Students have been known to crave a certain wanderlust. Or, a strong desire to travel the world.
Summers at the Jersey shore become boring and days at home are dreadful. At a certain age, students have the opportunity to travel to incredible places and explore new cultures. Whether that includes researching in South America, museum-hopping in Rome or exploring the land of their ancestors, studying-abroad has been noted as a must-do college experience.
Some Cabrini students decided to dedicate their summer to a semester in Ireland.
Sophomore, Chelsea DiPompeo was one of those adventurous students.
“I always knew I wanted to study abroad and Ireland was the one trip that allowed freshman who were becoming sophomores to participate,” DiPompeo said.
Along with exploring the lavish green lands, students were required to take courses to further understand the Irish heritage and what they were viewing.
“It was the most unreal, exciting, and indescribable experience of my life. The classes were not hard because you are living what you are learning,” DiPompeo said.
For students like sophomore Kevin Blake, Ireland was a place he had always dreamed of visiting.
“I am of Irish ancestry and had always wanted to see where my ancestors came from. When I saw the flyer posted on a board to the cafeteria, I immediately knew I wanted to go. I decided over the summer it would be worth seeing Irish culture and earning seven and half credits over roughly six weeks,” Blake said.
Encouraging students to travel, classes were only held Tuesdays through Thursdays. Instead of being stuck in class for their time abroad, students had the opportunity to travel throughout Europe.
“In six weeks I visited Ireland, Scotland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, and Paris. Traveling to each country was simple, cheap and fast,” DiPompeo said. “I definitely suggest anyone who goes abroad to visit more than one country because once I was comparing them all, its crazy how much in common they have while still being so different.”
According to the National Association of Foreign Student Advisers, over 50 percent of college students who choose to study abroad complete their programs in Europe.
“I’ve met some of the nicest, most interesting people, as well as seen some of the oldest structures in Europe. I saw where the Titanic was built and I have seen the Cliffs of Moher, none of that could have been done without my study-abroad program,” Blake said.
“The combination of the classes along with the free time you have and the bonds you create with other students made this experience once in a lifetime,” DiPompeo said.
From learning the traditional language of the Irish to visiting the Guiness breweries, students had nothing but rave reviews of Ireland’s beauty.
“I feel as though I only briefly gazed upon the Emerald Isle. With it’s green luscious country side, awesome mountains, enchanting small villages as well as breath-taking modern cities, it has definitely made me want to go to Ireland again,” Blake said.
Any student who is feeling hesitant towards studying abroad has many resources to help them feel more confident in their decision.
“The only advice I would give to any student who is considering studying abroad is to just do it,” DiPompeo said.
“Whatever worries and concerns are holding you back can be figured out. If you want to study abroad talk to Dr. Uliano or Dr. McLaughlin and they will find a way to get you there. Don’t sit back and think you can’t do it because it is possible. Nothing will ever compare to your time abroad, I promise,” DiPompeo said.
Whether one makes their work in the classroom stand out, participates in clubs, athletics ,or even study abroad every Cabrini student is given the opportunity to do something extraordinary.