A much needed change of pace from Wellesley January 24, 2020

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 09/23/2019 to 12/13/2020 with

King's College London: London - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It almost felt like I was living another reality. Everything was new and different, some bad and some good, but I definitely gained a sense of clarity of what I wanted from life and the future. The time abroad gave me time to do some reflection, almost like a semester-long meditation, so it was very much worth my time.

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.

Academic experience definitely depends on the extent of the student's personal effort to engage with the course material/resources. There is more expectation for the student to study and keep up with the material and to seek help when needed. Rigor depends on the student's goals.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Only had to email them about course selection at the beginning of the semester and they were fast to respond. They are also pretty good with answering phone calls for anything urgent.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Picked the cheapest accommodations, so I expected the living arrangements to be standard and they were. Took awhile for anything to be fixed and quite often radiator/hot water/lift would not work. Everything in kitchen worked fine. Not a lot of space in fridge however.

* Food:

Cooked almost daily since eating out is pretty costly but price of groceries are pretty fair.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

It is very important to take initiative and meet people. People are friendly esp. in the dorms, so it might be worthwhile to get to know the people on your floor. A lot of times it can feel pretty isolating if you don't know anyone, so it is kind of up to you to find people that would like to hang out and show you around the city. There is always something to do in London and I personally loved the energy and local culture there.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Didn't really need to access any healthcare during my time in London.

* Safety:

I felt pretty safe since there was always a good amount of people around during most hours, even late at night, so I was never walking alone in the dark much. However, I made sure to always be aware of my surroundings at all times.

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

I like the freedom and break from the expectations at Wellesley. Some might find this change to be too much, but it might be worthwhile to embrace it rather than to fight it.

Finances

* 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)

It is easy if you are more conscious of thinking ahead for your daily travels since transportation is where most of my budget went. Transportation can add up especially if you are using the underground often (bus fair tends to be cheaper), so I like to walk as often as possible. Also, as long as you are not eating out very often, the cost of food isn't bad if you eat simple and cook. Obviously, if you are thinking of traveling around Europe, you are going to have to spend more money on airfare, hotels/hostels, and eating out/sightseeing. I like to plan ahead (check exam dates since those are when due dates are) since airfare and accommodations are cheaper when booked at the earliest.

Language

* 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
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International 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?
  • The city
* What could be improved?
  • The sense of community
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I think it would have been smart to keep a spreadsheet of my daily expenditures just so that I would be more conscious of how much I was spending regularly.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

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The Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.