Ireland is an increasingly popular destination for student from all over the world. The friendliness and hospitality for which Irish people are renowned ,must have been the factor that contributed to the ease with which overseas students adapt to the way of life and in particular, the student life. Around 10% of students in higher institution in Ireland are from overseas and over Eighty (80) countries are represented in the international student population. The very good thing about this is that students are welcome from different parts of the world irrespective of their continent. China,Malaysia,France,USA,Nigeria,Botswana,Ethiopia,Uganda,Pakistan,Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Serbia, Germany, Peru, Congo, Cameroon to mention but a few are some of the countries in this partnership. For a student to get into Ireland you have to get a visa from the Irish embassy of your home country. This visa will only read study visa and with it you have only three months to stay in Ireland after which between these three months you have go and register at the Immigration and get a certificate card inform of identity popularly known in Ireland as “Garda National Immigration Bureau” (GNIB) Card. Having got this card you are now entitles to stay in Ireland for just one year. If your study is more than a year you have to renew this card every year. This card is only to be given if you have been able to prove that you have sufficient money in your account as a student, a valid international passport, your student I.D card, a proof that you have been insured either privately or by your scholarship sponsors and you will pay the sum of one hundred and fifty (150) Euros. After this you are free to move around the city and to do some other necessary registration. For instance, if you want to work you can only be employed by any organisation with your Personal public service (PPS) Number. This will be issued to you by the Department of Social and Family Affairs after they have demanded for your “GNIB” card and your international passport. Students are only permitted to engage in casual employment for up to 20 hours per week during school terms and up to 40 hours per week during school holidays. If you are from African countries and you want to travel within your years of studies to any country you have to send your passport to the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform to request for multiple visa as the initial visa issued to you will only be on a single journey .You will have to submit your passport and your “GNIB” card again and you will pay the sum of one hundred (100) Euros for it. But student from Botswana, the European countries and some parts of Asia like Malaysia are exempted from this.
HIGHER INSTITUTIONS IN IRELAND
There are nine (9) universities in Ireland – 2 in Northern Ireland and 7 in the Republic. The University of Dublin, Trinity College (TCD), founded in 1592, is the oldest university in Ireland. The National University of Higher institution in Ireland consists of the universities (with associated colleges of education), institutes of technology, and a number of private independent colleges. The universities and institutes of technology are autonomous and self-governing, but are substantially state-funded.
Ireland (NUI) is a federal institute consisting of four constituent universities; University College Dublin, National University of Ireland Dublin; University College Cork, National University of Ireland Cork; National University of Ireland Galway and National University of Ireland Maynooth. NUI also has three recognised colleges: National College of Art and Design (NCAD), The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) and St. Angela’s College of Education. The two newest Universities in Ireland are: The University of Limerick (UL) and Dublin City University (DCU) which were founded in 1989. The two universities in Northern Ireland are: the University of Ulster (UU) and the Queen’s University of Belfast (QUB). There are currently 14 Institutes of Technology located throughout the Republic offering programmes at degree, national diploma and national certificate levels in a wide variety of subjects. Their qualifications are externally validated by Ireland’s national certification authority, which ensures that their qualifications reach the highest international standards. Many of the Institutes of Technology also run postgraduate diploma and degree programmes, both taught and research. There are five Colleges of Education for primary school teachers. These colleges offer three year full time courses leading to a B.Ed degree which is the recognised qualification for primary school teaching.
Generally life in Ireland as a student is relatively interesting depending on the type of Area and type of person you are. To get started you can get a Student accommodation as low as fifty (50) Euros per week and as high as one hundred and fifty (150) Euros per week depending on where you choose to stay. Also the means of transportation ranges from Bus, car to train but if you are travelling across the state flight are also available. Out of all these the buses are the cheapest. The buses are just one Euro Sixty cent (1.60) within the city and you can easily get them in the city centres .Taxi cab are also available but they may be expensive a little bit for a student as some of them charge per km. To enjoy your studentship more when travelling you can try to get your International Student Identity Card (ISIC) issued by (UNESCO) in conjunction with the ISIC Association. You will get this by paying only thirteen (13) Euros with your recent passport, as this will allow you to benefit from some discount given to travelling students internationally. In terms of shopping there are many places to do this if you really want relatively cheap food items you will visit the like of ALDI ,LIDL, Tesco, Supervalu, English market and so on. For some designers you may check these shops out: Brown Thomas, River Island, Timberland, T.K Max and Debenhams. Michael Guiney’s and Penny’s are good for some beddings and household materials while you can easily get your electronics like computer, Radio sets, Television sets, clippers, wall clock, camera and so on in Argos, Sony centre, Expert and P.C. world. Finally if you are the flexi type you can go to pubs to enjoy yourself or buy some wines in places like Hillbilly’s with the Acronym (Buy one get one free).It is good for you to also target the time of sales or promos in shops like Michael Guiney’s and penny’s as you will be saving a lot of money during these periods.
The structure of all the institutions in Ireland is wonderful and all the facilities needed in a higher institution are provided such as a big library, computer centres, resource room, and administrative blocks. Virtually all the lecture theatres are spacious and have a power point projector that makes it easy for the lecturers to deliver their messages and for the student to enjoy the lecture condition. Lecturers bring the photocopy of what they have in the slide so as to make it more understandable when lecturing. Academic in all Ireland Institution are okay. Irrespective of the institution you choose you will enjoy your studies there, provided you are ready to study and work hard because there is no room for laziness and student are not allow to be idle, as essay and assignments are given to student at interval with a deadline for submission of which if you failed to meet you have to face the consequences. But one good thing is that all the lecturers in all the institutions are very good, knowledgeable, approachable and ever ready to assist and give you the necessary support if you are not feeling shy. Likewise the students in all the schools are ready to work with you because a lot of international students are there for you to share experience with and some of the Irish students have also travelled out of the country and have some ideas and experience of other cultures.
CAMPUS LIFE: The student union of each institution also organised their own welcome party for the new student and they offer some necessary information that will make the life in campus conducive for the entire student especially the international students. They will give you a welcome pack which will contain some writing materials and your calendar or wall planner for the academic session. Orientation week and some party weeks will be organised for you as well. There are some societies in the campus that you can join depending on your interest. It is good to join one or two societies so as for you to be able to utilize your talent and make yourself relaxed. Some students also organised class party but not in all cases.
I WISH YOU A HAPPY STAY IN YOUR NEW INSTITUTION