The best locals, gorgeous scenery, and lots of sheep! Past Review

By (Environmental Studies., Austin College) - abroad from 09/02/2014 to 12/21/2014 with

IFSA: Limerick - University of Limerick

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned so much about myself and how to get to know others. I could go on for pages about what I've learned, and it was one of the most worthwhile experiences of my life. I can't believe that it all actually happened - I met so many great people and had the best time in an extraordinarily gorgeous country - I feel like it was all a dream.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Compared to the intense liberal arts education at Austin college, the University of Limerick wasn't too challenging. This is good, though, because you have time to experience the surrounding area and aren't always stressing about school work.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I lived in Dromroe village and it was fantastic! It was in the center of everything. My roomies were a random mix of international students, Irish and American. The apartment arrangements don't really encourage interaction between housemates, that was really the only draw back.

* Food:

I bought the majority of my food at Tesco (although I know people say Aldi is cheap - I try to buy whole foods only and it's hard to find the quality there), and it was great! The local cuisine is absolutely delicious.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

It's easy to interact with locals if you make the effort. Joining clubs or societies is a great way to meet the Irish - as are the local pubs!

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I used the health center at the University of Limerick. Appointments were very cost effective, and prescriptions were affordable.

* Safety:

I always felt very safe on campus, and most of the city of Limerick is safe. I would not recommend walking alone in the city at night, always have a buddy! The busy areas are fine, but there are some questionable areas if you go wandering alone. During my stay in Limerick, I never felt uncomfortable or that my safety was at risk. Definitely not something to stress about, just keep in mind - all big cities carry a certain risk if you're not responsible.

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)

I buy whole foods, which are typically a bit more pricey than the processed stuff. However, compared to America, the cost of living in Ireland is very high.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? around 100 euro a week
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Try getting your housemates together for meals! Splitting the cost makes it affordable, and no food is wasted. Plus, it's a nice way to get to know them. Also, cook for yourself and limit eating out (but be sure to experience the local foods!).


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The Adventure Weekends
  • The Friendliness of the Staff
* What could be improved?
  • The recommended meal budget should be adjusted
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I got to see a whole lot of Ireland, but I should've planned what I wanted to see and do a bit better before leaving America. Take that initiative! Also, bring two big suitcases instead of one big one and a carry on! You'll be wanting to take a bunch of things from your Irish adventure home with you. If you have a specific hobby, and small accessories are required, bring them with you. I ride horses, and was glad that I thought to bring my helmet, breeches and riding boots. Finding hiking boots in Limerick was a struggle, especially since I was unfamiliar with European sizes.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Avid Adventurer
The wardrobe you packed was better suited for a semester of camping than club hopping. Outdoorsy, you might forgo a crazy night out for an early all-day adventure. You'd rather take in the rich culture of an old town than the metropolis of a modern city, but for you getting off the grid is ideal.