How do you live your best life in Dublin? Leave it to Katie to share all her tips with you! Find out how to balance classes, a beneficial internship, AND some good downtime while abroad. With good planning and a dose of spontaneity, you'll be on your way to building fundamental skills for your career while making memories from this experience of a lifetime.
Welcome back to my personal insight on how to immerse yourself into a whole new world of culture, food, and unpredictable weather. Today, I felt the drive to share a little bit of my academic experience here in Dublin: the good, the bad, and the (study) ugly.
Jenny and I at Croke Park.
First and foremost, I am sorry to break it to you… Yes, you have to study. Studying in the summer, abroad in another country—weird, right?? Let me be the first to say, CAPA does not make it a cakewalk of just showing up. While, yes, you HAVE TO SHOW UP TO CLASS, there are several assignments, interviews, exams, and tours you MUST attend to do well in these classes.
Scared, yet? Well DON’T BE. I came into this program knowing nobody, and everyone I have met, from the States and from this beautiful country, have made this experience that much more amazing. The city of Dublin has so many places to see, secret gems to uncover, and adventures just waiting for you to spontaneously part take in. DO NOT BE AFRAID TO DO NEW THINGS. I promise you, the best times you will have here are the moments you never planned.
Sara, Daniel, Michael, and I in front of a Dublin mural.
Anyways, back to all those beautiful classes and exhilarating internships! Now, I feel as though getting the real-person insight on your class load and internships schedule is essential to living your best life in Dublin.
For the University of Florida (UF) students in Dublin program, you are REQUIRED to take ONE internship class (no getting out of this one), ONE of the two other classes offered through CAPA (talk to your school advisor), and ONE online UF class (yep, no getting out of this one either). I am currently also taking another online class for the University of Florida, so studying has been CRUCIAL to my success thus far. Now, not all CAPA programs are the same as UF's, so talk to your advisor at your school or a CAPA employee to help you with your planning.
Stressed out, yet? Literally do NOT be. Classes can be overwhelming, but what you do with your downtime is by far the best memories you will have within this experience. Just this last weekend, my roommates and I went on a last-minute trip to London. Let me be the first to say, you SHOULD TRY to visit that incredible city during your time here. The Dublin airport is very cheap on flights, and, with a big enough group, accommodations are very affordable.
At the Cauldron with a Harry Potter crystal ball!
Now, back to the coolest part of your study abroad program… YOUR INTERNSHIP!!
If you are like me, you may be lacking in the professional realm of your resume. Guess what? EVERYONE GETS AN INTERNSHIP WITH THIS PROGRAM. You get to actually be apart of the Irish culture with firsthand experience within all types of companies: from business, to entertainment, to technology. My personal internship has been nothing less than a learning experience of a lifetime. I have been given the opportunity to make marketing material for my companies’ social media platform, gain firsthand experience on how to create an effective sales pitch, and the understanding of how to launch a company on a different continent. While this company was not something I thought I wanted to work for, this experience has made me THRILLED with the opportunity to learn and build soft/hard skills I never knew I already obtained.
Getting the chance to be thrown into the working world of Dublin is a very unique opportunity you truly cannot find anywhere else. Overwhelming? Yes. Lots of hours of hard work and planning? Absolutely. Have any questions? REACH OUT. Read these blog posts, ask your friends, and talk to anyone in CAPA—research is key here, folks!!
Sara and I in Phoenix Park.
Next time you will hear from me, it will be my inside scoop of my CAPA adventure to Belfast!!
Katie Berlin is an official CAPA blogger for summer 2019, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. An Industrial and Systems Engineering major at University of Florida, she is studying abroad in Dublin this semester.
Katie's journey continues all semester so stay tuned.