Center for International Programs
Maggie O'Reilly study abroad Ireland
Maggie in Ireland.

Maggie O'Reilly '23 figured she would fit right in. Originally, she was nervous about studying abroad, though Cork, Ireland seemed to be the least intimidating destination. Afterall, she has family in Ireland and her ancestors (the O'Reilly clan) were once the kings of County Cavan, just outside of Dublin. Turns out, it wasn't the O-apostrophe that made her comfortable – it was her Siena shirt. 

While wearing her green and gold, Maggie was stopped by a fellow Saint also studying in Ireland for the semester. They didn't know each other from the Siena campus, but they quickly bonded and organized a group of 10 Saints all studying at University College Cork. They have a group chat where they plan adventures and weekend trips. 

In the classroom, Maggie's exploring Irish folklore, such as supernatural fairies. She's writing a final paper about the fairy folk who are believed in local lore to be supernatural entities that live beneath the ground and rarely allow themselves to be seen by ordinary people. You don't believe in such Irish superstition? Then perhaps you've never picked a four-leaf clover for luck.

Once the paper's finished, Maggie will be leave the fairies and the Irish countryside behind. But, she won't have to say goodbye to her new friends. She's looking forward to spending more time together once they're all reunited on the Siena campus in the fall. 

"I almost didn't study abroad because I was too scared, but I'm glad I did because it's the best decision I've ever made! I really had to step out of my comfort zone to go abroad without knowing anyone. I've learned to trust myself and take life as it comes."

Maggie O'Reilly '23