(London)Derry, Northern Ireland
BCA offers a study abroad program at Magee College in Derry, Northern Ireland.
"Culture shock was not terrible. Be open-minded and don't be afraid to ask questions—the Irish people are happy to answer them and are very hospitable. Expect a different way of dress, but don't feel pressured to dress similarly." (Chelsea Cornwell '12)
"I did experience culture shock. When I first arrived it was a little overwhelming because of the attention I received. Because of my features (green eyes, dark hair, and darker features comparatively speaking), I tended to stick out wherever I went. I would imagine girls typically experience this reaction because the majority of the Irish girls typically wore a lot more make up than I did and got much more dressed up to go out. Most Irish people are very friendly and warm. I was always approached and politely asked about where I was from. Personally, I think reverse culture shock was a little delayed. I started to notice not much at home had changed and I had had all these experiences. It was difficult to come back to my routine when I had been traveling and meeting so many new and interesting people. Make sure to take pictures to show family and friends when you get home, but also keep in contact with friends from overseas to help transition back. I know it was difficult for other students coming home, but try to remember the experience may be once in a lifetime and coming back to the United States isn't a terrible thing. There are positives and negatives about every country to learn about which is the point of studying abroad." (Gina Taylor '11)
BCA UK students are also invited to attend the weekend-long BCA-sponsored International Student Conferences in Derry, United Kingdom for fall semester students and in Strasbourg, France for spring semester students. The conferences are open to all students studying abroad in a European country through BCA and feature speakers related to divided societies for fall-semester students and American-European relations for spring-semester students.