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School of Business and Management

Study Abroad Series Part 2 - Current SBM Student? Consider Studying at a Partner International University.

Did you know at the School of Business and Management (SBM), Queen Mary University of London you can study abroad for one semester or for one year?  

So what is it like to study abroad?

Ellen, BSc Business Management student shares her experience on securing and enjoying a Year Abroad in America at the University of Califronia, Berkeley 

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 1. Where are you from?


I am Swedish but lived in different countries in the last five years.  I am originally from Stockholm.


2. Why did you choose to study at Queen Mary?

I lived in Italy for high school with family and before that I lived in Japan. My parent’s attitude is that they want to have international careers so that has given me the opportunity to study in another country.   Also, going back ‘home’ was not a good fit for me for I only have relatives, there.  No connections and only some friends because I have not been living there for several years.

I visited lots of universities, but it was the Open Day at SBM when I knew I wanted to study here and in London.  I got a good ‘gut feeling’ and I knew I could study here for three years. 


3. Why did you choose to study BSc Business Management?

My mum did a lot of business abroad. I knew I also wanted to be on the move so starting a business management course would be the start to my international business career. 


4.How did you find out about study abroad?

I did my research, got emails about the talks and looked at different universities but found the University of California to be the best for my study abroad.


5. Why was it important for you to do a study abroad?

 I want to work in an international environment.  Also it looks good with prospective employers for you get one year experience.  It is also a cheaper way of getting into a great university.  I don’t understand why you wouldn’t do it.


6. What are the benefits of doing a study abroad?

  • Finance – you save money doing it. Lower tuition fee, good accommodation and the possibility of a scholarship.
  • Academics – you get a different learning experience, choose more of what you want to do in that you can follow the 2nd year modules here but do extra classes and get more options.
  • Social & Cultural Experience – you make friends for life. At Christmas, I went on a trip to New York, Boston and Philly (Philadelphia).  For the Spring break I went to Mexico and over to Canada for the weekend.   It really is an opportunity to travel.  I also joined a lot of clubs and societies.  It is very different from Queen Mary. To become a member you have to work to get in.  I had an interview, also had to submit an essay but it was worth it. There is also a lot of free activities on campus including a free swimming pool for students!  There is so much more available but don’t think about that when choosing a school.
  • How did you choose your school – good reputation and ranking, live on campus to get the real American experience, go to an English speaking country, I focused on Berkley and got in.


7. With hindsight what would you do differently?

Do more while I was there:

  • Go on more trips g. Texas, New Orleans
  • More clubs and societies
  • More time to get to know people I met
  • Do more extra classes – did required units and a bit more, have fun classes like ‘decal’ which are taught by students and get credits from feminism to baking


8. What is your lasting memory and key takeaways from the experience?

  • ‘Keep working, keep grinding’ Apply to do things it pays off
  • I was surprised at what I was able to do
  • If you want to do something just do it, even if you think you can’t just try it, it pays off in the end


 9. What advise would you give to first years?

Study abroad, just do it, it’s worth it.


  • Apply even if you are unsure

There are several ways you can go abroad:

  • International exchange
  • Within SBM for a business school
  • internships abroad


  • Have an open mind because opportunities are out there but if you don’t look yourself you are not going to find them
  • If you don't like it you can always come home


10. How are you acclimatising back to the UK and QMUL?

I keeping in contact with my friends and planning trips to visit them and some are coming here to visit me.  Another goal is to get into a Masters programme. Keeps me focused.  As study abroad opened my eyes I don’t want to go back to what is comfortable. Therefore, I might consider Asia.


For more information about study abroad opportunities at SBM email Salman Uddin: