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No plans for spring break in 2020? Join Our Lady of the Lake University graduate and undergraduate students with English Professor Dr. Leah J. Larson for a study abroad trip to Ireland next spring. All non-English majors eligible to take advanced English courses are also welcome. Interested students would register for Dr. Larson’s “Ireland Literature” course and use the study abroad trip as a lab.

During the semester, the class will read Irish literature and learn about locations like Dublin before visiting during spring break. After the trip, the group will return and continue to read, discuss and write. Fundraising options are available to keep the cost at a minimum, and students can also participate in the planning of the trip.

Last spring break, Dr. Larson took her “Crime and Punishment” class to tour London and Edinburgh. Students read literature that took place in both cities. Once there, the class spent five or six days in each location.

Hannah Walker, graduating senior and English major, shared her experience about visiting London and Edinburgh. “We visited places like St. Paul’s Cathedral, The Globe Theatre, and Shakespeare’s Grave,” Walker said. “Traveling abroad is a valuable experience that translates into perspective later in life. I absolutely recommend that any student who can go, should. The long day of flights and jet lag is worth it. Also, don’t wear uncomfortable jeans on a nine-hour flight.”

Emily Yglesias, graduate student in the MA/MFA in Literature, Creative Writing, and Social Justice program, also shared her experience traveling abroad with Dr. Larson last spring. “We read literature with a crime focus, like ‘The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde’ and ‘Confessions of a Justified Sinner,’” she said. “I love Picadilly Circus in London. I love the hustle and bustle. There are bright lights and it’s much like New York.”

Students interested in visiting Ireland should contact Dr. Larson via email at Those who need financial aid can begin fundraising this semester. Although the trip abroad is not mandatory for the course, only enrolled students can participate in the Ireland visit.

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