Canada trumps States as student summer location

It’s mid-afternoon in June and I have been awake for nearly 20 hours but luckily, the atmosphere in the Vancouver International Airport immigration queue is surprisingly relaxed. The queue is comprised of dozens of pale Irish students, and there is a certain feeling of camaraderie in the air, a sense of shared pride in the […]

The not so Lovely Island: the dark side of reality TV

  Love Island has become a phenomenon since its rebirth in 2015. It has seen increasing audiences with a record viewership of over 3.4 million in its current series. This is arguably because of its simplistic nature, with various men and women “coupling up” in order to become the final pair standing, and win a prize […]

The Leaving Cert continues to punish our young people

  With the year’s exam season drawing to a close once again, and another 121,000 Irish students running the gauntlet of the Leaving Cert, it’s worth questioning how this whole experience affects today’s youth, and whether the method of evaluating students in Ireland’s second-level institutions should be challenged.    Most secondary school graduates can attest […]

Trinity must follow students and protest government underfunding

Trinity’s slump in the QS rankings belies a crisis in funding for Irish third-level institutions. The return to form for Ireland’s universities in their fall down the league tables indicates their incapacity to keep the pace with international competitors and the absolute necessity of increased funding from the Irish state.   Most importantly, funding pressures […]

Academic responsibility – the biggest dichotomy in Trinity

I remember the first time I attended a talk in Trinity. It was the Maths and Physics open day 2013, and I was a naïve 18-year-old Leaving Cert fresh from off a bus from Galway. The defining moment of that day was when an aged academic came in to talk to us about why we […]

The reverberations of the referendum

In 1983, the introduction of the Eighth Amendment had the support of 66.9% of the voting population. On Friday 66.4% voted to have it removed. The logic of this mirror image is compelling; there has been an inexorable evolution of Irish values — values imposed by the combination of church and state.   This result […]

How China is becoming a world leader in environmentalism

“Crazy bad” was the phrase used by the US Embassy to describe air pollution on January 11 2013 in Beijing. They noted an Air Quality Index (AQI) reading of 755. The top of the AQI scale? 500.   While people took to Twitter noting the “apocalyptic” scenes that were occurring in Beijing as a thick […]

Sometimes the right choice is the hardest one

I am a resolute atheist, but like many in this country, both non-religious or from different faiths, I was raised in a school system where morals were taught via the christian faith. Despite not currently believing in any faith system my morals are rooted in christian teaching. The stories from the Bible from which morals […]

What I’m really thinking: A student who has had an abortion

Content warning: eating disorders, repeal referendum   On May 28, 2015 I travelled from Dublin to Manchester for a surgical abortion.   For me, the decision to have an abortion was not a particularly difficult or distressing one. It is the stigma surrounding abortion that has affected me the most. Having to travel in secret, […]

Katie Ascough’s cynical worldview

“Given the imminence of a referendum and the current oppression of freedom of speech in universities across the country,” Katie Ascough said, in a recent interview with the Irish Independent, “I am not holding my breath for a fair and open debate before May”.   It’s hard to be a pro-life student in Ireland, so […]


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