Studying abroad in Ireland

By Natalie Porter
Published October 31, 2011

“May the road rise to meet you, may the wind be always at your back...” begins the Irish Blessing popularized through use in numerous ceremonies in America. This traditional Irish blessing perfectly reflects the quiet, peace and serenity of Ireland. As college students, ‘quiet, peace and serenity’ are areas in which we could use a little training. Step outside the busy routine of campus-based collegiate life and find yourself submerged in peace and beauty when you study abroad in Ireland.

"My tour guide’s motto was 'Got a problem? Have a drink, talk about it. Have a second, forget about it!'” says Kim Pham, an undergraduate student who recently studied abroad in Ireland. Kim commented on how easy going and good natured the people of Ireland were. “Everyone is very relaxed and laidback. You can even come and leave work whenever you want,” said Kim. “This kind of an attitude about work makes Ireland internships quite enjoyable!”

Katelyn Schoenauer, another undergraduate student who chose to study in Ireland also observed the peaceful nature of the Irish. “The people really are the wonderful, friendly individuals that popular culture has made them out to be. The country is breathtakingly beautiful and picturesque, and very green! It’s a refreshing difference from the sprawling suburbia of the US.” Katie spent some of her favorite moments in Ireland venturing off on her own and enjoying the lush, green countryside of Ireland. The beautiful scenery makes the opportunity to study abroad in Ireland tempting to resist.

For those planning on spending a semester in Ireland, Kim provided some of her “must-see” spots in Ireland commenting, “The Cliffs of Moher and the Aran Islands are beautiful. Galway has a great night life, and you must experience Dublin!”

Katie agrees on much of Kim’s list, particularly on the importance of visiting Dublin. She comments, “My favorite memory from Ireland was the time I spent in Dublin. The city is so vibrant and made up of unique neighborhoods that really represent the lives of the Irish people.”

With all of the beauty and rich history that awaits you, it is easy to see why so many people are choosing to go get their own breath of fresh Irish air.

Natalie is earning her bachelor’s degree in English and Political Science. She studied abroad in France during the summer of 2011.