June 2017 – Education Ireland MY

Monthly Archives: June 2017

Malaysian students in Ireland join the #ATileForSeville campaign.

Yesterday we had the pleasure of receiving a group of Malay students, medicine and pharmacy, in their fourth year of studies in Ireland. From the Seville Mosque Foundation we wanted to thank them publicly for their effort and generosity.

These students since they knew about the #ATileForSeville campaign, from Ukhwah for Ummah, where more than 15,000 people have contributed until this day, so these students decided to make their own fundraising campaign for the Islamic Cultural Center, Mosque and Awqaf of Seville , among students and friends in Ireland.

Our sincere thanks to all of them for their initiative and to all who have contributed to this campaign. Gestures like this are, without a doubt, an example and a joy for all of us. With this effort and with every grain of sand, as is the motto of our campaign ’tile by tile’, we will achieve the goal that we long for and desire. Insha Al-lah.


‘I do not have to hide who I really am in Ireland’

New to the Parish: When a shy young woman moved from Kuala Lumpur to Dublin to study, she had to push herself to socialise beyond her Malaysian circle – and it paid off


Frisha Ishak: “Ireland is very far away from home, but when I finished studying my dad said, ‘Don’t come back just yet’. He encouraged me to experience life.” Photograph: Eric Luke

Frisha Ishak has always considered herself a shy person and says she struggles to make new friends. Moving to a city thousands of miles from her home in Kuala Lumpur was a daunting prospect for a young woman who had never lived abroad and did not even know how to cook.

However, upon arriving in Ireland in 2012, she was determined to meet people outside the group of 20 Malaysian students who had also travelled here to study accounting. The 24-year-old built up the courage to join college societies, including the drama group, where she met plenty of Irish people.

“Some of my Malaysian friends didn’t want to branch out and experience the full student culture,” she says. “They stuck to their own, basically. I felt that was a shame, because we were given this great opportunity to travel. I guess I was eager to experience new things.”

She had decided to move to Ireland after an opportunity arose to complete the final year of her accounting degree in Dublin. She had always planned to study medicine but decided to pursue a career in accounting after she received her high-school exam results.

“Medicine was one of those things that’s drilled into you as a kid,” she says. “You’re either going to be a doctor, an engineer or a lawyer. But when the equivalent of the Leaving Cert results came out, I took one look and realised: you can’t be a doctor, you’re going to be an accountant.”

Despite the initial nerves of leaving her parents and sisters behind in Malaysia, she was excited about studying in Dublin. Her father had lived in Australia as a teenager and always encouraged his youngest daughter to travel abroad and learn about different cultures.

“I was half nervous and half excited, because it felt like my dreams were finally coming true,” she says. “Ever since I was a little girl I had always wanted to travel around the world. I didn’t want to stay in Malaysia forever. I just couldn’t wait to finish school and go to college somewhere else.

“My parents were happy for me. Well, my dad was sad that I didn’t want to go to Australia. But I was like, ‘No, it’s too close.’ ”

Independent living
She spent her first week in a hostel in Temple Bar before finding a place to live. She loved the independence of living abroad.

“My parents were always very strict, but in a good way. They wanted me to focus on my studies, and it paid off in the end. But, growing up, I didn’t do the whole staying out late until the wee hours of the morning thing.”

She was also pleased to learn that the patron saint of her new home had, according to legend, driven all the snakes from Irish shores. “I didn’t know there were no snakes in Ireland and had never heard the legend of St Patrick banishing them until I came here. I thought, This is great because I hate snakes. There are lots of poisonous ones back home. I remember seeing a baby cobra in our living room once.”

After completing her degree, she sat her professional accounting exams and was subsequently offered a job on a graduate programme with the Dublin accounting firm RSM. While many of her fellow Malaysians returned home after their studies, Ishak decided to remain in Ireland.

“Some of the others were really homesick and went home every six months, but I guess I just took on the challenge; it was part of life. Ireland is very far away from home, but when I finished studying my dad did say ‘Don’t come back just yet’. He encouraged me to just live abroad in my 20s and 30s and to experience life.”

Although Ishak made new friends in college, she found it difficult to meet people after completing her studies. When her flatmate suggested she join GirlCrew (a social platform for women to make new friends), she immediately signed up to the Facebook page.

Since joining, she has gone on coffee crawls, seen concerts, visited different parts of Ireland and had chats over numerous cups of tea with women from around the world. Like Ishak, these women have struggled to make friends in a fast-paced society that increasingly favours communication through social media and technology over face-to-face interaction.

“I was very shy at first and didn’t post much on the Facebook group. But over time I went for a few meet-ups and felt more relaxed. The majority are Irish women, but there are other foreign nationals who have moved to Ireland. There’s more than 9,500 of us in Dublin, but there are other groups around the country.

“If there’s 9,500 women, you’re bound to find someone who wants to hang out and do the same thing as you.”

Family trip
She has visited Malaysia twice since moving to Ireland and hopes her family will make the trip to Ireland later this year.

“I’ve been to almost every county in Ireland – Donegal, Sligo, Galway, Cork . . . My sister wants to go to Kerry because of Star Wars and she wants to catch the Northern Lights, so we might go to Donegal as well.”

She feels “more respected” as a woman in her new Irish home. “I’m not saying all of Malaysia views women as second class, but there are people who think we’re not equal, that we should be seen and not heard.”

She also feels a sense of liberation living in a city where her life is no longer dictated by the conservative cultural norms of Malaysia.

“Malaysia is still very much a conservative country, and you have to put up many fronts to be socially accepted,” she says. “Back home you don’t want to be too open about who you are. The one reason I love Ireland is that I do not have to hide who I really am here. ”


If you are looking for a new experience and great education, consider Ireland. Merette Kennedy delves into the reasons that make this country a great international study destination.

You’re thinking of studying abroad. You want to experience education in a different culture and challenge yourself to step outside of your comfort zone. You will find many options to study in the US, UK, Canada, UAE, and now Ireland on SchoolApply. We encourage you to find the destination and school that is the right fit for you. I however found my perfect fit with Ireland and am here to tell you why this country is such an incredible international study destination.

Why Ireland?

International study in Ireland is a constantly growing franchise. Ireland’s Minister of Education, Richard Bruton, has embarked on a proactive mission to welcome even more international students by the year 2020. He believes in the quality of education in Ireland and has been overseeing the active increase in international enrollment in the past five years. He, along with many educational institutions around the country, believe things will only get better.

I have to agree.

I studied at the University of Limerick in Ireland for a semester in my undergraduate year of college. During this time, I fell so in love with the Irish culture, education system, people and rolling green hills, that I decided to later return for my postgraduate degree at the very same university.

My experience as an undergraduate was not the only reason I returned for a postgraduate degree. Tuition fees in Ireland, considering the level of education and the stature of the universities, are quite affordable. Even for a non-EU student, such as myself, the cost was still much lower than any university within my home country – the US. Add in the bonus of experiencing life abroad and my decision was made.

Low cost, quality education, a beautiful campus and a chance to experience a new culture and education in a different country; a no brainer in my book!

Finding the Right Fit for You

SchoolApply can introduce you to a plethora of top quality universities around Ireland. Some of these schools include National College of Ireland, Mary Immaculate College, Dublin International Foundation College, Cork Institute of Technology, IT Carlow and Trinity College.

Three of these colleges are located in Dublin. This endearing city offers an endless amount of historical tours, nightlife, sports, music and entertainment. A wonderful spot for those who like to be kept busy.

Trinity College is a campus I have personally seen many times. A beautiful adage of old buildings located close to the city centre, which ensures its global reputation will stay intact for a long time to come. Trinity proudly offers programs in Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Engineering, Maths and Sciences, and boasts famous alumni such as author Oscar Wilde.

National College of Ireland and the Dublin International Foundation College are also located in the country’s capital city. Both offer programs in Business and Management and much more. If you see yourself wanting to study in the bustling and cultural city of Dublin, these colleges may be a perfect fit for you.

Colleges outside of Dublin offer a great new vantage point of the country, Mary Immaculate College being one of them. Located just outside the historic city of Limerick, Mary Immaculate offers wonderful programs in Education and Humanities and prides itself in being a top quality liberal arts college. The campus has grown significantly over the past ten years or so, offering state of the art amenities for their students. I have visited this campus many times as well, and the vibe is welcoming and relaxed. The location is prime as it is near an international airport as well as the lovely River Shannon. This is a wonderful opportunity to experience Ireland’s quaint and personal side.

IT Carlow is another great college that offers a thriving town scene and is only an hours drive from Dublin. This institute of technology offers many courses such as Engineering and Science, Business, and Computing. Carlow offers the perfect blend of a small town life while never being far from city life and adventure.

Cork Institute of Technology also offers a wide range of programs with a strong emphasis on Engineering and Sciences. It offers programs in Music, Art and Design. This historic school located in Ireland’s second largest city, Cork, has over 12,000 students and offers an authentic west coast vibe. Public transportation is incredibly convenient and makes it easy for students to explore the beauty of the west coast and all it has to offer.

Education in Ireland

Ireland has an umbrella group called ‘Education in Ireland’ that promotes Ireland as a study destination and supports all of its international students. They do this by attending fairs around the world, with the objective of connecting with international students. Representatives from colleges across Ireland promote their universities and attract an array of students with their broad spectrum of programs.

‘Education in Ireland’ also has an extremely convenient website for students about to embark on their first excursion to the country. This site gives details about obtaining health insurance, registering with police, opening your bank account and details on working while studying. All of these extremely helpful tips make the relationship between Ireland and its international counterparts easy and manageable, leaving room for the exciting prospect of study abroad.

Working While Studying in Ireland

A lot of students need financial guidance throughout their academic terms. ‘Education in Ireland’ tries to make the process of working and studying as easy as possible for international students. Registered students, EU and Non-EU, can work up to 20 hours per week and 40 hours during holiday periods.

I was one of those students. I took up part time work at a shop called O’Brien’s Fine Wines, where I worked for a maximum of 20 hours per week. This was a massive help in keeping myself afloat, and not having to write home every week in a panic. I also really enjoyed supporting myself, forming relationships with my coworkers and getting a break from studying!

Shops, grocery stores and pubs are well suited for students as they offer flexible hours allowing you to balance your student life. If you are worried about having lower funds than you intended when setting off on your international adventure, worry not! Working part time is a viable and easy option. Most universities guide students in their job hunting which is extremely helpful. From my experience, I felt like I had guidance and support whenever I needed it.

To sum it up, lower college tuition, quality education and facilities, easy and accessible public transportation, gorgeous scenery, cities, culture, music and great people; these are all the elements that intertwine in making Ireland an amazing choice for studying abroad.

 Image result for experiencing ireland while studying

Top Reasons for Malaysians to Study in Ireland

Many students give up on their dreams to study abroad, especially in Europe due to the rising costs, both in terms of tuition fees and daily expenditure. The exchange rate that continues to see-saw creatures another stumbling block. But there is indeed hope for those who still want to get there. How, you may ask? Well, welcome to Ireland. There are many reasons why this would be the perfect tertiary destination for you, so do read on and decide for yourself.
C.K. Chiau, or as he likes to be called, CK, has more than 15 years of experience in helping students decide on their futures. Now, heading his very own team at Education in Ireland, with the blessing of the Irish government themselves, he tells us the top reasons why every Malaysian should consider studying there.

Why study in Ireland?

Why should you study in Ireland? Well, CK has multiple reasons, and some of which may stun you.

No Visa Required for Malaysian Students to Study in Ireland

Yup, that’s right. No complicated and mind numbing visa processes to follow. No expensive fees to be paid to receive the aforementioned visa. No visa, period. Utter bliss.

Fast Track Route to a Degree

While Ireland accepts almost all pre-u programmes from Malaysia, including STPM, matriculation and some local diploma programmes, they have their very own unique foundation programme, which takes just 9 months. Catered for students who have just completed their SPM and are looking for the fastest pre-u course available, the Foundation in Ireland has intakes as early as January. For those of you who wonder if you will have to wait for your real SPM results to release to apply, fret not! The programme accepts forecast results as well. Through this fast track route, upon completion, students can enrol in the Degree programme immediately during the September intake, making sure no time is wasted.

Credit Transfer Courses

Malaysian Diploma graduates with a good CGPA, can proceed to Ireland to their 3rd year of Degree studies, a highly sought after option if cost is the biggest issue in deciding whether to study overseas. Education in Ireland has an arrangement in place with TAR UC, as direct transfer with mapping of course syllabus with Irish Institutions been done. Diplomas from other colleges are of course subject to assessment and review by the respective universities. So, if you did the math, as an example (We used Accounting here):
2 years Diploma + 9 months Ireland Degree = Graduate with Accounting Degree with ACCA 9 paper exemptions.

Similar Requirements

While different universities and different courses would obviously have varying requirements, the general rule of thumb is:
SPM: 5 credits
A-Levels: 2 Credit Passes
STPM: 2 Credit Passes
Matriculation: Accepted but varies with university and course

Courses Fully in English

Courses in Ireland are all in ENGLISH. No need to learn a separate language to receive the perks that others do. If you do indeed WANT to learn a new language, then they make take up courses offered there such as International Business with different languages on offer such as Italian, German, Spanish and so on.

Reasonable Cost

As they use the Euro, the government universities are still subsidised. The actual cost after all those subsidies? Starting from roughly RM40,000 a year, which is a bargain in any European country. With scholarships (many of which are offered to Malaysian students), it could go down to RM30,000 a year, which is reminiscent of fees at local universities. Of course, if you choose to study abroad, then there are other costs to keep in mind. The estimated cost of living is RM2,000 – RM2,500 per month, which equates to around RM30,000 per year (including meals), which comes up to a grand total of RM70,000 a year in total.

Convenient Accommodation

Remember the RM70,000 we calculated above. Well, that could potentially do down even lower, due to the fact that accommodation in Ireland is extremely close to the institutions. There is a variety of on-campus and off-campus accommodations that are all within walking distance that help students save on transportation fees. To top it off, Dundalk Institute of Technology, which is extremely close to Dublin and the Institute of Technology Tralee, offers FREE accommodation for the full 3 years of study to Malaysians.

Stay Back Policy

Ireland have a stay back policy for all international students who complete their studies there. For students who graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree, they’re given a full year to look for a secure a job so they may stay on and work in Ireland upon graduation. For Master’s students? They get a two full years to do the same.

Good Post-Graduation Opportunities

CK also noted how many Malaysians who have gone to the Ireland have been hired by MNCs due to their existing command of more than one language. To top it off, many MNCs are now putting up cloud server facilities in Ireland due to the conducive weather, not being too hot or cold, which bodes well for both the economy and the chances of taking advantage of the stay back policy. Besides tech giants like Google and Facebook setting up shop there, Ireland is home to 9 out of the top 10 pharmaceutical companies in the world. Suffice to say, you’ll be spoiled for choice when searching for interviews post-graduation.


Ireland is also noted to be very safe, being on an island. “Policemen there don’t ever carry a gun because of how safe it is,” says CK. On top of that, being a rather smaller place, with less to do, students are more compelled to concentrate on their studies.


Institutions in Ireland offer scholarships, ranging from 25% to 50% off tuition fees (depending offer by respective institution and course applied). Please contact Education in Ireland for more info on scholarships offered by Irish institutions.


Why Study in Ireland (not USA or UK or Australia)?

Trinity College DublinOk so this is my (Adnan Awes) first ever blog on Why Study in Ireland, so I’m not sure how its going to be for the audience, but I’ll try to be as helpful as possible and provide the best information I can.Trinity College Dublin

My personal background: Born and bought up in Dubai, did my schooling there, then intermediate in Hyderabad and then my graduation from Osmania University in Mechanical Engineering with specialization in Production.

Currently pursuing my M.Sc. from University College Dublin, in Bio-System Engineering, Sustainable Energy and Green Technology.
Why Study in Ireland?

Ireland is emerging as the “new” preferred country for students to pursue their higher education. There are a various reasons for this.

My reason was , everyone goes to the US, Australia, Canada, UK etc.

I said, I wanted to go to a different place, where no one has gone, where I’ve no friends ( I traveled to Dublin alone, had no friends from India, made a couple on Facebook :P) or family members. My main aim was to be an example to others.

Anyways, to start with, Ireland is voted as the one of the “most friendliest” country in the world. This implies that, unlike the US, Australia, Germany etc, here in Ireland, there are negligible chances that you’ll get bullied. By the word “bully” I mean, there are hardly any instances where you are said “oh ok so you are an Indian” in the most disturbing tone. This literally never happens in Ireland. People are friendly, deep down to the core.

For example, on my second day in Dublin, I lost my way back to the hostel(where I was temporarily staying till I found an accommodation). There was this pregnant lady who was walking 10km to her yoga class (!!) noticed my confused look and approached me to provide help in finding the way back. She walked me to the hostel and left with a smile.

People will help you in all aspects here. Unlike the other countries where there is an obvious tone in the people “I can help you but…”, in Ireland its more like “I’m sorry I can’t but you can do this….” which of course is more pleasing.

More than 100,000 Indian students travel overseas for education every year and around 1,000 of these come to Ireland.

Indian Students have a “strange” mindset about education in other countries apart from USA, UK Australia etc. The first thing you hear from them is “Why Study in Ireland?”
Universities in Ireland

Also, there are about 4 Irish Universities which come under the top 1% universities in the world. This may seem a small figure for most people but it sure is considerable. The list of top universities in Ireland is as below:

  1. Trinity College Dublin (Estd 1595, Oldest University In Ireland With About 17,000 Students)
  2. University College Cork (Estd 1845)
  3. University College Dublin (Estd 1854, 25,000 Students Of Which Over 5,000 Are International Students)
  4. Dublin City University (Estd 1975)
  5. Nui Galway (Estd 1908, 17,000 Students Of Which Over 2,000 Are International Students)
  6. Dublin Institute Of Technology(Estd 1978)

There are various other universities with good recognition and infrastructure. I shall be writing more about each specific university.

Second reason to come to Ireland, is that its a English speaking country and the Irish dialect is very understandable compared to British and Australian English. Indian students will not have much difficulty with adjusting to the language here. More detailed information about education in Ireland coming soon! I hope this helps!

Let me know if you have any questions about Why study in Ireland or other aspects of education in Ireland.


Five Unexpected Reasons to Study in Ireland

Five Unexpected Reasons to Study in Ireland main image

Throughout the course of mu undergraduate years, postgraduate years, and later years leading up to the present, I have written many a blog listing reasons to study in Ireland. A significant number of those blog posts spoke about my favorite places to visit in Ireland; others honed in on the more abstract reasons for studying in Ireland-cultural, historical and the like. This blog post is going to take a slightly different turn…

Fear not: I won’t send any of you off the “metaphorical blogosphere road”. Instead, it is my greatest hope that, through the words below, you will gain a better understanding of just how much studying in Ireland can change any given individual, no matter what path of life he or she is on at present. Without further ado, here are my “Top Five Unexpected Reasons to Study in ireland”!

Studying in Ireland will help you…

1. Chill out… a ton. I seriously can’t even fathom what my mindset or “sense of the present” would be llike today had I chosen to study in Ireland. I’m going to level with all of you, because even though I may not know you from Adam, I tend to have a compulsive need to tell the truth…especially when I know it can help those around me.  I am your classic over-achieving, talkative, go-getting, perfection-seeking, passionate, goal-oriented, dreamer who can’t help but get in my own way sometimes. Okay, more than sometimes. Before I went to Ireland, I found it very hard to chill out, take a breather, relax, however you want to say it. I was in constant motion, which in many ways was good, but in more ways, to put it bluntly, over-kill. When plans I made fell through, or I was a bit behind palnning a paper or project or proposal, I would get angry at myself. I knew intellectually that I needed to find my “inner  Zen”, but I had no idea where to start. Then something incredible happened: I accepted a place in the study abroad program at the University of Limerick, and everything started to fall into place…without my incessant planning, I might add. Ireland is a peaceful place. It is a welcoming place. It is a place that allows visitors to look at the world around them and take it all in, instead of only sneaking an occasional glace once in a while. Things aren’t as rushed, people are genuinely happy to talk with others, and life is more about voyage as opposed to the reaching of one’s personal terminus. While studying in Ireland, I changed from someone who lived and breathed planning and deadlines, to someone who uses plans in beneficial ways without letting them control me. Ireland taught me to see life in a different, more beautiful and open, kind of way. That, in itself, is a gem I will always cherish.


2. Gain a better appreciation of history. You may not think about it all that much, but the United States of America is compared to other countries, very much akin to a toddler. At the ripe age of 237 years old (almost 238), we are very young country. While the Republic of Ireland is also fairly young, having gained independence from Great Britain in 1922 the land and culture of the country is rich enduring and deep-rooted. I mean, seriously there are forts, castles, ancient tombs, breathtaking rock formations and notable landmarks EVERYWHERE. While I was at the University of Limerick, I had two castles (King John’s Castle and Bunratty Castle) within a 20-minute drive from me. The Cliffs of Moher were a 35 to 40 minute drive away. I could get to Dublin to visit the Famine Ship and the Guinness Brewery via the train in two hours. The express bus to Galway City, where I got my lovely claddagh ring from Thomas Dillon’s Claddagh Gold, was a 45 minute ride. Cork and Blarney, both with beautiful sites and a plethora of stories to go along with them, were an hour and 30 minutes away by bus.


3. Look and feel healthier. You know all those really gross additives and artificial flavors and colors that we hear so much about? You know how, despite hearing about all these really gross “items” in our food, we still eat a lot of them anyway, usually because we have no idea they were even in our food in the first place? Good news…Throw high-fructose corn syrup, dangerous artificial products and harmful preservatives out the window, because in Ireland they are ridiculously hard to come by. I’m not saying that they’re completely not-existent, but I can tell you that, in Ireland, you won’t feel the need to read the fine print on every single label just to make sure you’re “eating right”. Between the wonderful farmer’s markets found in the major cities and on the campuses of colleges and universities, to healthier options found in local grocery stores, Ireland boasts a land of genuinely healthy food options. If you’re anything like me, you’ll find yourself feeling healthier.


4. Become a time management champ. I feel as though this reason is semi-obvious. While studying abroad, you’re going to want to explore, go out, travel, get involved on campus, and, you know… study. All of this very achievable as long as you get to grips with the time management, fast. While this life skill is one that isn’t “Ireland specific”, I felt as though I would be doing all of you  a huge disservice if I didn’t include it, even briefly. Basically, budgeting time for all of your study abroad endeavors is POSSIBLE in Ireland…and I’m not just saying this as the “pre Ireland me” spoken about in reason #1. I;m saying this because there is no more peaceful, beautiful, safe and welcoming environment than the Emerald Isle, if you’re looking to refine your time management skills, identify your passions and hone in on your strengths.


5. Discover your hidden strengths and passions. I kind of gave a few mini-spoilers to this final reason while writing the other four, but I still feel that it deserves its own slot. Simply put, my time in Ireland allowed me to discover strength and potential inside of myself that I had neglected to notice until my time as a study abroad student. Studying in Ireland:

  1. Forced me to embrace change, and the fact that life doesn’t always go as planned.
  2. Helped me understand my greatest assets and those pesky weaknesses.
  3.  Afforded me the independence I  so craved since, well, birth.
  4. Showed me that making mistakes isn’t a fatal flaw…It’s human and necessary for growth.
  5. Allowed me to see clearly for the first time who I was (and am now) and what exactly that meant for my present and future.
  6. Showed me just how open my mind could become, and how many wonderful adventures I could fill it with from day to day.
  7. Gave me to tools to write my own story, and share it with others.