passage for Irish students, with more than 150,000 taking advantage of the J1 scheme since it was established in 1966.

Under the scheme anybody at university in the Republic and Northern Ireland can spend up to four months living and working in the US. For years the number of visas was capped at several hundred but, in the 1990s, thousands travelled, including members of the Thrills, the pop band who wrote their debut album So Much for the City during a summer in San Diego.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/newspaper/0,,175-1460612,0...
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marcologico Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 09:18 AM
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2. Last I heard their economy was roaring. Looks like we need their pence nt
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peacetalksforall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 09:33 AM
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3. How un-diplomaatic - an Ambassador spending his time persuading
Irish youth to go to the U.S.? Why not spend some time with the Irish and get their ideas for peace in the world, then travel to the WH and advise the resident?

This is the Ambassador to Ireland? Right?

This is way overboard. Bizarre. A waste of power.

The Boston Tourist Board could do it if they wanted to.
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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 10:59 AM
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4. Better yet, is there a comparable visa for Americans to spend their
summers in Ireland?
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