Having been at home for a 3 month long summer I have had a lot of time to reflect on my year abroad. It really is true what everyone says, my year abroad did pass in the blink of an eye. For a long time, it was the main focus of my life and a huge upcoming adventure which I cannot believe has already come to an end. I found it surprisingly easy to settle back into the routine of living at home and although I am very happy to be back with family and friends, I do really miss the opportunities of travel and adventure that living in Hong Kong gave me.
Probably the best experience of study abroad for me was the opportunities I had to visit places I never thought I would be able to before. During my time in Hong Kong I particularly loved visiting Japan and Australia, two completely different countries but both equally incredible and ones I hope to return to in the near future.
Of course, study abroad is not all fun and travel. During my year abroad there were times when I did feel homesick, particularly at times of intense work load and exams. As a Materials student, my year abroad did count for 20% of my degree which definitely added pressure. At times I found it challenging to juggle social life and academics when surrounded by students whose year abroad was only pass/fail which meant they were under less pressure to succeed academically.
Considering how easily I have adjusted back to life at home, sometimes I feel that not much has changed since I left for Hong Kong almost 12 months ago. If I am totally honest, I do not think that studying in Hong Kong massively benefited me academically, but in terms of personal development, it definitely did! Living and studying abroad in a country that is so culturally diverse and different to my home in the UK has made me not only more confident socially, but also more determined to succeed and more confident that I can achieve highly in my final year of study in Manchester.
HOI AN, VIETNAM
SAYING GOODBYE TO HONG KONG
HARBOUR BRIDGE, SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA