“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.”– Saint Augustine
Being that we are approaching week 5, I thought that it would be appropriate to finally talk about what it is like to actually study while studying abroad. First, here’s some background info. I am a nursing major, so I am taking Healthcare Policy, Genetics in Nursing and Healthcare, British Life and Visual Media, and Shakespeare and Elizabethan Theater. Most other nursing students are taking Healthcare Ethics but I already took this class while at Drexel. The spring quarter of the Drexel in London program usually consists of nursing and other health related majors because this is one of the only quarters in our plan of study that can really accommodate study abroad (depending on your co-op). But there are other students who are not studying healthcare related majors here.
At FIE (Foundation for International Education), you only take courses with other American students in the program. As a result, the professors cater their lesson plan for American students. So far, I feel as though this course load is much lighter than what I would experience at Drexel. Any one who is a nursing major knows that we usually have an exam every single week, but thankfully that is not the case here! And from talking to my family and friends who reside here, my current course load is also lighter than what I would experience if I were studying at a British University along with British students. For example, students at Uni in London would be expected to write many more papers compared to what we are expected to do as of right now. Of course I am not complaining about this, especially since this experience has been a nice transition from co-op back to classes.
Even though I do not get to take classes with British students, there are benefits to having a class full of Americans. So far, every single one of my teachers have taken us on a field trip somewhere. This week for Healthcare Policy we are going to the Victoria Medical Center. Hopefully this visit will tie everything together that we have been learning about the differences between our healthcare and the NHS (Nationally Health System). For Genetics, we have gone to the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum. Visiting these museums have helped tremendously with enforcing the material that we have been learning in class. In British Life and Visual Media, we visited Tate Britain to take a look at British history from the 1500’s to the present day in the form of art. And for Shakespearean Theater we have seen three plays so far, Julius Caesar, Pericles, and Sh*t-Faced Shakespeare, and have gone on a walking tour.
Overall, I have been pleasantly surprised with my studies so far. I love that the professors here are taking the time to take us to different areas that we may not have ventured to if it had not been for their course. Learning outside of the classroom has been one of my favorite experiences so far.