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Brenda Romero heads to Ireland on Fullbright Fellowship

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Ogdensburg-native Brenda L. Romero has been awarded a Fullbright Fellowship by the federal Department of State to advise the gaming industry in Ireland.

“It’s an incredible opportunity and it’s a huge honor, too,” Mrs. Romero said.

Mrs. Romero is currently the program director for the Master’s Program for Games and Playable Media at the University of California at Santa Cruz and she will continue in that roll throughout her six-week stay in Ireland that begins in August.

The result of a year-long application and approval process, Mrs. Romero said she was especially excited by the opportunity to work in Ireland.

“They were looking for someone who is experienced in the game industry and game education,” she said. “The fact that it’s in Ireland was incredibly interesting to me because ultimately that’s where my family’s ancestry is from.”

The program will see Mrs. Romero meeting with gaming executives in Ireland as well as visiting IT Tralee, University of Limerick, Ballyfermot College of Further Education, Dublin Institute of Technology, IT Carlow and Letterkenny IT to advise them on best practices for gaming education.

The goal of the program is to ensure that instruction at the various schools is relevant for the gaming field.

“It’s one of the highest academic honors you can receive,” Mrs. Romero said.

Mrs. Romero, who has yet to visit Ireland, has been interested in her family’s Irish roots for some time now, and developed a board game based on the invasion of Ireland by Oliver Cromwell in the mid-1600s.

Called “Siochan Leat,” the game is currently on display at the Strong Museum of Play in Rochester.

Mrs. Romero said she plans on taking advantage of her time in Ireland by visiting as much of the country as possible, even arriving earlier than required by the program so she can travel.

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