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Hannah Brower, Smith College, Year Abroad

I most enjoyed the diverse course offering and the passion my classmates had for their course. You can find someone interested in just about everything here- and people doing something about it. There is always an academic talk, conference, or exhibition going on, and lecturers are keen to talk about and teach what they know best.

Study Abroad September 2011 - June 2012

Which courses did you take at SOAS?

Why did you choose SOAS?

I heard about SOAS from a friend who had gone the year before and knew it would be the perfect place to expose myself to other religions that I, as a religion major, hadn’t come in contact with before. I wanted a diverse atmosphere [and somewhere that] knew about modern issues AND historical context.

How would you describe living in London?

I never fancied myself a city girl, but London changed my mind and I can say that I’m head over heels in love. London is vibrant, diverse, and easy to get around. There is ALWAYS something going on and chances are, you’ll meet someone if you venture out of your flat. I love the market atmosphere; you can get all your food from the vendors who will likely haggle with you and get to know you if you frequent their stalls!

How did you spend your free time? 

I volunteer at home, so I made sure to set myself up with volunteer tutoring and a nanny job when I got here. It made me feel more permanent, even though I was only to be here a year. I didn’t end up hanging around with other study abroad students at all- it was easy to integrate with my flat mates and we’d soon had mutual friends and would go out on the weekends. As London is a walking city, I always found myself searching out new green spaces and open skies as well.

Any advice for students thinking about studying in the UK?

Make sure you get involved both at SOAS and in the wider London community. There is SO much to do if you look online, so many people have dedicated themselves to letting Londoners know what is on at any given moment. Get out and have fun!