My first Pitt Field Hockey tournament, winning 2-0 at Ohio State. September 2016
My university is through CAPA, a study abroad program offering sites in multiple cities across Europe. The London institute is incorporated with Imperial College which is located just down the street in the Kensington neighborhood. This is particularly excessive to all of the student organizations and real college city campus feel. Tons of museums across the Kensington campus including the Victoria and Albert and the Natural History Museum, and Design Museum truly made me feel back at home in the comfort of Carnegie’s Art and History Museums.
The study abroad students were invited to Fresher’s Week and after a lovely conversation with the Captain I was encouraged try out for Imperial’s Field Hockey Team. As hockey is a huge sport in the United Kingdom I was nervous and not sure what to anticipate for the rounds of try-outs, with the new unfamiliar addition of the boys league on the same field. In America field hockey is predominately a female sport and in the UK the roles completely change as it is majority a male sport as Ice Hockey is much less popular. Playing field hockey at Pitt was my favorite thing and one of the things I missed most about the Fall semester so I knew this was a step I was ready to challenge myself. After 3 long practices, I was so excited and proud that I made the ladies first team and so naturally welcomed into the team by all my new teammates. I found the culture in London and specifically at Imperial College to be similar in nature to how Pitt’s campus is. For example, everyone is so curious to get to know each other and encourage diversity as nearly every girl I talked to virtually was from a different country or province of the United Kingdom. The accents translating onto the field was also very entertaining to me as I was not used to a thick British accent from my coach. Overall the experience of joining a new team really bonded me to that regardless of where we are from that culture really extends to all parts of the world and that you can find close friendships truly anywhere.