Ireland 2018 Short-Term Study Abroad Program

Imagine your own adventure in Ireland!

COM 597/698 - Northern Ireland: Conflict, Peace, and Reconciliation

All Majors Welcome!

Spring 2018 Course- Travel Dates May 31-June 10, 2018

An old Irish proverb states “Seeing is believing, but feeling is the God’s own truth.” Through travel to Ireland and Northern Ireland you will have the opportunity to not only learn about history of this ancient land and the decades’ old conflict in this beautiful region, but also to feel the impact of the Troubles and the transformational conflict processes that have taken place. You will visit the lasting expressions of people’s experiences of the conflict (such as the walls in Belfast separating Catholic and Protestant communities, and the murals in Derry/Londonderry depicting the evolution from Bloody Sunday to current peace efforts). You will hear the narratives of activists, community members, and individuals from conflict management and peacemaking organizations. And you will connect with those most impacted by the historical conflict in the region. In this way you will feel first-hand how conflict, and peace, have been experienced by the people of Ireland and Northern Ireland.  

Travel Details: Fly out of Springfield and travel to Dublin, Ireland, and Belfast, Balleycastle, & Derry, Northern Ireland

Program Fee: $3,540 - Your program fee includes the following:

  • ALL transportation (including your flight out of Sprignfield, as well as train, bus, and taxi travel in-county
  • ALL hotel accommodations (shared rooms)
  • ALL entrance fees and tours, including:
    • Historical Walking Tour of Dublin
    • Guided Tour of Ulster Museum
    • Black Taxi Tour of Belfast
    • Tour of Crumlin Gaol
    • Day’s Facilitation at Corrymeela Peace Centre
    • Giant’s Causeway Day-long Tour with stops at Carrick-a-rede Rope Bride, Dunluce Castle, and Bushmills Distillery, as well as the Giant’s Causeway National Heritage Site
    • “Bloody Sunday” Tour of the Bogside Murals in Derry and “Free Derry” Museum
    • Conflict and Reconciliation Panel Discussion and Dinner in Derry
    • Plus more!
  • ALL breakfasts
  • Some additional meals

Course Information

  • Enroll in COM 597/698  (3 credit hours) in Spring 2018 (the course fee is covered by your spring financial aid).
  • The course will count as an elective in the Conflict Certificate and for many other majors.
  • Scholarships are available through Study Away office and individual departments. The deadline for scholarship applications is November 1, 2017.

Important Dates

  • November 1, 2017 - deadline to apply for Study Away scholarship assistance.
  • December 1, 2017 - priority application deadline for the program (enrollment is limited). 
  • January 19, 2018 - final application deadline (if seats still available)
  • Pre-Departure Meetings - April 26, May 10, May 17, and May 24, 2018 (note, dates of these 2-hour meetings may be adjusted to accommodate students' schedules once program enrollment closes)
  • Travel Dates: May 31 - June 10, 2018
  • Post-Program Meeting - July 2018 (TBA)

More Information or Apply

Apply now for the program, or for more information contact Study Away or the Center for Dispute Resolution at 417-836-8831 or



I never would have been able to guess that this trip would have impacted me as much as it did. I half expected to come here and learn a little more about the conflict, but honestly I am leaving feeling very informed. I am excited to go back home and share this experience with my friends and family and talk with them about conflict. This trip helped me understand how much the conflict in Ireland impacted people throughout the last couple of centuries as well as how it impacts them today. Seeing the ways in which people are forgiving and moving past their bad experiences gives me hope and ideas about how I can help others.

"I have learned that resolving this conflict, or any conflict really, isn’t just about making peace with the current situation, but also being able to live a life that accepts, moves on, and forgives that situation. Teaching ourselves and our children forgiveness is the key that keeps history from repeating itself. It is our mindsets that determine if our experiences break us or make us stronger."

"I have an entirely new outlook on people and their decision making. I try to look at the others perspective and how the impact of my actions would affect them."


The impact this trip has had on me is immeasurable. I came out of my shell, I made new friends, and I experienced a part of the world I never dreamed I would make it to. I laughed, I cried, and I toasted to new friends and a country that had welcomed me with open arms. I learned more about myself on this trip than I could have ever thought possible. I will forever be grateful for the experience and all of the people I have met.

I have learned that I need to be more aware of what is happening globally. Almost every person I talked to in Ireland had a very good grasp on what was happening around the world. It shows that we, in the United States, tend to think only about ourselves and our lives. I know that this trip has opened my eyes to a global worldview, instead of a narrow view of the United States.

The part I loved the most was being able to meet real people who had lived through the Troubles and hearing their stories. Seeing both sides of the conflict helped me to gain more of an understanding about the conflict itself, as well as how it affected people and how it continues to impact Ireland and Northern Ireland.