Waterford, Ireland

Welcome to the European Council’s Waterford, Ireland program page! While the European Council serves all of the University System of Georgia, Valdosta State University serves as the central office/headquarters for these programs. 

About the Program | Program Information & Course Structure

Payment & Refund Schedule | Deadlines & Late Fee Schedule

Course Descriptions | How to Apply to the Program

Insurance & Passport Information | What Students Say | Contact Us

Find your Campus Representative  | Program Flyer

About the Program

Live and study for five weeks in Ireland’s oldest city! See the cultural, artistic, and historical treasures which have made Ireland a destination for generations!  Waterford, once a walled settlement of Viking origins, retains much of its medieval character together with graceful cathedrals and townhouses from its 18th century expansion. The program fee includes two program trips to Dublin, a three-day stay in Killarney, Co. Kerry in the rugged West of Ireland, and eight day trips across the gorgeous mountains and valleys of southeastern Ireland to take in some of Europe’s most outstanding castles, stately homes, gardens, ecclesiastical sites, and prehistoric monuments.

Dates: June 16 to July 21

Costs: $4900

The package cost of $4900 for the five week program includes:

  • Roundtrip airfare between Atlanta and Ireland
  • Accommodations at the Waterford Institute of Technology
  • Free, three day weekends
  • 35 meals
  • Hotel-based weekend in Killarney, Co. Kerry
  • Two trips to Dublin
  • 8 day-trips across South East Ireland
  • A primary health insurance policy providing coverage for medical expenses

The package cost does not include tuition, textbooks, extra meals, entrance fees, and weekend travel expenses, passport and related expenses, spending money, ground transport to and from the U.S. airport through which flights will be scheduled, or any other costs beyond those listed above

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Student in Ireland

Program Information & Course Structure

The Waterford (Ireland) Summer Study Abroad Program is based at the Waterford Institute of Technology. The campus is not far from the historic center of Waterford and is only a short walk from the bus system which provides easy access to the city and neighboring regions. The nearby Waterford Airport also offers quick flights to Galway, and London, as well as to France, Portugal, Spain, and The Netherlands.

Classes are held at the Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT). Students can take one or two three-hour courses. Courses will meet in the classroom twice a week and students are will participate in required field trips on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Students will have three day weekends to travel in Ireland or other European countries. Also, there is a mandatory 1 hour culture class that all students are required to take. 


Classrooms and accommodations for the Waterford program are on the main campus of the Waterford Institute of Technology.  This modern, beautifully maintained campus is not far from the historic center of Waterford.  All rooms are single ensuite at the WIT, and each has internet access and a private bath. Each suite shares a kitchen and a living room with a television. Towels and bed linens are furnished weekly. The front desk of the WIT suites is staffed 24/7. You can visit their website at http://www.wit.ie/

The program package includes 35 meals that are offered in the dining hall of the WIT. The dining hall offers a wide variety of menu items, and a vegetarian choice can be included if requested.

Dorm Shared Kitchen

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Road side


Courses in the 2016 Ireland Study Program are part of the regular offerings of member institutions; therefore, students may apply for loans or grants for which they would normally be eligible. Students should apply for financial aid at the campus where they are registering for courses. Campus representatives will assist students in obtaining information about financial aid. Students must meet all campus requirements in applying for financial aid. 

Students should plan to budget a minimum of $1,500 for extra meals, entrance fees, and evening entertainment. If students plan extended travel or major shopping, additional funds should be budgeted. Some course excursions might involve additional fees and this is especially true for students in theater classes; course instructors will inform students if such fees apply at the mandatory student orientation on May 14.

All costs are subject to change because of unanticipated increases in airfares or other program elements or fluctuations in monetary exchange rates. The European Council will make every effort to keep program costs as advertised and will inform prospective participants of any changes as they occur.

Payment Schedule  

March 9, 2016
Application form and $300 non-refundable application fee due
March 9, 2016
 First payment of $2300 due
April 7, 2016
Final payment of $2300 due



Students’ application fee, deposits and other payments are applied towards required advances, purchase of airline tickets, and other costs related to the program. Note that the $300 application fee is non-refundable and covers processing and reservation fees; the application fee can not be used for a subsequent year.

Class Statue

Participants who withdraw from a program after the application deadline receive a refund according to the schedule below. Please note that all withdrawals must be emailed to the EC Coordinator, Beverly Vantine, at bbreeland@valdosta.edu AND to the student’s campus representative at the home institution. 

Refund Schedule 

Withdrawal before March 3rd

all but $300 will be refunded

Withdrawal between March 4 and March 18

all but $500 will be refunded

Withdrawal between March 19 and April 1

all but $850 will be refunded

Withdrawal between April 2 and April 30

all but $2000 will be refunded

Withdrawal after April 30

No money will be refunded

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Important Deadlines

  • March 9th- Application Due (spaces are available on a first come, first serve basis and students are encouraged to apply early)
  • March 9th- First Payment
  • April 7th - Final Payment
  • April 14th - 2 passport photos are due (late fees apply, see below for details). Photos MUST be passport photos that adhere to the passport agency’s rules and regulations for photos. Photos that are submitted that do not comply with these rules will be denied and late fees will still apply. Please visit the Department of State’s website for detailed passport information.  http://travel.state.gov/passport/pptphotoreq/pptphotoreq_5333.html


  • April 14th - An electronic copy of your passport is due. Faxed and Mailed copies are not accepted. (see late fee schedule below)  
  • May 14th- There is an all-day*Mandatory* student orientation in Macon at the Middle Georgia State College. This meeting starts at 9am and is over at 4pm. Students who fail to attend will be penalized by dropping  the final grades for study abroad courses by an entire letter; if you receive an “A” in the course, the grade of “B” will be submitted to your home institution as your final grade.

Late Fees for Passports & Photo

Items received between Apr 15- Apr 24

$25 late fee

Items received between Apr 25 – May 4

$50 late fee

Items received between May 5 – May 11

$75 late fee

Items received on May 12th or after

Will be charged the $75 late fee and an additional $5/day.

Flight Deviation/Separate Airfare

Airfare is included in the price of the program. However, if you wish to arrive to Ireland sooner, or stay later, there is a *possibility* that you can do this at an additional expense to you. Students are also allowed to do 100% of their own airfare however in order to keep our group rate only a certain number of students may do this and must receive authorization from the EC coordinator. If you are given permission to do your own airfare there will be a deduction in your SECOND payment. All deviation and separate airfare request must be submitted by April 7th and these opportunities are provided on a first come first serve basis. All requests submitted after April 7th will be denied.

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Course Descriptions

Students may take one or two three credit hour courses in Ireland in addition to the mandatory one hour class "Introduction to Irish Culture". All courses with the exception of the culture class are 3 credit hours and students should check with campus representatives to determine course equivalencies at the home institution. 

LD-Lower Division Course

UD-Upper Division Course


Morning Classes

(choose only one)

Irish Philosophical Tradition (UD)

Dr. Bill Eaton (Georgia Southern)

This course surveys the history of Irish thought from the Irish Augustine, a seventh century monk, to contemporary Irish-American philosophers such as Owen Flanagan. Special emphasis is placed on an important aspect of the Irish Enlightenment: the Irish contribution to the development of empiricism in the work of Robert Boyle, William Molyneuz, and George Berkley. Empiricism, the view that knowledge is ultimately based on experience, was a driving force behind the scientific revolution that directly led to the modern technological world in which we live. Learning about Irish philosophy helps us understand the world and our place in it.


Sociology of Modern Ireland (UD)

Dr. Stephanie McClure (Georgia College & State)

In this upper-level sociology course students will explore a range of compelling social issues through the lens of historical and contemporary Irish life. A course in introductory sociology will be helpful to students, but other lower-level social science training can be substituted (particularly anthropology, geography, criminal justice, political science, global history).  There will be quite a bit in the area of the sociology of religion (including visits to the Rock of Cashel and consideration of the role of women in Irish Catholic society through exploration of the history of Magdalene Asylums). We’ll also look at the role of sport as form of “civil religion” with special attention to the role of the Gaelic Athletic Association and its connection to the development of Irish national identity. As well, we will look at theories of social control, the role of Protestantism in the development of modern capitalism, and explore theories of secularization as they relate to a country with a deep and complex Catholic history.

World Literature I: Epics & Sagas (LD)

Prof. Susan Barron-LaPlant (Valdosta State)

Starting at the beginnings of epic poetry with Gilgamesh, we’ll read epics and sagas from a variety of ancient cultures including Greece’s The Iliad, India’s Ramayana, and, of particular interest, Ireland’s Ulster Cycle with its intriguing mythology. Waterford’s Viking Triangle provides a unique opportunity to explore the theories of how Icelandic Viking literature, such as the Laxdaela Saga, was influenced by Irish storytelling. Field trips may include the Rock of Cashel, Viking Triangle, Kilkenny, and the National Museum in Dublin—sites that allow us to experience life in Viking and Medieval Ireland.

Theater Appreciation (LD)

Prof. Sally Robertson (Georgia Perimeter)

Beautiful Waterford, Ireland is a wonderful place to study the historical and cultural contexts of theatre around the world. We will attend professional play productions around Waterford with a side trip planned for Dublin, dine on fish-n-chips at a Pub Theatre, and perhaps take a weekend field trip to London. Ireland will offer a unique opportunity to study the essential elements of theatre from ancient times to today, the collaborative artistic process, and a unique cultural experience of diversity and history, all with an Irish emphasis. There may be additional costs for theatre courses due to the costs of the theatre tickets.


Afternoon Classes

(choose only one)

Gothic Literature (UD)

Prof. Susan Barron-LaPlant (Valdosta State)

With its castles, Gothic architecture, “haunted” buildings, and sublime scenery, Ireland provides a fitting backdrop for reading novels and short fiction by the great Gothic writers. This course covers the development of Gothic fiction from the late-eighteenth through the nineteenth centuries. We’ll especially focus on the unique place of the Irish in the Gothic literary tradition, reading fiction by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, Oscar Wilde, and Bram Stoker, among others. Field trips may include a ghost tour in Dublin, church crypts, old ancestral homes, and, of course, plenty of gloomy cemeteries (even better in the rain!).



Contemporary Irish Theater: Acting Techniques (UD)

Prof Sally Robertson (Georgia Perimeter)

Contemporary Irish Theatre: Acting and Performance" offers you the opportunity to explore the craft of acting as a means understanding the performer's contribution to theatre. Through acting exercises and work on scenes and monologues taken from Irish canonical and modern works, you will discover the challenges of bringing text to life on the stage, how personal and cultural experience shapes interpretation, and how actors work with directors and technical theater artists to tell the story of a play. The performing aspects of the class will be responsive to your individual skill level.


Introduction to Sociology (LD)

Dr. Stephanie McClure (Georgia College & State)

This lower-level core social science course will explore various social issues, including education, the family, inequality, and religion, through the sociological perspective. Students will learn to think critically about their own society and others through assignments that ask them to make observations and cross-national comparisons using existing data and their own experiences in-country, on field trips and in their own time. Student learning will be facilitated by the use of a text by Irish sociologist Tom Inglis that features interviews with over 100 Irish citizens on their views of life, love, family, sport, and nation in Ireland today.    

 Introduction to Philosophy (LD)

Dr. Bill Eaton (Georgia Southern)

What is the meaning of life? What is the ultimate nature of reality? Can we know anything with absolute certainty? Does the soul exist as a separate entity from the body? Does god really exist? Why should one be just if he or she can get away with being unjust? These and similar questions form the foundation of philosophy which can be defined as the love of wisdom, or if yu prefer, the quest for truth. This course surveys the ideas of many of the great philosophers, focusing on issues about religion, ethics, reality, and ways of knowing. 



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Apply to the Program

Directions on how to apply: 

  1. Download and complete the European Council application
  2. Turn the application to your campus representative. If you do not know who your representative is click here
  3. After you submit your application to your campus rep, please pay the $300 non-refundable application fee.

*Campus representatives forward completed applications to the program office at Valdosta State University.  Applications will not be processed by the EC office until both the application form (approved by the campus representative) and the $300 application fee are received.

** Spaces are available on a first come, first serve basis according to the date of receipt of the application and application fee. Students are encouraged to apply well in advance of the application deadline to assure them of a place in the program as some programs will fill as early as November. Once a program is full, students will be placed on the waitlist. Please do not be discouraged if you’re placed on the waitlist as we always anticipate a 15% drop.



  1. Any full-time or part-time student is eligible to participate in the program as long as the student will be 18 years of age by the time of departure. 
  2. Students must be in good academic standing in order to be admitted to the program. Completion of an application form does not guarantee acceptance into the program. Note also that individual campuses may require letters of reference or other information beyond that required by the European Council. 
  3. Students from institutions that are not part of the University System of Georgia must become a transient student at Valdosta State University. Click here for information on becoming a transient at Valdosta State University

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Health Matters and Insurance

Participants are provided with health-care from CISI insurance (Cultural Insurance Services International) that covers them while they are abroad. Information about local doctors and medical facilities will be available from the program director.

Students with special medical problems may be required to provide a physician's assurance of their ability to undertake foreign travel and study. It is not possible for the European Council to guarantee accessible facilities abroad for students with special needs.

Participants should bring medications they regularly depend upon and should have copies of prescriptions in generic form in case they need to acquire additional medications.

No special immunizations are needed to enter Ireland, and the International Immunization Certificate is not required.

Passports and Visas

Everyone who travels to Ireland must have a valid passport. Participants with expired passports should have them renewed. Participants who have never had a passport should begin the process of obtaining one immediately as it can take more than 3 months to get a passport and sometimes require an appointment made well in advance. Inquire at your local post office for instructions on obtaining a passport.

Holders of U.S. passports do not need visas to enter Ireland for summer study. Participants traveling on passports of other countries should contact their campus representative for assistance in determining whether they need a visa.

Some countries require that your passport be valid at least three (3) months beyond the dates of your trip. Some airlines will not allow you to board if this requirement is not met.

Please visit the Department of State’s website for more information on how to apply for a passport. Students are required to turn in a copy of their passport by April 14th, 2016 to avoid late fees, please see "Deadlines" for details. http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/english/passports/apply.html

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What Students Have to Say

-Even if the price seems insurmountable at first, push yourself to save for the program! You will never regret making the sacrifices to go on the trip, but you will regret giving up this opportunity! Also, if you don't see a class that you need being offered, look for similar classes and talk to the professors and your school about receiving credit!

- Budget your money, everything is more expensive in Europe. Stay in Ireland the whole time, explore what it has to offer.

-Apply early and keep up with the work load while there. It's easy to get distracted by all the fun and shenanigans, but there's schooling to be done too, and if you fall behind you might miss out on fun stuff later scrambling to catch up.
-SAVE LOTS OF MONEY!!! You are going to want to see everything possible, so plan ahead and bring cash with you where ever you go. Try staying in some of the smaller towns like Doolin and you will have amazing experiences. Pack warm and waterproof clothing, and be prepared to enjoy the experience of a life time. You won't regret investing in this trip...I promise.

-Have fun. Be safe. Pack light: three pair of jeans and a variety of shirt styles; don't forget your comfortable shoes and raincoat; bring plenty of undies/socks. Don't worry about your appearance the weather will take it's anger out on your vanity. Travel as much as possible, even in the rain. Stay in the country. Get involved with every opportunity given
to you.

-They will say this at orientation, but it should be stressed again: pack light! You WILL bring back a lot of souvenirs! Plus, you really don't need many clothes. I would also like to remind students that it is STUDY abroad, and school comes first! If you goof off too much, you'll fall behind really fast. Most of all, don't be nervous if it's your first time out of the country, it'll be a first for a lot of you!

-Relax! Don't stress out about anything; the directors know what they're doing, will help you through any problems you have. You'll meet plenty of fun people and have the time of your life on this trip!

-Take in as much of the country as you can while you're here. Five weeks will fly by too fast for you to notice until it's over!

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Contact Us


Beverly Vantine

European Council/ISEP Coordinator


Dustin Anderson

Ireland Co-Director


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