University College Cork

University College Cork

About

University College Cork is an institution that combines all the best aspects of research, academic excellence, Irish history and culture, student safety and welfare, and a vibrant campus life to create an exceptional study abroad experience. From our castle-like campus quad, to our dedication to green studies and sustainability, from our active student clubs and societies, to our commitment to student distinction, UCC provides students with a safe, exciting, beautiful, intellectually stimulating environment in which to learn, grow, and make memories. Students who choose UCC as their abroad destination leave campus with more than just pictures and souvenirs; UCC alumni leave with countless memories, friends from all over the world, a wealth of knowledge, and a newly found sense of independence and self-awareness.

We look forward to welcoming students to our campus and watching them develop as scholars, travelers, researchers, and individuals. Ádh mór agus gach dea-ghuí.

Website
www.ucc.ie
Founded
1845
Headquarters

University College Cork
College Road
Cork
Co. Cork T12 YN60
Ireland

Reviews

Default avatar
SJ
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Landing in a new country and completely alone was quite daunting, to say the least, but wow, it was Ireland! A beautiful and highly reputable country that carries a terrific presence in the world. I was ready to begin my journey. I will say, it was tough at first, adjusting to the culture, norms, and the overall isolation away from home. Though, as time crept by the city grew on me and the University was astounding. I decided to take a step away from my undergrad studies of accounting and English literature and take a step towards the realm of politics and international relations. I was in an unfamiliar world of political and theoretical debate, learning the ideologies and opinions of citizens from across the globe, including Iran, Latvia, the UK, and (obviously) Ireland. It was insanely stimulating, and I dove into the material hard, absorbing all that I could. It's truly fascinating stuff. I absolutely standby my decision to get an MA in International Relations and the choice to study abroad. I have made incredible friends from France, Malta, and Ireland, and I have traveled across Europe, both solo and with friends, going to Spain, Romania, and Portugal. I have had a truly brilliant experience and opportunity to grow abroad because of the decision to get an MA at the University College Cork (UCC) and I'll always take that with me wherever I go.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
Driving on the opposite side of the road and standing along the Cliffs of Moher.
Response from University College Cork

SJ ~
Thank you so very much for submitting a review and testimonial about your experience at University College Cork. It is heartening to read about your transition from isolation to cultural immersion, and I am so happy to learn that you will leave the experience not only with scholastic take-aways, but also with an incredible group of friends. I will be sure to pass along your comments, concerns, and lessons with my colleagues.

Again, thank you so much for sharing your graduate student journey. It is so appreciated!

-Caela Provost, US Representative, University College Cork

Read my full story
Cork City, Ireland
Skyla
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I was humbled by the beauty I saw in Ireland. I believe if you decide to study abroad at the University of College Cork you would find the same happiness here. My roommates and I decided to go to an International party that was hosted by the University my first night here. Those parties are such good craic and they are just one of the things that made my year the most incredible one yet! That night we all decided to walk home instead of taking the bus (FYI I highly recommend walking everywhere!!) There was this group of Irish students walking in front of us singing "I love you Baby" "And if it's quite all right" and in that moment I knew I chose the right place. The challenging coursework, building international friendships, and endless adventure was soo much more than I anticipated. I cannot thank the University of College Cork and the people I met here enough for my amazing experience.

Get out there and Study Abroad, Cheers!

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
YES, pictures are a must when going abroad! However, I would have been more in the moment rather than looking through the lens of my camera.
Response from University College Cork

Skyla,

Thank you so very much for sharing some of your favorite UCC memories in your review. I am thrilled to hear (or rather, read) that you felt at home in Cork and that you enjoyed your studies and adventures. I hope you get to come back to visit soon!

-Caela Provost, US Representative, University College Cork

Default avatar
Kathleen
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Ireland was beautiful and UCC was terrific. If there is something that piques your interest, odds are you'll be able to find it at UCC. It doesn't feel like the massive school it is, though. The professors are enthusiastic and happy to help, especially for foreign students, which is helpful considering how different the Irish universities are from American ones. Communication to students is great, and support is readily available and easy to find, if needed. All of the UCC staff are extremely welcoming, and make students feel like they belong. They are always ready for tea and a chat, and seem to genuinely care about the students' well-being, all 20,000 of them. I only did this program because of a very last minute decision, but I'm extremely grateful that I did because it was absolutely incredible.

Response from University College Cork

Hi Kathleen,

Thank you so much for your wonderful words about your UCC experience! I am so, so very glad that you had such a welcoming, positive time in Cork; it seems sometimes last minute decisions can be the best decisions! Please know that you'll always have a home away from home in Ireland's Rebel County!

-Caela Provost, US Representative- UCC

Default avatar
Nicole
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Studying abroad in Cork was the best decision I've made. I instantly fell in love with UCC and Cork. The campus is stunning and the classes are challenging but manageable. Cork City is filled with mostly Irish people who are so kind and welcoming. The city is very safe and very active. I love Cork so much that I've already been back once since my fall semester abroad! I highly recommend this city and university to anyone who is looking to get the real Irish experience. I am so thankful for the people from Cork who I met abroad and the opportunity to learn all about their culture. Study at UCC!!

Response from University College Cork

Nicole ~

Thank you so much for sharing your Cork/UCC experiences! It's so wonderful to hear that you've already made your way back to Cork since your time abroad. We hope you find your way back to the Rebel County again soon for yet another visit!

-Caela Provost, US Representative - UCC

Elise
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The Fall semester at The University College Cork was a semester that I will never forget! From meeting life long friends to realizing how much I love to travel, Cork provided me with experiences like no other. If I could have stayed another semester, I would have in a heart beat. Within the last few weeks of the semester I didn't want to leave. I would catch myself calling Cork 'home', and it truly was. I never felt unwelcomed or unsafe, and I think that is why I gained such an attachment to Cork.

I was looking for a authentic Irish experience and Cork provided it. From listening to live Irish music in local pubs to interacting with the locals at the market, there was never a day in Cork where I wasn't smiling. I had the ability to dive right into the culture, and if that is what you are looking for then I highly suggest Cork, Ireland. It truly is an experience you will never forget!

Response from University College Cork

Hi Elise,

Thank you so much for your kind words about your time spent in Cork and at University College Cork. It makes me so happy to hear that you have found a "home away from home" in Ireland's Rebel County, and that you were able to truly experience Ireland's rich culture through your adventures and interactions with people in the community.

Again, thank you so very much for your review, and I hope you get to return to Cork very soon!

-Caela Provost, UCC US Representative

Programs

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Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

SJ Leck

Just a kid from Ohio trying to experience the world, visiting unknowns.

Why did you choose this program?

I chose an MA in International Relations to step away from my undergrad spheres of accounting and English literature, as well as my career as a weather forecaster, to engage in the debate of foreign policy, ideologies and theories outside of my home country and to be exposed to the perspectives of citizens across the globe.

That being said, I chose Ireland specifically for the culture and beauty, which it has lived up to spectacularly. In addition, I chose Cork specifically because of the desire to not be in a mammoth city, yet be in a city with enough to do. Cork has an insane charm and odd magnetism to it that is quite difficult to explain without knowing the personality and hospitality of the people. For instance, I was sitting on the southern coast of Portugal, a gorgeous view of the ocean and the sun levitating in a clear blue sky, and out of nowhere I found myself missing the brisk and rainy days of Cork... Wild stuff.

Furthermore, I chose this program, International Relations, because I knew I would meet people from all over, which turned out to be true. I am now friends with people from France, Iran, India, Latvia, the UK, Malta, and, of course, Ireland. Friendships that would have never happened without this program. Just incredible.

What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

My program advisor and the university's U.S. ambassador were outstanding. Answering my questions from culture to academic requirements and expectations, along with the minutia of registration and finances. Tremendous people. Pure class.

The biggest entity on my own, however, was finding an accommodation, which turned out to be incredibly difficult. The university did not help out with this, at least from my experience, and I will say, where I ended up living is not the greatest. There could be some improvements by the university in aiding students, especially foreign students, in this area.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

Be uncomfortable. Say yes to situations you wouldn't normally want to do and explore on your own. Get out, and it's okay to make a fool of yourself: the Irish are incredibly nice and understanding. These will be the experiences that are so unique to your own trip that you'll always be sharing them out of near disbelief that you actually did them, and it is one of the greatest feelings to know you pushed yourself and are able to carry the story with you.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

The isolation. Almost everything is new: currency, transportation, language barriers and customs, and it is essentially on you to figure it out. Your friends & family are an ocean away, hanging out and getting together, enjoying holidays, and you're missing it all. However, technology helps a lot with this, either through Skype, WhatsApp, Facebook, etc., because you're still connected in a way; though it's not quite the same, it still helps the transition.

But, this isolation has led to a growth that is beyond anything a classroom can teach you. You learn a lot about yourself and you learn how to live internationally on your own, what you truly like and what you don't, and then you start hanging out with people from class, grabbing pints, coffee, or food; you realize the similarities and appreciate the differences. Their friends become your friends, and soon enough, you're meeting up and doing things all the time, laughing and having the craic. It really is a beautiful thing.

Is there any other advice you'd like to share with prospective travelers?

Well, the stories are there for you to discover and create, but I will say, I do wish I had joined a club or society early on in the first semester. I believe that would have been a nice way to help with the isolation and to introduce myself to a new subculture. If there were something I could have done differently, it would have been that.

Also, make sure to go to Dennehy's in Cork. Incredible pub.

More Interviews

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Pádraig Ó Macháin

Job Title
Professor of Modern Irish

What is your favorite travel memory?

Seeing the municipal archives of Valencia.

How have you changed/grown since working/teaching at UCC?

Since coming here in 2012 I have had the opportunity to challenge myself every day in teaching and learning, and especially to establish and explore new frontier-areas of research, and do all of this with the enthusiastic support of a University that values innovation.

Why should a student choose to attend your program?

To gain or regain the energy that learning imparts. In the specific context of Gaelic Literature, to see how the history of a country and culture can be narrated through the story of its literary artifacts – texts and books – and to appreciate how energizing encounters with these artifacts, and with the ideas they inspire, can be.

Why would you apply if you were a student?

Because no-one else offers a course like this.

What makes UCC unique?

If you want to challenge yourself with new, open-minded, carte-blanche learning, this is the place to be.

When were you especially proud of your program?

When our first student graduated, and told me, on that day, that the course had been a life-changing experience.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in a successful program?

Personal communication between teachers and students in a spirit of courtesy, enquiry and mutual-learning.

More Interviews