Conversations on Studying Abroad

The Countdown is On: Preparing for My Semester in Dublin

Sep 7, 2018 3:00:00 PM / by Jessica Kisluk

Jessica Kisluk

Jessica Kisluk is an official CAPA blogger for fall 2018, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A Broadcasting and Mass Communication major at  SUNY Oswego, she is studying abroad in Dublin this semester.

In her first post, Jessica shares how she took her finances and health concerns into consideration as she prepared for her semester abroad in Dublin.


It’s crazy to think that at one point I was scrolling through the CAPA blog page, looking at the different places to study and at the experiences people had, and now it is actually happening. The decision to study abroad was not easy, as it is my senior year and I gave up a lot in order to come here—but I believe it will be well worth it.

Mint appTesting out the Mint app for budgeting this semester.

One of the major things that I had to think about was finances. If I did go to Dublin, how would I finance it? I decided that I would take out a loan, because this was a once in a lifetime chance and I knew if I went, I could also visit other places in Europe easily. I did look for plenty of scholarships, but after the fact of the decision. If you are looking to study abroad, definitely check with your school to see if they have any scholarships to offer. I have been using Mint as a budgeting app, but I plan to try out a few different ones to see which works best for me. The CAPA online portal also helps a lot to prepare you for arrival or any other miscellaneous questions you may have, from cultural norms to phone service.

Preparing to study abroad in Dublin has been a little hectic for me. A week ago, I got back from Poland, where I spent most of my summer. I have traveled to Poland and Italy before, but never longer than two weeks. Originally, I was planning to stay right through until the program in Dublin. However, I decided that because I have Type 1 Diabetes, it would be better to come home to refill my supplies. As you can imagine, this week has been crazy. I am trying to see some family and friends before I leave again. Meanwhile, I am unpacking and repacking.

PackingRepacking my carry on with all my diabetes supplies.

Traveling with diabetes is just another thing to prepare for. I’ve talked with doctors, insurance, and program coordinators, and the best thing for me to do is to bring all of my supplies with me. This means my whole carry-on is going to be filled with insulin pump supplies. I also need to keep my insulin cold, so I use a portable cooler called a Frio that I use for long plane rides. I highly suggest it if you have any medication that needs to be kept cool for a few days. This is the biggest challenge for me while studying abroad, because I need to make sure I have enough supplies and also have a back-up plan.

Medication coolerThe Frio cooler is helpful for keeping medication cold while traveling.

One of the things I am most excited for is my internship. I will be interning at the Screen Directors Guild of Ireland where I will help to run film event programs and film production projects. I am hoping the connections I make here will be beneficial in the future. My internship placement fits perfectly with my majors and minor, as I am a broadcasting major with an arts management minor. As I mentioned before, I gave up some things to study abroad—one was being the public relations director of my university’s radio station. I loved to promote the station and plan events, so I am glad I will be using similar skills in my internship.

I also found out who my roommate is recently, so I connected with her on Facebook, and I am excited to finally meet her! I am also extremely excited to travel. Galway, Belfast, Glasgow, and London are just a few of the cities that will be close to travel to. I also cannot wait to see the little towns in Ireland and compare it to the ones I have seen in Poland.

Passport and Dublin bookReady to discover new places I’ve found in my pocket travel book!

Everyone I have talked to that has been to Dublin has only said great things. I am super excited to be immersed in a culture that I am not very familiar with. I love going to museums, and cannot wait to learn all about my host country.

This time next week, I will be posting from Ireland! I hope you will enjoy keeping up with my adventures.

Thanks, Jessica!

Jessica's journey continues every Friday so stay tuned.

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Topics: Dublin, Ireland, Predeparture & Study Abroad Preparations