Lorraine Burke talks us through noisy first-year accommodation and why GMIT is better than a university. Introduce your college. GMIT is situated in five locations throughout Galway and Mayo. The institution delivers high quality education in the areas of science, business, humanities, nursing, furniture design and manufacture, hospitality and catering. What’s the best thing about your college? I studied at the Dublin road campus in Galway city, and what I found most beneficial about GMIT was the small number of students in my core lectures and practical studies, in addition to the high quality of the facilities and science laboratories. These factors enabled me to receive such a high standard of education which has been recognised and acknowledged in the industry. What’s the worst? There are some areas of the college that need attention, in particular the gym and fitness facilities in the college. What’s the local area like? Galway city is has a vibrant social scene and friendly atmosphere. There are a wide variety of activities in the area and it‘s very easy to meet people and make friends. What about accommodation? Is it expensive? Accommodation around GMIT is very reasonable, typically priced between 50 and 80 euro a week depending on the type of room. However, the closer to the city the accommodation, the more expensive it tends to be. What’s the cost of living like? The cost of living in the city is most affordable for students. Is part–time work easy to come by? Yes, the city centre is bustling with busy bars, restaurants, clubs and shops regularly looking for additional staff. What are the campus facilities like? The college itself has been recently renovated and its facilities are of very high quality. The library is well laid out and in a modern setting, carrying all resources required for research and studies. What’s the food like? Is there a good variety? Is it expensive? The pricing of food is very competitive in the college. Dinners are available; however sandwiches and wraps are more popular in the college. What kind of sports facilities are there? There are a significant number of clubs and societies in the college which are very successful and popular. Unfortunately, gym facilities are very dated on the campus. Are there a broad range of clubs and societies? Yes, there are a wide variety including the more common societies such as hurling, soccer and rugby, as well as less traditional ones such as belly dancing, trampolining, DJ, film and surfing societies, to name a few. What’s the story with the college/local bar? Is there a good atmosphere? Is it cheap? The local bar is the college bar, and the SU regularly run various events there alongside drinks offers. There is a partnership between the SU and a nightclub in the city centre, where there are weekly offers and specials for GMIT students. What advice would you offer to new students? For example, what’s the worst thing a new student can do? What’s the best? I would recommend that students starting in September live in the student accommodation across from the college. It can be a pretty crazy place to live and there is almost always a house party to be found, but it is a great place to meet new people. However, I would not recommend it to students after first year. I lived there in second year and it really wasn’t the most ideal situation when I needed to be a bit more focused, as noise tended to be an issue. Any other useful information you would like to add? For any student wishing to study any discipline in science, I would strongly recommend GMIT over a university. The small numbers of people permitted in the teaching laboratories mean that a more one to one education is delivered by the lecturers and more equipment is used by each individual, in comparison with students in other institutions.