SOAS University of London

Caitlin Ryan, Georgetown University, Year Abroad

I would not have studied anywhere else in London. I’m considering coming back for a Masters!

Study Abroad January to June 2009

Which courses did you study at SOAS?

  • Public International Law
  • Legal Systems of Asia and Africa
  • Arabic 100
  • Survey of Modern Japanese Literature

Why did you choose SOAS?

SOAS offers students like me, with a particular interest in Asian or African Studies, a wealth of resources in terms of people, publications, and ideas—all in the heart of London. I would not have studied anywhere else in London. I’m considering coming back for a Masters!

How would you describe living in London?

From the day I arrived I have been telling people that London is the most diverse place I have ever lived. Before coming I didn’t know what London cuisine could be. Fish and chips alone seemed bleak. But I quickly got my answer—food in London is anything you can think of from absolutely anywhere, because the cuisine reflects the people who brought them here.

How did you spend your free time?

I explored London by running in my free time. One day I stumbled upon a fresh flower market. Another I was thrilled to realize it took me less than 15 minutes to reach the Thames. I’ve gone running in the rain and even ventured out on our Snow Day, but I never regretted a good run and a chance to explore another corner of London.

Any advice for students thinking about Studying Abroad?

Study abroad in the UK! I know one reason many students decide against being in the UK is because they feel it is not “exotic” enough, being an English-speaking area. But the wealth of diversity in London constantly keeps me on my toes—so many accents and new phrases sometimes make me feel as though I’m the one that does not speak English! So our shared language as a reason for not spending a year or semester in the UK should be thrown out.