My time at Regent’s University London European Business School
Hello, my name is Katharina and from 9.9. Until December 9th, 2013 I completed a semester abroad at Regent’s University London European Business School. I am studying ” Media Management ” (Bachelor) at a university of applied sciences in Austria. Here I describe my experiences:
Why I chose London
Since I already knew London relatively well from several city trips and really wanted to live in this city, the choice was not difficult for me. Unfortunately, my university doesn’t have any partner universities there, so I was a “free mover” who couldn’t fall back on Erasmus funding, but had to organize and finance everything myself.
The International Office at my university recommended MicroEDU. Everything went really smoothly. I filled out the required documents and received my confirmation in the mail after about a month and a half. Everything without any problems, I was very pleasantly surprised about that. As an EU citizen, I didn’t have to worry about a visa either, which was very convenient.
To the University
The university is really beautifully located in a large park, Regent’s Park, which is one of the “Royal Gardens” and is therefore under certain protection and is regularly maintained. The university is a big old brick building that is overgrown with ivy – it looks really nice in autumn. Inside there is a large cafeteria, a Starbucks, a brasserie and even its own restaurant. The interior was fine too. The only drawback, however, was that in some parts of the university there was no heating in the winter, it was pretty cold! The library is very well equipped and one of the many computer rooms is sure to find a place to study. Read more experience for studying abroad on Top-mba-universities.
The university’s Student Union often threw parties, such as a Red & Black party in a huge tent with a casino and dance floors.
To the courses
I took a “Principles of Marketing” course, which consisted of a weekly theory and practice lesson. We should put the content learned from theory into practice and complete various tasks. In addition to group work (inventing a product; writing about the development process in a joint blog and making a video), there was also an individual part in which we had to describe practical examples on our blog and combine them with theory.
I also took the course “Advertising and Media in the Marketing Environment” in which you have to do two papers, theory (topic: What makes advertising effective?) And practice (topic: analyze a marketing campaign based on effectiveness).
Then I also had “Writing for the Media”. We had to write various articles and press releases. The lecturer was very nice, but couldn’t really convey much to us because he probably didn’t really know what to tell us and therefore often finished the class after half an hour or gave us long YouTube videos, e.g. how to get one Press release writes, demonstrated.
One of my best courses was Russian, where the three of us learned with a native speaker, which really helped me a lot!
Then I also had “ Business English for Exchange Students”, but that can be forgotten! I thought that you might learn how to best write academic papers or give business presentations, but a large part of the course consisted of how to form verbs like think + ABOUT smth. This was really a big disappointment and I was completely underchallenged in this course. You already know such things before you do a semester abroad!
Otherwise I was quite satisfied with my courses and the course instructors, who were always nice. To my surprise, I only had one final exam in Russian, which is why I finished my semester at the beginning of December after only three months!
To the students
Although I quickly made friends with a few exchange students, I found it quite difficult to connect with the regular students. Anyone who thinks that you will find English students at this university is wrong. Most of them come from France, Russia, India, South America etc. Since not everyone can afford this university, there are mainly children from wealthier families here. On the first day you are a bit amazed at the sheer number of Prada, Givenchy and Louis Vuitton bags. The fur jackets are then carried out in winter.
I found it a bit difficult with that, because I’m used to coming from my university to show up in cozy clothes and not necessarily have to dress up. Some were very nice, but I had the feeling that many of them were quite arrogant and wanted to stay among “their own kind”. That was a big minus point!
About my living situation
I lived in a small apartment with a tiny bedroom, kitchen, bathroom and toilet in the Nido Notting Hill dormitory chain. Since I was not very familiar with flat shares and good residential areas, I thought that was the best solution for the short time. However, the pictures on the Internet did not correspond to reality, because everything was much smaller – and that for a price of 250 per week !!!!
I wouldn’t do this again in retrospect. The price just wasn’t justified at all. I didn’t even have a good view, I looked at the wall opposite. They also asked for £ 3 per wash and £ 2 for drying, which is a lot if you have to do the laundry every few weeks. However, I couldn’t just move out, because with a toggle contract you would have lost all the money for the 4 months that you had to pay in before. Many of my friends were lucky enough to find a nice flat share that was much bigger than my room – and that for around 600 pounds a month. But for something like that you really have to search and be lucky!
About the cost
I have never spent so much money in my few months in London. University fees and housing in particular consumed the most money. Closely behind are the costs for the tube and food. I went to a nearby Sainsbury’s about 1-2 times a week and did some shopping. I’ve already paid 25 pounds for a few things.
A couple of times I went out to eat with friends, which cost around £ 15 for a main course and drink. What is really annoying is that in many restaurants, such as Le Pain Quotidien, they automatically add a 12.5% tip! That’s quite a lot, especially if you only order something small!
One of my favorite restaurants was Jamie’s Italian by Jamie Oliver, which you can find on pretty much every corner in London. They offer really great food for relatively little money. A main course costs around £ 9 and is really tasty!
To the tube
If you don’t live near the university, nothing works without a tube! Even if the tube map only shows 5 stations, this could mean a journey of 5 minutes or half an hour. I was lucky that it didn’t take me long to get from Notting Hill to Baker Street and that I didn’t have to change trains.
I made use of the reduced student card (30% discount on daily, weekly and monthly tickets), which you have to order online. Even so, the monthly price is still £ 80 – not exactly cheap!
There is still the option of a “Pay As You Go” card with a rechargeable credit, but that was out of the question for me, as the credit (single trip from around 2.2 pounds) is used up very quickly. The tube is really well networked and you can get from A to B relatively quickly if – as is so often the case – there are no disruptions, rush hours and delays.
To go out
Since I lived in London, I naturally wanted to explore the nightlife as well. There are a lot of options, both clubs and of course pubs! You don’t have to pay admission in pubs, which was very convenient for me. It is also unusual to tip when ordering from the counter. One of my favorite drinks was an Aspall Cider, a kind of apple wine that tastes really good.
In clubs, on the other hand, you usually have to pay £ 20 entry + wardrobe. Also, the drinks are SO expensive. I once had to pay 11 pounds for a shot – that really hits the budget. There is then also the possibility to come in with a promoter. Often they will talk to you on the street and ask you if you would like to come into this club for free today and then be allowed to drink free drinks. I was pretty suspicious at first and I would never have gone out with a stranger, but since a friend’s boyfriend was a promoter, I often went out with them because it was really much cheaper. The idea behind this is that the clubs try to use promoters to bring a lot of people – especially girls, of course – into their clubs so that it is full and the atmosphere is more lively.
To get into the club, you have to wear high heels and a dress as a girl and a shirt and nice shoes as a boy – otherwise they won’t let you in. At the beginning I wasn’t used to that because you can actually get into many clubs as you want, even with flat shoes.
The most famous and popular clubs in London are almost all around Oxford Circus, which is very convenient as most of the night buses leave from there. Since the tube doesn’t run at night, night buses are the only way to get home besides taxis. The buses are usually relatively full, but still very safe and bright – I never had a bad feeling.
If you need ideas for your weekend, go to the Time Out London website!
I hope you were able to get a good insight through my report. In retrospect, I would do a lot of things differently, but I really enjoyed my first real stay abroad in London. Just keep in mind that life in London is very expensive! The university is quite good, but the tuition fees for such a short semester are very high and not always justified.