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5 Lessons That I Learned 5 Years Later

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After first visiting London as a tourist five years ago, I returned this year to live and study in the city for the semester, and oh what a different experience it has been! Here are five lessons I have learned over the past four months living in London…

Location: Along River Thames near Tower Bridge.
Lesson 1: It is ok not to be ok all the time. Studying abroad can be a bit on an emotional roller coaster but it is all part of the growth process!

Location: Warwick Castle Garden (left) and Holland Park (right).
Lesson 2: Getting out of the city into the English countryside for a day or two can be a much-needed breath of fresh air (literally and figuratively).

Location: Outside Hyde Park.
Lesson 3: Never go inside the red telephone booths! Just don’t do it. I recently walked by a man peeing in one in broad daylight.

Location: Kensington Palace.
Lesson 4: Comparison really is the thief of joy. Everyone is experiencing similar ups and downs as you, even if they don’t talk about it, so try to stay focused on your own journey rather than comparing your study abroad experience to others’.

Location: Tower of London.
Lesson 5: Try the scones with clotted cream and jam. Two words: GAME. CHANGER.

Sierra DeAngelo studies Environmental Biology at Colgate University and studied abroad with IFSA at Queen Mary, University of London in England in spring 2019. She served as an International Correspondent for IFSA through the Work-To-Study Program.