New Skills in London!


Given the chance to study abroad has truly been a privilege. Not only am I completely in awe of the city but also the person I am becoming. This opportunity presents me with experiences I have yet to encounter, which allows me to sharpen my skills. In a completely new city with new faces, I had to quickly adapt and become more flexible. Those skills aren’t strangers to me but being in Pittsburgh and spending two years in a pandemic has made me lazy. I was getting too comfortable and familiar with my environment and lifestyle. Being in London as a student and an intern, I’ve learned that you should always plan ahead and be adaptable to unexpected situations. Trains may be down when you don’t expect it, new tasks may pop up, and work meetings may be rescheduled, delayed, or cancelled. However, those things should not negatively impact you and your day. Plan ahead and be flexible!

Confidently speaking, I can be your tour guide for London. Going to locations in Central London has become muscle memory and converting pounds to dollars has become reflex. If you had told me these are skills that I would possess a year ago, I would’ve laughed and said, “you’re joking”. Also, since everything is in kilograms, I’ve learned how to quickly change it to pounds in my mind. This is extremely useful when it comes to lifting to save myself from embarrassment. In terms of work, I’ve learned how to effectively send out mass emails and deal with unkind responses. These are all technical skills that would be able to help me in the future as I plan on coming back to London for work.

Coming to London, I’ve definitely noticed plenty of differences. Since food cannot be standardized (wise words of Professor Willie) I’ve noticed that chips here taste different and American snacks are easily overpriced (I miss hot Cheetos). Most Londoners have been nothing but welcoming and kind, however, some have given me a hard time due to my American accent. Ironically, some people find it fascinating. Also, the roads are smaller since they prefer sustainable and smaller vehicles! Nonetheless, I’ve been enjoying the street arts and graffitis along with markets.

For those planning to study abroad, I would suggest learning about the cultural differences between the United Kingdom and the United States. I’ve tripped up a few times myself so I can definitely vouch for the fact that certain words have different meanings in the US and in the UK.

Windy Dover

Anyways, that’s all for now, see you next time!