Time flies when you’re having fun!

Tuesday December 2nd 2014

Well you know what they say, time flies when you’re having FUN! It’s crazy to think that I’m now going into my 14th week of college (aka, study week for the dreaded exams!!!!!!) Three months later and the whole experience still feels so new and exciting. So, I suppose I’ll share with you all how it’s been…..
Before I begin, I want to thank the Michaela Foundation for this unique opportunity. One month on since I received an email from John welcoming me on board and I still can’t believe it. Shocked and honoured, I had to read the email quite a few times to make sure it was actually for me. I am thrilled to be able to share my university experiences as a fresher with you, however, I can’t deny how extremely nervous I am sitting here writing my first ever blog!
So, on the 18th of August when I received my offer for NUIG the previous year of stress, tears and sleepless nights finally seemed worth it. Although I knew I would miss my family and friends this change was one which I knew was needed in my life. The academic year of 2013/2014 was no doubt the most difficult of all. I haven’t stopped smiling since I accepted my offer!


The big day arrived on the 1st of September. IT WAS MOVING DAY! My sister Fiona, and I, squeezed everything into the back seats of the car and headed off with Mammy on the first of many long, long journeys to Galway. Thankfully, nerves weren’t an issue with me heading off to university; I was too excited to think about nerves! The past 13 weeks have been hectic: moving into 82 Dunaras, meeting my two new roommates for the first time, my first day at college, making friends, nights out and nights in, strolls along Salthill, 9am lectures, and 4 hour bus journeys home, assignments and exams and well… I could go on and on! It has all been very overwhelming and incredibly enjoyable.


I have made some amazing friends in the past three months and it feels like I’ve known them for years! They come from every corner of Ireland and although I’m constantly being teased about my Donegal accent, and the way I pronounce their names, I adore them all. Galway wouldn’t be the same without them!


The transition from secondary school to university was slightly daunting and certainly took a while to get used to. After orientation week I was content that I knew my way around and could successfully find all my lecture halls and classrooms… I was wrong. On my first day I had to text my sister for directions as I was wondering around like a lost sheep! Campus isn’t anything like the 31 classrooms of Deele College which I knew so well. In university you are treated like an adult and expected to act like one. You have to be responsible for handing in your work on time, unlike in secondary where your teacher would tell you to “bring it in tomorrow”. One more thing that is very different is not having my younger siblings to wake me in the morning for a 9am lecture! This is also a huge disadvantage. Oddly, I miss the duvet being pulled off the bed and the light being switched on ten minutes before we should have been leaving for school during the week, or going to mass on a Sunday morning. However, the Skype sessions always make up for it!


I have been blessed with the nicest, friendliest, and craziest housemates. So, there’s Lisa who I have known all of my school years. She is one of my best friends and we were so excited to live with each other. Although she doesn’t always wash her dishes, I couldn’t have picked a better housemate! Aoife and Paige are the other two girls of 82. We were perfectly matched as we all love to jump around the apartment to some Taylor Swift! I’m lucky to live with three wonderful girls who I get on so well with (I was named ‘Mammy of the house’ the first week) One of my most enjoyable nights in Galway was spent dancing to a cover band in the college bar, our first night out together! Awwwwww, cheesy I know!!!


As well as great housemates, I also have my fabulous sister here in Galway. Fiona is 20 and is a second year science student. The house was always so quiet without her last year and as she said herself it broke my heart sending her off on the Feda bus every Sunday, so I just had to join her! It’s great having her around this year to share dinner duties with and have the odd gossip after how little I saw her last year while she was in Galway. And although she’ll never admit it, I know she loves having me in Galway too!

This was us on student race day, Fiona’s 20th birthday!



Before I finish up I just want to say thanks to my Mammy and Daddy for helping me get to where I am today!


So, that was my quick summary of my first semester as a fresher! Now that you are up to date I wish you all well and I will sign off my first of many blogs….


Adiós, arrivederci agus slán!

xoxo Sarah.