Studying abroad has been the experience of a lifetime for me. When I started the process of looking at where I wanted to go, I knew I wanted to go to a place where they spoke English, and where theatre was thriving. Also, as a future professional actress, I wanted to have classes that would further me into my career after I graduate. Although I considered many areas, I knew London, England was somewhere that is booming with the theatrical arts.
After I chose my city, I had to consider programs that would accommodate my stay, as well as had the classes I wanted. When I saw AIFS’s program, and the classes they offered through Richmond The American International University in London, I knew I would be set on my choice. They had many acting classes for me to choose from, as well as others that would satisfy my degree. From the get-go, I absolutely loved my classes. My professors were all from the area, and were all willing to help me out in adjusting to the United Kingdom school system. They were very knowledgeable in their fields, and helped me to learn more about my focus in film and voice acting. All my fellow classmates were absolutely amazing, and made me feel welcome for the semester. As well, I got involved in the Richmond Student Drama Society, and we did a program called Pretty Dolly which was a devised play that we wrote within the semester. It was so much fun to work with these people and put on a fantastic production.
The part of London where I stayed, and studied, was in Kensington, which is just a twenty-minute walk from the royal Kensington palace. I was very lucky to be able to stay in an apartment style building, which offered more than the regular dorms. Kensington is one of the richer sides of London, and is where a lot of celebrities are known to walk the streets alongside us normal people. Also, Kensington is just a short tube ride from many other areas around London, and can easily be accessible within half an hour. I got the privilege of going to many tourist spots around London, such as the London Eye, the River Thames, and many other shopping areas along Oxford Street and Piccadilly Circus. I also attended the musical performances of Les Misérables and Wicked. There was so much to do within the timespan of a semester and I was fortunate enough to do a lot of it.
Studying in London was such a fantastic experience that I will recommend to anybody wanting a career in the theatrical arts after college. No matter who you are, or where you come from, London is a place where everyone is accepted and built up to reach everything they can dream of. It was the highlight of my collegiate career that I will never forget.
Bethany is working towards a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre with a minor in Music Performance. She spent a semester studying abroad in London, England through AIFS Study Abroad. Bethany had the following to say about her time abroad, “Studying abroad was the experience of a lifetime! It taught me so much about myself as well as about my field. I got to meet so many people and make so many memories. It was definitely something I will remember for the rest of my life. I absolutely loved it!”
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