Irish J1 students leave the USA with great summer memories


In Woodside, Ciaran Tolan is counting down the last days of his J-1. Despite not finding gainful employment, he says he still made the most of his summer abroad.

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“I got to see a good chunk of Manhattan and a bit of Brooklyn and Queens, I went to see Avenue Q and The Book of Mormon, I got to sit in the audience of the Jeremy Kyle Show, and I hit a couple of museums and saw some pretty cool New York City landmarks,” he said.

Tolan traveled with a group of friends who are all studying at the Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology in Dublin.

“Only half of us managed to get jobs,” he told the Irish Voice.

“Leo worked in a stock room in Astoria for minimum wage until he had to fly home, Sorcha had a waitress position in an Irish bar just off Times Square, but was let go after a couple of weeks, Saoirse is working in French Connection in SoHo, Emer had a job in a pizza restaurant in Brooklyn but it was shut down because of building code violations,” he said.

Despite pounding the pavements, the rest of the ground failed to find seasonal work, but remained committed to enjoying their time in the city.

“All in all it's been a pretty good summer just not as exciting as it could have been if we all had have been gainfully employed,” Tolan reflected.