Hello from London! On Friday, December 10th, I made my way to the Philadelphia International Airport for my very first study abroad program with Drexel University. I couldn’t be more excited to have a week in this beautiful city with my classmates and professors. To do a quick introduction of myself: My name is Juliana Bonomo, and I’m currently a senior Graphic Design major, minoring in Marketing at Drexel. Due to previous COVID-19 restrictions, this has been my first opportunity to participate in a study abroad program at school. I previously planned to study abroad in London during the Summer of 2020, but was unable to because of COVID. So once this trip was confirmed, and the flights were booked, I was ecstatic. I had an over-night flight on Friday evening, which means when we landed it was Saturday morning in London, due to the time difference being five hours ahead here.
Luckily, I was on the flight with a few of my friends from the major, so we all got to navigate together to our dorms at the Foundation for International Education. We took the tube up to our dorms, which is pretty similar to the New York subway, or the Philly Septa. Except the tube happens to be much nicer, cleaner, and easier to navigate than the transportation in the States. FIE is located in South Kensington, London. We got to see a bit of the neighborhood before arriving to the dorms, which was great to get a slight idea of the area we are staying in for the week. South Kensington is gorgeous, and I feel really fortunate to be staying in an area like this.
Once we placed our bags in our room we had to head to a COVID-19 testing site to ensure that we all tested negative for the trip. While I tested negative twice shortly before the trip, I was still pretty nervous. After quarantining for a few hours I received my results, which were negative. The second me and my classmates secured our negative tests, we headed out to get something to eat.
I was surprised to see that many restaurants here close much earlier than they do in the States. After some researching we landed at a pub close to our dorms, and enjoyed each others company in a brand new city together. As jet lag began to set in, we made our way back to our dorms to get a good nights sleep before our early start tomorrow at 9am.
I am so excited to be a part of Drexel’s Design Explorations in London, and can’t wait to share the rest of my trip.
A Message from the Office of Global Engagement:
The safety and security of Drexel students is a priority for the University. As part of the efforts to support Drexel students that are studying abroad during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Office of Global Engagement has conducted a rigorous review of programming and provided additional support to participating students with customized pre-departure orientations and regular check-ins during the required self-isolation period and the term.