By Marius Merz – Second year student at UCG
Already in the beginning of the second year it is time to think about your options for the semester abroad, which will be in the last year of you Liberal Arts and Sciences studies. Concerning exchange, UCG offers quite a broad range of possibilities. Places all over the world, from USA to Europe to Asia, are represented in the exchange prospects. Although a decision can be quite tough with such a variety of options, it was already clear to me that I would love to use this opportunity, given by UCG, to go to a place as far away as possible.
After quite some time of contemplation, Asia – Hong Kong seemed to me as the best shot for a new, intriguing chapter in my student life. Luckily, already one week after sending in my application, I was notified to be one of the selected people that are offered a place at the City University in Hong Kong. Now, boosted by the constantly closer coming challenge abroad, I succeeded in making more concrete plans about my near future. Conveniently, the semester in Hong Kong is, like in the Netherlands, starting in September. This gives me the opportunity to use my free time during the summer, so I can start my journey earlier.
After a sailing trip with my friends near Italy, I will kick off my exchange adventure by going to Sri Lanka. There I stay for almost a month, travelling and getting to know the culture of a completely different country. Two very good friends of mine from UCG, who also will have their semester abroad in Asia, will meet me in Sri Lanka two weeks after my arrival. So far, our plans for the stay on the island evolve around hiking trips in the countryside and surfing lessons on the beach. Could be worse, if you ask me. Then, finally, I will fly to Hong Kong, to be on time for the orientation week in the City University, when my stay in this mesmerizing city will start. Flights are booked and my courses are chosen, but there is still some work to do, regarding the visas and accommodation in Hong Kong. I am more than thrilled when I think about my summer and the following semester. I really appreciate the fact that I have the chance to travel in and experience a country, which is so different to Europe. But more importantly, I do all of this while continuing my studies.
Although the next months still seem so unreal, my excitement increases with each passing day.