SCSU’s Education Abroad office entered into a new partnership this June with Mary Immaculate College (MIC) in Limerick, Ireland to help expand study abroad opportunities for students. The new study abroad destination also comes with more scholarships as a result from another partnership SCSU entered with the Institute of International Education (IIE) earlier this year in February.
MIC was founded in 1898, and is a Catholic college of education and liberal arts, according to the university’s website. The university has about 3,000 students enrolled.
The International Students Guide put out by MIC describes Limerick as the third largest city in Ireland, being apart of the midwest region of the republic. The guide also said that Limerick is a cultural destination, and because of its live music, theater and sports, the city was designated as a “National City of Culture” in 2014.
According to Center of International Studies (CIS), the university’s location is convenient for students, because it’s a 10-minute walk from downtown Limerick, and a 20-minute drive from Shannon International Airport.
According to the CIS program information, Limerick has a population of 191,000, and is surrounded by historic destinations such as Bunratty Castle.
Nichole Pazdernik, director of Education Abroad at SCSU, said that “this program is perfect for teaching and liberal arts majors, as well as first-year students.”
Pazdernik explained MIC was originally founded as a teaching college just like SCSU was, making the partnership between the two institutions a great fit.
The programs brochure outlines that MIC offers a variety of liberal arts courses that international students can enroll in as long as they meet all the prerequisites. Like other exchange programs that are offered at SCSU, the courses will transfer back to SCSU upon completion.
The International Students Guide provided by MIC covers class details, including that each class equals three credits and usually involves three hours of lectures or tutorials per week. The guide outlines that each semester is 15 weeks long, made up of 12 weeks of lectures, one week of study and two weeks of finals.
The Education Abroad program brochure outlines that six students will be receiving $2,500-scholarships to encourage participation.
According Peggy Johnson-Finnerty, co-director of Education Abroad at SCSU, the scholarships are an outcome of a recent partnerships between SCSU and the Institute of International Education (IIE), where SCSU was able to match a grant from IIE.
“If we hadn’t signed on as an institution with IIE, we wouldn’t be able to offer the scholarship,” Johnson-Finnerty said.
She said that the scholarship and the new partnership were two independent events that ended up coming together. According to Johnson-Finnerty “an agreement was already in process with MIC, before our partnership with IIE.”
Johnson-Finnerty said that “we want to, in general, expand our programming, so we have more places for students to go, and more students going abroad.”