Rob Jones, a final-year undergraduate reading for a BA in French and Business Studies, is to resume his work as an English-language assistant this September, having spent the last academic session working as an assistant in the West Indies. For his year abroad he had the fortune to be placed as a British Council English Language Teaching Assistant on the island of Guadeloupe in the Francophone Caribbean. The year provided an insight into the unique culture and identity borne out of the long process of departmentalisation of France’s colonies. A refreshing blend of French contemporary culture and the spice of Caribbean Créolité, Guadeloupe was truly an exciting, vibrant and welcoming island for Rob’s year abroad.

Living in the small town of Bas-du-Fort, and working in the commercial centre of the island, the city of Point-à-Pitre, Rob spent his free time exploring the island with its many waterfalls, secluded beaches and rainforest wilderness. When working, Rob taught English in two collèges and one lycée to students aged 11 – 21. Though challenging, sharing the culture of the UK and the importance of learning a language proved to be an extremely worthwhile and rewarding experience.

As a result of his first posting as an ELTA, Rob has decided to accept a placement to teach in Québec, Canada over the coming academic year. Though this promises to be a completely different, slightly colder experience, it is once again a challenge and a superb opportunity to experience a new culture, improve his French language skills and help little Quebecois realise how much fun learning a language can be!

Read two more guest blogs from students who spent their years abroad in Mexico and Vienna.

SOCLAS students can read further accounts of year abroad experiences here.