Dealing with Drama in University

By Roisin O’Donoghue

Drama. It can happen anytime, anywhere. Some people hate it while others thrive on it. Needless to say, when you’re in university you’ve got bigger priorities than getting caught up in a silly feud or argument especially if it does not involve you. It can be stressful enough either way and the older you get the less time you have for it. It’s a part of life because if you interact and have relationships with other people so chances are you will at some point experience drama.

You may already have a sure-fire way on dealing with it and if it works for you then great! If not, then I can share some of my own methods on dealing with drama.

  • The first thing is to remain calm and not lose your temper. Don’t scream or call the other person names either. You might say something you can’t take back and doing this will only make the situation worse.
  • If you are directly involved in the conflict try and understand what part you played in creating it. Did you say something insulting? Did you do something that caused stress to the other person? If so you must explain your reasons for doing so and apologise.
  • When apologising, don’t be passive aggressive, like “I’m sorry you feel hurt”. That’s not an apology because you’re still deflecting the blame. The right thing to say would be “I’m sorry for hurting you”. No one likes to admit they’re wrong but if you are at fault for something then you must swallow that bitter pill called pride and say sorry.
  • If the drama is between two other people and you’re not directly involved try to remain so. You can be there to advise the others if necessary but getting too involved may complicate the situation especially if you take sides.
  • Don’t immediately assume that the other person is being dramatic. Sometimes genuine problems arise that need to be addressed and it’s important that you do so. Avoiding these situations because you don’t want the hassle could lead to bigger problems later on.
  • If all else fails, walk away. You can only do so much to right a wrong and if the other person isn’t responding positively to it then it might be time to call it quits. If this is the case then don’t feel too bad or obsess over it. Thinking things like “if only I’d apologised more then maybe we could still be friends” will only make you feel helpless. If you share the same classes or live in the same place as the person you’ve fallen out with then try and be civil to them until the end of semester.

Remember some people are drama queens and attention seekers. If the person you’re having the trouble with is like this then you should move on for your own sake. You’re not obligated to help someone who won’t help themselves.

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How To Keep In Touch With Friends From Home

By Sarah Talty, 4th year Journalism and New Media

You meet so many amazing new people in college, between groups and societies, housemates and course-mates, you will end up making a whole group of new friends! This is great but we don’t want to lose our old friends from home too.

A lot of people worry about keeping in touch with their friends from home when they go off to college. Although it isn’t just when people first head to college that they lose contact with old friends, it can happen gradually throughout college.

Long distance friendships are work and usually it won’t take much to keep in contact. We all have social media platforms now that make us feel like we know exactly what’s going on in people’s lives and our friends are just a tap away. But nothing beats meeting in person and sometimes college life gets so busy that we forget to make time to see people at home.

Here are some tips to ensure you don’t drift apart from your good home friends:

Communicate Often

This seems really simple and it is! With our phones, the Internet and social media we can’t make any excuses for not keeping in contact with people. College life is exciting and busy but make sure to check in with each other often. A phone call is a great way of staying up to date with each other’s news. You can also leave each other voice messages on Whatsapp or Facebook, this way you can leave them and listen to them and reply to them when you have a free ten minutes.

Visit Each Other

Invite your friend to come stay at your college house and visa versa. Whether you go out to a club, for drinks, for dinner, a walk or watch a movie at home, it doesn’t matter. Visiting the place your friend calls home for 5 days a week will help you grow closer. Now when they complain about their messy housemate you have a face to put with the name.  It will help  You will no doubt be excited to share this new part of your life with each other.

Plan Meet Ups

Often we don’t have a lot of free time at the weekends. If you have a job at home you’ll be lucky to have time to see your family. Then your commute back to college could take up half your Sunday. It’s important to make time to plan your time in advance to see friends. It could be a late movie night when you’re both finished your split shifts or a breakfast date before you set off to college. You’ll be surprised as well at how even a short meeting with your best friend at the weekend can set you up for a good week.

Plan Something Fun In The Future To Do Together

This is really effective at making sure you keep in touch! Plan to do something in the future that you both love. This could be anything from the cinema to see a movie you’re excited about, a concert, a holiday or a nice dinner out. Having something planned to do will keep you connected to each other, it gives you something to talk about and get excited about together. Also if you can’t meet up as often as you’d like it means that when you finally do you will be doing something that you both really enjoy.

Leaving UL

I am writing this blog, knowing that I am going to leave UL and Ireland soon. The past two semesters were the best time of my life. In honor of this amazing experience and my time in UL, I want to give you a recap of my Erasmus journey and the time I spend in Ireland.

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University of Limerick – UL

UL was the most welcoming place I have ever been to. The international office did an amazing job to make sure that we have all the information and support needed to study at UL. After this introduction I had an amazing time at UL. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect about studying in another country, but all the lecturers, tutors, and the fellow students were really nice and helpful if I had questions. The campus is so beautiful and everything is on one place, which makes it easy to walk to lecture halls, get lunch or just hang out with friends.

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Friends

During the whole time at UL I met a lot of Irish and international friends. It really helped with making my whole experience even better. Also it is nice to know that there are similar students who are studying in another country away from home. In addition being part of a club or societies was the best thing ever. At my home university we don’t have things like Clubs & Societies. It is a simple way to meet new people and have a lot of craic. Thanks to my Erasmus experience I now have connections all around the world and many new friends for life.

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Life in Ireland

Ireland is an open and warmhearted country. Of course there are some differences to Germany, but it is also a good way to learn something new about another country and its culture. For example the Irish weather, a good Irish breakfast on a Saturday morning or that the stores are open on a Sunday. My favorite part is that everybody is so polite and helpful and always apologize for everything.

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Adventure – travel

Generally people come to Ireland to travel around and see all the beautiful places. And even though I was here to study I had enough time to travel around a little bit. Also the International Society organized some fun adventures with trips all over Ireland. I enjoyed the wild nature and the beautiful places I’ve been to in Ireland. My favorite trip was the Ring of Kerry. And I know that I have to come back sometime, because there will always be a spot that wants to be discovered.

All in all it was an experience which I will never forget. I learned so much about myself, life and that sometimes you just have to be spontaneous to enjoy the special things in life. Before I say my final goodbye I want to thank all the people I met during my time at UL, the UL Basketball Team, the Trampoline Club, the AHSS Ambassador Program and the International Office for everything they have done for me during this journey. I know that I will miss UL and all my friends. I definitely leave UL with mixed feelings. But I know you always meet twice and I will definitely come back!

My Erasmus journey at the University of Limerick

By Nadine Kimak

nadineHi my name is Nadine and I’m from Germany. I am studying Social Science and right now I’m doing my 3rd and 4th semester at the University of Limerick.

Every time I meet new people they are really interested in why I chose Ireland and what it is like to be an Erasmus student. Therefore I want to share my story and journey with you.

Let’s start at the beginning. According to my academic studies in Germany I didn’t have to do an Erasmus year. But I could choose to do it. I talked to a lot of people who did an Erasmus and also to a boy who went to the University of Limerick. At the beginning I wasn’t quite sure if I could handle two semesters in another country, with another language in the lectures and a new culture. But I also knew that this was a lifetime opportunity and I didn’t want to blow it. I looked at the website of my home university to find out on which partner universities I could go. When I saw Ireland I knew that this is the one I wanted to go to. I heard so many things about the beautiful Islands, so I applied for the Erasmus spot. Luckily I got the spot and so I packed everything together and came to Ireland.

Landing at the Shannon Airport my first impression was that this is the nicest country I’ve ever been to. Everybody is so polite and offers you help. The orientation week and the first couple weeks just kept getting better and better. And you get to know so many people that it is really easy to fit in. Besides I really enjoy the different lecture and grading system. At first doing everything on English seemed complicated to me. But right now it is harder for me to switch back in German when I am writing an email back home ;).

The best about being a student in Ireland is that you can travel around the island. I know that studying here my priority is on my studies. But joining Clubs and Societies, having fun and going on trips should in my opinion also be a part of the time here at the University of Ireland. Because through that you will meet new people, get to know their culture and make lifelong friends.

So far I enjoyed every second of my journey here in Ireland and I hope that it’s continuing to be GRAND! I wish everybody who wants or has to do an Erasmus semester the best time of their lives.

Here is a short video of my Erasmus journey so fare. I hope you like it.

 

Nadine is an Erasmus student from Germany. She is studying Social Science in Limerick for two semesters. She loves to work with people, do sports and explore Ireland.

Making friends at University

By Jane Vaughan

 Making friends at college was probably one of my biggest worries coming into to college. I was so nervous walking in by the flag poles on the day of orientation but looking back I need not have worried.

The key thing about making friends is in your orientation group, this group is filled with about 10/15 people who are all in your course, you spend the day being shown the campus together by your guide. I met some of my best friends on orientation day. After the day was finished we all exchanged numbers and decided on a place to meet on the following Monday, for our first day of college. We were all afraid of getting lost but once you’re in a group at least if you get lost, you all get lost together.

Being a part of two very popular subjects can make it had to find out who is actually is your course so me and two of my friends (from my orientation group) decided to make a Facebook group for our course and one by one we eventually began to know who was in our course. Year by year you get a lot more closer to those in your course.

Tutorial groups are also a very good way of making friends as a lot of the time you get put into even smaller groups for team work. You are meant to go to the same tutorial group every week so it’s no harm in befriending people so ye can all help each other out with readings and work.

If you are willing to make friends in college you will have no problem doing so as everyone else around you wants to do the same thing.

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Jane Vaughan is in her fourth year studying English and History at the University of Limerick. She is 22 and from Limerick. You can read her personal blog here  and follow her on Twitter at @_PaulaJane. Here she talks about making friends at UL.