SEDA brings Panama closer to Ireland
It has been over a year since SEDA College opened its student support and marketing office in Panama. SEDA already has representatives in Mexico, Brazil and other countries – all of them provide support to students wishing to come to Ireland and participate in Study Abroad fairs to promote education in Ireland. SEDA News spoke to Panama office supervisor Emir Mujica.
Emir can you tell me a bit about your office?
Sure! The office is staffed with people who have studied in Ireland and know a lot about this country. Every Panamanian student over 16 can come in and chat to SEDA representatives who will be happy to support them, advise about all aspects of travel, visa and accommodation as well as all the legal aspects of coming to Ireland. We are ready to help every student from Panama fulfill their dreams of studying in Ireland!
Is there much interest in Ireland? Do people in Panama know much about Dublin?
At present our team is working on raising awareness about Ireland throughout Panama. We are not only promoting Dublin, but we are also promoting the country as a whole, talking to people about all its provinces. Our aim is to make Ireland known and to help Panamanians learn English and get to know another lifestyle, including meeting with students from around the world.
Why do you think people from Panama would be interested in coming to Ireland? What are the advantages that Ireland has compared with the United States, Canada, etc?
Currently Panamanian students have many destinations to choose from, but Ireland stands out as very multicultural country that is happy to welcome people from all over the world. Another big advantage is the fact that in Ireland students from Panama can get a visa which allows them to live, study and work for eight months. Plus there is the option to renew this student visa for an extra 8 months afterwards. Immigration policies are a lot more restrictive in other countries, such as the USA, Canada and England. Also, in these countries foreign students are not allowed to work in order to support themselves financially, but in Ireland they can. Another thing that attracts students from Panama is Ireland’s beautiful scenery: castles, cliffs and other wonderful attractions.
How does your office support Panamanian students who wish to come and study at SEDA?
We answer all their questions, provide them with information about European lifestyle, the travel process, academics, extracurricular activities and SEDA’s internship program. Our work here in Panama is to give students the confidence that in SEDA College they will find a family that’s always willing to help them make the most of living in Dublin.