Brittany - University of Texas at Austin

B. Communications / Journalism
Semester 2, 2016

Academic experience

While on exchange I chose to do 4 elective subjects so I got to study in areas I never have before, such as sports and social media as well as interpersonal communication. I liked that the teaching staff were so passionate about their studies and really motivated you to do well in your assignments. It was a little difficult to get the hang of their online enrollment system but having an academic advisor was helpful as they provided guidance with any queries I had.

Personal experience

I made so many friends while on exchange. Once people hear your accent they are immediately drawn to you so you have plenty to talk about. I made friends through university, my accommodation and as well as travelling. I was able to meet so many people from around the world and share experiences with. I also got to travel to over 40 different places across three countries, so I definitely got to see and do a lot.

Accommodation

I lived in an apartment block on campus. I was in a 2 bedroom apartment where I shared a bedroom with another girl. It was very different to anything I had experienced before, but it is very common in America for people to share rooms. I made really good friends with the girls I lived with and was able to meet so many people in my apartment block. My advice would be to organize accommodation early as it fills up very quickly. And also put yourself out there to make friends early on.

Budget

I would recommend budgeting at least $20,000 for food, rent, electricity and of course travel.

Professional development and employability

I've definitely refined my communication skills as well as interpersonal skills. I learnt how to navigate around unfamiliar places and develop my street awareness. I definitely grew a lot as a person while abroad and I realized a lot about my personality and interests.

Highlight

Moraine Lake, Canada
Moraine Lake, Canada

My highlight of my experience was being able to travel to the Grand Canyon. It absolutely blew my mind. Oh and I also got to see Kanye West in concert, which was pretty cool.

Top tips

  • Get organized early on.
  • Ask plenty of questions as the whole process can be very confusing.
  • And be sure to get your courses approved early.
Brittany - University of Texas at Austin