Galway, Ireland


The National University of Ireland, Galway is located on the banks of the river Corrib in Western Ireland. Galway is a modern urban center of 80,000 people that is known to many as a cultural center of Ireland.  A Willamette professor teaches one course to the program students and accompanies the excursions with a local guide. Excursions may include Dublin, Northern Ireland, and Cork.

The spring 2020 Program Faculty Leader will be Karen Arabas, Professor of Environmental Science. She will teach:

Reading the Irish Landscape: Reflections on Place. The central theme of the course is how the geography, climate and ecology of Ireland have shaped its people, how the people have reshaped the landscape, and how in doing so the Irish have shaped themselves.

The spring 2019 Program Faculty Leader is Jonneke Koomen, Associate Professor of Politics, Policy, Law and Ethics.

Past Faculty Leaders for this program include Courtney Stevens (2018, Psychology), David Craig (2017, Biology), Scott Pike (2016, Environmental Science), Richard Ellis (2015, Politics), Ann Nicgorski (2014, Art History), David Gutterman (2013, Politics), Seth Cotlar (2012, History), Wendy Petersen Boring (2011, History), Todd Silverstein (Chemistry, 2010), Ortwin Knorr (Classical Studies, 2009), Mike Strelow (English, 2008), Mark Conliffe (Russian, 2007), Charlie Wallace (Religious Studies, 2006), Steve Hey (Sociology, 2005), Lane McGaughy (Religious Studies, 2004), Ken Nolley (English, 2003), Myles Jackson (Science Studies, 2002), James Thompson (Art, 2001), and Bill Braden (English, 2000).


While at NUI, students take an Irish Studies course (1.0 WU credit) that provides an introduction to Irish life and culture through the disciplines of Irish, English, History and Sociology.  Students take a second course (1.0 WU credit) taught by the WU professor and two to four additional elective courses from NUI (credit varies). The university has approximately 17,000 students and offers a large variety of courses to choose from. This program offers the best fit for humanities and social science majors due to course scheduling of NUI classes with the WU program classes and excursion schedules. All participants should have a good deal of flexibility about the local classes they can take from NUI.  Courses available to visiting students (NUI site).


Students live in campus housing with Irish flatmates. Bathrooms and kitchen facilities are shared with one or more students.


Available spring semester only. Early January start. Final exams conclude by mid-May. Students will have a specific arrival schedule to facilitate group pick up. 


Please see the Willamette Sponsored Programs Cost Matrix for detailed explanation of the cost of each program. Students should plan on paying their police registration fee upon arrival to Galway - the registration fee is 300 Euros (2017). A sample budget for meals, books and transportation can be found on the International Affairs Office website.

Pre-departure Resources