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Ing Lucie Cerna, UCT Prague, ročník 5

Faculty Faculty of Food Technology and Biochemistry
Field of study Clinical bioanalytics
Field of internship Biological and Biomedical Sciences
Specialization of InternshipBiomedical Sciences, General
Internship period (from - to) 1.7.2019 - 30.8.2019
Internship duration (weeks) 9
Transport (means, price) Ryanair (4000 CZK return ticket)
Insurance/Insurance company ISIC
Visa/Work permit (yes/no) NO
Price of Visa -
City of Internship Zobrazit místo na mapě  Ireland, Dublin
Internship reference number IE-2019-1129

About the country

Location of the place

Trinity College University Dublin

City

Dublin is the capital city of Ireland. It is the largest and also the most expensive city in Ireland.

Surroundings (possible trips, ...)

There are a lot of museums in Dublin. Most of the commercial ones are very expensive, but some of them definitely worth to see (Guinness). Some of them are overpriced, like Trinity Library, but if you work at Trinity (or know someone who works there), there is a free entrance.
There are also a lot of free museums, I recommend the Chester Beatty Museum.
Options for one-day trips:
Howth (village, cliffs, beautiful views)
Wicklow Mountains (lakes, mountains, hikes, a lot of movies were filmed there - PS I love you, Vikings)
More-day trips
Cliffs of Moher and Galway, Belfast and Mourne mountains, Cork and Spike Island, Ring of Kerry

Employer

Employer

Trinity College Dublin - Monaghan Lab, Trinity Biomedical Science Institute

Work description

Monaghan lab works on the development of conductive polymer, which can be used for the production of scaffolds or patches to help heart recovery after a heart attack.
I helped postdoc with 3D printing of patches - we did a lot of experiments (creating a programme from printing, microscopy, SEM, mechanical testing, conductivity testing, cytotoxicity with cell tissues). I have never done this before (except cell tissues), but I had a great supervisor, who explained everything to me and also let me do it by myself. In the end, I analyzed all our data and I think that I contributed to the research.
We had a lab meeting every week, where we had presentations about the progress of lab members and also lab journal, so I had to read scientific journals regularly.

Salary (sufficient for local conditions?)

260 € per week - Dublin is very expensive. It covered accommodation, food and most of the trips - however, I wasn't using public transport (2,50 € per each way), I was cycling, I was cooking every day and trying to live as cheap way as possible.

Language requirements

English - Irish accent is sometimes difficult to understand, however, Dublin is very international and in my lab, there were only two Irish people out of 12.

Accommodation (price, who provided it)

There were only two trainees in Dublin and we had to arrange accommodation by ourselves. Dublin has an accommodation crisis and it is extremely expensive. We shared a room together and each of us paid 125 € per week.

Social life

Meeting IAESTE members (pick-up at the airport, organized events...)

There are only a few members of IAESTE Ireland - the national secretary offered us pick-up at the airport, but I came one week earlier to Ireland to travel, so we met after I came back to Dublin. She provided as a booklet with all information about things we need to do (PPS number, accommodation, salaries etc.).
Despite there were only 3 trainees in Ireland, LC Dublin and LC Northern Ireland organized a weekend trip almost every weekend. I very appreciate that they did it for us, even there very only a few people on the trip. It was a great way how to discover beauties of Ireland and also try different activities like surfing.

Meeting other foreign students

I shared a room with another trainee from Brazil. We met the third trainee from Greece on the weekend trips and also trainees from Northern Ireland (there were almost 20 of them).

Sport and culture

I'm not a very sporty person, but I cycled to work every day 4 km. Dublin is mostly flat and if you get used to driving on the left and crazy traffic and cycling between cars, it is ok. There are many parks as well and it is nice to cycle there.
Life Irish music in pubs is very popular - you can find bands and sometimes dancers in many pubs or outside on the streets. I went to River dance (traditional dances and songs) to theatre and it definitely worths.

Food, local specialties

There aren't a lot of traditional Irish meals - most of the people buy prepared meals and maximally heat it on the cooker. Typical meat is chips and fish, stew (like our goulash), potatoes...
They also eat a lot of crisps and they put in in the toast.

Other information

Possibilites to communicate with the Czech Republic

There was wifi in my flat and work, thanks to the roaming I communicated with my family and friends as usual

Recommendations for students who will go to the same place

Don't forget to make an appointment for PPS number in advance - you're most likely to need it in order to get paid.
Make the appointment at least one month before coming to Ireland.

What not to forget with you

Rain jacket - it rained a lot. Enough money at least for the first month here. I got paid every week, but I had my PPS number appointment after two weeks here and it took me almost a month to prepare all papers to make my bank account.

Benefits of the internship

It was a great working experience. I have already had two other internships and Erasmus abroad and this one was the most valuable.
During the week I didn't go out much, I ended at work late. However, the weekends were great and I saw a lot from Ireland. I also met new people and found out more about different cultures.

Cooperation with IAESTE in the foreign country

The national secretary was always helpful when we needed something. IAESTE organized a lot of trips for us and they were amazing.

Overall experience with IAESTE

I joined IAESTE after my first internship, so I have to say that I love IAESTE.
#IAESTEspirit

Student's website

http://luckyprazdniny.blogspot.com/

Employer's webiste

https://www.monaghanlab.com/

Other useful links

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Other comments

Go for it! If you are not sure and you are afraid of going abroad alone, don't worry. Having my first internship was the best choice of my life. It really changed my thinking, the world opened for me.
This internship was great working experience and it encouraged me to continue working in science.
I improved my English - before, I was afraid to speak English. Now I'm even able to present scientific topics without preparation, watch movies without subtitles and write without google translator.

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