Tag Archives: Freshers

Your first year at Trinity

Getting around Dublin

While Trinity College Dublin is located in the very heart of Dublin City, it’s not the only thing there. The vast majority of what Dublin has to offer is concentrated in the city centre, an area of no more than a few square kilometres. Therefore walking is generally a great way to get around the city centre, and with google maps at your side, it’s difficult to get lost.

However, walking aside, Dublin is a very easy and convenient city to get around. Public transportation is good and getting better, taxis are plentiful and reasonably priced, and there are plenty of options when it comes to cycling.

Dublin_Bus_buses

By Bus

After walking, buses are the most convenient and practical way to get around.  Bus service runs daily throughout the city, operated by Dublin Bus , starting at 6am (10am on Sun), with the last bus at about 11:30pm. On Friday and Saturday nights, Nitelink service runs from the city centre to the suburbs from midnight to 4am. Buses operate every 30 minutes for most runs; schedules are posted on revolving notice boards at bus stops.

Fares range from €1.95 for short journeys all the way to €3.80 for longer trips. You pay on board the bus, using an automatic fare machine located in front of the driver. No Dublin bus accepts notes or gives change.

The best way to pay (and to save money!) is by getting a Leap Card! These are smart cards which can be used on a variety of Dublin transport systems (Dublin Bus, DART, Luas and more). You can top up your Leap Card in shops or online and never have to worry about cash for buses. Leap Cards also entitle you to cheaper fares.

What’s even handier is a Student Travel Card  (which offers great discounts for Students) acts as a Leap Card automatically, and you can purchase a Student Travel Card by dropping into House 6 right beside front arch.

By Tram

The sleek, modern (and wheelchair accessible) light rail tram system known as Luas runs from around 5:30am to 12:30am Monday to Friday, 6:30am to 12:30am Saturday, and 7am to 11:30pm on Sunday. (The last trams to certain stations are earlier—be sure to check the timetable). There are two lines, Red and Green: The Green Line links St. Stephen’s Green with Brides Glen in the south; the Red Line runs between the Point, near the O2 in Dublin Docklands, and Connolly Railway Station, down to the southwestern suburbs of Saggart and Tallaght.

Fares range from €1.80 to €3.00 for a single ticket depending on how many zones you travel. Again, a Student Leap Card entitles you to cheaper fares and it’s very easy to tag on and off at Luas stops.

The Luas Green Line stops at Milltown, which is only a 7 minute walk from Trinity Halls in Dartry!

Dart

By DART

An acronym for Dublin Area Rapid Transit, the electric DART trains travel above ground, linking the city centre stations at Connolly Station, Tara Street, and Pearse Street (right beside the Hamilton end of Campus) with coastal suburbs and seaside communities as far as Malahide to the north and Greystones to the south. Service operates roughly every 10 to 20 minutes Monday to Saturday from around 6am to midnight and Sunday from 9:30am to 11pm.

 Dublin_Bikes

By Bike

Getting around Dublin by bike means you don’t have to worry about sticking to bus timetables or being restricted by how much is left on your Leap Card. Whether you’re just popping down to the shops to pick up some milk, commuting to college or cycling to get fit and help the environment, cycling gives you the freedom to be flexible and spontaneous. Dublin City is a wonderful city for cycling with lots of dedicated bicycle lanes across the city. Many students opt to buy second hand bikes for their stay. Trinity College Dublin has lots of spots around campus for securing your bike. 

However if buying a bike doesn’t suit, the Dublin Bikes scheme provides 100 public bike stations around the city with 1500 bikes available for general public use. Pay an initial subscription of just €20 a year and you are free to use any of the Dublin Bikes for 30 minutes free of charge. After 30 mins of use, you will be charged a small fee. However, as everywhere within the Dublin Bikes zone is within a 30 minute travel distance, with a bit of forward planning you never need go over the 30 minute time limit. It’s a great way to save money and stay fit!

Make Yourself At Home | Part 2

Last week we offered tips on how to decorate your student room to make it more homely, and while the internet offers an abundance of style tips and inspiration, where can you buy things without breaking the bank? We offer some ideas below.

Go to IKEA

From bed linen to wall hangings to quirky knick knacks, IKEA is a one-stop shop for all your student needs. However a bit of planning will be needed in advance if you aim to buy bulky goods and bring them home on the bus. Check out here for advice on the best way to get to IKEA, which is located in north Dublin, about 45 mins away from Trinity College by bus.

Check out Tiger

Located on Nassau Street and in the Stephen’s Green shopping centre, Tiger is often described as a mini-Ikea. It boasts a range of different decorations, handy  organisational knick-knacks and quirky ornaments, all at affordable prices. Tiger is a great store to wander around and see what jumps out at you. While it’s less then 60 seconds away from Trinity, you can check out their website before you make a trip to see what they have.

Homeware sections of stores

Many department stores, such as Dunnes, Tesco and Marks & Spencers to name a few, have specific homeware sections in their larger stores. Offering all sorts of kitchen, bedroom and general living room wares, these stores offer good quality goods at low prices. Even better, they are located throughout the City and are easy to get to. Stephens Green Shopping Centre and Henry Street are two great places to check out.

Online

Why limit yourself to what you can find in shops? As we suggested last week, sites such as Pinterest are a great way to find inspiration for decorating your room. So why not continue your search for decorations online? If you have specific ideas in mind, then sites such as Amazon or Ebay are great places search. If you’re not sure what you want, why not check our places such as Etsy and see what catches your eye.

George’s Street Arcade

George’s Street Arcade, less than a 5 minute walk from Trinity College Dublin, is an enclosed Victorian market where you can enjoy ‘independent’ boutique shops and stalls ranging from trendy clothing, jewellery, funky music, collectable items, souvenirs and much more along with wonderful dining and food options. Take a look around and you may be able to find unique treasures for your room or home.

Marketplaces

Finally, marketplaces and second hand stores can be treasure troves for homely decorations. Did you know there is a book market in Temple Bar on the weekends? How about the Designer Market? Temple Bar, Dublin’s Cultural Quarter, is packed with markets at the weekend. Take a wander through the cobbled streets and hidden avenues and see what you can find amongst the stalls and second hand stores. Market days and times can be found here.

David  is a marketing intern working with the Global Relations team, and is a current student of Trinity College Dublin.

Make Yourself At Home | Part 1

It’s not always easy settling in as a student. It is hard feeling completely at home in a new place, especially when that place is a dorm room, or a bedroom in a house with 5 other people. Help is at hand however, as we compile a list of some student hacks and DIY touches you can use to settle into Dublin and make yourself at home.

Bed Linen

First things first, you have got to sort out your bed. It’s more than likely taking up a large amount of space in your room, so you might as well make it colourful and easy on the eyes. Ditch the drab monotones and choose colourful bed sheets which will complement the style of your room.

Lights

Lighting is very important in student rooms. Fairy Lights and fake candles add a warm and inviting mood to your room. Equally getting coloured lamp shades (or draping coloured cloth over regular lamp shades) will help negate the harsh white lights often found in student apartments.

Plants

As long as you remember to water them, flowers and plants are a lovely, easy way to bring life and colour to your room.  If you’re simply not the gardener type and your plants are likely to die within days, invest in a cactus instead – they require zero maintenance! Equally, plenty of artificial flowers look quite real and can be bought from a variety of homeware stores.  A potted plant or two will do wonders for your room.

Wall hangings

The walls in student accommodation are often neutral and bare. With repainting them not an option the next best thing is to cover over them up. Posters and photos are a great way to add a personal touch to your walls. Hang photos with pegs from a piece of string, or use some blu-tack so you don’t mark the walls. Stick up photos and memories from home and if something makes you smile, hang it up so you can always see it.

Colour

If in doubt, just try and add colour. Whether it be through furnishings such as rugs and cushions, or simply colourful pictures, the more colour you add the more homely your room will feel. Paint some photo frames in vibrant colours and hang them on your wall. Or recycle some old jars and paint them in bright colours, leaving them on your shelves. Paint your hangers, shelves and furniture or cover them with colour tape and ribbons. ,l.

Need more Inspiration?

Lacking ideas? Try Pinterest and see what other people have done on the cheap to make their halls feel like home!

David  is a marketing intern working with the Global Relations team, and is a current student of Trinity College Dublin.

My 5 favourite things about Trinity

by Caoimhe Tyndall – ‘The list certainly could go on forever!’


Living in Trinity Hall

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Thanks to Freshers’ Week, JCR events, Hall’s Musical, and generally the close proximity of all the houses, I have built incredibly close bonds with hundreds of people and friendships that will undoubtedly last a lifetime. While there is never a dull moment in Halls, the atmosphere is extremely warm, welcoming, and safe. No matter what time of day, there is always someone just a few meters away to have a cup of tea with. Trinity Hall is where I am comfortable, and where I have been given the freedom to truly explore and discover myself.


A Great Location

dublin

TCD is located in the very center of one of the most iconic cities in the world. Living in Dublin and having all kinds of events and activities at your fingertips allows you to gain a strong sense of independence, and places you in the middle of a wide range of opportunities for both leisure and success. However, being a student at Trinity also provides you the typical college-campus feel that many look for. There is no better experience than the perfect mix between city-living and campus-living that Trinity provides; it truly is the best of both worlds.


Trinity’s Societies

societies

Trinity has an endless number of societies that all allow you to share your talents, practice your skills, make great friends, and do what you love. Joining the Sailing team in particular during Freshers’ Week was without a doubt the best five euro I have ever spent, and one of my favorite things about Trinity. I am very proud to represent Trinity on a team that competes all over Ireland and the UK, and have made incredible friends doing so.


The Teaching Style

Trinity's Ussher Library
Trinity’s Ussher Library

Unlike the majority of American Colleges, the education system in Trinity does not force you to take any kind of General Education classes or classes you do not have an interest in. From your first day as a student, you specialize in one specific course, and focus solely on the modules in that course, without being swamped with other classes that are in your timetable simply to maximize credits.


Studying in a Landmark

front

Another aspect of Trinity that I would consider a favorite of mine is seeing tourists on campus every day. It makes me so proud to know that the place I call home is a place people travel to from all over the world for their own enjoyment and curiosity. While discovering Front Square, the Campanile, and the Book of Kells, tourists are fascinated each day by what my school has to offer, as both a university and beautiful place to sight-see, and I enjoy having that eclectic collection of diversity and culture on my campus.

Bitesize Top 10 Courses: PPES

Elli, one of our student ambassadors, let’s us know what it’s like to study one of our Top 10 Courses, PPES

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Your name: Elli Brennan

Your year of study: 2nd year

Your programme of study / course: PPES (Philosophy, Political Science, Economics and Sociology)

What made you decide to study your course at Trinity?

I chose PPES because I had taken politics, economics, sociology, and philosophy classes in High school and knew those were subjects I wanted to pursue in the future. PPES was a great opportunity to go in depth into all of them at one of the best universities in the world, without having to fulfil unrelated classes requirements in my first two years like in American colleges. Also the size of the course, only 36 people, was very appealing because you get to know everyone really well and become really close. It was all the benefits of a small liberal arts college within a big university. I became very interested in moving to Ireland and studying at Trinity ever since visiting after sophomore year of High School. I saw college as the only opportunity in life to easily live abroad, and didn’t want to waste that by staying close to home.

What, if anything, was the most challenging thing about moving to Ireland to study?

The hardest part about moving to Ireland for me was getting the courage to go 5,000 miles away from my friends and family to a place where I didn’t know anyone.

How did you overcome the challenge?

Skype, long summer and Christmas holidays, loads of fun things going on in college, and living in Trinity Halls surrounded by lots of very friendly people who are all away from home for the first time too made being far not nearly as scary as it sounds. The time has flown by.

What aspect / module of your course have you enjoyed studying the most so far and why?

So far, my favourite part of my course has been statistics and international relations. These were things I had taken in high school as well, but going more in depth in college and getting a more global perspective has been a great experience and really reinforced the idea that I’m definitely in the right place doing what I love.

If you had one piece of advice to any other students about to start your course in Trinity what would it be?

The most important thing you can do is balance school and fun. Especially in your first year there’s fun things to do every day and night and you’ll want to do it all. You should definitely try new things and meet new people, but make sure you don’t forget you’re also here to study!  You don’t want to find that out when you get to finals. That being said you can definitely find a good balance between the two.

What is your favourite thing about Dublin?

I think Dublin is the perfect city. With just over a million people it’s big enough that there’s always something going on, loads of great shops and restaurants, and a great buzz in the city centre, but not too big that you feel overwhelmed. It’s very walkable, but also has safe and reliable public transport. Not to mention it’s stunning with beautiful old buildings, parks, churches and even castles around every corner.

What three words would you use to describe Trinity to someone who’s never been here?

Welcoming, Impressive, Hogwarts!

If you would like to get to know Trinity College and the city of Dublin better, consider coming along to one of our upcoming US events.

Trinity cat!
Trinity cat!

‘Some advice for my 1st year self’ – a second year student looks back

Experience is the best teacher, right? Well, looking back on my first year, and reflecting on the changes I made coming into my second, I feel there is some useful information that I can pass on.

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I spent my first year  in Trinity Halls. Now, Halls is close enough to supermarkets like Tesco, Lidl, and Aldi… but I still found myself – nonstop – consuming ramen noodles. They are cheap, easy to make, and honestly… not even that bad on the palate. However I would recommend caution! They are not sufficient meal supplements (don’t let your diet become overtaken by the things!) Make sure to eat plenty of REAL food! I’m talking about MEAT (unless you’re a vegetarian, then I suppose that is reason enough to go without). Eat your VEGETABLES (yes, vegetables). Those green things which haunt the majority of your mother’s meals, feared by most under the age of 12, are actually important. If you eat at least some of these two things, in addition to some other select choices of the food pyramid, you won’t just survive – you’ll thrive.

fruit and veg

One easy way to eat healthy as a student is to shop at Lidl and Aldi, two great discount stores which will have most of what you want, and they also sell alcohol. I bring this up because saving money is obviously important to students, and let’s be honest – going out is expensive. A cornerstone to student life at university is social interaction and one form of such is going out with the friends you’ve made. On one hand, clubs and pubs are fun, but paying 4 euro a pint can become awfully costly! Try staying in with friends. The four euro you may have spent on a pint can be stretched much farther with a quick stop at an off-license.

societies

The second, and more important, form of social interaction at university is clubs and societies. They are the best way to meet new people with similar interests, and to engage in activities you enjoy! Just think of something you’re interested in and see if there is a group for you, and if not, maybe start one for yourself. Odds are you aren’t the only person who is interested, and there’s nothing more fulfilling than taking something you love and building a club around it.

My final note will be on academics, that is the foremost reason for university after all! Lectures are important, and you should be in all of them. My old American football coach once eloquently said, “It is voluntarily mandatory”. Even if your lecturer isn’t taking attendance, if you think you have nothing to gain from this particular class, go. There is always something important going on, and there are things which come from the lecturer that you can’t find on the online notes – and that is if the even provide such a wonderful resource. Also, note-taking is an art form and unique to each individual – take the time to figure out what’s the most efficient way for you to take in all the information being thrown at you. Personally, I have a simple flowchart which helps me decide how to take on a class:

  1. Are there online notes?
    • No – option (2)
    • Yes – option (3)
  2. Write what they are putting on the board for you
  3. Sit, and listen. Pay attention to their lecture on the subject, and try to understand and follow along. You already have the notes!

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Best tip of all though… enjoy your time! Manage you time wisely, and avoid stress. This should be a fun time for you as well!

Charlie Stein is a Student Ambassador in the Global Room from Chicago

Students and their societies

societies

There are almost 150 student societies at Trinity, and in the excitement of Freshers’ Week many students sign up to more of them than they could ever participate in. Now that we’re half-way through the first semester, we wanted to know if you are still involved with the societies you joined?