Katerina Russo is an official CAPA blogger for fall 2016, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A communications and political science major at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, she is studying abroad in Dublin this semester.
In this week's post, Katerina interviews fellow CAPA Dublin student Aydali Campa.
Aydali Campa is a junior from the Arizona State University studying with CAPA at Griffith College in Dublin this fall semester. She is a journalism and mass communications major who enjoys drawing and painting in her free time.
KATERINA RUSSO: What made you originally want to choose to study in Dublin, Ireland? Why were you originally drawn to it opposed to other study abroad locations?
AYDALI CAMPA: Probably the friendly people drew me to it and the language being English made it a lot easier to be able to study and intern here. I also heard that it was a great city to work in the technical field with companies like Google and LinkedIn having offices here.
KR: What part of your study abroad experience have you found to be most rewarding or memorable thus far?
AC: My internship. I just feel like it’s kind of more of a mentorship. The people are so helpful and it's a very young company with young workers, which is great. I’ve learned a lot about my field as well as Irish current events.
KR: What kind of differences have you noticed in the workplace at your internship site? Are there any obstacles that you have had to overcome during your time there?
AC: The social aspect of it in and out of the office. It’s much more casual. There isn’t as much of a sense of superiority between your boss and fellow co-workers. It’s a lot less intimidating, so you’re more easily able to put forth your opinion or ask questions.
KR: Have you encountered much homesickness while you’ve been abroad? If so, what methods have you used to overcome this? Has it had much of an impact on your overall experience?
AC: I began to feel homesick about three weeks into the program, but just distracted myself from it by exploring and keeping busy. Now I just try to embrace my time here because it’s only for so long.
KR: In what ways are you balancing the academic side of studying abroad versus exploring your host city and wanting to make opportunities to travel?
AC: Weekdays, I try to focus on school and my internship as much as possible and then weekends are time for fun and traveling. I think it's best to plan out the weekends ahead of time so that you’re able to make the most of your time here and explore your host city as well.
KR: Do you have a favorite spot in the city to grab a cup of coffee or get lunch? What is it about this place that makes you enjoy being there?
AC: My favorite spot to grab lunch is a cafe near St. Stephens Green called Viola because it’s really fast and cheap. At my internship we’re kind of used to grabbing lunch and then sitting together at the workplace, so it’s the perfect place to quickly pick up a good salad or soup.
Katerina's journey continues every Tuesday so stay tuned.