A Gateway to Europe…

Join Michaela as she takes a break from her studies at Easter and leaves her home away from home at Reading to explore more of Europe!

When you study abroad at somewhere like the University of Reading, you inadvertently discover a home away from home. At the same time, you are also inspired to leave that home and explore.

Having come from a family who has encouraged me to see the world, I took full advantage of the University of Reading’s Easter Break between spring and summer term. After my last class that Friday, I headed to London Gatwick with my weekend duffle bag to start my 24 day-long trip in Madrid. Through the Erasmus programme, I found travel partners as well as places to stay along my trip since my new friends from school live in all different countries.

14 cities, 6 countries, and 1 British Territory later, I had felt a range of emotions. Accomplished for surviving various metros in foreign languages by myself, bliss from eating delicious food, exhausting from overnight trains and endless walking, and above everything else: appreciation.

If it wasn’t for this school and in part the funding from my blog scholarship, I wouldn’t have pushed myself to see so much. This school has a unique ability to help you surface your passions and to realize everything you’re already capable of, which is something every student can benefit from.

Not only did Reading give me the courage and resources to explore so much, but it also gave me a place to miss.

By the end of my travels, I started to feel homesick for Reading and the people it brings together.

Creating friendships that last a lifetime…

For Michaela, from the University of Rhode Island, its the people she met at the University of Reading that made her Study Abroad Programme experience here a home away from home. Join her as she reflects on January – June 2017…

When you take part in a study abroad program, you sign up for more than what’s proposed in the name “Study Abroad’. Not only do you leave an academic system that you’ve already adjusted to, but you leave your old university home and respective social groups.

Coming from the University of Rhode Island, where the campus acts as a student city filled with familiar faces, I knew no one here. However, I soon realized that didn’t mean I was alone. Since the first day of orientation, I’ve met countless other international students which turned into a close group of friends. I’ve also become friends with my English flat mates, as well as the English flat mates of my international friends. With their help, I have created lifetime friends and experienced the social life they have to offer.

The Erasmus and study abroad team has helped expose me to new places around the UK and test the waters of exploration through the comfort of the University. The picturesque Whiteknights campus continuously gives me a friendly and safe atmosphere while its location gives easy access to England’s capital and a subsequent gateway to all over Europe.

In a time where everything is new and you’re forced to immerse yourself into a culture that is unique to your own, the University of Reading and its community has managed to make it a home away from home.