Until Next Time Past Review

By (Trinity College) - abroad from 01/11/2020 to 03/13/2020 with

IFSA: London - Queen Mary, University of London

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Since I did a bit of traveling, I gained a lifetime of memories with new friends. I tried new foods, was exposed to a variety of languages and cultures and learned how to be independent and self-sufficient. I wouldn't give this experience back for anything. I only wish I got to stay longer.

Review Photos

IFSA: London - Queen Mary, University of London Photo IFSA: London - Queen Mary, University of London Photo IFSA: London - Queen Mary, University of London Photo

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

This 2-star rating is circumstantial. I happened to study abroad during a semester when the professors went on strike, eliminating 3 weeks of school for two of my favorite classes. Then, we got sent home early because of the pandemic. Because my actual time in the classroom getting hands on instruction was so limited, I felt like my academic experience wasn't what it could have been. However, all my professors were kind, accommodating and approachable. Overall I found the work to be quite easy if you put in the time.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The room was spacious and comfortable. The kitchen was great as well despite getting messy fairly quick. My only complaint is the bathroom came with a bit of a musty smell that took a while to get rid of.

* Food:

I cooked for myself.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

Yes, I would absolutely go back to Queen Mary with IFSA. The first thing I said when I got home was I can't wait to go back. I made lots of great friends through the athletics club. Also, coming from a small school, some of the classes I had the opportunity to take I would have never been able to do back home. While the professor strikes and the pandemic were definitely unfortunate and untimely, I still learned a lot both about myself and about the subjects which I studied.


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? I probably spent between $30 and $50 on food each week.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? The first couple of weeks will be the most expensive as you have to buy things for your room like bedding, toiletries ect. Take advantage of any and all student discounts you can. Don't buy a student oyster card as you don't actually get any discount unless you purchase a weekly or monthly pass. If you plan on traveling by plane, make sure you research how much the transportation to and from the airports you are planning on flying into/out of as that can add up. One thing I did to save a little bit of money is purchase a CO-OP card for £1. Then, everytime you buy something from CO-OP that is CO-OP brand, you get a small percentage of that money back to spend on groceries. I probably made around £15 pounds doing that. Take the time to find a credit card (Visa or MasterCard) that doesn't charge any foreign transaction fees. I went with the deserve student card, it didn't have great benefits but it worked everywhere I went.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Campus Location
  • Supportive staff
  • Excursions/day trips through IFSA
* What could be improved?
  • More time spent in class
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Well I sort of knew this going in, but it bears repeating. You will spend a lot of money, especially if you plan on traveling. If you plan on going abroad, start financially planning ahead of time by saving your money and not spending frivolously in the months leading up to your journey. You will make great friends. One thing I was concerned about was that I didn't have a core group of friends that I was doing this program with. The great thing about IFSA is that during orientation there is a great deal of mingling that goes on between students from different schools, states ect. I was lucky to meet a really great group of people the first couple of days in London who I plan on staying in touch with even now that I am back home. Finally, it will go by so quick. You go into study abroad with these grand plans to journal everyday or travel to every country in Europe, and both of those are great, but its important to take a step back every once and a while and appreciate the moment. I feel like I blinked and I was back home in the states.