Why you should do a semester abroad!
Having recently returned from my 6 month exchange programme, I’ve spent the last 2 weeks re-adjusting to life in Chichester and reflecting on my time in the Netherlands. Now that the experience has come to an end, I’ve really started to understand the very best parts of my time abroad.
One thing made clearer since leaving, is the difference in Dutch culture, something that can only really be understood when you immerse yourself for an extended period of time. Whether it’s a place or a culture, you grow to love or, grow to realise is not for you – an exchange programme is an invaluable opportunity to engage in such learning where you have the university as a support system as well as the knowledge that it is only temporary. The whole experience has made me a lot more at ease with the idea of moving abroad alone in the future.
Another positive, of Radboud University in particular, is their array of module choice, the majority of the courses I did I found incredibly fascinating, courses I wouldn’t have been able to do at Chichester.
But the most important thing I will take from the experience is the incredible friendships I made with incredible people. I was extremely lucky that all the other international students on my course were such amazing people. It was them who made my time abroad the experience it was, and it was them who made saying goodbye so hard. However, with many of them living across Europe, it makes for a perfect trip to visit a few of them over summer – something I will be taking full advantage of.
If living abroad is something you would like to explore, an exchange programme is the perfect opportunity to test the waters whist you have a broad safety net of support around you. In this increasingly globalised world, that is seemingly shrinking, living and working in another country is becoming more and more common and accessible – an exchange is the perfect stepping stone to such a future.
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