Changing futures: How study abroad inspired me…
Want to broaden your horizons and be inspired by the world? Patrick Smith is studying Political Science at Mary Immaculate College in Limerick, and in this blog he shares why studying in Ireland has opened up a whole new future for him…
Study abroad can mean living in a new culture, travelling the world, and taking a very large step outside of your comfort zone. I was expecting all of these occurrences to take place during my year in Ireland however there was one aspect of study abroad that came to me by complete and utter surprise.
I entered into this study abroad experience with a passion for politics and the different ways that governments are set up. However, my world view was strictly limited to America and how my own country was operated and viewed. I only thought of America in the world, and was so limited in the scope in which I viewed international issues. However, luckily for me, being abroad for the year in Ireland has completely turned my life upside down!
Being in a foreign, European country has given me the true privilege to learn more about my passion – politics and government – in an entirely new context and scope. Being in my international relations class at MIC and learning about how different countries are structured and interact on the global stage has truly been invaluable.
Talking with other erasmus students about their own countries, as well as sharing my own experience with them about being an American, has shown me the extreme beauty in the way the world is structured. My experience here in Ireland makes me want to work abroad and continue to learn more about international relations and politics. This experience has shown me just how remarkable the world is, and the ability to represent America on the global stage would truly be an honour and a privilege.
I hope to one day work in an American Embassy or Consulate abroad so that I can continue these dialogues with those of other cultures and nations. Ireland opened my eyes to the way the world is, and I hope that this enlightenment just continues.
I am currently researching my graduate school options in Ireland to study Political Communication and hope to work in Ireland after school finishes. Like in nearly every moment I have in Ireland, I am always reminded of how lucky I am to be in such an amazing and rewarding country. I hope to further continue these experiences into grad school and continue working in cross national collaboration between Ireland and the United States of America.