Coming into ILR as a sophomore transfer, I didn’t think that I would have the ability to study abroad and receive ILR credit. I thought that when I transferred to Cornell that my dreams to study abroad were crushed. Shortly into my first year at Cornell, I learned about the ILR/UCD Semester in Dublin program and I knew I had to apply. I applied as soon as I could and I never regretted my decision to study in Dublin the fall of my junior year. My time spent studying at UCD was one of the best experiences of my college career.
I chose to live on campus in the Belgrove Residences. I was able to walk to class, go to the free gym, have access to the on-campus library, and not have to worry about commuting to campus by bus. Also, most clubs are located on campus, which makes living on campus convenient if you want to get involved and meet Irish students. I lived with two random roommates in my co-ed apartment style suite: one male Irish Freshman from County Carlow and one male Chinese study abroad student from Shanghai.
The required classes are intellectually stimulating and introduce students to labor relations in a European setting. European Industrial Relations and Human Resources focuses on labor issues faced within the European Union. Our class was fortunate enough to visit Brussels, which was one of the many highlights of my time at UCD. In Multinationals: Managing People, there were multiple guest speakers, from all different backgrounds, who discussed different management styles and issues that occur in multinational companies looking to operate in foreign countries. The class consists of visits to a variety of non-Irish multinationals that operate in Ireland. For example, our class visited Shannon Aerospace (a subsidiary of Lufthansa) and Leo Pharma (a Danish pharmaceutical company). The Irish History class is made up of a variety of American students studying abroad at UCD. This class also offers trips to places such as the National Museum of Ireland in Dublin and the Parliament Buildings in Belfast.
The classes are made up of Irish and international students, and consist of group projects, presentations and individual assignments. Most classes at UCD are assessed by a few assignments that are worth a substantial amount of your grade. For example, my elective course that fulfilled my upper level Economics course requirement, Public Policy, consisted of a midterm (20%) and a final (80%).
My biggest suggestion to anyone considering participating in this program is to get involved. The Irish friends that I made within the university’s clubs made my time at UCD the absolute best. I chose to get involved in softball, a sport I had never participated in other than high school gym class. We went on multiple trips, including a weekend trip to Galway. Take chances and put yourself out there. Irish people are warm and welcoming and will want to get to know you.
This program is perfect for students looking to gain international experience in labor relations. The education I received at the ILR School is enhanced by my time spent in Dublin at UCD.
- Bridget Bugliari, UCD Fall 2012