If you are planning on studying at SHU in Dingle for a semester, we recommend you have a working, unlocked cell phone. We will supply you with an Irish sim card and pre-paid phone credit upon arrival, to get you started. You will be on the Prepay Option, which allows a customer to ‘top up’ with credit as and when required. Credit can be purchased online, at an ATM and in stores. Students generally spend $25 per month on credit
If you are planning on a short-term program, we recommend that you have a working cell phone with a data plan which provides minutes while abroad. You are encouraged to research international phone plan.
Free WIFI is available on campus, at all accommodation and most bars and restaurants to allow you to use iMessage, WhatsApp, GroupMe etc. to keep in contact with your program leaders, family and friends.
You are recommended to travel with a credit card, as well as a debit card, so that, in case of emergency, a student does not have to worry about how much money is in their debit account. Visa and MasterCard credit cards are recommended as they are the most widely accepted in Ireland.
You are also recommended to set up online banking before you travel to allow you to monitor your account. You are not advised to open a bank account in Ireland. Be aware that using your debit/credit card in an ATM abroad will often incur international service fees. We encourage you to research your bank’s rates concerning international withdrawals and exchange. You should inform your bank of your travel plans before your trip to ensure your cards are not denied/blocked while abroad. Confirm the phone number that you would need to call if you have any problems with your card(s).
Ireland operate on a chip-and-pin system for debit and credit cards, meaning that instead of swiping the card, the card is inserted into a machine that reads a microchip, and the user enters a pin number. Some US debit/credit cards still use swipe technology, which may not be readily available everywhere, so you should always have cash on hand. US debit/credit cards will still work in ATMs regardless of chip-and-pin technology.
If possible, you should purchase some Euro currency in advance so you have it available as soon as you arrive in case you have any problems with your card(s) upon arrival. Euros can be purchased at most major banks.
Of course! However, family and friends are not permitted to stay overnight in your housing as it is against program guidelines to do so. We recommend that those wishing to visit you do so after your midterm exams/break. This will give you enough time to become acclimated into your program, and get to know Dingle. Those wishing to visit SHU in Dingle can contact us for advice on travel, accommodation etc.
As part of the study abroad fee, you will automatically be enrolled in the mandatory GeoBlue International Health Insurance plan. This comprehensive plan provides medical and evacuation coverage. You will be provided with an insurance card prior to departure, as well as guidance on how to use your health insurance while abroad. We recommend you familiarize yourself with GeoBlue prior to traveling abroad. Also, you should NOT cancel your U.S. insurance plan.
Each program has a different program cost depending on what is included in the total program fees. An estimated budget sheet for each program is available on the budgeting section.
You will pay the regular Sacred Heart University tuition plus a study abroad fee, which includes international insurance. You will be billed directly by SHU for these fees. SHU will also bill you directly for housing and/or meals through the program fee
We recommend students do some research and create their own budget based on their preferences and spending habits.
You will need a valid passport to study in Ireland. It is our policy that you present a copy of your valid and signed passport (valid for at least 6 months after the study abroad program end date) during the application process. If you do not meet this requirement, apply for a passport immediately. You may visit the US Department of State website for more information on obtaining a passport. You may also apply for a passport at most local post offices or by appointment at the Connecticut Passport Agency. The processing time for a passport is approximately 4-6 weeks.
Ireland also requires you to apply for a visa to legally live and study in the country if you wish to stay for a semester. The short-term programs do not require a visa.
The Office of Global Affairs and SHU in Dingle can provide assistance with the process. Please note that visa regulations (and the decision whether or not to issue a visa) are imposed by the Irish government not Sacred Heart University. The fee for the visa is approximately $350.
The minimum GPA required to be approved to study abroad is 2.8, although some courses will have higher requirements for acceptance. Students who may be worried about their GPA impacting on their wish to study abroad are encouraged to meet with a Study Abroad Advisor to discuss possible options.
All applications are to be completed online through the OGA website. Applications can be accessed here. You should meet with you study abroad or academic advisor before applying as there may be additional requirements you need to meet prior to applying.
No! There are short-term winter and summer programs if you’re not ready to do a full semester abroad. Check out the programs section to see what courses are available in the short-term programs.
Choosing when to study abroad can depend a lot on your major and it’s requirements. Most students that go for a semester do so sophomore or junior year. For athletes or students with strict academic schedules, short-term winter or summer programs can be great options.