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Leaving University: What Now?

It’s getting to that sad time of year where we say farewell to our final year students. Micheál Costello is a final year BA in New Media & English student at the University of Limerick. In this blog post, originally published on his blog What He Does, Micheál writes about his time at UL, and his future plans.

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So it has been a while since I have written and uploaded a post! As you may know from my Instagram I am in my final year of University studying New Media & English (I should really “I was in” but that’s still a little too scary to write). These past few months have been pretty hectic with my undergrad thesis due, and several other assignments, essays, and projects, so I basically did nothing worth blogging about!

I would love to be able to say “I have finally reached the end of my degree studies” but it feels wrong to say “finally” when the last four years have absolutely flown by. Time flies when you’re having fun! My four years in the University of Limerick have been nothing if not fun. Of course there were days when I cursed my degree, my lecturers, my tutors, my group assignment members but the positives outweigh any negatives by the longest shot you can conceive of.

Memories of UL’s beautiful campus full of students from all corners of the world doing their own thing will stick with me forever, and I will cherish them. The friends I have made here and the experiences we have shared on campus are also ones which I will never forget. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t sad to be leaving. I will try to come back at some point though, there is no way I can completely wean myself from the homemade fudge sold in UL’s farmer’s market every Tuesday!

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Right before I handed in my undergraduate thesis, I still can’t believe I produced such a detailed text on one sole topic. 50 pages!

 

Not only did UL inject positivity into my life while being on campus, the university gave me the opportunity to travel, and enjoy new experiences off- campus, as far off campus as Barcelona and Geneva. I know that it’s such a cliché to say that travelling changes you, but it did change me. If anything living in these two cities forced me to become more independent and to basically make that final transition from being a child to a proper adult.

The opportunities to travel that UL placed in my hands have created positive memories and relationships that I will have treasure forever. When I was placed in Barcelona teaching English little did I know that I would enjoy it so much that I would choose teaching English as my first job after I graduate. If it wasn’t for UL and their international programs I would still be here scratching my head trying to figure out what I want to do, or worse working in a job just for the sake of it without any enjoyment.

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Enjoying the amazing views of Barcelona from the Bunkers a week or two after I arrived for my 6 month stay in the city.
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My final day with one of the primary classes I taught while in Barcelona. I want to rewind so much when I look at these photos!
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Cruising along Lac Léman (Lake Geneva) while on Erasmus in Geneva.
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This is my favourite shot of Geneva I captured during my 3 month stay there, such a beautiful city.

So what happens now? Well, beginning on the 15th of August I will be no longer a student, I will be an English teacher living and working in Abu Dhabi! This is exciting as much as it is daunting, but I am determined to remain focused on the positives. Year round good weather, a new culture to immerse myself in, a job that I know I will love, and living in a coastal area, what more could I ask for?

As much as I am eager to leave the student life behind (not for good, I will more than likely do a masters at some point). I am emotional to be leaving UL. These past four years have been full of learning experiences extending far beyond the lecture halls, building friendships, becoming an adult (or at least a more mature man-child). Of course departing from the little corner of Ireland where all these significant changes in your life took place is going to be difficult. Having said that, I do leave with a little pep in my step, I know that UL has equipped with the skills to go far in my life both inside and outside of any career path I go down. The university has fostered in me a sense of adventure which is certainly going to carry me through my time in Abu Dhabi.

I don’t think there is much more to say other than, thank you UL, and see you later!

 


 

The very best of luck to Micheál and all our final year students!

Follow Micheál for updates

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