I came to Leeds to study law straight after finishing my A-levels in my hometown of Scunthorpe. I chose to study law because I felt the course would offer me the potential to either pursue a career as a lawyer, or afford me the opportunity to go into other fields of related employment, through acquiring a well respected degree.
Four years down the line, I am happy with my decision to study law. As with most courses, I found some modules more appealing than others. Nevertheless, the School of Law at Leeds allows students to pick many of their own modules in years two and three.
This has meant that I will leave Leeds with a law degree tailored to my own interests. Human Rights, Equality Law and European Union Law have formed the most interesting aspects of my degree, and I will seek to further my knowledge in these areas in my future career.
At the end of my second year I decided to apply to do a study abroad programme. My reasons for wanting to do exchange were numerous. I felt that studying abroad was a once in a lifetime opportunity that I could not miss out on. In addition, I thought the experience would increase my own personal attributes, aid my studies and increase my future employment prospects.
I chose to apply for a place at KU Leuven in Belgium and was successful. I studied European Union law whilst in Leuven. However, the most enjoyable aspect of the degree was meeting likeminded people from all over the world and sharing such a wonderful experience.
Leuven was a small student town with thousands of international exchange students and home to the longest bar stretch in Europe. Therefore, it was perfect for having a great time and socialising with fellow students.
My study abroad year has only been full of positives. I learned to become more independent, mature and responsible and also had the opportunity to travel across much of Europe, living in such an easily accessible location.
Deciding to move abroad is daunting, perhaps because of the many unknowns before you leave. However, it is completely worth it and all the challenges and adapting to a new culture that I had to do have only increased my confidence and outlook on life.
Since returning to Leeds, although during my time in Leuven I can say that studying took a backseat to the overall experience, I definitely feel that it has helped me with my final year. I am a lot more motivated to work hard and perform well in my assessments.
In addition, studying abroad offers interesting and different modules that you can use as a basis for your dissertation or to inform a greater understanding of other final year modules.
I would definitely recommend studying abroad to anyone. It has been the most enjoyable aspect of my University experience and without a doubt is not an opportunity not to be missed!