The four Providence students that are studying abroad in Belfast for this semester have now been here for a little over a week and we are loving every minute! Although it took longer to arrive here then we thought (we missed a flight and had a layover in London Heathrow for five hours) we are now here and soaking up every minute! However, this gave the four of us a chance to bond with the three other students from other universities back in the USA that would be joining us in this experience.
Upon our arrival, we were met at the airport by an IFSA Butler representative who took us to our hotel accommodations for that night. The hotel was right in the middle of downtown Belfast so it was a prime location for us to explore the city the very first day we arrived! After a night of fighting off some jet lag, we toured downtown a little bit more before our IFSA representatives took us to Stranmillis University College where we are living and taking classes this semester.
We are living in a flat that accommodates eight students. However, we all have our own room and our own bathroom (even with walk-in showers!). Stran’s campus is absolutely beautiful and looks like a park with all of its open land. Here are a few pictures of us exploring the first few days:
Since we moved into Stranmillis on Thursday yet orientation did not start until the following Monday, we, along with the other international students, made the most of our days by exploring the city of Belfast! We visited Victoria’s Square, a sort of city center/outdoor mall, Culture Night, and even the Titanic Museum!
Once orientation started on Monday, we had meetings every day to get us accustomed to student life here at Stranmillis. However, there were plenty of fun activities to keep us entertained every day. To name just a few there was a Fresher’s Funk Party (like parties at McPhail’s!), an inflatable day, and multiple movie nights.
Classes start on Monday here for us! Our schedules are still getting finalized but we know that we will be teaching for one full day every week at a school here in Belfast!
We already have plans to travel to Dublin, London, and Germany so we will give you updates on that as well as classes as soon as we can!! Hopefully this gave you a taste of how much fun (or as they say here in Belfast ‘craic’) we are having here in Belfast so far!!
Michelle, Maggie, Colleen, and Kati