Hiya! It’s been a while since I’ve written anything about my study abroad plans. So I definitely think its time for an update! So in my last post I talked about how I started to plan where I wanted to go in the Fall of 2015. It was between the AIFS Stellenbosch in South Africa, and the AIFS London program. Well since then there have been some changes to my plan. Ultimately these definitely needed to happen, so I was able to logistically make the study abroad happen. The first big change is that I decided switch semesters. Instead of going abroad in the Fall of 2015, I will go abroad in the Spring of 2016. This helped a lot because I actually just declared my major in Digital Media Studies. When I first decided that I was going in the fall of 2015, I hadn’t quite figured out my major. But in January I decided that I was going to do the Special Major program here at Mary Washington. So when I was deciding which program I thought it would have been a good idea to switch to the spring semester rather than the fall so it would give me time to get some prerequisites out of the way.
I’ve also finalized my decision regarding my program. There were definitely some pros and cons to both programs. Some Pros to South Africa: I’ve never been in the Southern Hemisphere, it would be my first time in Africa and South Africa as well. Another huge Pro for me is the fact that they speak English. Cons: I would be down in South Africa, completely by myself. My parents wouldn’t be able to visit me while I was down there. Another Con is that I wouldn’t really be able to do a lot of traveling. Since South Africa is a pretty big country it would be pretty expensive to travel to other countries.
Pros to London: I’ve traveled to the city before so I have a feel for the city itself. Speaking English isn’t a problem over there. The University I will attend is about 20 minutes from Heathrow airport so I would definitely be able to travel easily. Some of my friends are also studying abroad in other countries during the Spring, like I am so I would be able to go visit them. My family would be able to visit me as well. Cons: I’ve been to London before. Also, the program needed to be approved by the Center for International Education.
So do you want to know which program I chose?
I think London will be the best program for me, not only because I’ve been to the city before so there is the sense of familiarity, but because I would be able to take classes that would go towards my major. Unfortunately, the program in Stellenbosch wouldn’t allow me to do that, most of the credits would count towards electives. I’m really excited for this opportunity to study in London and South Africa is definitely still on my bucket list for sure! I’ll keep you guys updated with more of my study abroad adventures in the future!