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Ireland Sports Medicine and Culture (Spring Break)


Dublin, Ireland

Program Description

Students will learn about sports and the injuries associated with common Gaelic Games sports such as hurling and Gaelic football as well as the more common cross-cultural sports of rugby.

Students will also identify differences in the sport culture and healthcare delivery systems of Ireland when compared to the United States. Students will participate in traditional Irish dance and Gaelic Games and engage with students enrolled in a similar academic program to discuss professional development and career goals.

Structured learning activities which will expose students to the rich history and culture of Ireland include a walking historical tour of Dublin, a day trip to iconic historical sites, and a hop on hop off bus tour of Dublin. As part of a global community, students will benefit by immersing themselves in a different culture for one week, returning with a broader, more enlightened perspective of the world.

Location Description

Ireland is one of two countries that will allow Athletic Trainers to work in a similar capacity as in the USA after graduation. However, the Irish sports environment, structure and culture is very different than in the United States.

Immerse yourself in the fast paced, high impact Gaelic games and learn how these games invoke a sense of national pride and international recognition for this tiny island country. Develop your understanding of injuries and injury management from professionals working with these unique athletes on a daily basis in a low key, fun learning environment. Included are fun, structured tourism activities in and around Dublin. The program ends with a visit to the Cliffs of Moher.


Connie Peterson | | Health Sciences


Housing accommodations will be in dormitory style rooms shared with other students in the program at a highly rated hostel. There are bathrooms/showers in each room, free wifi and laundry facilities available. The hostel is located close to public transportation, grocery store and many restaurants. The city center is within walking distance. 

A continental breakfast will be provided for students daily at the hostel. Four group dinners will be provided. Students should plan to spend their own money for lunch and snacks (can be purchased at the grocery store) and dinner on the remaining evenings.

Additional Items to Consider

Ireland is an easy country to visit. You will need a passport, but no visas or immunizations are required. The flight is relatively short (direct routes are about 7 hours) and while they have a unique accent, the primary language spoken is English. The people are warm and friendly and love to have American college students visit.

A preliminary itinerary can be obtained by contacting the program director. Time is split approximately 1/3 sports medicine learning activities, 1/3 structured cultural and historical learning and 1/3 free time. It is amazing what all you can learn, see and do in 10 days!

Students do NOT need to be formally admitted to the professional phase of the Athletic Training program. However, those NOT in the professional phase, should have an intent to pursue Athletic Training and be planning to apply for the professional phase. Preference will be given to students with strong Athletic Training academic and clinical background and experience.

*Students enrolled at JMU full-time Spring 2018 will pay no additional tuition to participate in a spring break program. The program fee will be the total required cost.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.5

Prerequisite: ATEP 205 with grade of B or higher

Preference given to students with strong Athletic Training academic and clinical background/experience

Junior and senior level students, however sophomores who have declared Athletic Training as their major will be considered

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($25 fee)
  • Short Essay 
  • Interview with Program Director may be required
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU students

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in. 

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Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


HTH 390: Special Studies in Health Sciences: Ireland: Sport Medicine and Culture (2 credits)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.


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