Tag Archives: Ireland

Edge of Europe

Hello folks!

We have been on exchange program in Ireland, County Kerry and Tralee. Time has flown very fast and in a sense it is harmful leave from here, but in other hand it is nice to go back Finland and start summer work in familiar environment. Contradictory, or what you think?

Castle
One of the Ireland’s hundreds ruin castle.
IMG_4144
The highest peak in Ireland, Carrauntoohil. And surprise! There is sheep on top of the mountain.

Ireland has given very good experiences to me and my wife. We’ve seen amazing places and met great people, locals and foreigners. Irish people are very nice, helpful and they have great sense of humour! Here is only one problem, accent. Kerry’s accent is sometimes crazy. They speak very fast and their lips don’t move, I don’t really understand how anybody can speak like that, but Kerry’s people can.. Too many times I had to rise my hands up and said: “I’m very sorry, I didn’t understand anything.”

But to return amazing places, Ireland has launched at 2014 great travel route called Wild Atlantic Way. It is unbelievable set of peninsulas, gulfs, cliffs, beaches, villages, castles, ruins and history of this great green island. Here is some pics from this 2 500km long way (no, I haven’t driven whole way. No time, no money.), because pictures tells more than thousand words.

IMG_3432
Slea Head, County Kerry

I have placement in Kerry University Hospital. It is quite little hospital, but it is enough to me. I don’t need massive hospital complexes.

I have been a little bit surprised about hygiene here. I heard horror stories about large MRSA problems before I came here and I waited something terrible inoperative system. But luckily this system is good and it works! System is quite same than in Finland, but we have computers, Irish has papers.

The time in hospital has been very very good experience to me although I haven’t learn very much like new “tricks” to care patients. But I have learned lots of English, so I have reached my target. But process ends to satisfaction, so keep learning lads!

That’s it guys, Ireland has shown the best side of this beautiful country!

May the road rise to meet you and may the wind always be on your back! (Part of Irish blessing)

IMG_2734
Flowers for the summer!

Cheers!

Oskari

Where the craic is mighty!

Ireland, the land where strange tales begin and happy endings are possible!

They say that times fly when you’re having fun – Which is very true in my case. I was almost five months in Ireland having the most wonderful time in my life and can’t believe it’s over now!

Athlone and river Shannon
Athlone and river Shannon

I lived in a little town Athlone, in the midlands. School where I studied is Athlone Institute of Technology and I liked it very much. Lecturers were very friendly and there was a lot of exchange students from different countries. The courses I chose were about tourism and hotels, also including revenue management and professional/enterprise development and I liked those courses a lot. There was four other erasmus students in my class so it was nice to study also with Irish students.  I took a English for studying skills- course to support my studies and I think those classes were my favourite. The English lecturers were so friendly, always so positive and welcoming and it was nice to learn with so many different nationalities and have interesting conversations during the classes.

Department of Hospitality Tourism and Leisure studies
Department of Hospitality Tourism and Leisure studies
Cliffs of Moher
Cliffs of Moher

One thing I found challenging there. In Finland we do most of the assigments in teams, but here almost everything was individual. First it was hard, but by time it became easier and I found the best ways to study. We had to do different  reports, project, wordbook, essays and at least five different presentations and after submitting the last one, I felt so proud and relieved. Also the final examination weeks were hard trying to read as much as could and exam situations were different compared to Finland.

During the semester, I got so many new friends and spend amazing time with them. Many times when we had free time,  we spend time in a pub next to our apartment playing pool and enjoying Guinness or going to parties organized by International society or other erasmus students.  I think that always people who you meet wherever you go, makes your time there. That semester wouldn’t been the same without all those lovely people.

Cliffs of moher
Cliffs of moher

During that time, I saw a lot of beautiful Ireland. And I  really mean beautiful. Green scenery everywhere, numerous mountains and cliffs, fields with sheeps and the coastal roads with ocean views. Seriously breathtaking country which I fell in love. Definitely going back maybe after few years to experience the whole Wild Atlantic way and other cities I didn’t see.

Wicklow National
Wicklow National
Pub in Dublin
Pub in Dublin
Game of Thrones- tour in Belfast and role playing
Game of Thrones- tour in Belfast and role playing

I made trips when having free time. International society organized few trips to erasmus students to Cliffs of Moher and Wicklow national park. Also in St. Patrick’s day, there was three buses full of exchange students going to Dublin to celebrate. With friends I made trips to Dublin, Galway and to Belfast and all those cities were so nice. Including to our courses, we made fieldtrips to Dublin, Westport and Clonmacnoise visiting different attractions and learning about tourism.  Everywhere was a lot of activities and attractions for tourists and sometimes it was difficult to choose what to do and see.

Celebrating St. Patrick's Day
Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day
Ballintoy Harbour
Ballintoy Harbour

To people who are thinking about going to Ireland, I can only suggest that lovely country! Not only because the scenery, but also because the Irish people, culture and way of living!

Ireland, Sláinte!

Cheers from Tralee!
It has been a amazing adventure I have had here this far and now it is almost time to go home already. Time flies when you are having fun!

Institute of Technology Tralee (IT Tralee) is a bit different than TAMK. The lectures lasts only an hour and the examinations are very strict. The courses’ final examinations are as strict as the matriculation examinations are in high school. There is only two semesters that equals to two periods, not like in TAMK with 4 periods per academic year.

The Starbucks cafeteria in the North campus has a nice view to the mountains, and is has been nice to see the mountains where ever you go in Tralee or how I have noticed, anywhere in Ireland.

View from the North campus of IT Tralee

The courses I had here were mostly marketing courses, but very different that those I had in TAMK. Sometimes the lecturers just did not show up but that happened to me only once. Some other course teachers were gone for most of the time without any note.

I have travelled around Ireland and visited also in Edinburgh, on the holidays and weekends. The nature here is wonderful and yet it amazes me every time how green it is here. Anywhere you go, for example from Tralee to Dublin, when you are sitting in the train, every 30 seconds you see either cows, sheep or horses. The sheep are everywhere, it is true that they can lay anywhere.

Ballyseedy Wood in Tralee
Ballyseedy Wood in Tralee

Ballyseedy wood was only for a 15 minute cycling away from the city centre. If ever going to Ireland, I recommend to rent a car. The public transport is not at the same level what it is in Finland.

Cliffs of Moher, Galway
Cliffs of Moher, Galway

Cliffs of Moher was beautiful and no wonder why it is a known place in Ireland with Giant’s Causeway.

After getting used with the accent of the Irish people it was easy to understand the people. For example our bus driver on the Northern Ireland trip, he was from Kerry, and he had strong Kerry accent, and for awhile it was almost impossible to understand what he was saying, but I got used to to the accent pretty fast.

Dingle Peninsula

The day trip to Dingle was the first one I did and I was impressed about the view there. Definitely worth seeing.

Killarney National park
Killarney National park
Giant's Causeway, Northern Ireland
Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland
Blasket Islands
Blasket Islands
Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh Castle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The people that I have had the chance to get to know here are so great! They have made the studying and the small town Tralee feel like another home.

 

So as they say cheers in Irish, Sláinte!

Three months of good craic in the green island


It was a grand exchange period in Ireland I had. I met some great people and enjoyed my time fully. I studied in UCD (University College Dublin) and the radiography program was very good there. We had two modules: Irish Culture and Cardiac Imaging. I really liked the lecturers and their English was really easy to understand which I wasn’t expecting. It is amazing how quickly one adapts to another language and culture. The three months felt such a short time and flew by so fast.

fullsizeoutput_9d0For seven weeks I did a clinical placement in St. Vincent’s University Hospital. The people there were extremely nice and welcoming there. I lived with 13 other girls and five of them were also studying radiography so I had loads of support. At the hospital we did one week in each modality: General radiography, CT, MRI, IR, Cath Lab, Theatre and a few days in mammography, nuclear medicine, ultrasound, fluoroscopy and emergency department. It was nice to see the whole range of radiographers work in SVUH. The hospital is moderately modern and has 4 general x-ray rooms, two CT and one MRI.

The health care system in Ireland isn’t as equal in Ireland as we have here in Finland and the poor state of the economy is still effecting the hospitals and the equipment there aren’t as modern as we have in Finland. You can still see handwritten referrals scanned in the computer and huge patient files with handwritten forms. Our Finnish paper-free hospitals seem very modern compared to the computer programs in SVUH. Hand disinfection isn’t used as much in Ireland and almost the entire population carry MRSA in some form. The role of the radiographer is also quite different, they are more like technicians rather than nurses in Ireland and for example in IR (Interventional Radiography) the radiographer is only responsible for the imaging and radiation safety and the radiographic nurses are there to assist the radiologist and take care of the patient.

fullsizeoutput_bd3
Cliff walk, Bray – Greystones

The scenery of Ireland is amazing. I love nature and Ireland definitely has a huge amount of beautiful places to visit and see the nature at it’s best. Although the Irish complain a lot about the Irish weather, I beg to disagree and after leaving the -20 degrees Finland in the beginning of January and arriving to the +14 Dublin, it was pretty great. I got to visit a lot of places in Ireland, because it’s a quite small country in size. Besides Dublin, I also visited Galway,  Doolin, Killarney, Belfast, Kilkenny, Wicklow mountains, Greystones, Bray, Howth and Tullamore.

fullsizeoutput_aa0
Ring of Kerry
fullsizeoutput_986
Connemara, Co. Galway

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m happy that I did the Erasmus exchange and I’m sure to be back to Ireland at least to visit. It has also made me appreciate Finland more and I’m proud to be a Finn. 🙂

– Heta

 

Having a craic in Ireland, Athlone!

 

Hello mates!

And so begins our 11th week in Ireland today. Only 4 weeks to go!#!!?

I´ve been asked to tell something about my stay in Ireland as an exchange student. I will be happy to do that.

My studies

I absolutely love my studies in here. I think I´ve learned more in this time here than I learned whole last year in Finland! But there is only one explanation to that and that is time. I have Tuesdays and Fridays off and my classes starts at 11 am at the earliest. Usually even later, like today only at 2 pm.

img_8752

When we signed up for courses, I was horrified about Management accounting course. I´ve been so pleasantly surprised because I absolutely love that course! Such an interesting calculations and the teacher is so much fun! He absolutely hates our class, because people won´t shut up and some uses their phones, but I´m having a blast fallowing all of this. He also has a humor that gets into me, so yes gonna miss that one.

img_9885

My other course is Operations & Chain Supply Management. The teacher is such a sweetheart and funny as hell – but sorry to say this out loud, I don´t learn there as much I would like to. Maybe it´s the language barrier but I´m off track a million times whenever I sit in his class. But the subject is new to me so I have found it very interesting. Something I will definately get into more at home as well. Products and services manufacturing process can be quite interesting to my brain 🙂 Also we did a group work about Tesla, which is now all I can think about. I want my own Tesla and I would like to start building a life at Mars with Elon Musk, thank you very much.

img_9267

I find the teachers here have a bit more time to put into teaching.  What I don´t understand here, is the fact that we only got to know our final exam days like a week ago and got to book our flights back home only then. Prices have been going up all the time but we couldn´t book the flights any earlier. Well I´m glad we have a return ticket now.

img_8575

My spare time

I could not be happier about this opportunity I had to come and live here in another country. And what a lovely little country it is. Since I am a bit older (I just turned 30!!) than the rest of the exchange students here, I have had more time to just think and rest than at home in my normal life; work-studies-social life mess.

img_9142

I do love my daily routines here. We eat the most delicious breakfast each day with fress berries  and we cook nearly all of our eatings ourselves. I haven´t cooked this much in years and I absolutely love it! Can´t wait to continue this in Finland.

img_8404

We have the best gym at school and we like to play badmington. The gym is only couple years old and it has everything! The staff provides you a free programm you can follow and I´ve already had 3 of those from there. Also they make tests to measure progress and check up on you in the gym. All of this is voluntary of course, but I have enjoyed every bit of that! And I´ve also seen some results so yey for those summer-fats gone away!

img_9084

We´ve also done some trips. I´ve been to Dublin couple of times and Galway one time. We also went to the famous Cliffs of Moher, which was pretty amazing experience. I think I´ll just leave these pictures here to explain what I´m talking about.

img_8982 img_8962

Than I also drove a car here! The steering wheel is on the right side of the car and you drive left side of the road so that was interesting. Truth to be told, it went pretty well! Can´t wait to drive some more, I hope!

img_9046 img_8555

All together, I´m having a craic here! For those of you that don´t know, craic is an Irish way of saying I´m  have so much fun here and we laugh each day with our abs sore! This definately feels like home, even though it is freaking cold inside!! But I love to coming back to our flat after a trip away.

Thanks for visiting this blog and have a good day!

-H

 

Great craic in Ireland

I’ve been in Ireland for five months and still staying strong. Last of the exams are over and now it is only matter of the results coming in. I came to Tralee in January, when it was windy and raining all the time, just like Finnish winters are now. The first impression I got from this little town that is was quiet and the people living here were very helpful and kindhearted. The accent in Kerry is the thickest I have ever heard, listening and nodding are my greatest strengths.

I mainly chose Ireland by accident, because I had to change my destination to something else, do to the fact I couldn’t leave in autumn. But it is easier to choose an English speaking country and  I’ve always wanted to visit Ireland.

The school has two campuses to facilitate all the fields of study. I had problems choosing courses, because most of the courses I chose weren’t available, for some reasons. At the start I was happy with all of my decisions, but first impressions are deceiving. Quickly I noticed that some of the lecturers don’t fit the standard of educating, but others do. The workload for me was massive and after 80 pages of writing I was exhausted, choose your courses carefully. For some lecturers you could see the passion for their work and it was a motivational factor, but some just demotivate you. I’m lucky I didn’t have any group projects, because I heard some horror stories about the work of the local students, the lack of it. After the crazy amount of studying I’m more convinced I like the system better in Finland, because we actually do something and not just go over theories I’m not going to need.

2016-02-01 13.32.05

Of course we had a lot of free time and most of the Erasmus live in the same place, so it was easy to get to know everyone. The town is small, but everything is close by and you can get easily from town to the next. We used The Irish experience tours services a lot, because they offer cheap tours for students which was grand and you get to see the scenery. Otherwise just see as much as you can and enjoy. I think this doesn’t help my English at all, because the Irish talk a little funny and I’m picking up some bad habits.

2016-04-10 18.05.24 2016-04-09 15.53.16 2016-04-05 11.23.15 2016-03-24 17.14.08 2016-02-13 14.46.08 2016-02-13 13.38.03 2016-02-13 13.05.47 2016-02-13 12.19.03

Greetings from Ireland!

Hello from the green Ireland!

It has been about three months since I´ve arrived to Ireland. It wasn´t  that big culture shock to come here because the culture is quite same comparing to Finland. Time has gone by so fast and soon it is time to go back to home.

I had some concerns about the lectures here. I was afraid that the teachers would speak too fast and with a strong accent so that I wouldn´t   understand anything, but luckily that wasn´t the case. Lessons are easy to follow and there hasn´t been any problems with the school for me.

I have traveled a bit around Ireland. I have visited Dublin few times already, Killkenny (we went to see horse race), Galway, Ennis, Clifs of Mohar and some other places. There is still much left to see and me and my friends are planning to go visit at least  some places in the Northern Ireland (most likely Belfast is one of them). There is also a surfing trip to the South of Ireland.

IMG_20160312_130356IMG_20160312_141608DSC03860DSC04015IMG_20160312_183247

Greetings from Ireland!

Hi everyone!

IMG_2290

I am half way through my Erasmus time here in Athlone Ireland. The time has gone so fast and almost time for Easter break of two weeks! The studies here in Ireland have gone smoothly and learned so much etc. about Irish politics, economy and history. The education system is very much alike in Finland, except few differences. I am really enjoying the HR studies especially. The teacher is strict and demands a lot more from us students than other teachers here. We also have some projects for her that we need to return at the end of April. We also have project in marketing, in which we are suppose to design an ad for some Irish product that we start to import to Finland! I am really looking forward to that, due to in that we can exploit our visual eye and imagination. I prefer doing more projects than reading just to the exams, but the exams are going to be within two months so that is a bit terrifying!

At this point we have travelled many times to Dublin (which is an hour and a half away from here), Galway, Cliffs of Moher, Kilkenny, Ennis here in Ireland and also Scotland few weeks ago. We have seen lots of green (especially on St. Patrick’s Day), sheep, castles and beautiful landscape. The plan is still to go to maybe Cork, Belfast and some few-day trip to Morocco or Madrid.

I also started my internship in the early March. I’m doing it as distant job for a finnish company and while I go for the easter break in Finland, can work then as well.

I would recommend Ireland to all at least visit for a few days, the landscapes are amazing, people are nice and helpful and Dublin is definitely one of the most vibrant cities I’ve ever been to!

IMG_0189 IMG_2651 IMG_3402 IMG_3080 IMG_3988

Greetings from the land of leprechauns

P2060152Hi Everyone!

Greetings from Tralee, Ireland. I’m doing my study exchange in University of Technology Tralee and I’m almost halfway through my semester. My time here has been great so far. I’ve made a lot of new friends from other exchange students and school has also been quite okay. Lectures here are not so different compared to Finland and I don’t usually find it hard to understand the lecturers even though the Irish accent is really strong here in county Kerry and people tend to speak really fast. Back in January on my first night here in Tralee, I spoke with an old Irish man and I seriously couldn’t understand a word he was saying. Fortunately most of the people don’t have as strong accent as he did.

All of us exchange students here are anxiously waiting for St. Patricks Day. Most of us are planning to go to Dublin and see the parade and all the celebrations there. I think that will be a day to remember. Also my two week Easter break starts then and I’m going to visit London and Scotland during the break, so lots of fun things in the future for me.

P1220012 P1230059 P2060188 P2060140 P2060145 WP_20160123_13_09_17_Rich

Exploring Ireland

Dia dhuit!

That means “hi” in Irish, a celtic language spoken in Ireland. It’s been two weeks since I arrived in Ireland. At first I stayed in Dublin for few days and I already felt like being at home. The atmosphere in general is very friendly and relaxed, people are so helpful and warmly welcoming you to Ireland. The pubs are great, there’s always live music and of course Guinness. The landscape is as beautiful and green as I thought it would be and almost every building is colourfully painted.

So I’m doing my placement in University Hospital Kerry which is located in the west coast in Ireland in a quite small town called Tralee. I’m there as a midwife student. It’s a bit different comparing to Finland. Maybe the most significat difference is that they don’t use computers and all the patient information and data is on a paper. And there’s lots and lots of paperwork because of that. Of course pregnancy, childbirth and the care in general are the same everywhere. My working hours are 9-12hrs a day which at first was tiring but I think it’s much nicer to work longer hours and then have at least 3 days off. I also have to mention that students in here don’t get to do much in their placements; they mostly observe and assist. So it’s sometimes a bit frustrating not to do “anything” whereas in Finland students work independently.

All in all it’s been lovely so far and I think it’s going to be even lovelier as the time goes. I’ve got so many travel plans for example visiting Connemara and Killarney national parks, Cork, Cliffs of Moher, Dingle peninsula, Galway, the Ring of Kerry, Glendalough, Kylemore Abbey, Blarney castle and Northern Ireland.

IMG_20160217_144607 IMG_20160227_165108 IMG_20160227_182740 IMG_20160227_165809