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Going to College 2020 podcast: Making the most out of your college years


For this final episode of the Going to College podcast series, presenter Sinead Ryan discusses the practicalities of college life, finding out what you can expect and how to make the most of your college years.

Joining Sinead to give their insights and advice were Nóirín Deady, First Year Experience Co-Ordinator at UCC, Róisín Nic Lochlainn, Welfare & Equality Officer, NUI Galway, and Hannah Bryson, Education Officer, UCD.

Nóirín outlined just how much of their content as well as induction and orientation has now gone online to help with the smooth transition to lectures for students whilst she also pointed out that the most common questions at the moment are in relation to accommodation.

“Students should be organising their accommodation,” she said. “As the university aims for as much contact time as possible within the government health guidelines.”

Nóirín also said that while some restrictions may lift in the second semester, accommodation would still be needed then and would be harder to find at that stage.

Róisín Nic Lochlainn meanwhile said that the main concerns she is getting from students is about making friends when so much college time will be online.

“We’re still encouraging people to join clubs and societies,” she said.

The issue of sexual harassment on campus was also raised and UCD’s Hannah Bryson said that despite everything being done, it is still common place.

“It is happening a lot and coming to the fore,” she told Sinead Ryan. “The importance of consent training for students is vital.”

Róisín Nic Lochlainn agreed.

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“It is rampant,” she said pointing to a survey that showed 50% of students experience sexual harassment in their first year of college.

Going to College is a four-part podcast series, presented by Sinead Ryan, that will help you prepare for some nerve-wracking - and exciting - weeks ahead.

From the Leaving Cert results to CAO offers and then going to college in a time of Covid, it’s stressful and life-changing, but this series will help with practical advice, tips and insights from experts in the area.

Don’t forget to listen and subscribe to the entire series on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or Independent.ie.

The Going to College series is in association with QQI.

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