The Mercyhurst College Institute for Intelligence Studies, a leading provider of graduates to crime-cracking agencies such as the FBI and CIA, is bringing together worldwide experts for a major conference in Dungarvan this summer.

Making the announcement in the County Waterford town last week, Mercyhurst President Dr Thomas Gamble confirmed that Tom Ridge, the first US Secretary of Homeland Security and the 43rd governor of Pennsylvania, will deliver the keynote address at the July 11-13 gathering.

Dr Gamble says the conference will strengthen Mercyhurst’s already productive relationship with Dungarvan, a Sister City of Erie. This spring the college has sent six faculty and 26 students to the ‘Old Boro’ to establish a satellite campus for the first of what is expected to be many overseas terms.

The goal of the conference, foreseen as an annual affair, is to explore the application of intelligence analysis across various disciplines. Panels will comprise top practitioners representing medicine, the law, finance, technology, journalism and the sub-disciplines of national security, law enforcement and business intelligence.

Key organisers include Mercyhurst principals along with Dungarvan natives and Mercyhurst alumni John Melody and Deputy John Deasy, as well as Waterford County Manager Ray O’Dwyer.