I studied in Dublin, Ireland during the Spring 2014 semester with the Dublin Management Internship Program. I attended University College Dublin and took classes in the Lochlann Quinn School of Business. I worked on the Campaign Management/User Engagement team at Bentley Systems International. Bentley makes software for infrastructure (civil engineering projects, for example). My projects included the scheduling, promotion, moderation of webinars, and updating social media platforms with upcoming events.
I learned: I learned the value of navigating an international business environment. From the outside, it doesn’t really seem different until one is immersed in a new culture. I’ve improved my communication and collaboration skills by acclimating to new standards, procedures, and work ethics. More specific to the content of my projects, I learned new digital marketing tactics that will be invaluable to me in my academic and professional field.
I was surprised by: I was constantly taken aback by how friendly the Irish are. They are outgoing, always looking to have fun and willing to help out strangers. I will definitely miss the people more than anything!
The hardest part: I’d say the hardest part was still living on campus after the semester was over. The Irish students had all moved home, so campus was very quiet, and I was also adjusting to my internship at the same time. While I was busy every day, it was still a different dynamic.
The best part: The best part of my experience was being so close to other cultures. The physical distance wasn’t very far, but it still felt like an entirely different world when I visited another country. It was nice to travel and then feel like I was going “home” to Dublin. I missed it when I was away!
My tips: Be SURE to see Ireland. Dublin is wonderful and there is so much to do in the city, but make time to visit other parts of the country as well. Northern Ireland, Galway, Cork, Howth, and many more, are beautiful places that offer different vibes and experiences. Take advantage of any international student groups that plan weekend trips – they’re all-inclusive, affordable, and a great way to spend the weekend with your friends and meet other study abroad students!