Global Service in Ireland – Summer 2018

Program Dates: June 2, 2018 – July 14

Experience scenic ocean views, brightly colored cafes, boundless live music, and rich history and sites of the eclectic city of Galway, Ireland while serving on a variety of community-based service projects. Students may choose projects from one of the focus areas and organizations listed below.

Activities listed are sample options – final projects will vary based on the needs of the community identified before the group arrives in Ireland. Full descriptions will be provided in Spring 2018.

Students will experience Irish sociopolitical history and culture through a three credit hour prerequisite course on the MU campus during the Spring semester. Once accepted into the program, students will meet at an arranged time during the last eight weeks of the spring semester. This learning will continue through various in-country excursions and activities while in Ireland.



All students will enroll in a 3-credit hour prerequisite orientation and cultural studies course that takes place during the Spring 2017 semester. A second 3-credit hour course will be taken in-country, for a total of six undergraduate or graduate credit hours, awarded in the Summer 2017 semester. These courses are designed to integrate academic and experiential learning with cultural immersion, identity exploration, and global engagement. The general undergraduate course numbers are listed below. Undergraduate students interested in other credits and graduate students may earn credit by arrangement with the Office of Service-Learning and their individual departments.

SRV_LRN 3028 or 3028H: Pre-departure Orientation and Cultural Studies (3). The 3 credit hour prerequisite course takes place during spring 2017 on the MU campus. The course focuses on building cultural competencies, critical thinking, and self-discovery. In addition students will research and study the host country’s history, culture, languages, politics and geography.

Class Schedule – must attend all classes

Monday, April 9th, 16th, 23rd, & 30th, at 8 pm to 10 pm

SRV_LRN 3028 or 3028H: Global Service (3). Students will earn 3 credit hours while engaging in intensive service in the host country. The main objective of this course is to promote service-learning through direct contact, classes, discussions, reflections, and projects while living in host country. Academic coursework will emphasize the development of critical consciousness while engaging in reflection and group dialogue.

Academic Credit

You will be enrolled in MU courses and are guaranteed to receive MU credit for successfully completed coursework. Grades earned through this program will calculate into your MU GPA and appear on your MU transcript when grades are recorded by the Program Leader. You must work with your academic advisor(s) to obtain pre-approval regarding course/degree requirements.

Additional Learning and Academic Activities

While living in the host country students will participate in multiple cultural activities. Excursions are considered as part of the coursework and should be looked upon as once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. Part of the final grade will come from their participation and attitude towards learning during these activities and excursions. Faculty will require students to reflect on your experiences on the excursions as part of a final multimedia project.


Considered by many to be Ireland’s “most Irish city,” Galway is a modern city steeped in Celtic traditions. Stroll the promenade along Galway Bay, take a boat out to the Aran Islands, traverse the many live music venues and street performances, or shop for Claddagh rings and Aran sweaters—there is so much waiting for you in Galway! And even though Galway is a growing international city, due in large part to the university, it is not uncommon to hear the traditional Gaelic still spoken in shops, pubs, restaurants, and around town. Galway’s brightly painted buildings stand out in the misty sky, so don’t forget your camera and umbrella. If live music and food are not on your to-do list for the day, you can always escape a rainy day by visiting one of the city’s many art galleries, museums, and cathedrals. There is something for everyone in Galway!

Accommodations and Meals

Students will reside in shared bedroom (2 – 4 students per room) apartments at the National University of Ireland-Galway. Each apartment offers shared living rooms and kitchens. Occasional breakfast and dinners will be provided each week, as well a group lunches on excursion days.

Example Itinerary

  • Depart U.S./Travel to Ireland
  • Arrive in Galway; Orientation/walking tour
  • Orientation continued; free time to relax and explore city
  • Introduction to service sites; begin service
  • Service at sites; two evening group meetings
  • Excursion to Aran Islands – Inis Mor
  • Corrib River cruise
  • Service at sites; two evening group meetings
  • Free weekend
  • Service at sites; two evening group meetings
  • Excursion to Cliffs of Moher and Burren
  • Excursion to Connemara and Cong
  • Service at sites; two evening group meetings
  • Free weekend
  • Service at sites; two evening group meetings
  • Free weekend
  • Service at sites; two evening group meetings
  • Free day
  • Depart Galway; earliest student departure/return to U.S.

Possible Service Sites

  • Galway Simon Community
  • Cope Galway
  • Ability West
  • Breast Cancer Research Foundation

Possible Excursion Sites

You will travel with the group but will have opportunities to explore the country independently during your time abroad. Visits around Ireland might include activities or tour such of:

  • Galway and the surrounding areas of Western Ireland
  • Aran Islands
  • Connemara & Cong
  • Cliffs of Moher & Burren
  • Corrib River cruise
  • Irish music and storytelling workshop

You will have the option of a four-day tour of Dublin at the end of the program.

Program Costs

Please see the budget sheet for Summer 2018 here: Ireland Summer 2017 Budget

For more information about financing your Global Service Program, please see the Financing page

Application and Eligibility

Before you apply to your chosen program, please review the How to Apply page.

Applications will be evaluated on the basis of a student’s academic transcript, quality and depth of response to the personal statement. In addition, students must have at least a 2.5 GPA and be in good disciplinary standing with the University for consideration. A personal interview may be required. Admission to a global service program is not guaranteed.

To apply for this Global Service Program, please submit the Online Application by:

  • Final deadline: February 28, 2018

More Information

For more information, please contact Office of Service-Learning. To schedule an appointment, visit MUConnect on Blackboard, go to your “My Success Network”, type in “Service-Learning”, and click on the link for Global Service on the Service-Learning page.