Imagine walking into your first day of class, in a new country and your professor tells you that in just 14 quick weeks you’ll be putting on an event in Dublin. That’s exactly what happened to me and my fellow classmates. Fast forward to the end of November and we can now reflect on that same task and proudly say, “we did it!”
This semester, Champlain Abroad Dublin‘s Creative Dublin class was given the daunting- yet delightful- challenge of putting together an arts event from start to finish. This project was undoubtedly, one of the most in-depth and hands-on projects any of us have ever done at Champlain College thus far. During one of our first classes we split into two groups. Each group talked about what their ideal event would look like. Then, we came together as one and discussed how to combine all of our ideas into one seamless event. After that, we hit the ground running.
We decided we wanted slam poetry, music and an art gallery. To effectively achieve this, we came up with the idea of Urban Expression; a one-night event that highlighted the paths we have taken to get to where we are today. Through photography, visual art, slam poetry and music our aim was to show that each individual is on a unique journey. We made sure the event was free and filled with both American and Irish artists and fellow Champlain students. We even managed to snag one of Dublin’s biggest graffiti artists to do a live piece. Continue reading
One of the classes that I have been taking during my semester abroad with Champlain Abroad Dublin is called Early Irish History, taught by archaeologist Naill Colfer. We’ve been exploring Ireland’s past all semester and recently took a trip to the Irish National Heritage Park in Wexford. Here we actually got the chance to see reconstructions of many of the things we’ve discussed in class!
The first thing we got to see on the tour was a Mesolithic house, used when people first came to Ireland, around 8000 BC, and lived as hunters and gatherers. Later on, the people adopted the practice of farming during the Neolithic era. We got to see examples of these sorts of houses as well and a reconstruction of a tomb from the time. When I visited the Burren in the west of Ireland I got to see an actual tomb from this period too!
Neolithic tomb at the Irish National Heritage Park
Poulnabrone dolmen is a portal tomb in the Burren, County Clare, Ireland
The time is now, the week is here: midterms. Exams abound, and essay assignments never seem to stop coming. As a third-year college student, this isn’t my first tango with that dreaded M-word. As someone who is studying abroad, though—yes, the study is a key factor here—it proves a bit more challenging.
My workload has been very manageable, but in the last few weeks my assignments have been piling up and led to some initial stress. It’s not a secret, but practicing time management is so, so important: especially while living in another country, where the world is your oyster and there is endless life pulling you in all directions. Like I said, it’s not a new development: but polishing up this habit will combat stress and leave ample time for immersion! I haven’t perfected my formula, but what I’ve been doing to date has worked swimmingly.
1. Make a list.
I haven’t gotten a formal planner while here, but I do have a notebook where, each week, I make a to-do list and organize it into sections of classwork, events to sign up for, papers to print, and miscellaneous things to take care of. It’s also best, for me, to write everything in order of importance. Paper due in four days? Starred at the top. Reading for class next week? Listed towards the bottom, below the upcoming assignments needing to be taken care of first. It’s a good visual of what needs to get done when. And sometimes I start from the bottom of the list and work my way up, to be able to cross a few minor tasks off. Really, a day for me can’t begin until I know what needs to be done when. Continue reading
Boasting a playlist primarily made up of show tunes and Broadway soundtracks and a slow-but-steady collection of plays filling my shelf, my love for theatre runs deep. I’m left reeling for weeks after leaving a performance, and try to stay up to date on the latest shows and performers—a Hollywood of sorts. One of the greatest privileges in life is to witness live theatre. There’s simply nothing like it.
Like writing, theatre has the power to touch, to move, and to inspire. It can provoke belly-aching laughter in one instant and, in the next, leave almost sorrowful tears streaming down audience members’ faces. It leads us through the journeys of its characters, and we leave the confines of the theatre with a lighter step and more peace of mind. More insight; more humanity.
Many people hear about the wonderful trips that study abroad students go on and the unforgettable places they see. These are semester highlights and no doubt I will have many of those by the end of my time with Champlain Abroad Dublin.
But what does the average day look like for a Champlain Abroad Dublin student? Those days when I spend more time at the Academic Center than I do exploring Dublin or other places are just as interesting. I’d like to lead you through my typical Tuesdays!
I’ve always been a morning person, so I wake up for my day around 7! (I know, crazy right?) Recently, the sun has begun to rise later, so it’s often still dark when I wake up! But here’s an early morning view from my apartment:
Hello! My name is Amanda and I’m a third year Professional Writing major at Champlain College, currently studying with Champlain Abroad Dublin.
Student apartments for the Champlain Abroad Dublin group.
It’s been about a month now since I arrived at my student apartment from the Dublin International Airport and, yes, it’s also been a month since I have left the familiarity of the US for the first time. While there are some brands and chains here that I recognize from home, like Burger King, Special K, and even Starbucks and their pumpkin spice lattés, there are many new things that I have never seen before. Spar, Tesco, and Lidl have become frequent stops for grocery shopping and the green crosses of pharmacies can be seen on most main streets. Café Sol is perfect for a quick bite for lunch and Penney’s is the best place for affordable clothes.
But, of course, I have learned more in the past month than where to do my shopping for the semester.
If you would have asked me three weeks ago to start a campaign to empower women, I probably would have looked at you like you were crazy and said “I mean I’ll make a twitter page, but I doubt anything will happen.” Three week later, I found out just how wrong I was. For my Social & Not-for-profit Marketing class (MKT 340) , we were told by our teacher Lucy Masterson to get into a group, pick a topic, and “do something with it” When my group got our topic, which was “empowering women to have the confidence in the work place,” we all just sort of looked at each other. How in the world were we supposed to do that?! Here we were, four college girls, sitting in a class room in Champlain College’s Academic Centre in Dublin. Not a clue how we were supposed to instill confidence in women in the work place.
Liza Fowler, Rachel Hatem, Karisa Desjardins and Page Hallock – Champlain College students and founders of the Women’s Empowerment Movement It Takes One. Photo Credit: Lilly Johnsson
This is Ian Oliver’s first semester teaching at Champlain College Dublin. He is in charge of the first installment of a new local course version discussed by blogger Ben Pitt a few weeks ago called Creative Dublin and running under ART 380: ADVANCED ART HISTORY.
Ian Oliver – Adjunct Faculty at Champlain Abroad Dublin
In addition to be the campus director, I also teach SCI 155 – Environmental Earth Science. We manage to cover all of those topics any introductory earth science should cover (you know…rocks, minerals, plate tectonics, earthquakes, climate etc….). But, I also like to assign a book for class discussion that may not make it onto […]
Creative Dublin is not your average class. Technically titled “Advanced Art History: Special Topics” the course description states the following: “This [course] is a combination of an active engagement with independent aspects of cultural landscape of Dublin including venues, outstanding artistic projects, and Creatives behind it and practical work leading to completing the Creative Dublin […]