Fionnghuala O’Reilly copes with NASA job and Miss Universe Ireland duties due to covid-19

06 Apr 2020 | Priya Bhardwaj

The first-ever biracial Miss Universe Ireland Fionnghuala O’Reilly was crowned the new queen in 2019 as she represented Ireland in Miss Universe 2019. The stunning beauty and the first woman of colour from her country created a very strong impression on the audience and the jury but unfortunately failed to place in the Top 20.

Along with being a successful beauty queen, Fionnghuala also does IT work for NASA. However, Coronavirus has made both her jobs trickier as nobody expected the world would be grappling with Coronavirus midway through her reign. Fionnghuala is also a Nasa Datanaut — part of a highly competitive programme comprising engineers and scientists, who engage with Nasa’s open data to create innovative new thinking, processes and products.



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It has been pretty hard for the beauty to see events postponed or cancelled where she was due to talk in the context of her work as a systems engineer and director of the Nasa Space Apps Challenge. It has also been hard for her to see Miss Universe Ireland duties cancelled. “In addition to going to St Patrick’s Day in Boston, I was planning to attend Ireland Day at the New York Stock Exchange. So many people are trying to figure out how to maintain a sense of normality — and community — at this time. For the past few weeks, I’ve been thinking about how I can best serve the community”, she said.



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Fionnaghuala has been maintaining her social distancing during the current quarantine situation. “I work in my bedroom. I set up my desk near the window, facing the light”, she quoted. She is also creating planners to organize herself and makes a list of goals at the start of the week.