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Study Abroad - Jill Waddle

Name: Jill Waddle

Degree: MLaw Exempting

Location: Year Four Semester One at University of Lucerne

Why did you decide to do study abroad?

Four years is a long time to be studying in the same place. I thought going abroad to do a semester would not only be a welcoming change to routine, but would massively help my job applications inn such a competitive industry. I thought it would be nice to have a new start coming into final year, the most important year of my degree.

Why did you decide to go to the university you went to?

I had never heard of Lucerne before I saw it as an option for a place to study. I met with another student who had previously studied there and she spoke so highly of it. Switzerland is such a beautiful country and I thought it was the place for me. I also thought it would be so safe to live in meaning I could be totally independent – and I was right! It was the perfect place to study with the most amazing surroundings in a beautiful city with so much life.

What was your stand out moment during study abroad?

On my doorstep of the student accommodation was ‘Mount Pilatus’. You could walk to it from my flat. Going up there on the most beautiful day and having a drink and meal at the top of there was breath taking. It was in the middle of my studies there and it was just such a peak of happiness. I loved Lucerne, and this was the highlight moment. 

Was it expensive to study abroad?

Yes. Switzerland has a high standard of living – just a brief example, a burger and chips at an average restaurant would be about £20-25. However, the Swiss government give you a lump sum of money when you study there. This was extremely helpful. The rent wasn’t much different from what you would pay in Newcastle, but in general things are not cheap. If you budget well however this is not a problem! It takes time but I learned to shop at the cheapest supermarkets, places to eat and cheap transport methods, for example, ‘the half fare card’.

Why do you think this will help you in your future studies at Northumbria and future career?

I was told in second year “imagine everyone on your degree gets a 1st or a 2:1, what else do you have to make you stand out?”. I feel like studying abroad offers you an edge on applications. It shows you are motivated, independent and take risks. It shows you are a social person willing to meet new people and open to new opportunities. Even coming back to finish my last semester at Northumbria in the Student Law Office I am in a firm of other Erasmus students. Everyone is motivated and driven and we have been welcomed back with ease into Northumbria life again.

If you could offer some advice to students thinking of going on study abroad what would you say?

GO! It is the best thing I have done. I was hesitant and heard of others going in the past but thought I couldn’t do it within my degree and it the studying wouldn’t be the same in a different country. Little did I know, every question I would ever have about study abroad was already taken care of at both Northumbria and the University of Lucerne had accommodated for every need.

I met the most amazing life long friends, gained a Global Legal Studies certificate, travelled Europe (Cheaply!), had so much fun and even managed to get an average of 75%. You would not regret going!

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