Teagasc Walsh Scholar Conor Hammersley is set to enroll at one of the most prestigious medical schools in the United States after securing a Teagasc-Fulbright Award to conduct further research into contemporary issues impacting on farmers’ wellbeing and health.
As a Fulbright-Teagasc Awardee, Conor Hammersley will spend time at the Columbia-Bassett Medical School in New York where he will research evolving socio-cultural and economic challenges US farmers face in relation to their health, compared to those encountered by farmers in Ireland. He will undertake qualitative research through interviews, observations and focus groups with farmers to understand the nature of the factors impacting farmer wellbeing in the United States. This will support the development of strategic health interventions developed in the US, to further inform the development of supports in Ireland.
Conor, a native of Clonoulty, Co. Tipperary, is currently based at the National Centre for Men’s Health at the South East Technological University (SETU), Carlow campus, where he is pursuing his PhD as a Teagasc Walsh Scholarship recipient. His research project ‘On Feirm Ground’ explores modern-day barriers encountered by farmers in relation to their health, and seeks to support the development of a national farmers’ health training programme targeted at agricultural advisors to effectively engage farmers on health issues. His research also looks to inform intervention strategies to support farmer wellbeing. Conor’s PhD is co-supervised by Dr. David Meredith, Teagasc and Dr. Noel Richardson, SETU.
Conor, who was a member of the 2019 All-Ireland winning Tipperary Hurling squad, is a former graduate of the Munster University of Technology having obtained a Master of Science (Research) in 2018 and Bachelor of Business in Sport & Exercise in 2016. His family are small-scale dry-stock farmers, while his father also runs a family business in the village of Clonoulty.
Commenting on Conor Hammersley’s award, Jane Kavanagh, Head of Research Development and Walsh Scholarships, Teagasc said:
“I am delighted that Conor has secured this unique opportunity to spend time at the Columbia-Bassett Medical School in New York to build on existing research in the An Feirm Ground project. This area of research is extremely timely and has already generated significant discussions in the area of farmers’ mental health and wellbeing. I would like to wish Conor every success during his time in the US.”
Conor was named as one of 40 recipients of the prestigious Fulbright Award for 2022-2023 at a recent ceremony held at Iveagh House in Dublin.
The next round of applications for Fulbright Irish Awards will open on 31st August 2022, interested candidates should visit www.fulbright.ie for more information.