Connie Dale

It is incredible how quickly Dublin has become my home.

As an international student, I worried that I would feel isolated here. I couldn’t have been more wrong. The Graduate Entry Medicine (GEM) programme has about 80 students, so it’s a really tight-knit community. Within the first two weeks you know everyone by name.

The GEM professors are always available to answer questions and address concerns. There are also a number of resources for student support, including cognitive therapy, free GP visits at Mercer Medical Centre, and career mentors for every individual student.

I am repeatedly reminded of the prestigious reputation of RCSI. Often in our lectures, we’ll come across something named after an RCSI professor: the Colles' fracture, Smith’s fracture, valves of Houston … all from RCSI. It’s actually incredible how much influence this school has in the field of medicine. To attend RCSI is to be a part of a nearly 300-year history, a fact that I am reminded of often.

College life

Every day I wake up for class and then I work out at the gym before studying in the afternoon. I honestly don’t feel too stressed or overwhelmed with my educational materials, it is the perfect amount of challenge and enjoyment. It is incredible to study something that you have a passion for. I have an undergraduate degree in biochemistry, but I always knew I didn’t want to be a biochemist. Studying medicine, though very closely related, feels like a breath of fresh air – like I am exactly where I want to be.

On Fridays we go rock climbing. It is free for us through the RCSI Rock Climbing Club and it's an absolute blast. It’s the perfect way to unwind after a week of study. Our professors always say that you cannot take care of anyone else unless you take care of yourself; having fun in your free time, staying active, maintaining relationships are all great ways to offset the hours sitting in the library.

I feel blessed to attend this school. The history, the professors, the brand-new 26 York Street all contribute to the quality of teaching that RCSI offers. If you’re trying to decide whether or not you should come to RCSI, just take the leap! You won’t regret it.

Connie Dale, Graduate Entry Medicine