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My name is Brigid Shine, I am a BEd3 Business Studies student and I am writing to report back from an amazing experience in Mumbai, India. I took part in the Study India programme, which I had the privilege of attending thanks to King's College in London, UKIERI, and a generous grant from the British Council obtained through the International Office at St Mary's.


The programme consisted of a three-week study programme in the prestigious HR College, Mumbai, in which we were given an insight into 'Living and Working in India', the soon-to-be business capital of the world. I travelled along with 80 other students from universities across the UK, to the financial capital of Mumbai, where the British Council, in association with UKIERI, put us up in a hotel, provided us with food, transport, support and a packed itinerary for three weeks. We studied the economy in India from a variety of different perspectives; Bollywood to the slums, social entrepreneurship to corruption. We had the opportunity to learn about the education system in India from the perspective of both municipal, private and NGO schools, we gained a cultural insight into the life of the Indian people through interaction with students, plenty of Indian cuisine; we were even treated to the Ganpati festival which was celebrated during our time in Mumbai! In our final week we participated in a work placement within an NGO, working with some of the most impoverished people in the city; street kids.

 

At the close of the programme, I was among selected students to be offered a prestigious place in SP Jain Business School in Singapore (partner of HR College of Business and Commerce of Mumbai) for the spring term, for an ‘all-expenses paid’ semester in Singapore, to study business and economics. I kindly refused due to the 'minor obstacle' of teaching practice/third year/exams/degree-to-maintain but will certainly reap the benefits of such an offer following graduation!

 

I am writing to express my sincere gratitude to the college. I would not be encouraged to reach for fantastic opportunities such as the Study India programme if it weren't for the support of the college, in particular the International Office, and of course the grants made available to us. As the only Irish student on the trip, I feel that I promoted not only student life in Ireland, but our college itself. Following seven months in Barcelona on Erasmus and a further month in India, it's safe to say I have had a truly international experience on the BEd at St Mary’s.

 

Brigid Shine