“I loved learning how the skills we learned in the classroom can apply to the business world.”

Lucy RowlandWe had a chat to visiting US student Lucy Rowland about her BIS experience in the second semester of this year…

Tell us a little about yourself – where you’re from, where and what you are studying in the USA, how long you’ve been in Cork etc.

I grew up in Minnetonka, Minnesota which is a suburb located 30 minutes outside of Minneapolis. I attend Iowa State University which is located in Ames, Iowa and is a three hour drive from my hometown. I am currently in my third year of school, and I study Industrial Engineering. I arrived in Cork on January 5th, and I leave to go back to the states on May 17th. In addition to BIS I am taking modules in Accounting, Engineering, Psychology, and French.

Why did you choose to come to UCC and why did you choose BIS?

I chose UCC because of the wide variety of classes offered, and because I have always wanted to visit Ireland! I also knew a couple of people from my University who studied here and they really enjoyed their time here.

I chose BIS because my major requires me to take a certain amount of “Management Electives” and BIS seemed like it would be a good supplement to my engineering degree since you learn about databases and how to construct them.

What is the best thing you have got out of the course during your time in Ireland?

I really enjoyed learning how to use Microsoft Visio and Microsoft Access. I would have never learned how to use these programs back home, and I think they will be valuable to me in the workplace. I like how Microsoft Visio can help map out processes in a clear way which can help explaining processes to others easier.

I also enjoyed the BIS coffee mornings which helped me learn more about Ireland, my professors, and my classmates!

What’s the one thing that has surprised you most about the course?

I was surprised how interested I was in the material! I really liked learning how to construct a database through our project, and I loved learning how the skills we learned in the classroom can apply to the business world.

What’s the biggest difference between college in the US and Ireland?

The biggest difference I have noticed here is the difference in work load. Back in the US I would have multiple assignments due almost every day of the week, but here there is usually one project and one final for each module. In the US I always feel stressed about keeping up with school work, but here the work load is a lot more relaxed which is nice, but preparing for finals here is more stressful since there is only one exam.

One other difference I noticed is that I have better relationships with my teachers here than I do back home. My university back home has giant class sizes so getting to know the teacher is very challenging, but the teachers I have had here, especially in BIS, do a great job of getting to know their students!

Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time?

In five years I will hopefully be a manufacturing engineer, or have a job related to Supply Chain Management. I am also thinking about pursuing my Masters in BIS or Supply Chain Management so maybe I will be going back to school!

If you had one piece of advice to offer someone considering doing BIS, what would it be?

If you find that you don’t love the field right away don’t be discouraged. Sometimes it takes just one class or one teacher to help you really figure out that you like what you are learning. I had this experience with my current major, and I am so happy I kept with it!


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