Northern Ireland Program

Photo courtesy of Maryanne Briane '14

The goal of this program is to increase students' understanding of the complexities of the conflict and the peace process in Northern Ireland and to use the knowledge gained to analyse and to increase understanding of the conflict in their own and other societies.

Students begin their program with an orientation program at either Corrymeela Knocklayd or Corrymeela Ballycastle Reconciliation Centers in Ireland along the North Antrim Coast.

Living Arrangements

The students live with local families in bed and breakfast arrangements in Derry. In Belfast, students also live in private homes, both Protestant and Catholic. Typically two students are placed in each home.


Click here to apply online for the Northern Ireland Program.


Photo courtesy of Maryanne Braine '14

Program Courses

Students will earn a total of 18 semester hour credits for successful completion of the program. All courses are taught by faculty from the University of Ulster. Courses include:

  • Women and Community Organisations (2 credits) 
  • Peacebuilding through Reconciliation (3 credits)
  • History and Background to Troubles (2 credits)
  • International Conflict Resolution (2 credits)
  • The Government and Politics of Northern Ireland (2 credits)
  • Practical Mediation Skills and Conflict Transformation (2 credits)
  • Supervised Field Placement (5 credits)

In addition to the courses, students will meet with many political, religious, and community leader throughout the program. Essential components of the program include two week-end retreats, field trips, and cultural excursions. Students will have the opportunity to learn some Irish (Gaelic) music and dance as an extra-curricular activity.

The Field Placement

The supervised field placements provide the students the opportunity to work with the people of Northern Ireland directly and learn about the issues these people deal with on a daily basis. Students are in direct contact with both sides of the conflict by being placed in organizations that bring people from both backgrounds together. In Derry students work in a placement agency one day a week with their placement agencies. In Derry, students have participated in agencies such as Oakgrove Integrated School, Derry Peace and Reconciliation Group, and the Women's Center, and in Belfast, student placements have included Lawnbrook Family Center, The Corrymeela Community and Counteract, a mediation service.

Pre-Departure Course and Post-Return Course

Students accepted to the Northern Ireland Program are required to participate in Cross-Cultural Explorations I (1 credit) prior to departure and Cross-Cultural Explorations II (1 credit) after they return. Pre-departure sessions are designed to prepare students for the cross-cultural experience and will include readings, activities, films, lectures, and discussions with former participants of the program. A weekend retreat is part of this course. Students and parents will receive a Handbook of important information prior to the program. Following return to campus, students will participate in a 7-week course that will guide them in processing, analyzing and building upon their off-campus experience. Credit for Cross-Cultural Explorations I is dependent upon successful completion of the semester program.

Academic Programs


Photo courtesy of Maryanne Braine '14


Photo courtesy of Maryanne Braine '14

The program will cost the same as one semester of on-campus charges. The program covers academic and educational costs including field excursions and other group activities, as well as room and board while on the academic portion of the program. A deposit of $350 is required after acceptance into the program, which is a part of the total cost. Students on financial aid may apply their aid to one Earlham or GLCA-recognized off campus program during their college career.

Additional Cost

Each student will need to plan for additional money to cover round-trip airfare, passport and visa fees, personal expenses such as books, and costs for the independent vacation travel period. A passport is required for travel to Northern Ireland.


Students will be responsible for making their own travel plans both to and from the program, as well as during the independent travel period. After acceptance, students will be informed of the date to arrive in Belfast at Belfast City Airport. All students must arrive on the same day. For immigration purposes, flight arrangements must be made from Great Britain to Belfast rather than through the Irish Republic.


Undergraduate students in good standing with the College may apply. Majors from all disciplines are welcome. Selection will be conducted by a student and faculty committee.


Photo courtesy of Maryanne Braine '14

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Earlham College, an independent, residential college, aspires to provide the highest-quality undergraduate education in the liberal arts, including the sciences, shaped by the distinctive perspectives of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

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Richmond, Indiana
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