What to expect when you’re expecting (to move abroad) _ guest blog from Bronwyn Latham

It’s March. The email has arrived. The email that opens you to a world of new things, and by new things I mean modules.

This year will be different, as if you’re taking single honours your choice will have been selected for you.

EU5000.

If you’re taking multiple modern languages then you’ll have ML5000 looming in front of you, however the same situation is inevitable. You’re moving abroad.

Where do you start? Where will you end up? How can someone just relocate abroad for a year and be fully independent when you’ve had your lecturers at your doorstep (or on an email thread) for the past two years?

Well here’s the thing. It’s going to be fine.

Depending on whether you decide to study in a university, teach abroad or find a job, you’re going to have a very different experience. I firmly believe that no two years abroad are the same, but you’ll still have a support network of friends and lecturers that you can rely on. Also, you get assigned a year abroad tutor, and Carmen has been nothing but reliable for me.

One of my friends has described it as starting university again. You have to meet new people. You have to find your way around. It’s an opportunity for a fresh start for many people. The only difference is a potential language barrier, but you’ll learn as you go.

The one thing that worries people is the fact that it’s something you can’t really prepare for. There is so much to take in with just administration alone, let alone starting off on the right foot. Last year I was lucky that I was one of the first to find out where my school was (I chose to teach) and that a girl in her final year was willing to answer my many, many questions, but there is only so much you can anticipate. Which sounds absolutely terrifying.

What you should expect when you’re expecting is… nothing. An open mind is key to this chapter in your university career, as you have nothing to lose and everything to gain- and that intimidatingly large handbook you will be given is more useful than you may think.

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