It has been over 3 weeks now since I left home and made my way across the world to the University of Leicester and boy, what a crazy (and stressful) adventure it has been so far.
My flight to the UK was long and for the most part, uneventful. Once I arrived in London, I spent the night in a hotel in Heathrow to recover and prepare myself for the next few months. The next morning, I met other international students going to the University of Leicester and we spent the next couple of days around London, visiting its most iconic sites. I am so thankful I did this tour because it was a great way to meet other people who are in the same boat as me. To this day, I still see them around campus and in fact, dine with them every night.
After three days in London, we made our way to Leicester via coach. It took over 2 hours to get there and unfortunately it didn’t seem like the bus driver knew exactly where we had to go! Finally, we got dropped off at my accommodation and I was able to unpack and settle in.
The next couple of days were just orientation days specifically designed for international students, including a walking tour around the city of Leicester. This is when I found out that my classes were not going to start until October, meaning I had over a week of free time. I decided to take this opportunity to travel and I spent three days in York, a city that I have wanted to visit for a long time. York is such a beautiful, historic city and I highly recommend giving it a visit!
On October 2nd, my classes finally began. I am taking 5 psychology topics here, which may seem like a lot but there is barely any contact hours. The topics only have lectures but they are however compulsory. The only thing I am not super keen on is the 11 essays I have to write during this semester, 10 of which are all due on the day I leave Leicester. Luckily, most of my classes finish in late November so at least I get 2 weeks in December to smash out the assignments.
Living on campus is totally new experience and for the most part, has been fun. The Residential Advisors have organised so many events for this semester so there is always something going on every night. The only downside to living in student accommodation is there is a lot of first year students, or as they call them here ‘freshers’, who like to party all the time. My university has a nightclub on campus which I think is really odd and for the past week and a bit, there have been all kinds of parties on there every night. They generally don’t start to 11pm so I can usually here my dorm mates leaving and coming home at ridiculous times. I am just hoping that now that classes have started, they may dial down the partying a bit!
In early November, I get a week off of classes and so I will be travelling to Belfast in Northern Ireland to visit the Titanic museum. I have heard many great things about this museum and I am fascinated about Titanic’s history, so it should be a really great trip. Later in the month, I am going to Bristol and Bath for a weekend trip to visit the Roman Baths. Apart for these two trips, I don’t have much else planned during the semester until I leave in December to go meet my parents in London.
All in all, the experience has been good so far, apart from a few hiccups along the way (like my laptop breaking, twice). I still have over 2 months left here so there is still many more adventures and memories to be made!
Catherine Clemow , Bachelor of Behavioural Science (Psychology)/Bachelor of Laws and Legal Practice student, Semester 2 2017 exchange at University of Leicester, the United Kingdom
- Read Catherine’s 1st blog post here