Complete core credits by traveling to Ireland

By Jackie Bocanegra/reporter

Studying abroad at TCC is an option for students who want to get out of their comfort zone and earn school credit at the same time.

NE geology professor Meena Balakrishnan took students to Ireland this past spring break and will be taking 20 more in the fall semester. TCC partners with the Institute of Study Abroad Ireland where students will learn and earn credit for GEOL 1403 or 1405.

“In the first eight weeks of class, we go to lecture and lab that is three hours long,” NE student Juan Esparza said. “Then, we set off for Ireland.”

In the fall semester of 2019, students who choose to travel to Ireland will enroll in a class with Balakrishnan to learn about physical or environmental geology. This is the first part of class before taking the trip to Ireland.

“This course is geared to non-science majors for a much easier format and lots of hands-on work,” Balakrishnan said. “Once you go to Ireland and we are out on the field, everything we learned in class will make much more sense.”

Visiting Ireland was more than immersion with the culture, but it also lets students see what was in the book to be right in front of you, Esparza said.

“I feel that all students must be afforded the opportunity to travel and study — wherever it may be — be it study abroad or study away,” Balakrishnan said. “It allows for learning at multiple levels.”

The trip will last 11 days and cost around $3,000. This includes ground transportation, accommodation, activities, breakfast, dinner and airfare.

Tuition will cost the regular amount for each credit hour, depending on if a student decides to take both courses or just one.

“I hope to increase the time students have to plan out in advance and manage their finances appropriately,” Balakrishnan said.

The deadline to sign up for this trip is June 1. Contact Balakrishnan at or 817-515-6360 for more information.