I have always known that I would go medical school, but never in my wildest dreams did I think it would be in Ireland. After applying through Atlantic Bridge and being accepted into medical school in Ireland, I often wonder why I didn’t think of this option sooner. The answer may lie in the magnitude of the decision to move thousands of miles from home and create a new life for five years, which is un-nerving to say the least. However, I can confidently say it has been one of my best decisions. The transition from life in Canada to going to school in Ireland has been seamless and simple and has added much excitement and fulfillment to my life! And I have not been alone in my choice, being in a class with twelve other North Americans, most of us sharing common goals for the future and have had similar experiences leading us to attend school overseas.
Life in Ireland is almost exactly what I imagined. It does rain a lot, but the rain brings bright green grass and is often accompanied by a rainbow or two. The people are friendly and always ready for a chat. The country-side scenery is full of rock-walled pastures, flowing endlessly to the rocky cliffs and sandy beaches of seaside towns, with quaint houses dawning brightly painted doors, opening out to amazing vistas of the Atlantic Ocean. The city of Galway, on the west coast of Ireland, offers all the amenities of the city while keeping a small town feel and has a college reputation equal to any big city. To add to this, weekend trips to the rest of Europe are easily accessible and affordable, and there is always a classmate or two willing to join in for an adventure.
The National University of Ireland, Galway is a great institution offering up an education which is of a world-class scale. Lecturers are knowledgeable, encouraging and helpful. Most come with professional insight, having been or are employed in the field of medicine. The overall class size, up-to-date equipment and early exposure to patients, greatly adds to the overall value of the education that I am currently receiving. The Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery and Bachelor of Obstetrics (M.B., B.Ch., B.A.O.) program is diverse in criteria, covering the foundations of medicine, but also allows choices to the direction I would like to take my studies through electives. Having already completed one degree in Canada, I can say that the differences in circumstances are truly unforgettable but the education experience is of an equal calibre. Atlantic Bridge has led me to an exciting time in my life, an era I will never forget.