Daunted by the prospect of a compulsory semester abroad on Erasmus exchange, I almost decided against studying French at university as an Undergraduate student. Having graduated in 2012 with a degree in English Studies and French, I now know that I would have missed out on one of the best experiences of my life; one which, given the opportunity, I would repeat ten times over. Not only was I able to integrate into French culture, I also gained a valuable insight into other cultures through the many international friends I made. I could not have foreseen how quickly Perpignan would feel like home, or how friends would become like family.
On completion of my degree, I was desperate to return to France as an English Language Assistant through the British Council and was ecstatic to be offered a position in Lycée Henri Poincaré in Nancy. This gave me valuable experience in teaching English to non-native speakers and opened my eyes to the prospect of a career in this field. Living abroad, both as a student and as a language assistant, offered a new sense of independence and increased my confidence, both in my linguistic abilities and in life in general.
All in all, I believe that I had the best possible experience as an Undergraduate student. Indeed, I enjoyed my studies and the opportunities derived from my degree so much that I am returning to the University of Stirling in September to undertake a Master’s in Translation with TESOL. I have no doubt that this course will open many more doors into exciting new opportunities and that my passion for languages will only continue to grow.