Why did you choose this program?
LSE Department of Management (Wharton Exchange Program). I decided to go to the LSE DOM exchange program because 1) I wanted to study in London, 2) I was interested in seeing what studying at LSE would be like, 3) I had business breadth requirements that I still had to fulfill, and 4) I liked how large of an international student population LSE had, so I’d be able to meet people from around the world.
How were classes different from classes at Penn?
The main differences between Penn and LSE courses is the consistency of the workload. Courses at LSE were highly dependent on only one or two assignments counting towards your final grade, whereas at Penn, course grades are much more spread across other metrics like participation, quizzes, discussion posts, exams, and projects. This allows you to have a bit more free time from studying during the term, but when finals come around you have to put in a good amount of effort!
What was the hardest adjustment you had to make when you arrived? How did you handle that?
The hardest adjustment when I arrived was making friends and forming a social circle. Luckily, at LSE, the exchange program I was in had only 18 students total from universities around the world, so we were all able to form a group chat and be friends with each other.
What were some of the extracurricular activities that you engaged in while abroad?
I did not engage in many extracurricular activities because I was traveling most weekends to different parts of Europe, but many friends in the program got involved in intramural athletics and other student organizations at LSE!
What surprised you the most about your study abroad experience?
I was surprised by how little FOMO (fear of missing out) I had for things happening back on campus. Being abroad, everything was so exciting and new that I never felt sad to be missing things back on campus.
What is your favorite moment or memory from your time abroad?
My favorite memory was when my high school friends came and visited me in London during their spring break. We went around the whole city together and it was great being able to share all of the excitement I had about it there with them.
How did your abroad experience help you grow?
Abroad helped me grow by allowing me to take a step back from things and do some personal reflection. I felt as if I became much more confident in myself abroad, much more curious about the world, and was refreshed coming back to campus. I also feel that being abroad gave me a sense of agency in being able to travel and meet new people.
How did you feel coming back to Penn after your program?
I felt so sad leaving London because it had become such an influential time in my college experience! Coming back to Penn, I felt excited to bring back some of the personal development I had had while there, and to share all of the memories with my friends on campus.
What advice would you give to another student planning to go on this program?
Do it! I think this program had a lot of unique benefits that I didn’t expect, especially how small of a community it is. Going abroad can be a bit nerve wracking, leaving a lot of your friends for a few months, but the small size of our program made that transition relatively quick and easy for me. I would also say to take advantage of the opportunities available at LSE. There are leaders from all over Europe that come to the LSE campus weekly, and it was amazing being able to see some pretty influential people during my time there!