Rebecca Sponaugle from University of South Carolina, USA, tells us about her exchange experience at Strathclyde. Find out what Rebecca enjoyed most about studying here, Glasgow, Scotland and exploring Europe.
Why did you choose to come and study at Strathclyde?
I wanted to study somewhere in the UK because I knew that the culture shock wouldn’t be quite as extreme, and Scotland was a great option for me because I have ancestry in the Isle of Skye. The University of Strathclyde offered everything I needed to continue studying for my major abroad, and also has a great Business School in general, so it was the best option for me!
What differences have you found between studying at home and here in Scotland?
It’s extremely different to study in Scotland compared to the United States, because a large amount of your work has to be done in your own time. Your professors aren’t constantly checking on your progress throughout the semester, so you have to have self-motivation.
What have you enjoyed most about studying at Strathclyde?
The best part of studying at Strathclyde was the people I was able to meet through living in the residence halls and through my classes, since there are so many international students.
Without coming here, I never would’ve been able to experience the way people from other cultures and backgrounds think to the extent that I did at this university.
What have you enjoyed most about studying in Glasgow/Scotland?
I really loved how friendly and helpful the people were in Scotland, and how comfortable I felt in the city itself.
Every time I was on the last leg of a trip in Europe, I was so excited to come back to my home away from home in Glasgow.
What advice would you give to an international student thinking of coming to Strathclyde?
I would definitely tell them to make sure they give themselves enough time to explore Glasgow and Scotland.
As this was my first time in Europe, I constantly wanted to travel to as many countries as I could while I had the opportunity, but some of my favourite memories are from trips I took to Edinburgh, the Isle of Skye, the Highlands, and St Andrews. I felt like I didn’t even get a chance to see all of Glasgow itself, and wish I had seen more of the West End.
What’s the best thing for an international student to do in Glasgow/Scotland?
In Glasgow, I think the best thing to do is to go out and really experience all the awesome restaurants and pubs the city has to offer, and to take advantage of all the events and concerts that seem to constantly be going on.
I don’t think that anyone should leave Scotland without taking time to see the Isle of Skye, either by student trip or renting a car-which is what I did. The scenery in the north of the country is so breathtaking, and I wouldn’t trade the experience I was able to have there for the world.