A Truly Unforgettable Year -- One of the Best You'll Ever Have July 17, 2019

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 10/07/2018 to 06/22/2019 with

Worcester College, University of Oxford - Visiting Students Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Academically, I gained many skills in research and academic writing. Outside academics, I gained more independence and friendships that would last a lifetime. It was definitely worthwhile.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Oxford was rigorous in the best way. It never felt impossible or overwhelming, yet the focus on students initiating the learning posed enough intellectual challenges to render my year academically enriching.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My room was single, spacious, and was ensuite. My dorm was luckily small and mostly British students, making the atmosphere conducive to a cultural immersion.

* Food:

Worcester has one of the best, if not the best, food!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Having made mostly British friends and partook many college activities, I felt very much integrated into the community. That being said, I was always aware that I could never be a complete insider, and that was evident in my interactions with matriculated students. As a visiting student, I sometimes did activities they did not do and vice versa, and not having classmates in your tutorial meant you did not have the classroom to be close with your peers as the matriculated students do. Although knowing that I was never a full member of the community was hard, under the circumstances, I felt very much at home at Worcester.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

When I needed to get a vaccination, I went to the health service. They were helpful, but they did not have the vaccination I required. I did not have major health issues, but I heard from many that Worcester's health resources, especially when it comes to mental health, are not as easily accessible as colleges in the U.S.

* Safety:

Oxford is generally very safe, but you should try not to walk in dark areas alone late at night. Gloucester Green is rather shady at night, and I heard one person say he was mugged there.

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

Worcester is very used to visiting students, so the support system was there and the community was very friendly. Worcester is also blessed with its beautiful scenery and location near the heart of town.

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 did not have a budget and was not keeping track, but I do not think it was bad at all. The hall food is cheap (3 pounds for lunch, 4 pounds for dinner), so if you mostly ate on campus, you were fine. You also have student discounts in many places.

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
  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Other
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with? 10+

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Academics
  • Community of students
  • Chance to be involved in any extracurriculars you like
* What could be improved?
  • Having more senior professors to teach you
  • More health resources
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Britain has a heavy drinking culture. As a non-drinker, I was worried by this. Just know that you can definitely make friends without drinking! People have vastly different experiences, and I was worried by some of such reviews before I went. Before you go, just know that if you're happy with your experience at the end, that's the absolute best, even if your experience did not match what others did to make theirs the best.

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!