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Raguell Couch

About My Study Abroad Program

Major/Minor: Psychology w/ a minor in conflict management
Program: Burch Field Research Seminar in London: Criminal Justice and Health Policy
Location: London, GB
Term: Summer 2023


Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you select your program?
I chose to study abroad because I wanted to explore the topics described in the program and because of the rich culture, history, and environment of London. I knew that I wanted to utilize Honors Carolina as a resource for finding a study abroad program because I wanted a smaller class that focused on a specific subject area.


What did you learn about yourself?
An important aspect of this trip for me was determining whether I was genuinely interested in attending law school or just enjoyed the thought of it. Getting to attend both criminal and civil court, visiting the Inns of Court for lawyers called to the English bar, and more solidified my choice. I plan to go to law school and hopefully I am able to interact with both American and English legal settings.


What is one of your favorite memories from your program?
One of my favorite memories from the program was visiting the Royal Courts of Justice, the major civil court of London, and seeing a criminal case be appealed. My mother is an attorney and I've attended several court cases in the United States, so I was curious about the distinctions and similarities in the UK. It was so exciting to be in court as judges, barristers, solicitors, and trainees buzzed about discussing cases, typing away, and preparing for hearings. The building itself was a gorgeous historical landmark that felt nearly alive as we explored each corridor.


What advice do you have for future study abroad students?
An important piece of advice I would share for future students is to give the opportunities available to you a try. Whether that's taking the train to a different city, seeing a play, visiting a unique museum or another specific event, give it a chance! You of course could end up not liking it, but going abroad is such a short and specific opportunity that it's crucial to stay in the moment and give this new setting your full energy and attention. You can always binge watch Netflix at home, but you may not get these chances again!


How do you identify?
Student of color


Could you share any experiences where your identity played a role in your time abroad?
I was very curious in discovering and exploring with my professors w the demographics of barristers and solicitors in London. Furthermore, I was intrigued by the history of Black lawyers called to the bar in London. While doing journals and other reflections, I was able to learn and share about this topic.


Is there any advice you would give to other students who share your identity?
I would say especially in a city that’s as diverse and metropolitan as London, there was so many festivals, restaurants, historical landmarks, and more that were about Black Brits across the diaspora. This was so amazing to learn about because I don’t feel that I’ve gotten to in my regular education at home! So take the time if you can to explore about your cultural backgrounds in these locations because there is more than initially believed.