BEVERLY, Mass. — For the fall semester of 2017, Endicott women's lacrosse teammates Erin Gill (Winchester, Mass.) and Molly McMahon (Hanover, Mass.) traveled to Dublin, Ireland to study at the University College Dublin (UCD). ECGulls was able to touch base with both women and get a greater insight into their time overseas.
ECGulls: Give us an overall description of your trip.
EG) We studied in Dublin, Ireland at the University College Dublin. I got to travel abroad with one of my teammates, Molly McMahon. We were there for about four months from early September until Christmas. We traveled all around Ireland, and to eight countries in total.
ECGulls: Describe your overall study abroad experience.
MM) Studying abroad was such an amazing opportunity that I'm very grateful for. I not only had the chance to travel and see several parts of Europe, but also got to immerse myself in these cultures that are very different than my own. I learned much more outside of the class room than I could've imagined.
EG) My overall study abroad experience was unbelievable. I loved living in a different country. I had never left the country before going to Ireland, so this was a huge change for me. The classes were very interesting, the traveling was easy, and the country of Ireland, as well as the rest of Europe, was so beautiful!
ECGulls: Why would you recommend studying abroad to other students?
EG) Yes! It is important to be flexible and open to new or different ideas, cultures, and people. I got to see so many beautiful places and views that I will always remember, and I got to experience things that other may never get to do. There will rarely be an opportunity to live abroad like this again.
MM) I would 100% recommend studying abroad to anyone even possibly thinking about it, even those who don't want to. It's an experience of a lifetime. When you're abroad you meet tons of new people from your own country and several others, and travel to so many new places. You get to see the world from a new perspective.
ECGulls: What was the biggest lesson you learned?
MM) One lesson I learned being abroad and traveling often is leaving ample amount of time to get to the airport before your flight. There were several times where I was sprinting through airports trying to make my flight, most of the time catching the plane, but I did miss a flight once and was stuck in an airport for hours. Thankfully I was with my best friend Erin and we made the most of it and grabbed brunch, but one bit of advice would be to leave early for flights; always!
EG) I learned a lot about myself while studying abroad. The most important lesson was to not take anything for granted. I knew that I would only be in Europe for four months, so I did everything that I could during this time. Learning to be flexible with traveling and experience different cultures makes you realize that the world is so much bigger than you know. Similar to playing sports, flexibility is important when studying abroad in a new country. Growing into our independence is another lesson that we had to learn over there.
ECGulls: What was your favorite experience?
EG) Getting to visit the Christmas markets in Edinburgh, Scotland, or running a half marathon with Molly in Oxford were my favorite memories.
MM) It is hard to pick one experience that was my favorite as I had an amazing four months with no complaints. I got to travel across Ireland and to several countries across Europe and each place was so different than the other making every trip special in its own way. Aside from traveling a lot of my favorite memories were in the city of Dublin exploring the amazing things it had to offer.
ECGulls: Describe the educational side of the program.
MM) I'm a nursing major and classes in Dublin were very different than what I was taking back in Beverly. I was used to the science and nursing classes, so history and literature were quite out of my realm. Class sizes were very different than what I was used to as well, as I went from having 20 person classes being my biggest to a lecture hall with hundreds of students. Finals were by far the biggest difference though as they were taken off campus a few miles down the street at a stadium-like complex with thousands of students in a gym taking tests at the same time. Although it wasn't like Endicott, it was interesting to see what school was like in Ireland.
EG) School in Ireland is very different than the way we have school in the United States. We were fortunate enough to get to pick from a variety of a lot of classes at UCD. We chose to take classes that were mostly centered around Irish history and culture so we could learn as much about the country that we were living in as possible. There were only a few assignments due throughout the semester, and then a large final exam at the end of the semester. This made traveling really easy.
ECGulls: Were there any funny stories from your trip?
EG) My teammate Molly and I missed our flight back to Ireland from London, and we were forced to spend hours in the airport waiting for the next flight, but we missed that one too!
WHY STUDY ABROAD? – (ENDICOTT STUDY ABROAD WEBSITE)
Following the College's philosophy to "learn by doing" through experiential learning, the study abroad program & its international internships prepare students at Endicott for success by offering alternative academic understanding, social & cultural literacy and life-changing experiences. Through semester-long academic study, faculty-led trips, and/or 3-to-15 week internships abroad, students gain new confidence and self-awareness, and obtain the skills necessary for success in today's economy.
"Globalization is here to stay, and students who want to work in our interconnected global world should study or intern abroad.
Despite the inevitable increasing global competition for jobs, American graduates lack the international experience, language capabilities and cross-cultural communication skills necessary to succeed in the global economy.
Making education abroad a part of their college education is the most effective and accessible means for students to develop needed skills because it pushes a student to get out of her comfort zone to experience another culture, language, environment and education system. It teaches students to appreciate difference and diversity firsthand and enables them to recognize — and then dismiss — stereotypes they may have held about people they had never met.
Learning how to interact with people from other countries and cultures equips future leaders in all sectors to address urgent issues — from curing diseases and finding energy solutions, to fighting terrorism and hunger — shared across borders."
The Endicott Experience feature aims to highlight the entirety of the student-athletes' experiential learning journey throughout their academic careers. The student-athlete at Endicott is afforded the same opportunities as the general student population at the College as it relates to internships, study abroad, and postgraduate career pursuits. This philosophy mirrors the mission statement of the College which every student is encouraged to take intellectual risks, pursue scholarly and creative interests, contribute to the community, and explore diverse career paths. Read more Endicott Experience features by navigating the links below.
INTERNSHIP: Fall 2015 | 2014-15 Internships | Fall 2016 Semester-Long | Gulls "Learn By Doing" On Winter Break | 442 Student-Athletes Complete Internships During 2016-17 Academic Year
STUDY ABROAD: Ryan Healy Studies Abroad in Europe | Studying Abroad as a Student-Athlete at Endicott | James Dwyer Focuses on Opportunities Abroad in Switzerland with Les Roches Global Hospitality | Endicott Student-Athletes Study Abroad in Asia | Holly Erbe Studies Abroad in London, Paris, Amsterdam | Andrea Courtemanche Gains New Perspectives Through Study Abroad Trip | Shelby Elwell Catches Travel Bug From Study Abroad Experiences | Erica Hadad Studies Abroad In Ireland
ACADEMICS: Emily Sharpe and Eric Owens Balance STEM and Sport at Endicott | Daquan Sampson Always Willing To Learn, On The Court & In The Classroom
CAREER OUTCOMES: Internships Lead To Career Outcomes | 2015 Graduates Find Immediate Success in Job Market | The Relationship Between Athletics & Academia At Endicott
(Photo Credit - Molly McMahon)