The Interview Process
On December 4th, 2015 I was offered an interview for the University College Dublin Veterinary Medicine Program. I was in Italy at the time visiting my sister, and I was stunned – and excited! I must have read the letter three times over before I finally showed it to my sister; it said that the interview would take place in New York City in January. It was only about a month’s notice so I was a little nervous about how it would all work out – but there was no way I was going to turn it down. I had to make it happen.
When my fiancé (Kelsey) and I came back from Italy, I immediately went into planning mode. I began looking into flights, but they were of course very expensive. Kelsey found out he was going to have enough time off from work to go with me, so we decided to do a road trip. The drive from Indianapolis to New York City is approximately 11.5 hours, which really isn’t that terrible when you have two drivers, but we couldn’t get enough time off of work to really take our time with the trip. My interview was scheduled for Monday morning, and we left Indiana the Saturday morning prior. We did about half of our driving Saturday, but stopped in central Pennsylvania for cheap lodging. We then used our Sunday morning to drive into the city, park our car in New Jersey and then catch the ferry into the city. It was a rainy but beautiful day and we were greeted by a rainbow as we stepped off of the ferry – a good omen!
We took a taxi to our hotel and checked in. The hotel I booked was just a minute walk from the building where my interview was to be conducted. I felt much more comfortable getting a close hotel and not relying on any vehicular transportation knowing how chaotic New York traffic can be. After settling in at our hotel, we had the rest of the evening to walk around downtown and find a place for dinner. Luckily Kelsey and I had been to New York previously and had seen a lot of the sights so we didn’t feel like we were missing out by only having a few hours out and about town. For dinner we settled on a restaurant called Foxy John’s that was listed in our hotel’s nearby attractions guide. It was just a few blocks away. We sat at the bar (which we never do) and our bartender happened to be from Ireland! He was very friendly and when we told him I was applying to UCD, he told us all about the school and mentioned that he’d been there many times to play soccer. He also wrote down a list of places we should visit during our trip to Ireland in June and gave us some names of friends of his that we should visit. He ended our dinner with a free shot of Jameson and a good luck toast for my interview. After dinner, we turned in for an early night so I could be well rested and interview-ready in the morning!
The next morning I got ready and headed out to the interview site. I got there 15 minutes early and was able to sit and talk with one of the UCD vet school administrators; she was very friendly and answered any questions I had about the school. When it was time for the interview she led me to a room with two professors from the university. The interview had its casual moments and more intense times: they were very thorough and I really felt like they were trying to get a good feel of who I was and what kind of experiences I had had. The interview lasted about 30 minutes and afterward the administrator told me I should hear back in approximately 2 weeks. I felt so relieved once it was over… except for the fact that Kelsey and I had the 11.5 hour trip back home to make that night so that we could get back to our jobs the next day.
Overall, the trip was exciting and a little stressful but it was well worth it as the next day, while I was at work, I received an e-mail informing me that UCD would be making me a formal offer for a seat in the Class of 2020.