Marisa Layes is a Griffith College student in the third year of the BA (Hons) in International Hospitality Management. We sat down with her to learn more about her Griffith experience.
Coming to Griffith
Although I feel and sound like I’m Irish, I was born in Germany and lived there for about 13 years before I decided to move here with my dad and stepmom. Since I had already been visiting for several years, moving here permanently wasn’t really a big deal - Ireland already felt like home. I can say for sure that no matter where I wind up in years to come, I will always come back home.
Moving abroad didn’t feel like an achievement, but it has brought many benefits. My first encounter with the college was when Griffith College representatives came over to my school and had a chat with us – I probably wouldn’t have heard about Griffith if I’d stayed in Germany. If I hadn’t moved, I wouldn’t be where I am now!
“Although Griffith is a smaller college, you won’t find the same sense of family and friendship in any other college.”
College is definitely nothing like those American movies. That said, college has been a good experience; I feel that it was a good choice to continue my education after my Leaving Cert. All the lecturers and students here make you feel very welcomed. I also like that our class is quite small, so we feel like a family and are always trying to help each other out.
Each day in my course, International Hospitality Management, is different, and they’re all fun. Some of us may be doing last-minute assignments, group projects, or have a free day drinking coffee in Arthur’s Café.
One really hectic but very valuable experience was when our course had us running a pop-up restaurant. A few people called in sick, leaving us short-staffed for the day. Despite the fact that we were a small group, we really worked well as a team and helped out each other wherever we could.
What the future holds
If I am being honest, I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life five years ago, and even now, I still don’t know what I want to be. But I feel that doing this course will open up a variety of positions for me. I don’t think we’ll ever truly know what exactly we want to do in life, but gaining experience and knowledge never hurt anyone.
Griffith has helped me a lot. Since starting this course, I am able to adapt very well and apply that into my workplace. This also allows me to reflect on my work and see if and where there are areas I can improve.
As of now, I am very much undecided. I think I'll probably take a year off to travel - I'll only be 20 when I graduate, and I have my whole life ahead of me to pursue my career!