The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

PBPL 85: Global Policy Leadership Participant Ayesha Dholakia '15

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This post is part of a series on the Global Policy Leadership Practicum through PBPL 85. Students reflect on their experiences as part the travel abroad portion of the course to Northern Ireland during the winter break.


PBPL 85 students pose for a group photo during a weekend of adventure.

This weekend has been full of adventuring. On Saturday, we woke up bright and early to take a bus to Derry/Londonderry/Stroke City. For our first stop, we explored the Museum of Free Derry where we took in powerful video footage, letters, and other information about Bloody Sunday. Next we grabbed lunch followed by a walking tour. Led by an ex-prisoner, the tour took us around the city to see such sights as the Bogside Murals. It slightly warmer out than the Siberia-esque weather we experienced the day before. After the tour, we  jumped on the bus back, grabbed dinner, and went to work, rejuvenated after the previous night’s game night and work ceasefire.




PBPL 85 students hike down to the Irish coast in brisk weather.

The plan for Sunday was a bus tour to North Antrim. Little did we know that it really was a tour of buses, which we realized when they shifted us from one bus to another after only 17 seconds of driving. We were happy to end up with a tour guide who told us about anything and everything along our two hour scenic drive along the coastline. We took an hour-long break to cross the rope bridge, where David B. had an unfortunate run-in with some sheep with three attacks in under ten minutes.





PBPL 85 students cross a rope bridge along the Irish coast.

In the midst of seeing castles, a rainbow, and learning about glens, we received a short break from the tour guide's lectures right before lunch. We almost had a crisis while dining when we found out that the restaurant didn’t accept credit cards, but Professor Wheelan thankfully saved the day by making a one mile dash to the ATM. The tour guide hadn’t quite made it clear when we were supposed to get back on the bus, so it was quite the lucky break that we made it back in time.





PBPL 85 students pose for a photo after taking in some remarkable Irish sights.

Then we were on to Giant’s Causeway, which was an amazing sight despite the dagger-like raindrops we encountered on the walk down. Nick and Noah had the whistle blown on them a few times for running up some mountains, but we made it out in one piece and headed back to a WiFi-less guesthouse, an inconvenience which rendered us fairly incapacitated for the remainder of the evening.

-Written by Ayesha Dholakia '15, Global Policy Leadership Practicum Fall Term 2014 Participant 



The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences