While thinking about where the typical college student chooses to study abroad, London or Italy may come to mind, but Ireland may not be your first guess. When I tell people that I am studying abroad in Ireland they immediately respond with “Oh, why did you choose Ireland?” Or, “Okay, so you are going to Dublin, right?” I have even gotten “Why, do you like really green grass and the rain?” Well yes, as a matter of fact I do, but that is not the only reason why I chose Galway!
Most people have not even heard of Galway, but I have only been here for a little less than a month, and I can say with confidence that my choice to study abroad in Galway was one of the best decisions that I have ever made.
I choose to study abroad in Ireland at the young age of seven after traveling to Ireland with my Dad and his family. I fell in love with the culture, the people, and the fact that Ireland is where most of my family descends from. When deciding to study abroad in Ireland, I had to choose between Limerick, Dublin and Galway. After researching the cities and looking into each school, I realized that Galway was the right one for me. Coming from a small town in New Hampshire I knew that going to a large city such as Dublin would have been too much of a culture shock, but I still wanted to experience the small city feel with many cultural activities available at my fingertips.
A Little Bit About Galway
Galway is a small city located on the west coast of Ireland, bustling with friendly people and a rich sense of culture. From the large campus of the National University of Ireland that is home to many Irish students from around the country, to downtown Galway that is home to many natives that have lived in Galway for their entire lives, the people are warm, friendly, and proud to call Galway home.
Finding a New Home
Connecting with your roots is something that makes studying abroad even more meaningful, and having the opportunity to take specific Irish history and art classes that would not be available in the United States is something that I have loved experiencing so far. Traveling throughout Europe is something that I intend to do throughout my semester abroad, but even after the little trips that I have completed so far, I have been happy and relieved to be going back to Galway at the end of the day.
Having a place that I can call home that is so far away from my actual home is something truly special that only Galway can give me.
The world awaits…discover it.