As an international student, choosing where to study is one of the biggest decisions you’ll ever make. The country or city you choose can have a huge impact on your future career and happiness, so you want to get it right. So, what are the main reasons to study in Ireland?
There are over 30,000 international students in Ireland, representing 12% of the entire student population. Most students hail from the US, though a large number also travel from India and China to study in the Emerald Isle.
While every international student will have a different reason for choosing Ireland for their studies, some big advantages might influence your decision. These are the top reasons to study in Ireland!
7 Reasons to Study in Ireland
1. Attend a Top University
Ireland has the fourth-highest standard of education in the world, according to a 2019 report, so it makes sense that the country’s universities are also top of the charts. Trinity College Dublin makes the top 100 universities in the world in the QS rankings, while other institutions like University College Dublin, the University of Galway, and University College Cork enter the top 500. If you’re looking to study business, Ireland is also home to some of the world’s best business schools, including UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School.
2. Explore a Different Culture
Ireland’s culture is famous throughout the world – but the only place to experience the real thing (inclusive of traditional St. Paddy’s day celebrations and whisky drinking) is in Ireland. Take an Irish dance or music class in Galway, explore whisky distilleries in Dublin, or just take in the atmosphere at a classic Irish pub in a small country town. There are so many ways to enrich your free time as you study in Ireland!
3. GET A POST-WORK VISA
The Irish Third Level Graduate Scheme allows valid non-EU students to remain in Ireland even after their study ends to find a job and begin their career. You should apply within six months of finishing your course, and the visa allows you to stay and work for 12 months. There’s a chance that you’ll be able to extend your stay in Ireland after that with the ‘Green Card’ scheme, which applies if you’re in a job that pays over €60,000 per year or a job in a specific underrepresented industry that pays over €30,000.
4. Practice Your English
Yes, Ireland has its own language (Irish Gaelic), but you’ll hear English almost everywhere you go as well. Though about 40% of Ireland’s inhabitants can speak Irish Gaelic, virtually all of these people also speak English, so studying in Ireland is a good opportunity to explore a different culture while still practising your English skills. And if you want to take an Irish Gaelic course while you’re there to fully immerse yourself in Ireland’s history and culture, that’s an option too!
5. Start YOUR CAREER At an International Company
The capital of Ireland, Dublin, is home to a huge number of multinational companies in sectors as diverse as finance, technology, professional services, and science. So after studying in Ireland, you could get a job at Microsoft, Google, PayPal, Deloitte, or Pfizer. The Irish economy has been steadily growing for years, and the trend looks set to continue, so you’ll find a growing number of opportunities in the country, particularly in innovative sectors.
6. EXPERIENCE COUNTRY AND CITY LIFE
You’ll most likely be studying in one of Ireland’s cities like Dublin, Cork, or Galway. But one of the most compelling reasons to study in Ireland is the proximity to some incredible countryside. Ireland is known for its rolling green hills and dramatic cliffs, and you’ll get the chance to experience all of this nature at the weekend when you study here. Not to mention, Ireland is just a short flight from cities like Manchester, Liverpool, and London!
7. EXPERIENCE A GREAT QUALITY OF LIFE
When you study in Ireland, you’ll live in a country that’s famed for its welcoming nature. So it’s no surprise that Ireland ranks 13th in the world for happiness. The country also takes 3rd place in the Global Peace Index, reflecting safety in Ireland. All this means that your time in Ireland is likely to be positive.
What Do Students Say About Studying in Ireland?
Now that you know why students are attracted to studying in Ireland, what do international students actually say about their experience? Thousands of international students have submitted reviews about their experience in Ireland to EDUopinions, and below you’ll find just a few.
Explore Unique Cities
University College Cork (UCC) is a great institution for higher education. The campus is beautiful and well-maintained, with state-of-the-art facilities and a wide range of programs to choose from. The professors and staff are knowledgeable and approachable, and the student body is diverse and engaged. The city of Cork itself is also a great place to live and study, with a vibrant culture and plenty of opportunities for entertainment and exploration. Overall, UCC is a fantastic choice for anyone looking for a high-quality education in a supportive and stimulating environment.
Meet Other International Students
Brialliant University, the course was very interesting, very helpful professors and the international administrative office. Lots of opportunities to make international friends, attend career workshops, etc. The university campus is extremely beautiful too! Overall great experience.
Great Student Life
The most progressive and modern university with a Warm campus atmosphere, great facilities and interesting lectures. DCU offers a broad range of courses, something for everyone. The student life is ideal here, with the U building a great hub bringing everyone together
If you haven’t thought about studying in Ireland, then this is your signal to seriously consider studying in the Emerald Isle. From top universities to a high quality of life, plus incredible travel experiences, there are lots of reasons to study in Ireland.
Ready to apply but nervous about heading off to university? Read our article How to Succeed at University: 5 Tips You Need to Know.