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Study Abroad and Domestic Study Away

Notes from Abroad: Tayah in Northern Ireland

Tayah Brent ’19 is a major in Psychology and a minor in Music who is studying in Londonderry, Northern Ireland.

I am half way through my time here at Northern Ireland and I am learning a lot about the culture and history here. The classes here are a lot different from LFC. At LFC, the professors are really hands on, assign a lot of assignments to make sure you really understand the subjects being taught, and have office hours to get extra help. At the university I attend, they are more hands off and the classes are not that demanding, which is nice, but can also be risky because my grade depends on 1 assignment and 1 final exam. Since the classes are not so demanding, I have time to go on trips to see the beautiful sites Ireland has to offer and try new foods. It took some time getting used to the food out here. I would look at a food and expect it to taste a certain way, but when I would bite into it and it would taste totally different. One thing I though was strange about the food was having baked beans for b! reakfast. I’m used to only having them at a barbecue or with hot dogs. I never would’ve thought to put them with eggs and toast. I miss a lot of US foods, like ranch dressing. They do not have it here and it is hard to enjoy a salad or chicken bites without ranch. But other than that, the food is pretty good. It wasn’t that hard adapting to the culture here. A lot of things are the same as the US. There accents were a bit difficult to understand at first, but now I’ve gotten the hang of it. The hardest thing was looking the correct way when crossing the street, so I wouldn’t get hit by a car. There are a lot of things here that are different from the US. The main thing is that people here are very friendly and like to talk to you, even if you are a stranger. At home, I was always taught to never talk to strangers and to keep to myself because you never know what a person is thinking or what they are capable of. People here love to talk and get to know you. Especially when they hear my American accent, they become curious. They don’t really know a lot about Americans, except the things they see on TV, which is not always good. Most of the time, Americans are portrayed as greedy, spoiled, selfish, horrible people, so I do my best to represent us in a good way. I am really enjoying my time out here and sad that I am already half way through. I greatly appreciate this experience and hope to have many more adventures like this in the future!