Member Profile: Dónal Grogan

Donal Grogan
Dónal Grogan, Cúntóir Teanga

Dónal Grogan’s initiation into the Irish language was as impressive as it was peculiar. Moving to Ireland at the age of 11, he was deemed except from having to take it in school. However, while doing homework in a class during which other students were being taught Irish, he absorbed a few words passively. One day, when the teacher asked for the Irish translation of “thin,” only Dónal could answer him. As a result, the teacher forced him to take the leaving cert exam for Irish—which he passed, partly by using some of the test instructions given in Irish as a base for his essay. 

Dónal watched his sister and her husband successfully learn Irish in order to raise their children in the language. It was all the proof he needed that it was possible to pick up where he left off on the Leaving Cert and become fluent himself. Now living in Colorado, he stays active in learning any way that he can, from Let’s Learn Irish courses to popup Gaeltacht events.  In fact, Dónal, so entirely invested in the language, says that in some ways he leads two lives: one in English and one in Irish.

Cé Thusa?

Ainm/Name: Dónal Grogan

Áit/Location: Colorado, USA

B1 Intermediate

Ról sa Chomhphobal/Role in the Community:
Cúntóir Teanga/Language Helper

Slí Beatha/Occupation:
Is fear gnó mé

Fad ag foghlaim Gaeilge/Time learning Irish:
Sé bliana

Caithimh Aimseartha/Hobbies:
Ag siúl, ag foghlaim Gaeilge, ag breathnú ar spórt

Cad is Fearr Leat?

Ceol/Music: Aon chineál ceol

Come Out Ye Black and Tans

Bia/Food: Bia Meicsicánach



Clár Teilifíse/TV Show:
 Real Time with Bill Maher

Rud ar bith

Bridge Across My Sorrows by Christina Noble

Mac tíre

Laoch/Hero: President & Roselynn Carter

Áit in Éirinn/Place in Ireland: Áit ar bith in iarthar na hÉireann

Frása Gaeilge/Irish phrase:
Smugairle Róin

Miotaseolaíocht/Irish Mythology:
The Children of Lir

Ní bhíonn saoi gan locht (agus ní bhíonn locht gan “c”)

Mana saoil/Life motto: Níl ach saol amháin agat

Comhairle d’fhoghlaimeoirí nua/Advice for new learners of Irish:
Join any conversation group speaking Irish, at times it will feel awkward but that is where you make the most progress

Join the online Irish community for cúrsaí, comhrá & ceardlanna, and follow along on social media @LetsLearnIrish – beidh fáilte romhat!

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