Visiting Scholarship student reports 2011
Jack J Knight, (History, Alcuin) attended Rutgers
My scholarship was invaluable in aiding me to get by on the day-to-day essentials and also helped me to maximise my nearly all my experiences on study abroad.
One of the main reasons I wanted to spend my second year abroad was to immerse myself in a different culture to as great a degree as possible. Through careful financial management of the scholarship given to me by the alumni fund I was able to gain a lot of experiences that would simply not be available to me otherwise.
An example of this would be the long weekend I spent in Washington DC. The capital was an ideal place to enrich my understanding of American culture and national identity with its cheap travel links to New York (a $20 return bus journey), relatively cheap hostel beds ($25 a night) and a plethora of free museums and cultural centres on every chapter of American heritage.
From my experience of travelling to Washington DC and managing the money awarded to me properly; by the time I finished my year aboard I had also visited New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Montreal and Toronto, as well as spending three weeks travelling the length of breadth of the continent using the US train network and visiting Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland, Seattle and Chicago.
There is absolutely no way that I could have ever had the opportunity to experience so much on my year abroad without the generous help of alumni fund and for that I am truly grateful.
Nick Skeavington (History and Politics, Vanburgh) atteneded UPenn
The opportunity to study abroad was something that attracted me to York when I was deciding which university to attend.
During my first year I was lucky enough to be selected to spend my second year at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. Overall I don’t think there is anything I could have done in York that would have encompassed the academic, social and cultural opportunities I experienced whilst in the USA. During my year I was lucky enough to receive a Visiting Student Scholarship. This additional money really added to my time in America; I used some of it to spend two weeks visiting archives in Philadelphia and Washington to complete research for my dissertation. The rest of the money funded a weekend in New York where as part of the UPenn debate team I judged in the North American Championships and a trip to California to stay with two American friends I had lived with and their families. I am still in touch with them today and am looking forward to welcoming them to the UK hopefully in the summer.
I want to express my thanks to all the alumni who donate to the Visiting Scholarship Fund, your generosity greatly enhanced my time abroad and contributed very tangibly to what was a defining part of my university experience.
Rachel Stafford (English and Related Literature, Langwith) attended York CA
When I was offered the place to go to Canada, I took quite a lot of time deliberating about whether or not to take it. Ultimately though, I decided that it was a once in a lifetime chance and promised to be a life-changing experience. Looking back I am so glad that I took this chance! It would have been a great experience even if all I took away from it was knowledge of Canadian culture, but it was really about so much more than that.
I used the scholarship to cover the cost of my flights which, aside, from relieving me from the stress of the cost of travel, also meant that I could spend more money exploring the country and I even took a spontaneous trip to Montreal on my own which is one of the things I am most proud of over my exchange year. I felt like I got to know myself better, and proved that I could be independent, adaptable and adventurous which I never knew I could be! I made some great friends and have amazing memories and with the help of the Alumni fund, I didn’t have any financial worries to get in the way and I was able to take advantage of every opportunity.
William Stanley (History, Halifax) attended UCLA
I would like to begin by thanking the alumni and the University for providing me with this generous scholarship. It was invaluable to me last year and allowed me to greatly enhance my experience of Los Angeles and the other parts of America it allowed me to see.
One of the main benefits of the scholarship was how it enabled me to travel within America. As a direct result of the award I was able to spend a week travelling around California on the Coastal Starlight train; first going to Santa Barbara and then on to San Francisco. I then followed this by travelling with some friends to see Washington; an expensive trip that I would not have been able to afford on my own.
Moreover, Westwood is a phenomenally expensive place and the scholarship certainly eased the burden of my maintenance costs. It also allowed me to get to know Los Angeles to a greater depth than a lot of my peers who were also on exchange. I feel like I got to truly begin to ‘know’ L.A. I doubt this would have been the case without the scholarship. Becoming an Angeleno was incredibly important to me; my weekends travelling around the city and amongst its inhabitants were mainly funded by the scholarship. The experience in hindsight was priceless and I truly appreciate the university was able me help me. Once again, thank you.
Luca Wolf Bauwens (Politics, Economics and Philosophy, Alcuin) attended York CA
I want to take this opportunity to thank you for the Visiting Scholarship Fund award. I am very grateful for your support having helped me to make my year abroad an unforgettable experience. The following shows you how I used the award.
Thorough Academic Engagement Thanks to the award I was able to acquire additional course material for the courses that I was particularly interested in and wanted to profit from most. An example is the course “Self and Identity: Feminist and Anti-Racist perspectives” which is uniquely taught at Glendon College and where I was introduced to alternative views of Philosophy of Identity. Not only was I able to acquire additional academic references, but I also had a chance to visit an exhibition in the MoMA, which emphasised the issues discussed during the course. I saw artworks that inspired me to engage further with the issues; as a result achieving a first class research essay.
Best Delegate at the North American Model United Nations In addition to that, the award allowed me to finance my participation at the North American Model United Nations conference where I successfully participated as a delegate representing Spain in the Legal Council and won the award as Best Delegate.
Exploring Canada Moreover, the funds enabled me to participate in travels to different cities in Canada such as Montreal and Quebec City as well to discover Canada’s beautiful nature. This was an especially great opportunity since I would not have been able to profit from Canada’s cultural richness and diversity otherwise.
I had a wonderful time in Toronto. Thanks to the Visiting Scholarship Award I was able to engage in and enjoy such a great range of activities. Thank you!
Daniel Hofmann (Politics, Economics and Philosophy, Vanbrugh) attended UC Santa Barbara
Receiving the York Visiting Scholarship Fund enhanced my experience abroad a lot. When studying abroad one wants to participate in all special events; be it little trips within the year, music concerts or other venues. The problem, however, is that due to financial constraints one is generally unable to participate in all of them. To have to be selective whilst abroad is hard as every new event seems like something unique and unmissable. The Visiting Scholarship Fund allowed me not to have to make these difficult choices; using the money for exactly these purposes. I was able not to sacrifice my interests and could therefore attend concerts of my favourite artists in Los Angeles and Las Vegas and make the trips I intended to do. I am especially thinking about a trip I made in the final days of my stay.
With two friends, I biked down Highway 1 for three days camping in the wild; right next to the Pacific Ocean, immersing ourselves one last time with everything that is California and giving us the chance to think back to what was the experience of studying abroad and how it had changed us. Without doubt, the Scholarship helped me to do this trip as I still had $150 from it, allowing me to meditate on my journey with two, now lifelong, friends.
I am deeply thankful to the Visiting Scholarship Fund and can only hope that you will keep funding students abroad and maybe even expand the scheme as this money can make a huge difference to a student experiencing life overseas.
Daniel Hofmann, Economics and Politics, Vanbrugh
Jamie Fisher (Politics, Economics and Philosophy, Goodricke) attended UC Davis
Due to the generous bursary awarded to me I was able to truly take advantage of all aspects of the study abroad scheme. I believe the central benefit of study abroad is the amazing range of opportunities that living in a different country and culture presents; especially the wide range of travel options. The ability to not just study topics particular to certain locations that would not be possible at the home institution, but to then go out and see them in operation, is one which is exclusive to the study abroad programme.
I used the grant to visit Washington DC; a city of especial interest to me as a PPE student. During my time abroad I took many courses specially orientated towards American politics and due to the very generous award was able to see the institutions and processes I had learnt about in practice. I also used part of the grant money to take the train across America during which I not only saw many states which are normally passed over, I met and spoke to Americans from across the States and was able to gain a greater understanding of the many different cultures that make up America.