Hi! Today was so busy, I think my feet might fall off. I walked over 26,000 steps! I also was getting sick and feverish; I thought I would faint at one point but I took some medicine. Lesson: always be prepared for the unexpected such as getting sick.
Today we had class time, and then took a tour of the Docklands. This is an area kind of like East Liberty in Pittsburgh. It is the technological and financial hub of Dublin with major companies such as Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, and PWC… and they are all the European headquarters too. Today, we were lucky enough to have a site tour of the Google headquarters! I was so excited because Google is such an integral part of my daily life and it would be a dream to work for them.
To get to Google, we took about a two hour walking tour with Dr. Darren Kelley. He is a professor who is very interested in urban landscapes and how people and the environment interact with each other.
He essentially lectured about the recent economic boom in Ireland and how it has impacted Dublin. Basically, the cause of this economic change was the rise of an educated society. In the 1970’s, not many people were expected to go to college after high school. Throughout the next decade though, students would be able to attend for free, which resulted in a rise of wealth and disposable income. However, when the 2008 housing crisis in America happened, it greatly impacted Ireland. The country was in debt and many lost their jobs. However, the good part was that major companies started to build their global headquarters here.
The lecture was definitely very interesting and I liked how it focused on gentrification and the impact of education. It truly reminded me of what I recently learned that about the technology boom and gentrification in East Liberty as well. It’s a smaller world than we think!
The most impactful part of his lecture was when he talked about why the Irish have succeeded so far. It’s because they have “soft skills” such as adaptability (wow haven’t heard that term before!), communication, emotional intelligence, and teamwork. This has been what Pitt Business has taught us all 4 years, as well as this study abroad trip. I think Dr. Kelley ties this whole trip together and brings all the themes into a two hour walking tour: technology, soft skills, adaptability, and Irish culture.
Hopefully after today, I will feel less sick and my feet will feel better after a long day of walking!