Politics of the Troubles of Northern Ireland

On this one-week spring break program, students will explore Belfast, Northern Ireland and Dublin, Ireland. Students will engage with local experts, ex-combatants, politicians, and witnesses to learn about the period of conflict known as the Troubles. Students will also have the opportunity to learn about the peacebuilding and reconciliation efforts in divided societies. As part of this program, students will take part in service-learning projects at a local youth center. 

Various site visits include the Belfast Castle, City Hall and the Peace Wall among others. 

What You'll Accomplish: 

As an engaged and active participant on the program, you will have the opportunity to develop:

  • an understanding of the development, process, and issues of the rebellion and reconciliation in Ireland and Northern Ireland. 
  • critical thinking and analytic skills when considering the sources of conflict among communities of Ireland and Northern Ireland in a historical and political context.
  • an understanding of the barriers to peacebuilding in post-conflict, divided societies. 

The majority of this program will occur in Belfast, the capital of Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom. The city experienced a period of violent conflict and destruction, a period known as the Troubles. Dublin, the capital city of Ireland, will also be visited on this program. 

Where You'll Live: 

You can expect your housing to have the following:

  • shared rooms in hotels
  • shared bathrooms
  • Wifi in hotels
  • some meals

We do our best to provide the most accurate information about housing and amenities but due to the nature of the locations in which we offer programs and limited availability, these items are subject to change. Contact your program manager with any questions. 

What You'll Study: 

This program is a 1.0 credit course. Assignments and meetings on the Greensburg campus before and after the program are required. 

Information about how the courses on this program count towards general education requirements for different schools and campuses can be found here

The Politics of Rebellion & Reconciliation in Northern Ireland (PS1969)

This course explores and analyzes the development, process, and issues of rebellion and reconciliation in Ireland and Northern Ireland especially focusing on the period of the Troubles (late 1960s) through present. The course encompasses a study abroad component held during Spring Break where students will spend a total of a week in Belfast and Dublin engaging wtih ex-combatants, politicians, youth organizations, and schoalrs with direct experience in the conflict and reconciliation in Ireland and Northern Ireland. 

You will earn one credit for successful completion of the program and will be required to take part in pre-departure orientations, lectures, and coursework on the Greensburg campus. 

This program works with Pittsburgh-based global service-learning organization, Amizade. Amizade has a long history in Northern Ireland and will provide on-site support for this program. Amizade creates Fair Trade Learning programs which are founded on values of community service, reciprocity, diversity, and more. More information about Amizade can be found here

Your Pitt Study Abroad Contacts: 

Lauren Perri

Hi! I'm Lauren, the Study Abroad Coordinator at the Greensburg campus. As an undergraduate student, I studied abroad in Marburg, Germany. Since then, my career in international education has taken me to many locations around the world. In addition to traveling, I enjoy growing my own vegetables, going to the beach, and hanging out in the backyard. Let's chat about study abroad opportunities - lap140@pitt.edu or 724-836-7494.

Schedule an appointment

Schedule an appointment with me using Pathways!

  • Log in to Pathways or use the Navigate app.
  • Select Appointments > Schedule an Appointment
  • Select Pitt Global as the Care Unit.
  • Select Greensburg Study Abroad - Virtual Appointments
  • Select the service type (exploration or program-specific)
  • Find a time that works for you and confirm!

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Your In-Country Contacts: 

Dr. Paul Adams

Dr. Paul Adams earned his PhD from the University of Massachusetts (Amherst) and specializes in comparative politics and international relations, specifically the study of the politics of Europe, the European Union, corporatism and state-society relations, as well as American foreign policy and international organizations. He is an Affiliated Faculty member of the Center for European Studies, a Jean Monnet European Union Center of Excellence, at the University of Pittsburgh (Oakland Campus). Dr. Adams is the Chair of the Behavioral Science Division and faculty advisor to the Pitt-Greensburg Chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, the National Political Science Honor Society. He is also a member of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi and Gamma Theta Upsilon, the International Geographical Honor Society. He has authored or co-authored chapters or entries in texts such as New Directions in Comparative Politics (2002) , Authoritarianism and Corporatism in Latin America Revisited (2004), The International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences, Second Edition (2007),Globalization: Universal Trends, Regional Implications (2008), The Research Handbook of Voluntary and Nonprofit Associations (2016) and co-edited the text Western Europe and the United States: Foundations of Comparative Politics (2005). He has also published articles and book reviews in EUSA Review and Perceptions: Journal of International Affairs. Dr. Adams came to the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg in 2006 after a visiting position at the University of Richmond. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 2013.

  In- State Out-of-State
Estimated Expenses Billed by Pitt  $3,799 $3,999
Estimated Additional Expenses $300 $300
Total Estimated Cost $4,099 $4,299

Final program costs and will be available by September 15 (spring) October 15 (spring break) November 15 (summer) Februrary 15 (fall).

The amounts above are for the 2019-2020 academic year and should be used as estimates only. Pricing for 2020-2021 will be posted and announced in the fall term.

What's Included: 

As part of your Politics of the Troubles in Northern Ireland program fee, the following are included:

  • Tuition for one credit (note: if you are enrolling in 18 credits for the spring, please contact Lauren Perri)
  • In-country transportation
  • Museum entrance fees/cultural visits/tours of Belfast and Dublin
  • Workshops with local experts 
  • Hotel accommodations with some meals
  • Roundtrip airfare from/to Pittsburgh International Airport
  • International health insurance 

While your program fee will cover most of your expenses, keep in mind that you are also responsible for the following:

  • Transportation to/from the Pittsburgh International Airport
  • Passport fees (~$150)
  • Most meals and any personal expenses

Remember that your lifestyle and spending choices can greatly affect the amount of money you'll need while abroad. Visit our Budgeting page for more information. 

When You'll Go: 

Dates for the 2020-2021 academic year will be posted in the fall! 

What Else You Need to Know: 

Because of the nature of this program and dates, students do not have the opportunity to travel independently before, during, or after the program. 

Students participating in this program should not purchase their own flight. Flight arrangements will be made for you. 

Pitt Greensburg students should contact Lauren Perri regarding scholarships.