Esther Eikins

About My Study Abroad Program

Major/Minor: Political Science and Global Studies, Minor in Health and Society
Program: Kings College London
Location: London, England
Email: esthero@live.unc.edu
Term: Spring 2022

 

Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you select your program?
I wanted to step outside of my comfort zone and really immerse myself in a place and culture that was unlike my own. I saw studying abroad as an opportunity to broaden my horizons and expose myself to other parts of the world!

 

What did you learn about yourself?
I learned that I am more resilient and open-minded than I previously thought. A lot of people live different realties from mine and learning to understand how and why they see things the way they do, while also expressing my own thoughts, was something I realized I was good at doing.

 

What is one of your favorite memories from your program?
I really enjoyed meeting people from all over the world. London is a cosmopolitan city and King's College reflects that. Sometimes I would be in class and every person in the room was from a different country.

 

What advice do you have for future study abroad students?
It's important to believe that you are a lot more equipped for handling difficult situations than you realize! It may be a learning curve but eventually you'll figure it out.

 

How do you identify?
Student of color, First Generation College Student, Scholarship Recipient

 

Could you share any experiences where your identity played a role in your time abroad?
Being a black, young woman definitely effected my time abroad. For as great as Europe is, they definitely have a stigma against black individuals-- especially if you have afrocentric features. There has been a lot of racist, anti-immigration rhetoric in the region lately. Therefore, I faced some discrimination when people assumed I was an African immigrant.

 

Is there any advice you would give to other students who share your identity?
Never travel alone, especially at night. However, it is hard to "prepare" for racist insults being thrown your way.

Memories

Travel Image Travel Image Travel Image Travel Image Travel Image