Shun Yan takes us through the many reasons to choose Civil & Environmental Engineering at IT Tralee, from practical modules to exposure to a mix of cultures and knowledge…

After I graduated from secondary school in Hong Kong, I began thinking about my future career path and choosing a tertiary education program that I was interested in. I realised pretty quickly that Civil Engineering was my cup of tea, so I started to research related degree programs provided by different universities. At that time I found IT Tralee in Ireland offered Civil and Environmental Engineering and the course was recognised by Engineers Ireland, so I packed my bags and started my journey of studying abroad away from my homeland.

Ireland is an English-speaking country, so there is not much to worry about in terms of communication, and it’s a great opportunity to practice your spoken English with native speakers. And in Tralee there are international students from Malaysia, Finland, Poland and more.

Courses in the college are balanced well with both theory and practical modules, meaning students have the chance to make use of the knowledge we learn during lectures. In the very beginning, I was afraid of the practical side of engineering such as site surveying, as I had never worked on site before and the apparatuses were all new to me, but now I am far more confident and have learned to work and collaborate with my classmates. The course involves both civil and environmental engineering and this gives me more choice in terms of career and but also allows me to understand how to balance construction with improving the environment.

The modules for the course are given step by step and we are given the time to build up basic skills during the 1st semester, like how to use AutoCAD and levelling, before moving on to more advanced topics. This means everyone starts at same level which helps with stress levels!

The learning ability of students are measured is diverse ways included assignments, projects, reports and tests. The lecturers can then analyse the performance of students and give individual advice. Along with support from teachers, my classmates at IT Tralee are kind and helpful, we get on well and and they have welcomed me. In group projects, we have a closer relationship and the mix of different cultures gives me a chance to discover more about the world. I learn new things every day, an example would be the time I had to design a timber frame dwelling as a project. I had never seen this in Hong Kong before and my classmates and lecturer explained to me that timber is commonly used in Ireland for construction purpose. As a girl who has lived in a concrete jungle for 18 years, this really surprised me! Tralee is very different from Hong Kong, here there are no skyscrapers, no 24-hours convenience shops. Life here maybe a bit simpler but it is relaxing, I often look up at a big blue sky and enjoy warm sunshine in the afternoon! Here I have a good quality of life, a great work-life balance and it is a pleasant place to study abroad.

If you have questions about studying at IT Tralee, leave a comment, I’m happy to help!