The academic, extra-curricular, and personal experiences I had in St. Andrews were overwhelmingly positive. It was refreshing and intriguing to get a different teaching and learning perspective and to be taught in an environment that stresses independent learning and individual expression of ideas. My courses were very valuable both in and of themselves and in the context of my studies here at home; I feel privileged to have been able to be a part of a new marketplace of ideas. As well, I tried to see as much of the country as time would permit, making visits to Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dundee and Inverness; the beauty of the countryside and the urban centres impressed me quite a lot. In St. Andrews, I got involved in a few of the litany of activities offered at the university, including the Philosophy Club, the Liberty Club and acting in student productions, all of which I feel were fun and informative experiences.
Thank you again for choosing me to go on this amazing adventure. I could not have imagined the effect that this exchange has had on my scholastic and personal outlook and future endeavours.
The academic atmosphere here is exhilarating and it has been fascinating
to observe the workings and standards of a very different system. Participating
in varsity sports here, particularly basketball, has also been great,
as the emphasis is much more on recreation than competition. Then there's
been all the travel opportunities that have truly changed my perspective
on life and my future career ambitions - I just can't imagine ever settling
down now! From reading week in Paris and Rome to various weekend trips
to London and, to cap it all off, a wonderful week in Istanbul over
Easter break participating in a World Model United Nations conference,
my life here has been a continuous adventure. Perhaps the highlight
of the year was my family's visit on March break; like me, they would
have never had an excuse to travel had it not been for the award placing
me here. My dad, being an avid golfer, especially enjoyed his visit
to St. Andrews and his obsessive examination of the Old Course!
I had an outstanding year and have thrown myself into lots of extra-curricular stuff. I played on the women's football team , and was a strong participant in the debating society. Debating at home doesn't have the same sense of pageantry as there is here. I competed at several intervarsity tournaments including the World Debating Championship for St Andrews.
...the chance to study international relations with some real experts has been phenomenal. When your professor shows up in the newspaper, on the radio and in the Economist magazine regularly throughout the term, you know you're getting a great educational experience.
This year at St. Andrews, I have not only been able to experience the academic programs the university has to offer, but also a whole range of Other pursuits. These include involvement in the university music center (I play the violin), as well as playing on the varsity soccer team, which has proved to be great fun. Getting involved in various things has enabled me to get to know people from all over the place and really get a feel for this country.
May 4, 2010