I’ve always dreamed of visiting the country of my ancestors, and what is better than an opportunity to study there for five months. Ireland has always been appealing to me; the history, the music, the landmarks, the greenery, and the people. I knew for a fact that the students in Ireland would be extremely generous and welcoming, and the education would be top tier. Since I was confident that I wanted Ireland to be my visiting country, I began researching programs that were affiliated with Providence College and my Health Policy and Management Major and noticed that IFSA sent students to the University College Cork in Cork, Ireland. My interest peaked, but I wanted to gain more information about the program and hear from a PC student that was in the IFSA program a year before. My study abroad advisor matched me with a senior named Rachel, and we stayed in communication with each other before and throughout my experience. She told me her personal experience while abroad in Cork, the IFSA trips she went on, and the enormous amount of support from IFSA advisors during the departure and arrival process, orientation, and emphasized that they had constant check-ups and conversations. Speaking to a Providence College student about her personal experience with IFSA truly helped when deciding which program to pursue. I loved hearing about her personal anecdotes of the program and the University College Cork as well, and I could picture myself being there. I can attest to the fact that my IFSA advisors were extremely helpful and in constant communication with me before and throughout my abroad experience. With their help, I was able to smoothly navigate my way to Ireland and explore the beautiful city of Cork without worry. I was also fortunate enough to take courses with generous Irish students that I would keep in contact with for a long time. I am proud to say that Rachel was right, and I would love to talk to students about my wonderful experience with IFSA in the future.
Victoria Hanlon is a Health Policy and Management student at Providence College and studied abroad with IFSA at University College Cork in Fall 2021