Jane Kirkpatrick - 2015 Program Participant

Why did you decide to study abroad?

There were a lot of people older than me that said their one regret from college was not studying abroad. I didn't want to spend the rest of my life wondering, "What if?"

Why did you choose CAPA International Education?

I definitely knew I wanted to go to Dublin, so it was between CAPA and Trinity College. Trinity is very prestigious, but I felt like I could benefit more with an internship by enhancing my international business awareness.

Celebrating St. Patricks Day in Dublin, Ireland

St. Paddy's Day - Dublin, Ireland

What was your favorite part about Dublin?

Dublin is the coolest city because they are so proud. After many years of oppression from the British, they are now independent and stronger than ever. I was there during the gay marriage vote which was absolutely incredible, wearing my Tá Comhionannas (vote yes) button everywhere; I was right in the middle of history.

What makes CAPA’s program in Dublin unique?

CAPA is amazing because they offer internship placements in one of six major global cities. I was able to get a marketing internship at a non-profit organization. Working for a charity gave me so much responsibility since a marketing lead was not in their budget. I am forever grateful for the experience.

Riding bikes in Amsterdam,Netherlands

Riding bikes in Amsterdam

What surprised you most about Dublin?

Dublin is actually very similar to America. There's a lot of diversity with food; you can get any type of food you could ever think of and I guarantee it will be the best food of your life.

How did local staff support you throughout your program?

Susanne Bach became our CAPA Mom while our parents or guardians worried from home. She took care of everything we needed, whether it was a question about time tables or to have a cup of tea. There was never a second that I felt alone in this process.

What's one thing you wish you would have done differently?

I wish I had known beforehand how easy it was going to be to leave my friends and family behind. Leaving is the hardest thing to do until you actually do it. The preparation is the worst part.

Describe a day in the life of your program.

I would wake up and go grab a latté from the café across the street. I would grab a bus and head to my internship. I would call major companies around Ireland and ask for donations. Then I would come home and go to a class with my friends from CAPA. Then we'd all head out for dinner and maybe grab a drink before we headed home. It was all normal stuff that we would do back in the U.S., but being in Dublin made it so much more special.

What was your favorite thing to do on your free time?

My favorite activity would be watching all of the street performers on Grafton Street. They all rotate, but they have the same days and performances each week. I never got tired or less impressed while watching them.

What type of accommodation did you have? What did you like best about it?

I lived in an on-campus apartment with three other students from the U.S. I liked that we were so close to everything and didn't have to worry about commuting to class. It was also nice being with people who were just as excited to explore Dublin as I was.

The John Lennon Wall in Prague, Czech Republic

Lennon Wall in Prague

Do you have any packing tips for students headed to Dublin?

I would definitely pack a ton of dark colors! I brought a lot of preppy pastels and I instantly looked like a tourist.

What was the hardest part about studying and interning abroad?

The hardest part was leaving my new home in Ireland. I miss it so much every day and I keep daydreaming about returning one day.

What is one thing you wish you would have known before studying and interning abroad in Ireland?

I wish I would've known how mild the weather is in Ireland and how rarely it rains in the spring on the East coast. I swear we had so many beautiful days that I never once used an umbrella or my rain boots.

Now that you're home, how has study abroad impacted your life?

I can truly say that all of the amazing job opportunities I've had have been from my time abroad. Each employer has asked me about it and has truly been impressed with my experience. I'll never forget Dublin, which makes it so hard being back here.

Visiting the Cliffs of Moher, Ireland

End of semester trip to the Cliffs of Moher

Would you recommend CAPA International Education programs to other students?

I absolutely would, which is why I decided to become an ambassador for them! Greatest job in the world.

If you could study or intern abroad again, where would you go?

I would probably go to London. The reason I didn't was the exchange rate was so bad and I was tight on money. I just wanted to make the most of my experience by having enough pocket money to travel to places on the weekend.