Undergraduate Student Profiles

Ciara Dunne

3rd Year BATh (2012-2013)

Ciara Dunne photoRepeat performances and I have quite a close relationship. From the age of 17, I have repeated Leaving Certs,   driving tests, exams and college. I was a beacon for bad choices. When I applied to SPCM in 2010, I can honestly say I broke the bad choices circle.When I applied for the BA in Theology and Arts, I had absolutely no knowledge about what it was and what it would get me. I just wanted a degree – any degree.  Imagine the shock I got when I realised I was enjoying it and actually wanted to do work for it.

The BATh isn’t just about a Christian worldview of things and what is right and wrong; issues such as Islam, women, morality, faith and deciphering the Bible are all eagerly taught in the classes. Topics that make you sit up and take notice. Teaching methods in SPCM are quite interesting; gone are the long monotone lecturers and in their place are lecturers who teach with passion, open-minds and constantly engage your mind in various ways

In SPCM there is no ‘business’ feel to the college that you would find in bigger universities. Classes are smaller, more relaxed and friendly, and lecturers are extremely approachable. Help is always at hand, and encouragement and confidence is instilled daily.  But more importantly independent thinking is ecstatically welcomed

I picked English and History as my first year Arts subjects and I continued forward with History into second and third year. In NUIM History comes alive again

Now my third year is almost finished and honestly, I can’t see myself anywhere but in SPCM next year. Very few places in the world feel like home, but SPCM comes a quite close second.


Holly Meade

1st Year BATh (2012-2013)

Holly Meade Filling in the CAO was a daunting process, however after weighing up all of my options St. Patrick’s College seemed like the perfect choice. By choosing St. Pats I could study the interesting and thought-provoking subject that is Theology, while also having the opportunity to pick from the wide variety of Arts subjects they offered through NUIM. As I began college in September 2012 studying Theology, English and Sociology, I soon realized I had made the right choice. St. Patrick’s College offers the unique opportunity to study in a close-knit environment, with excellent support systems in place to ensure you have the best possible experience you can, while also giving you the chance to experience the hustle and bustle of NUIM – so you truly get the best of both worlds!

I really enjoy walking into class in St. Pats where everyone knows you, especially after being in a lecture theatre in NUIM with over 400 students.  It is this relaxed and inviting atmosphere which truly allows you to feel welcome from the moment you step onto the aesthetically incredible campus.  From the lecturers to fellow students, everyone is a part of the caring and encouraging community that is St. Patrick’s College.

Mairéad Jennings

3rd Year BATh (2012-2013)

M. JenningsLeaving Cert felt like it would never end, but it did and the reward for the stress and hard work was so worth it. Studying theology at St. Pats was as a result of advice from my career guidance counsellor who, in response to my confusion about where to go or what to do after secondary school, encouraged me to focus on the subject from school that I enjoyed the most – religious education. I had always been interested in religion but was worried that theology would be very different from what was taught in secondary school, too old-fashioned maybe.

As it turned out studying theology at St. Pats was different to secondary school but in a good way. The style of teaching was dialogue-focused and not dictated. Personal theories, experiences and opinions were encouraged and taken seriously in class discussions, and students were free to ask any question, with one lecturer in particular (Dr. Séamus O’Connell) constantly reminding us that there is no such thing as a stupid question.

This personal style of study made my three years at St. Pats fly by. Throughout my time here there was no problem that the faculty would not help with, whether it be personal, educational or financial. There was an endless number of people on campus who were available for assistance, no problem was without help.

Today third level education has become essential to any person’s future prospects. I would encourage anyone with an interest in world religions, Christianity, and human behaviours and interactions to aim to study theology at St. Pats because of the well-rounded, personal and positive learning experience offered here.

Paul O’Sullivan

3rd Year BATh (2012-2013)

P. OSullivanWhen I first drove into the student town of Maynooth for an Open Day, I immediately realised that this was somewhere that I could call home.  My three year experience at St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth has been superb.  The greatest achievment of third level education is that it equips the student with the skills necessary to think for themselves. My experience of theology is that I have come to understand a lot about life itself, and the impact that religion, morality and history have had on life. Theology is not simply a religious education as one might expect when looking in from the outside, but facilitates the development of the person and our understanding of the world around us.

St. Patricks College is not only a beautiful place aesthetically, but internally it is home to a close knit community of staff and students.  The staff are exceptionally professional and go far beyond what one would expect of them.  If you choose Maynooth, I can say with confidence that you will leave a number of years later with a lump in your throat; and the town, the University and the people will hold a special place in your heart that will remain with you forever.

Stefano Zordan

2nd Year BATh (2012-2013)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERANow that my second year in Maynooth has come to an end, I am in the right position to rethink and critically assess my choice. Without denying the initial and ongoing moments of difficulty, I will however never be tired of repeating that coming to Maynooth was one of the most significant and positive choices of my entire life.

As the only full-time non-Irish student on my course, I have undoubtedly experienced some cultural and linguistic problems, which have promptly been resolved though, thanks to the helpful attitude of the lecturers and the general friendly atmosphere of the college.

My attraction for Saint Patrick’s was firstly inspired by the superb beauty of its campus and it was motivated by the offer of a joint degree in Theology and Arts (BATh). To these reasons (certainly reconfirmed) I can now add the peculiar nature of this place, an extremely student-oriented reality where the rich Christian heritage lives in a constant relation of dialogue with other fields of study, resulting in a challenging and enriching learning and living environment, where my different background is valued and finds proper expression.