Alan McCloy BA (2012, German & History) crossed the Irish Sea to come to Liverpool from Belfast in 2008, and when he wasn’t to be found on a river – as a key member of the University Rowing Club – he threw himself into his studies. Alan was particularly interested by the range of modules on offer, meaning that he could study everything from German literature to films featuring the Vietnam War.
My time at Liverpool was definitely the most exciting, fun and important time of my life, providing me with memories and experiences which have definitely helped shape and develop me as a person as well as in my career.
Alan spent his year abroad at the University of Würzburg in central Germany, as a full-time student on the Erasmus scheme. Here, he was able to continue his rowing, as well as enjoy a particularly memorable visit to the beer festival in Erlangen, in Bavaria.
On graduation, Alan trained as a pilot and currently flies for Ryanair, based in Athens. Alan notes that living and working in the Greek capital reminds him a lot of his year abroad, given the diversity of nationalities and the cultural differences. Relocating to Athens did not come without its challenges, but Alan feels that his time at Liverpool in part prepared him for the culture shock. Talking about his time at university and in particular the year abroad took up a large portion of the interview with Ryanair, highlighting the emphasis which large, multinational companies place on transferrable skills, especially given that, in Alan’s words, a degree in history might not seem essential for becoming a pilot.