The most incredible experience of my life thus far. Past Review

By (English Literature (British and Commonwealth)., San Jose State University) - abroad from 09/14/2011 to 12/17/2011 with

University of Roehampton: London - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned so much about myself and how to take care of myself on this trip. It truly taught me to be independent, and forced me to grow up in many ways. I made incredible friends, friends that I know will always be a very large part of my life. It was the most amazing experience of my life thus far, and even with all the ups and downs, I wouldn't change any of it for the world. I would do it again a thousand times over. :]

Review Photos

Direct Enrollment: London - Roehampton University Photo Direct Enrollment: London - Roehampton University Photo Direct Enrollment: London - Roehampton University Photo

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? None

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

They were more than welcoming and helpful with everything from arriving at the airport to making sure we were able to find our classes and get around the city with out a problem. They were fabulous!

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The housing was very nice, not at all what I expected, but very nice. The halls, restrooms, and showers were cleaned every day, and even though it took her a while to warm up to us, she eventually did, and would sometimes come in for a quick hello and a bright smile :]

* Food:

The food was great! We ended up having two kitchens on my floor, so I and my floor mates cooked our own meals most of the time, but when I did go to the cafeteria the food was very nice.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

All of my friends were very, very British, and they immediately took me under their wings and taught me how to be a proper Brit! It was wonderful and so enlightening! We had wonderful conversations about the wacky differences between our two cultures, and I know they learned just as much about me as I learned about them. They really helped me fit in with the local culture, and really made me feel comfortable.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I ended up sick for about a month with a flu that turned into bronchitis. The health care there was relatively easy to access, and the people whom I interacted with were very helpful. The first time I went to the doctor, I went to the hospital clinic (the hospital was very conveniently placed right across the street from the school), and they helped set me right for free, and I only had to pay a 7 pound fee for my prescriptions. The second time, I had to go to the school's doctor as the hospitals clinic was closed to non-urgent patients that day, and while she was very nice, she was also more expensive. I had to pay to see her, and because the prescription for medication came from a private doctor, rather than a public hospital, I had to pay much more for it. In total, I had to spend about 35 pounds, which in reality was a small price to pay for getting well again. I think it was worth it.

* Safety:

My experience safety wise was very good. I very rarely went out anywhere alone, especially if I wasn't familiar with the area, and my friends and I were always out together in groups of at least 2-3 people. We made sure to keep a look out for each other everywhere we went, especially when we went out drinking or went to clubs, and we always made sure that we stayed together as much as possible. One thing I'd like future students to be aware of though, is that England has a bid problem with date-rape drugs and false cab-drivers. Always make sure that you call for a cab rather than grab one from that street, as there's as chance that the ones on the street are not really drivers and are really predators. Also, make sure that if you have a drink, never ever set it down, and keep it as close to you as you can. While I was there, one of the girls on my floor was drugged while the drink was still in her hand, so please be vigilant of those around you and try to either finish the drinks at the table before you go dance, or make sure that if you have it with you while dancing you keep it as close to your center as possible. Make it hard to get to. You can never be too careful.

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


* 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)

In the beginning, the task of budgeting seemed daunting and difficult. It became very easy though, and about a week after I had settled in I was able to really create a budget for myself. It's not hard at all, but you really gotta make sure you leave some wiggle room for emergency situations, and you also need to make sure that you stick to the budget as much as possible.

* Was housing included in your program cost? Yes
* Was food included in your program cost? No
Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? I tried to keep it to about 30-40 pounds a week.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Make sure you plan ahead for emergencies, and also make sure that you set out a budget as soon as you are able. The sooner you do it, the sooner you can start sticking too it, and it'll be easier to stick to it if you go into the experience with a budget to begin with.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Direct Enrollment

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 friends I made.
  • The culture and city I was immersed in.
  • The school and its wonderful teachers and staff.
* What could be improved?
  • The counseling department.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Leave more room for emergencies, and I wish I had had more guidance about what to do and not to do.