Immersion in Cultural History to Appreciate the Present August 19, 2017

By (University of Westminster) - abroad from 06/16/2017 to 07/08/2017 with

University of Westminster: London - Direct Enroll Study Abroad & Internships

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I felt like I was able to really connect with the history of London through all of my museum visits, tours and my Shakespeare: Themes and Presentation class. I especially felt that connection in the Poet's Corner of Westminster Abbey, where I stood among the names of the authors that made English literature what it is today and I felt a responsibility of carrying that torch as a writer.

Review Photos

University of Westminster: London - Direct Enroll Study Abroad & Internships Photo University of Westminster: London - Direct Enroll Study Abroad & Internships Photo University of Westminster: London - Direct Enroll Study Abroad & Internships Photo University of Westminster: London - Direct Enroll Study Abroad & Internships Photo University of Westminster: London - Direct Enroll Study Abroad & Internships 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.

The class was challenging enough to exercise my academic ability over the summer, and the class was also relevant to the sight-seeing provided by my program.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The SAI administration was very responsive and had a lot of varied and fun activities. The Hidden Pub tour and Globe Theater shows were especially enriching experiences. I would have loved to go through more walking tours. Kim Di Nunzio was my SAI Advisor and was wonderful, acting great as a guide and a trustworthy friend.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I felt that I had adequate privacy and plenty of room for my things. However, I would have liked to have had a greater warning about housekeeping's regular visits. They did an excellent job keeping things clean, but I don't feel like I was given much of a warning. The kitchen was also very spacious, though I found the high chairs for the table made it extremely difficult to eat at kitchen. Otherwise, I enjoyed my stay.

* Food:

The food was varied and is great quality. I had plenty of access to various types of food and restaurants. I have had a fun time exploring for cafes and ice cream shops with friends.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I felt that it didn't take me long to get used to the London lifestyle, especially in terms of traveling. I felt especially comfortable using the underground train to traverse and felt that I could easily go from one place to another by myself.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I did not have any major health issues but I attempted to use the free health advice number provided by the program, but it did not work.

* Safety:

I felt that I was fairly safe, though I did witness someone get stolen from while I was walking through the streets with a friend. I did still feel comfortable enough to explore London regardless.

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

I am very happy with all of the activities and opportunities that I was given through SAI. I felt that most of the complementary tours and shows were relevant to my interests and showcased the culture of London.

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)

I spent a lot less money than I expected to, and I was happy to see that there were plenty of museums and activities with free admission.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 85% of my funds
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Plan out what kind of meals work best for your schedule and buy groceries for it to limit the times that you go out to eat.

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
  • Hotel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The activities
  • The avaliability
  • The personaliization
* What could be improved?
  • I would be happy to see a larger variety of activities
  • More resources to find the attractions I personally enjoy
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish that I had applied earlier and there several attractions that I wish I had visited earlier on, like Stratford and the Zoologoical Society of London.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

4ELIT015X Shakespeare: Themes and Presentations

Course Department: Liberal Arts
Instructor: Dr. Dierdre Osborne
Instruction Language: English
Comments: The class consisted of several lectures that detailed the history and development of play-writing in London, with two major papers. The class was well-paced in that the work was intensive but still allowed me time to explore the city at my own leisure. We experienced technical difficulties during the first week, but the teacher was well-prepared and conducted the lecture regardless to a successful degree. We read a different play for every class meeting, and though I think that there could have been more time given for each reading, I feel like I received an informative and varied exposure of British plays. The teacher also provided the class with field trips to The Globe Theater, The Albert Museum and a performance of The Twelfth Night at the The Globe Theater, all of which were relevant to the class. I found myself making connections to tours I attended outside of class to the information I learned from class, such as recognizing historical sites related to Shakespeare and understanding the full context of its history. The teacher was also very communicative and patient. I am thankful that this class challenged me and I hope that future students will attend this class.
Credit Transfer Issues: There appears to be a delay in the credit transfer and the whole process could be more clear by providing the contact information of someone connected to the abroad institution or study abroad program. I have felt very disconnected and out of control of this process. I would recommend that future students communicate with their program early on to ensure that they have the contacts necessary to stay in the loop with their credit transfer.