The run-up to the end of term brings with it extra pressure on students, especially those in their final year, as coursework submission deadlines loom. In this short blog post, one of our finalists, Lucy Kay, allows herself a spot of reminiscing as she shares with us experiences of her Year Abroad.
Metz might not have seemed like an obvious choice for many (in fact, many French people raised their eyebrows when they heard I had actually chosen to come to the capital of the Lorraine region!), but it really worked for me. A deciding factor for the location of my year abroad was being in proximity to the eastern border, as I wished to visit other countries during my stay. Spending my weekends off visiting Luxembourg, Belgium, Germany and Switzerland was a definite plus!
For any students deciding to choose the British Council pathway for their year abroad, I would really recommend it. Working as an assistant guaranteed a pre-established network for me to become a part of, which definitely made things easier during my first days in France – and having colleagues to ask for advice is really helpful. The work experience in itself is invaluable, as is the fact that you’ve already lived and worked abroad when you come to graduate.
I think the biggest benefit of my time away is showing itself now that I have returned to classes at the university. My improved ability and confidence has definitely reinvigorated my enthusiasm for the subject and has made me look at studying French in a new way. The global outreach of the year abroad is something that really struck me. Although I was living in France, I made friends from all over the world and we were all connected by the fact that we were learning a second language. It really makes you feel like a part of a bigger network, and helps you realise that there are so many opportunities that arise from studying languages.