Introduction: AIFS London

Studying abroad has been a goal for me ever since I got to college. I’ve barely ventured outside of the United States, and have never spent any time in Europe. I have spent nearly the entirety of my life in New Jersey, and, as of recently, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. While a large part of my decision to attend Pitt can be attributed to the fact that I wanted somewhat different cultural experiences from the ones I had earlier on in life, I still found myself lacking any significant knowledge of what life is like outside of the Northeastern US. After a long summer of working an internship during the day and bussing tables at night, I am extremely excited to finally be touching down in London, England for the semester.

I would consider my current degree track to be fairly eclectic. I anchor myself as a marketing major, but my additional certificates range between Corporate & Community Relations, Digital Media, and Business Analytics. My personal interests are similarly diverse, as well, as my hobbies include following pro basketball, performing improv comedy, and writing music. Given all of this, when it came time to choose a destination in which to study, I knew I had to pick a city diverse in culture and experiences. This is exactly why I ended up in the wonderfully comprehensive city of London.

My program is running through a Pitt recognized provider called AIFS. I’ll be spending my time across the pond studying at Richmond University, which is an American international university with campuses in the London boroughs of Richmond and Kensington. My classes and housing accommodations are at the latter, where I’m staying in a fairly standard dorm building with mostly American students. An additional familiar touch is that the food is provided by Sodexo, so I can eat the same delicious, nutritious and sanitary food that we enjoy in the dining halls at Pitt!

In terms of what I would like to gain from my time in London, I hope to acquire knowledge and experience that will benefit me in my professional life. London is a bustling center of industry, and a great place for a young professional looking for a place or career in which to plant their roots. I will seek out any opportunities that may enable networking and/or professional experience. Being in a fresh, new classroom environment with students from all around the world is also something I’m looking forward to a great deal. Finally, I can’t wait to spend weekends traveling around London, the UK, and beyond to greater Europe, as well.