IES Abroad Dublin - Irish Studies

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About

This program is designed for students who seek intensive academic exposure to Ireland's political and social history, contemporary economic issues, and literary heritage. By combining coursework with study outside the classroom, you have the opportunity to discover the rich heritage of Ireland, as well as its contemporary culture through its art, theater, and film.

Check out this Center for yourself by taking a Virtual Tour at http://www.youvisit.com/tour/iesabroad.

Questions & Answers

All of our classes for the Irish Studies program were taught in the IES Center with the other American students in the program. The teachers are either staff at the center or professors at other universities in the area. They're all brilliant and creative, and I loved attending classes. All of my professors were Irish or had been living in Ireland for many years, so it gives you a different...

Reviews

98%
based on 24 reviews
  • Academics 8
  • Support 9.9
  • Fun 9.4
  • Housing 9.5
  • Safety 9.8
Showing 16 - 24 of 24
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Brigid
10/10

Slainte! IES Dublin spring 2015

I am currently suffering from severe wanderlust and am fighting the urge to hop on a plane to Dublin as I write this review. As I settle back into my old life in the U.S, I took the time to decipher what my study abroad experience meant to me. Simply put, my semester in Dublin was one of the greatest (if not the greatest) decisions I have ever made. Let me explain that before I left for Dublin I was a painfully shy personality who came from a tight-knit family and had lived in a small town all of my life. Of course I was excited to go abroad, however, I had never done something so out of my comfort zone. I have never been more scared to do anything in my life and I boarded the plane (Departing from Chicago) while trying to control my ugly sobbing. All of the fears and nerves I had were completely assuaged as soon as I stepped foot on Irish soil. At that moment I knew this would be an experience of a lifetime, and it was. Let me tell you why.
1) The Staff- The IES Dublin staff is in my opinion the best out there. I was immediately greeted in the airport by some of the nicest, most enthusiastic people I have ever met. The teachers, coordinators, counselors, RAs, ect. were so welcoming and inspiring. These individuals quickly became a part of my abroad family. From tea and cookies in the middle of class to last minute flight and travel advice, the staff was what really made my experience so unique. The classes were so interesting and pertinent to my every day life in Dublin that class became fun to go to. The staff did everything they could to make sure that we got out to see the rest of Ireland and Europe and were cognizant that although we were there for school we were also there to grow as people and experience travel as well. They will be the first people that I contact as soon as i get back in Dublin (which I hope is soon)!
2) The City- Dublin is such an amazing city in so many aspects. It is a large, modern, growing city with tall modern buildings and businesses, however, the city still maintains its small town feel. The streets are peppered with small locally owned restaurants and cafes and the pubs are all so different and cozy. The city is so full of history that I found myself simply walking for hours each day just to see and learn more. From historic O'Connell street to the Georgian buildings and squares, the city is such a beautiful juxtaposition of the new and the old Dublin.
3) The Culture- The culture and people of Ireland are so warm and welcoming. From "pub culture" to storytelling, there is simply nothing to dislike about the people and way of life in Dublin. I enjoyed a more laid back lifestyle in Dublin and was able to be stress free and take a walk down the canal every day. The locals really love to showcase their history and are so willing to include you in their culture and customs that the transition from US to Ireland went seamlessly.
4) The Land- Everything in Ireland is breathtaking. If I had a euro for every time I found myself saying "is this place even real?" I would have enough money to buy my flight back to Dublin already. The sights I saw and people I met along the way are something that will forever be engrained in my memory.
5) My Fellow Students- As a shy person, I was so nervous about not making friends abroad. I learned very quickly that when thrown into a foreign country, people are so open to meeting new friends and having new adventures. My classmates became my travel buddies, my pub crew, my homework help and my best friends. From Spring break in Spain to a farewell weekend in Galway, my crew was up for anything. I made friends that will last me a lifetime!
As my review is getting extremely long and I am getting increasingly more nostalgic, I best wrap it up. Simply put, my semester in Ireland changed my life. I became a more confident, adventurous and curious person and Dublin secured a permanent place in my heart. I can only say that I sincerely hope that every student can be as fortunate as I was to undergo the amazing adventure I did!

How can this program be improved?
The only bad thing i could say about this program is that it wasn't longer. Everything was amazing, it was just so hard to leave!
Yes, I recommend this program
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JoAnna
10/10

IES Dublin

Dublin is an incredible city. It's extremely walkable, so I saved a lot of money on transportation while still sightseeing. The airport was easy to get to, and cheap Ryanair flights to various countries were plentiful. The DART train allowed us to take quick day trips or half day trips when we had a spare morning for exploring another coastal city or cliff walk.

The program is very small, and we all become close friends as a result. The staff members are incredible, and the courses are all very interesting. Even though we were living an ocean away from home, having friends who were American helped ease the culture shock as we all adjusted together. Everyone we met, from the owner of a coffee shop down the street to the tour guide on Paddy Wagon tours, was friendly, and I felt completely comfortable in the city as a result.

On a typical day, I would get ready and walk to class around 9:30am. My first class would end around 12:30, so a group of people would either eat lunch at the center or go out to eat at a cafe. Sometimes we would go visit a museum or do something in the city center in the afternoon. Otherwise, we would work on homework before the afternoon/evening class in the IES center. After class, we often made "family dinners" and watched movies while working on homework.

The staff at the IES center are absolutely the best. From the very moment I stepped away from the baggage claim, they helped welcome us to Dublin and introduce us to all things Irish. I always felt cared for, and they made sure we knew that they would do whatever they could if we ever needed anything. They excelled at serving as tour guides (both in Ireland and by making suggestions for other cities we wanted to visit), friends, and instructors.

The biggest challenge I faced abroad was learning to become comfortable with being uncomfortable. At first, almost everything I encountered, from ordering at restaurants to navigating the bus system, felt challenging, new and a bit daunting. Within a month or two, the city began to feel like home, and I learned how to simply ask for help when I was confused or else fake the confidence.

How can this program be improved?
It was difficult to get to know many Irish people outside of the IES staff all that well. Without joining a club or getting a gym membership, I was unable to make any real connections outside of the program.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Sarah
10/10

Irish Studies

My time in Dublin holds a very special place in my heart and I owe this to the wonderful IES staff and students. The academics and field trips within the program allowed me to gain a better understanding of Irish culture and history. I made lifelong friends during my time abroad and would highly recommend this experience to anyone who is looking to expand their horizons, grow, and see the world around them.

How can this program be improved?
N/A
Yes, I recommend this program
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Katie
10/10

Take me back!!

IES is the best place to study abroad. I never felt lost or out of place in my city because the staff was so helpful. The housing was beautiful. I lived in the best area of Dublin and I could walk everywhere without even thinking. I feel perfectly comfortable and safe. The field trips were so fun and I miss Ireland already. I met my best friends in this program and think I will keep in touch with the staff and students for years to come. The center had everything we would need academically to get our homework done. The best part of the classes that it wasn't all about classroom learning. We were constantly going to museums exhibits and even coffee and scones for class periods to take advantage of every second we had in Dublin. I truly felt at home and could be dropped at any point in the city and find out exactly where I was.

How can this program be improved?
There should be more field trips, even outside of Ireland. I loved traveling with the teachers and other students. The best part was that everything was planned for us so we knew we were getting the most out of the experience.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Craggy
10/10

Branching Out

My time abroad was everything I expected it to be. By that I mean that it was completely unlike anything I'd done in my life thus far. The city itself was amazing, as were the people (and the weather). Virtually every aspect of my time abroad exceeded me expectations in terms of how I would grow personally and what would come about because of it. Specific to the program I was enrolled in, I have no complaints. On the contrary, IES treated me and my fellow students with the utmost respect and were nothing if not extremely helpful and adaptive. Every member of the staff was extraordinary in their own way -knowledgable of the city and capable of fulfilling our needs while still pushing us to do more. Each field trip (Howth, County Mayo and Northern Ireland) brought us closer to the island in different ways, illuminating some other aspect of Ireland that we hadn't yet seen or filling us in on some secret of the land (either historically or aesthetically) that we never would have expected. IES really took care of us in every way I can imagine. The housing was excellent; the RAs accommodating and helpful; the professors brilliant and challenging; the staff eager to give us the best experience possible. Day to day life was always exciting, but never uncomfortably so. The roads are beautiful, the ducks were never aggressive, and class always enticing.I will recommend the program to anyone who will listen, and will always look fondly on my time in Ireland as told through the IES Dublin experience.

How can this program be improved?
That's a tough one. I would probably just add a few more field trips in there so the students got to see more of the country together and with the wonderful staff.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Margaret
10/10

IES Abroad: Fall 2014 Irish Studies

I spent the last semester in Dublin through the IES General Irish Studies Program. I found Dublin to be a wonderful city, but the staff at the IES center fostered the transition from tourist to student. They were extremely supportive and generous with their time. Whether they were discussing in greater detail a topic brought up in class, or giving advice on the events and festivals happening that weekend, they were excited to help me gain a better understanding of my host country through my experiences. They created an incredible support system that encouraged us to visit and take advantage of the many places and experiences Dublin, Ireland, and Europe had to offer.

The classes I took focused on Irish literature, history, culture, language, and politics. They gave me the background to have meaningful conversations with people living in Dublin and around Ireland about topics that were important to them. What further helped me gain a better sense of Irish life was my Service Learning placement. I volunteered one a week at the amazing Solas Project, working with children from disadvantaged backgrounds. I worked with permanent volunteers and other students to help children with homework, and engage in activities with them such as Gaelic football! In addition to my time at Solas there was a seminar where I was able to talk about the experience I was having with other students in the Service Learning course, and we reviewed topics and issues that affected the children I was working with.

At the end of the semester I did not want to leave. I am trhilled to have the new friends in Dublin and in the Sates to share this with, and we are all so excited to continue to travel and (of course!) go back to visit Dublin and the center!!

How can this program be improved?
I would love to see the program expanded and incorporate more sponsored trips.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Shannon
10/10

Dublin, Ireland

The IES program was everything I could have asked for in a study abroad program. The academics were very engaging and let me learn a ton about the country I was now living in. The that was planned by IES and that was encouraged to go to on the weekends really allowed me to immerse in the Irish culture. The apartment housing really made me feel like I was a part of the Dublin community and not just an American tourist. The small size of the program allowed me to become really close with a lot of the other students and I can truly say I made great friends.

How can this program be improved?
I wish the program had more excursions we did as a group. Sometimes planning things on your own with your group of friends can be difficult.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Kevin
10/10

Summer in Dublin

This program was absolutely incredible. I had always wanted to visit Ireland, and IES only made that experience better. The academics were everything I wanted-- great topics taught by great instructors who really were interested in giving their students the best experience, culturally and academically. Living in Dublin allowed me to make lifelong friends who I keep in touch with to this day, and I have the IES program to thank for that.

How can this program be improved?
The housing is a little scattered, so one may not be accustomed to the amount of walking required (but, hey, a little exercise never hurt anyone).
Yes, I recommend this program
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Kevin
9/10

IES Dublin Summer Review

The program does a very good job getting everyone in the program involved and makes it extremely easy to make lifelong friends. Everyone that was in the program always had someone to walk to class with and hang out with during the day and night. The classes are very engaging and involve a lot of classroom discussion that helped you really learn the material and enjoy learning it.

How can this program be improved?
More information beforehand about the items that you will receive while there (towels, sheets, etc.) and also what you will be expected to bring.
Yes, I recommend this program

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IES Abroad offers 140 programs worldwide for college students. We are a highly charged force of study abroad enthusiasts. Every day we have the privilege of witnessing how study abroad changes our students’ lives. We also believe that every student...