Finding a balance in Limerick Past Review

By (Math, Trinity University) for

Arcadia: Limerick - University of Limerick

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained a lot of self-confidence and problem solving ability. Overall, I was very pleased with my study abroad experience. I wish I could have lived with an Irish family to get more of a cultural experience, but that's really the only thing I would change about the program. I liked the amount of independence balanced with the support Arcadia provided. I really enjoyed learning about the way that another culture thinks about the world and especially the way they view American policy.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The workload was not overwhelming, the grading system seemed to make provisions for lower quality work, teaching systems were what I expected from a University. The educational system was much more self-motivated than in the US. Most modules (classes) required a paper and a final exam.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Grainne was great about getting us information and answering questions very quickly. The entire staff on site were very helpful and friendly. Everyone had useful advice about how the system and life in general worked in Limerick. The program in Limerick was smaller than I expected, but I didn't mind. I was overall very pleased with Arcadia's staff in Ireland. They were there if we ever needed them and made a big effort to integrate us into the city and help us experience cultural events.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Housing in Cappavilla Village was very good. Your living situation really depends on who you are placed with. Our apartment was always dirty, which drove me crazy, but that was just the people I ended up living with. The village felt very safe and was close enough to the campus to get there in 10 minutes walking. UL is outside of the city, so if you want to go into town you have to depend on the bus or take a taxi, which gets expensive very quickly. We were required to buy sheets and towels, but all cooking and eating items were provided, as well as a mop, broom, and vacuum.

* Food:

The university did not really provide food other than restaurants. There was a large variety of places to eat though, and every place I ate had pretty good food. I suggest dining in Red Raisins, but honestly I didn't try very many other places.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I really enjoyed the ceili that they provided for us. I also really enjoyed the weekend trip to Belfast that Arcadia organized for us.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Everyone told me that Limerick was stab-city. I did not find it very dangerous during the day at least. I never had any incidents and only heard about rare ones with others. I would not suggest walking near the train station in town by yourself at night. I didn't have any health issues while I was there, so I cannot comment on the caliber of health services. They definitely tried to educate us about meningitis.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? I usually spent about 30 euro
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? I just advise people to be really frugal with their money at the beginning and you may end up with some left over to do things you never got around to.


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • They had a few organized trips but mostly just provided information and gave us time to explore.
* What could be improved?
  • I'd like a little more cultural integration, especially with people outside of the university circle.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Come with an open mind. Take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way. Limerick isn't necessary the most exciting city in Ireland, but don't neglect to explore it too. You can find little cultural treasures that will teach you much more about Ireland than sightseeing will. The student who would benefit most from this program is one who is self-motivated and wants to experience everyday Irish culture.