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Hope Gambill

About My Study Abroad Program

Major/Minor: Political Science & Philosophy with a minor in Conflict Managment
Program: Criminal Justice in London Burch Seminar
Location: London, UK
Term: Summer 2022


Why did you choose to study abroad and how did you select your program?
When I decided to apply to study abroad it was kind of on a whim for me. I had always known that I wanted to study abroad but I just did not know exactly how it would work- or how I would afford it. I decided studying abroad in the summer would be the best path for me and just picked the program that I thought seemed the most interesting. It ended up being the best program, I was so interested in all the topics we discussed, and I loved getting to experience London with other people from UNC.


What did you learn about yourself?
I learned so much about myself and the world through my time studying abroad but I think one of the most important things I learned was that I am capable of doing so many things on my own. It was really scary to imagine going abroad without my normal support system, but I ended up figuring out a lot about the way I problem-solve and gained more faith in my abilities to accomplish things. I also continued to learn more about how I like my normal environment to be and what's important for me to do so that I am able to be my best self at other times.


What is one of your favorite memories from your program?
London is such an amazing city because there is so much going on all of the time. Sometimes, that can make the city feel a little overwhelming because you feel like you are constantly missing something cool going on, but other times, when you are open to new experiences, the activities will just kind of line up for you. That's how my roommates and I felt on one of the first nights we were there when we found out that part of the Sundance film festival was in London. My roommates were both able to get tickets, but right after they bought them it showed me the tickets were sold out! I ended up getting ready and going with them to see what would happen, got a ticket, and had an amazing time. Emma Thompson was like a foot away from us at the premiere of her new movie Good Luck To You, Leo Grande and we got to stay for a special Q&A session. Afterward, we were hungry and the place we wanted to go was closed, but we ended up finding our favorite restaurant in London, Dishoom, that night! There were so many times during my time abroad when everything just worked out perfectly and those are my favorite memories too. Another example was when we arrived in London during the Queen's Jubilee! It was an amazing way to experience the city for the first time and see everything booming!


What advice do you have for future study abroad students?
Even though you are in a new country you are not alone! There are still so many available resources and people out there who will help support you anytime you need them. The people around you who are in your same program are also having very similar thoughts and are probably just as scared as you. Don't be afraid to reach out to others and ask them if they want to do something! If you are planning on going to London, the Winston House is there and it feels just like you are back at UNC! The staff is helpful and any UNC student can go there!


How do you identify?
Scholarship Recipient, Rural County Resident


Could you share any experiences where your identity played a role in your time abroad?
London was totally new to me not just because I had never been out of the country much, but also because I had never spent much time in a large city like that. It was a big adjustment to city life, but I loved it so much! I was definitely relying a lot on my friends there for navigation assistance at first, though!


Is there any advice you would give to other students who share your identity?
Even if you don't know how you can afford it if you get accepted into the program still apply! There are so many resources and scholarships that can help with funding it might be way cheaper than you ever thought it could be to go abroad!


If you faced any challenges abroad, where could you turn to get the support you needed?
I always knew that if I ever needed anything I could talk to my professors. They were so helpful and understanding! There are also a ton of people in the Study Abroad Office whose contact I had just in case!