Life across the pond has been transformative. When you hear the words ‘Study Abroad’ don’t shove it off, instead embark on the experience.

 

1. The classes are extraordinary. Students are taught by spectacular instructors with a wealth of experience and credibility. Who ever thought 4-hour classes could be enjoyable?

+For my core journalism course students were granted the opportunity to visit the broadcast powerhouse for class.

 

2. The residential areas are phenomenal. To say the least, American posture and volume has undergone a transformation.

Oh, I live 15 minutes away from the royal family. #PrinceGeorge

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3. Tea time is the best time- happens everyday.

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For once you can enjoy life without constant Facebook usage or data consumption.

Lets be honest who really wants international charges.

 

4.  The theatre scene is surreal- you never know who you’ll run into. I purchased a ticket to see a production at Royal Court without prior knowledge of the cast.

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MET GARRY CARR #JackRoss FROM DOWNTON ABBEY!

5. Studying abroad offers a chance for students to immerse themselves in the culture of a foreign land, get lost, travel, eat yummy food, network, and create memorable moments that will last a lifetime. DO IT!

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Sad to leave London but excited to rejoin Terrier Nation!

 

Cheers,

Taylor

Follow me: @TaylorReports

Steph: Markets Galore

Since being abroad in London, I’ve come to find a bunch of differences between the US and the UK. For example, you should never tell someone that you like his or her pants if you want to avoid extreme embarrassment. Pants in the UK = underwear. Trousers = pants. Not saying that this comes from personal experience or anything…

One of the more fun, less embarrassing differences is that London is totally on their game when it comes to markets, and America should take note. Any given day of the week, especially Sunday, there are so many different markets in cool areas to explore. Here are a few you must check out if you ever make it across the pond!

Borough Market

Borough is probably one of my favorite places in all of London. Being as obsessed with food (and free samples) as I am, this place is heaven on earth. They have everything from the freshest produce, to fish, to cupcakes, to bread, to food stands, to mulled wine….My personal favorite is the Pie Minster food stand, where you can get any kind of traditional pie with mashed potatoes, mushy mint peas, and gravy on top that looks like this:

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Need I say more?

 Portobello Road

Portobello Road is an antiques market in the super cool area of Notting Hill. All the houses are colorful and you can get some really great leather goods if you don’t mind sifting through millions of piles. It’s always packed, but for good reason. There is always something fun to find.

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Brick Lane

While Brick Lane is mostly known for it’s multitude of delicious curry restaurants, the long street is also home to a flea market on Sundays! If you’re into vintage clothing, this is the market for you. There are tons of stands and shops to browse for authentic clothes from the 1950s, or just some old sweater from a Philadelphia Relay for Life for your hipster self (true story). A must is a stop at Brick Lane Beigel Bake (yes, its Bagels, but they spell it weird. Silly Brits!). I had one this morning with loads of cream cheese and it made me feel right at home

 

Cant believe I’ll be back in the States in exactly 20 days!! While I never ever want to leave England, I have to say that I am really looking forward to being back on Comm Ave. Until then, cheers!

Sara: Top 10 Reasons to Study Abroad

I confess I have been a bit of one-track mind lately, and so I apologize for this gushing blog post in advance.  But, wherever you find yourself in your college career please do this one thing: make time to go abroad! I know it can be difficult to work in when there’s so many requirements to tackle but take it from someone who is overloading on credits for two semesters just to make it happen, its worth it.

The last six weeks I have found myself in London and I am completely in love.  So therefore, I present to you a totally buzz-feed style list of ten convincing reasons why you should go abroad (sorry for the lack of gifs illustrating exactly how you should feel).

1. Meeting New People-Not everyone from your program will be from BU necessarily and even if they are, chances are on a campus this big you’ve never even seen their face in a crowd before. There are loads of new people you might never have met otherwise. If you’re lucky enough they just might become your best friends.

2. Easy Travel– With inexpensive trains, planes and buses to take you to wherever your heart desires, it’s so easy to see other cities and countries while you’re abroad.

3. The Food– I personally believe the best way to get to know another culture is through your stomach, or maybe that’s just because I’m a foodie wannabe. But in all honestly, trying new foods has been one of my favorite parts of being abroad.

4. New Perspective– It’s easy to judge other cultures from afar but once you’re standing in the middle another country where you don’t speak their language, I guarantee any preconceived notions you might have had will be erased. And bonus, you’ll also probably gain a new love for your own home.

5. Personal Growth– It takes a lot of courage to put yourself in a completely unfamiliar environment for months but once you do it, you find yourself growing as a person in ways you never thought possible.

6. Getting a Break From Your Normal Routine– Because who wants to be on the same general schedule every day of their college career?

7. Unique Resume Boost– In some programs you get to intern while you’re abroad which is something not everyone can say they did and will definitely set your resume apart from other students in internship and job interviews.

8. The View–  From the top of anywhere, over any city- go on the London Eye, go to the top of the Duomo in Florence, climb up a hill to the castles in Lisbon and appreciate the view. No matter where you go, looking over an entire city is so captivating, its life changing.

9. TRAVEL- oh, I already mentioned this one? Well, I think it deserves to be mentioned again

10. Why not?– The best reason of them all. You’re young! What better time to see the world when college has already allowed you to perfect the balance of minimal sleep and maximum productivity.

 

Please feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions about going abroad or need any help with the application!

Cheers,

Sara

Tyler: I Swear It Wasn’t Like This Before

When I got off the plane from London at Logan Airport two months ago, I gleefully welcomed the frigid weather. It was unbearable and exposure to the wind caused concerning pain to my face and hands, but it confirmed that I was home.

 

Don’t get me wrong — spending the fall semester studying abroad in England was the greatest thing I’ve ever done. And that was exactly the problem. I didn’t want to leave at all, but I’d accomplished my academic and research goals and completely run out of money. So, I had come to accept that it was time to get back to campus where I can focus more directly on working toward a career without being distracted by travel, a different social dynamic, and the whimsy of simply being elsewhere.

 

I take it back. I’d become accustomed to such a routine lifestyle of extremes in London. My time was spent in lengthy periods of either sitting quietly and nervously in a massive historical library or taking taxis, buses, trains, and planes to the new coolest place I’d ever been in my life. Classes ran once or twice a week. The weather was a comfortable, albeit often rainy, 50 degrees every single day. Plane tickets cost $40. I could drink legally!

 

Nothing feels right in Boston — the city in which I’ve lived practically all my life. I’m no longer on a cultural crash course disguised as a vacation. It’s not easy realizing that what I learn and accomplish in the next year very much decides how I spend the rest of my life. It’s not easy reverting to prudent financial habits. Fortunately, friends and family remain constant regardless of where I spend my time, and returning to those at home has certainly helped me realize what, or who, truly drives me to achieve my goals.

Kate: London vs. Boston

Hello again from London!

I hope everyone has been having an amazing semester back in Boston and I am looking forward to joining you all in just over a month!  For the past seven weeks, I have been completing the internship portion of my abroad programme and I am happy to report it has been a successful experience! I chose to intern with a small fashion PR firm in central London who work with a variety of clients. I’ve always been interested in fashion PR but I’ve never known if it was exactly what I wanted to do so I decided, why not give it a try in one of the fashion capitals of the world?!

The internship was definitely a learning experience and the best way to get immersed in the culture and work life of London.  Here are the four most valuable (and fun!) things I learned at my internship:

 

  1. Difference in the style of journalism. Each day, I scanned through the local daily papers like The Guardian, The Daily Mail, and The Daily Telegraph for fashion coverage and mentions of our clients. Here, everything is so much more sensational and almost reminds me of the National EnquirerThe Sun even features a nude photo on page three everyday! No daily paper in America would get away with that!
  2. Running PR events. During my time, I helped the team with three client events including our major fall press day.  A press day is basically when you invite all local journalists to your showroom to see you client’s new collections. It’s a really important day for the agency and I learned a ton preparing for and helping at the event.
  3. Sending out press samples. This aspect of my internship may have been favorite.  A couple times a day, journalists sent us stories they were working on so we could send them clothes from our clients that could be featured in their publication.  It was my job to pick out the clothes and accessories and send them to the journalist.  This helped me learn what types of items look best when photographed and the difference between still life shots and model shots.  It tapped into my shopaholic tendencies a bit and I loved it!
  4. The lingo. For the first week of my internship, I was so confused when I would come into work and people would ask if I was alright. Did I look sick? Tired? Sad? I couldn’t figure it out.  Nope, that is just a normal greeting like “what’s up.”  Other confusing terms? A jumper is a sweater. A gillet is a vest. Rocket is arugula. A biscuit is a cookie. Chips are French fries and crisps are chips. The bin is the trashcan. And don’t forget to say cheers before leaving for the day!

Now that the internship is over, I just have my last class and final! I can’t believe I only have two weeks left in this amazing city and I will be sad to leave but it will be good to be home with my family for Christmas.

Happy Holidays COM Family!

 

 

Tom: Take a Break from Boston… Go Abroad

Hello all! I am in the midst of writing this blog post while checking through my London Visa Application – so I figured this would be the ideal time to discuss my own “break” from Boston this upcoming spring. As I alluded to in an earlier blog post, I will be heading to London this upcoming spring with the BU Study Abroad Programme and will be taking part in the COM Internship Program.

After an incredibly exciting and fast paced semester of COM, Advertising and more and more theater, I knew I was ready to take a break from the Boston University Campus Scene. This is why I decided to apply for the London Programme.

I understand that there are a number of myths out there that may make you concerned about studying abroad. I’ve decided to take this blog post to combat those myths and again, encourage you to GO ABROAD!

Myth #1 – The Program is Too Expensive

Undoubtedly, studying and travelling abroad can get costly – especially when you have the opportunity to travel and experience all the sights around Europe. However, the great thing about the BU Abroad Program is that the program costs are not much different than a typical semester at BU. For me, all of my scholarship, grants and loans carried over to the London Program. I also managed to cut down the program costs by applying to be a Resident Assistant.

Myth #2 – I Won’t Be Able to Graduate On Time

Not true! This is Reason Number One Million why COM is the best. COM offers COM Internship Programs abroad in a number of locations (such as London, Paris, Madrid, Los Angeles, to name a few). While abroad, with this internship and some liberal arts classes – you can actually satisfy all of your requirements while travelling abroad. Plus, the internship is so worth it when looking for jobs after graduation.

Myth #3 – I Won’t Be Able to Handle the Culture Shock

Yes, there will be Culture Shock. I won’t lie and say there isn’t. But as someone who’s known many people who go abroad, the culture shock is actually the best part of studying abroad. While some people may be turned away by the idea of a new culture – use this experience as a way to broaden your horizons. The new things you’ll get to experience may pleasantly surprise you.

Long story short – go abroad! You won’t regret it. I’ll keep you updated next semester with all of my exciting London adventures, along with fellow COM Ambassadors – Dany, Julianna and Sarah!

Signing Out,

Tom

Kate: Three Tips to Picking Classes Abroad

I cannot believe I am finally in London! After a six month long countdown, I finally made it over The Pond and have been living the abroad life for the past 10 days. So far it has been everything I had hoped for and more and I am so excited to everything to come. In fact, I just booked my fall break to, wait for it… ITALY! Five days of eating pizza, drinking wine and sight seeing until I can’t walk anymore is just a mere four weeks away (I’ll be sure to catch all of you up on that in my next post)!

However, study abroad is not all about traveling the world, there are courses involved too. So here are my tips to getting the most out of your classroom experience:

Find the Program you will get the most out of. You don’t necessarily have to do the same program as your major. Do something that interests you or that you have always wanted to try because that is what your core class will be in and the field in which you will do your internship. For me, I live and breath PR so that decision was a no-brainer. However, I know a fellow COM student who is majoring in Journalism, however he chose to do the Pre-Law program because he has aspirations of attending law school when he graduates. The Study Abroad office offers hundreds of options (there are at least 15 just in London!) so you will definitely something that works for you.

2. Take one class that takes care of a requirement. Whether it be a liberal arts requirement or a class towards your minor, find something will check another class off your list. All your major specific classes must be taken at BU so don’t spend all your time taking electives here and then stress about getting all your requirements done in Boston. There are a lot of options for CAS courses and you will easily be able to fulfill at least one required course.

3. Take something fun! Again, as someone who dreams about PR in her sleep, I took a COM-related course for this one. Its called International Brand Management and I am literally jumping out of my pants excited. BUT, my best friend is taking a British Pop Culture class. Hello, Beatles! Also, every class in the London program has at least one field trip (and I am sure this applies to other locations too) so a fun class equals an interesting field trip!

The first word in Study Abroad is study so make sure to work hard in your classes and get good grades. But, have fun and learn a lot because most people will never have this experience again. I have already learned so much about British culture and daily life from my professors (who also happen to have fantastic accents). And if I have any other advice it is to STUDY ABROAD. Go. Do it. I’ve been here a week and I already never want to leave.

 

I’ll be sure to update y’all later in the semester (be sure to follow me on The Twitter @KateScott10) and I hope you are loving BU so far!

Cheers!

 

Kate: Tips for Tackling the Study Abroad Application

Kate Image

This semester, I began the grueling process of applying to a study abroad program.  When I was on the college hunt, I realized that studying abroad opportunities was a must where ever I ended up.  And I definitely picked the right place for that.  BU has programs all over the world doing any types of program you could think of.  A girl in my sorority just got back from a Creative Writing Trip to Greece.  My other friend spent a semester at sea.  My plan: London Internship Program for Fall 2012.

The following are a few tips I have for those beginning the application process and how to make sure you get accepted to the program of your choice!

  1. Plan ahead. There a certain requirements to go on a study abroad program, especially ones that have an internship component (check out those requirements here).  Decide early what semester or summer you want to go abroad and plan your schedule accordingly.  There are no exceptions for the class or GPA requirements so make sure you’re all set when it comes time to apply.
  2. Get your recommendation letters. Most applications require 1-2 professor recommendations.  Contact your recommenders early.  It is not okay to expect them to finish it in a day so consider reaching out to them at least a month before the application is due.  Don’t be afraid to send them a reminder email if the deadline is closing in but don’t badger them.
  3. Apply early! This may be the most important piece of advice I have to offer you.  Applications and decisions are made on a rolling basis a.k.a. the sooner you get it in, the sooner you find out your decision.  I had one friend who turned the application in almost two months before it was due and heard back in 12 days (the usually time is about four weeks).  Also, many of the popular programs will fill up before the application deadline.  Procrastinating your application may lead to a rejection from your program of choice.

Once you’ve been accepted (congrats!), get all your forms and deposit payment in fast! Once you do that, you can select your housing and classes for your upcoming time abroad.  It is a very exciting time–remember these tips to make sure you have a semester you will never forget!

Check out the study abroad website for more information on abroad programs and to being your application!

Brittany: COM-portunities

Brittany

The last time you heard from me, I was interning at Chronicle on Boston’s WCVB Channel 5. I told you all what a great experience it was for me, but the best had yet to come. By the end of the summer, my hard work earned me the opportunity to be an associate producer for a segment of a show! I came up with my own story idea, organized, planned, made contacts, filled out paperwork, and accompanied the crew on the day of the shoot—all the responsibilities of a real (read: salaried) producer. The episode aired a few days after I left for school, and it was the best way I could have ended my time at the station.

After Chronicle, I started working for New England Sports Network (NESN) in the fall. I’m a Boston Bruins/Hockey East Studio Production intern—a position I’m convinced is the best job in Boston. When the Bruins are home, I ride along to the Garden, where I do one of many things—learn how to run tech equipment from the truck, stage manage the pre-, post-, and intermission reports from the in-house studio, or stage manage the color and play-by-play commentators from their booth. After the game, I usually run tapes of post-game interviews from the locker room to feed them back to the office. There’s a lot of running around the Garden, but there’s no place I’d rather be on game day.

Recently I’ve been doing a lot of work for Hockey East. I was the time out coordinator for the Frozen Fenway games (check out the picture that Dean Sabovik took off of the TV that day!), and I’ve put in countless hours working on Beanpot features in preparation for the tournament in February. My internship at NESN is so multifaceted, I never know what to expect as I walk in in the morning. COM has given me the preparation to handle whatever is expected of me at any given time, and complete the task at a professional level.

Last semester, I applied and got into a class going abroad to London this summer to cover the Olympics with COM. Come next year I will have graduated, and I’m so thankful that I will be able to cap out my three years at BU with such an amazing work experience. You can read more about it here: http://www.bu.edu/com/2011/12/13/students-tapped-to-cover-olympics-in-london/.

The point of my post is this—everything that I talked about truly is an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Through COM, I’ve had opportunities and experiences that many college students can only dream of. I’m happy to answer any questions about internships that you might have, and I look forward to sharing my contacts with the next batch of COM students!

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Tiffany: Updates from the London Study Abroad Program

Tiffany Feng
Tiffany Feng

Happy summer everyone! Hope everyone is soaking up the sun and getting a nice tan.

Unfortunately, London isn’t too warm right now and the sun loves to play hide-and-seek with the clouds, while surprising everyone with a little rain here and there. But other than that, if studying abroad is of interest to you, I would definitely recommend it!

You will be surprised how much you will learn about other cultures, while also learning a lot about yourself. On one of the first days of class, my International Brand Management professor stated, “It is only after you’ve spent time abroad and are forced to not be American, will you truly understand what it means to be American because you will, again, be forced to realize and reflect on your values, customs, speech, media, and everything that used to seem so ordinary.”

I’ve only been here for 6 weeks and have already seen, learned, and experienced so much! For the past 6 weeks I took two courses, International Brand Management and European Marketing Strategies, and am just about to start the second half of the program where I will be interning at a fashion PR agency called Bryan Morel PR.

Other than coursework, I’ve been exploring London quite a bit and even traveled to Paris for a weekend (travelling within Europe is so cheap in comparison to what you would ever pay to travel from the States).

BU London is located in a really convenient area with lots to do right in our own borough of Kensington. It is in the most posh part of town, right down the street (literally a 2 minute walk) from Kensington Palace, past residence to Princess Diana, and where Prince William and Kate Duchess of Cambridge have chosen as their London home. Right next to Kensington Palace is the gorgeous Hyde Park where you can paddle boat, ride bikes, go for a run, or just sit by the pond and watch the swans. We are also located right next to all the big museums like the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Natural History Museum, and the Science Museum that are all free admission!

There is seriously and endless amount of activities to do and places to visit throughout London. Some of my favorite places so far are Hyde Park, Trafalgar Square, and Regent Street (really good shopping). Also for my fellow foodies out there, there are Portobello, Camden, Borough, and Greenwich Markets that are a foodies dream come true.

I really recommend looking into study abroad and if anybody has any questions about London in particular, I’d be happy to answer them or, pardon my shameless self-promotion, you can select me as your COM Ambassador!

Cheers from across the Atlantic!