Hello from London!

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This is my first actual Study Abroad post that takes place in London! AHHHH!!!!

The airport, flight, and moving into the dorms went pretty smoothly. Last time, the flight to London seemed to take forever but on Saturday I was able to sleep on and off the whole time! When we arrived in London we passed through customs and security really quickly and then hopped in a taxi to school. The only problem with moving in is that we are on the top floor and had to carry everything up my hand (no elevators)!

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Day one ( January 25th) consisted of trying to work the wifi, unpacking, buying a UK cell phone, visiting Primark and Boots, napping, and enjoying Fish and Chips at a local pub (Allsop Arms)! All in all, it was a perfect first day in London! Emily ended up being my roommate which was a really nice surprise! I’m feeling really grateful about everything that has happened so far!

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For a phone, I went to Car Phone Warehouse which is right down the street from Regent’s University. I bought a SIM card for 20 pounds which allowed me to receive a free phone. The 20 pounds also covered my first month of unlimited texting and 150 minutes for local calls. Since it is a basic cell phone, there’s no way to get a plan with data. However, almost every place I have been to so far has had wifi so I’ve just been using my iPhone for social media and everything else.

Today was my first day of orientation through the International Partnerships Office (IPO). The day started bright and early with introductions and registration. I was so nervous that I wouldn’t meet any friends and have to spend the day alone but I met three girls right away! After registration we went on a quick campus tour which was confusing but very helpful at the same time.

We were then given instructions to take the Underground and meet at Trafalgar Square. This made me almost as nervous as the thought of not meeting any friends. However, one of the girls that I met already had an Oyster Card and showed the rest of us how to easily get one too.

Basically, before you arrive in London you should apply for a Student Oyster Card which will give you discounts off travel. I didn’t apply for one so I just bought a regular Oyster Card that is pay as you go.  The tube was much easier to use than I originally thought! It made traveling so easy!!!

We got to Trafalgar Square pretty early so we wandered around the National Gallery. When the time came, we met back up with Regent’s and started “The Great London Treasure Hunt” which was so much fun!! We had a list of items that we needed to take pictures with (pigeon, horse, policeman, bridge, etc.) as well as questions that we had to find the answers to. My group was amazing and I will always remember our first little adventure around London.

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Day two was amazing. I saw Big Ben, The National Gallery, the London Eye, Houses of Parliament, Trafalgar Square, Hamley’s toy shop, Piccadilly Circus, and so much more. Not to mention that I rode the tube and a red double decker bus for the first time! I also made so many new and wonderful friends. I can’t wait to see what else London has in store for me! 🙂

Cheers!

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2015 Goals

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I’m setting myself a few simple goals for 2015 to challenge myself.

  1. Read one book a month
  2. Travel, Travel, Travel
  3. Become comfortable in a new place
  4. Drink more water and less pop
  5. Focus on eating heathier
  6. Make some real and lasting friendships
  7. Spend more time at school and less at work
  8. Learn to give myself a break
  9. Spend more time with my family and friends
  10. Learn to relax and have fun!
  11. Share my life through blogging and become more involved with the blogging community.

I’m trying not to set myself up for failure by setting hard goals for myself. Instead, I want to spend 2015 traveling, loving, and laughing. I want to make new friends, cherish the friendships I have, and learn to put myself first. 2014 was great and I know that 2015 will be even better!

Thanks for reading! I can’t wait to share 2015 with all of you!

Here’s to 2015!

It’s a new year and the only thing that I can think about is leaving for London. I am filled with anxiety about my upcoming journey abroad. Starting a new year can mean many things to many different people. But for me, it means a new life full of new opportunities.

Best friends in London!

               Best friends in London!

Studying abroad has been my dream since I traveled to Europe in 2011. I was talking to my friend the other day and she said that she can remember me saying that I would be going back to London in the future. And here I am, four years later following my dream.

Of course, I am very anxious. I’m a nervous wreck about everything that could go wrong. I think I’m most nervous about leaving my family and Brett behind. I know that I will be coming back but it’s still hard to move away from them.

2015 brings the promise of new memories, journeys, and dreams. I’m looking forward to living the next year to the fullest. I’m happy to have the chance to start over someplace new but I am even happier that I have someplace to come home to when it’s over. I am lucky to have the chance to follow my dreams and to have the support of my family and friends.

Here’s to 2015! Good luck to all of you as you follow your own dreams and go your own way!

Study Abroad: Application Process

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I just finished my application for spring 2015 Study Abroad semester at Regent’s University! London, here I come!!!

In all honesty I am scared to death that I won’t get accepted. I would be heartbroken because I have put my life on hold to follow my dreams! I moved back home with my parents, told my boss that I’m leaving, and have informed my whole family of my plans. So please pray that I get accepted. It would be the most amazing opportunity of my life!

The application process itself wasn’t that difficult. I had a couple of appointments with the U.K advisor at my University where she basically guided me through the process. I filled out a bunch of paperwork, wrote a “Statement of Purpose” essay, and got two facility recommendations. Luckily, the whole application was online which made it pretty simple to get done.

I struggled a bit with the essay because it was limited to 500 words about why I wanted to go. For me it’s not about wanting to go, it’s about needing to go. I know that I am meant to go to London and experience life in the U.K. I just had a hard time conveying my dreams in only 500 words. Studying Abroad means so much to me and I hope the Regent’s sees that from my essay.

I tweeted that I finished my application and Regent's University favorited it!

I tweeted that I finished my application and Regent’s University Favorited it!

The facility recommendations were also hard to come by. I chose my favorite professors and both of them agreed! I provided my professors with my resume which I definitely recommend doing! Not only did my resume provide them with extra information about me to use but it also provided me with two sets of extra eyes critiquing my resume! Both professors gave me awesome feedback that I used to improve my resume!

Now it’s just a waiting game. The application wasn’t due until October 15th but I was able to turn it in a month early. I am hoping to get early acceptance so I can start planning and budgeting further. My fingers and toes are crossed that I get accepted but if not I will find some other way to fulfill my dream.

I am so overwhelmed with how supportive everyone has been! My boss, my family, my friends, Brett, and all of you guys have helped me so much along this journey. I can’t thank all of you enough for believing in me and guiding me through this!

It’s that time again…

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Well, if you haven’t already figured it out, school is back in session. This means an endless supply of homework, exams, and reading assignments. This semester I am taking 15 credits which equals 5 classes. One of my classes is online and is the first online class that I have taken since high school!  Here’s a list of my classes for your enjoyment:

  • BCM 3700: Integrated Communication in Businesses
  • CIS 2900: Web Applications for Business
  • ECON 4000: Managerial Economics (Online)
  • FIN 3200: Business Finance
  • HIST 3020: World History to 1500

This is also my first semester pursing my BBA instead of my General Business minor. At my University you spend your first two years working on your General Business minor before being accepted into the program for your major. Classes are definitely harder the last four years….yay!

I am also working this semester… a lot. I requested to work 3-4 days between 25-30 hours a week. So far I have been working 4 days at 33-35 hours a week. I’m not complaining because I really need the money for study abroad. So far I have been able to balance work, school, and my social life. My boss is more than willing to scale down my hours if I become stressed.

My goal is to blog at least once a week during the semester. I really want to grow this blog before I leave for London in January. I want to provide information about my journey including what I packed, what research I am doing, the application process, and all of the adventures along the way! I originally created this blog to document my life and I have been slacking a bit. I am going to try to make blogging a priority this year!

Good luck to everyone as they head back to school! Let’s make this a semester to remember!

Thanks for reading!

Image via picjumbo.com

Study Abroad: Choosing a Program

 

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I can’t believe I am already applying for University in London! I did hours and hours of research before deciding where I wanted to go. I always knew I wanted to study abroad in London so all I had to do was find the perfect University.

The one and only University I am applying to is Regent’s University. Regent’s is located in Regent’s Park in London. It is a gated, Royal Park so I know that I will be safe living there. Regent’s is so beautiful and I can imagine myself living there!

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Now that I have picked my dream University all I have to do is turn in my application. I have been procrastinating turning it in because I am honestly scared to death. What if I don’t get accepted? What if I want to come home?

Leaving is going to be so hard but I know that I am meant to go on this amazing trip. I know that Regent’s University is the place I am meant to live. I am lucky that my family believes in my dreams as much as I do because they are the ones that are motivating me to turn in my application.

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Another huge bonus of Regent’s is that it has an elite business school. I will be able to complete my International Business minor as well as taking classes that will transfer for my Bachelor of Business Administration! Going to University in London will help me gain an international business perspective which will set me apart from my peers. It is a great opportunity to make the best of my education and learn as much as a can!

Thanks for the continued love and support! The application process has me super anxious but I am beyond excited to start this journey. I can’t wait to explore London and various other places that I am blessed enough to travel to!

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P.S: The pictures used are from Regent’s website and Flickr. You can find them here.

London is Calling-And I am Answering!

 

London is Calling

For as long as I can remember I have wanted to travel the World. My wish came true the summer before my senior year of high school when I travelled to Europe with my best friends. I was nominated by my band director to go on a tour with two hundred other high school musicians.  This was an experience of a lifetime that I seriously could not pass up. So I worked my butt off, got a job, and found a way to make my dream happen.

On this trip we went to London, Paris, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Italy, and Lichtenstein (clearly not in that order.) We flew into London and I can still remember that first moment stepping out of the airport. Everything was so new and exciting. I could feel my heart beating so fast and in that moment I was indescribably happy.  My junior year was particularly rough for me but I knew that this trip was a new and exciting way to begin my senior year. So with my best friends by my side we took on Europe!

Best friends in London!

Best friends in London!

Pub Life

Pub Life

Sister Sister!

Sister Sister!

London was perfect. I loved the architecture, history, and the feel of the city.  I felt at home in a city that I had never been to. That’s when I knew that I would be back. At the time, I didn’t know how I could possibly make it back to London. But now, with the help of my advisers, my family, my boyfriend, and my friends I have found a way to make my dream come true.

Paris

Paris!!

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My mom, sister, and me in Paris!

Spring 2015 I will be studying abroad in London. I haven’t been accepted into the program yet but I will make it happen. This is the scariest, most daunting decision that I have ever faced. I am scared of moving away from my parents and Brett. I am scared of living in a big city where I don’t know my way around. I am scared of not making any friends and being miserable. I am scared period. But this is something that I have to do. I know that if I don’t I will regret it for the rest of my life.

So I am looking for advice. Have any of you studied abroad or moved to a different city? What can I do to prepare? Is there anything I should know?

Thank you so much! I will fill you guys in with my progress! 🙂