It’s hard to generalise about what student life will be like at your host university. Every country and partner institution is different, so we encourage you to discuss with a wide variety of persons for advice on what life is like at your host university.
Student life at your host institution
Every country and partner institution is different. For advice on what life is like at your host institution, you also encouraged to speak not only to returned Queen Mary students but also to current incoming students from your host institution who are studying abroad at Queen Mary (see below section about ESN Society). You should also read our returned students' amazing testimonials and blogs on Queen Mary Global Bloggers.
It’s also a good idea to look at your host institution’s webpages for advice for exchange students for more information. You can also look at their social media to see whether they have any exchange or international student groups.
While the idea of making friends might seem daunting at first, you should quickly feel at home at your host institution thanks to the Orientation/Welcome/Induction activities they will likely organise from the beginning of your exchange.
After you receive a Conditional offer of exchange, ask your School/Department Coordinator if they can introduce you to students who have returned to Queen Mary from studying at your proposed institution: they can give you valuable insights into what life might be like there for you as an exchange student and perhaps help you make some connections before you go. You may also reach out to any of our many Global Opportunities Ambassadors directly for this valuable one-to-one advice.
It’s also a good idea to look at your host institution’s webpages for more information: start following their social media accounts to see whether they have any exchange student Facebook groups or advertise events on Instagram, for instance.
The Erasmus Student Network (ESN)
As an exchange student, you also have the international support of the ESN. The student-run Network helps its members feel at home academically and socially in their host countries through a wide range of cultural and social events that help you make friends from all over the globe. The ESN provides a Student Guidebook, and you can find out more about the Network at: esn.org.
The Erasmus Student Network at Queen Mary is a QMSU society and open to all students interested in or participating on any type of exchange. Joining before an exchange is a great way to meet previous participants, get advice and make like-minded friends who have been to or who are from the destination/s you interested in going to. If you wish to join Queen Mary's ESN chapter, you can contact the team via Facebook or email: email@example.com.
Support and campus life
You will also be able to use all of your host institution’s available welfare and sporting/social facilities on the same basis as any other fully enrolled student at your host institution. Look at your host institution’s website and social media to see what they provide in terms of student support, advice and campus activities.
As every destination is different, you may contact the GO Office if you have a query regarding the availability of a specific kind of support at the host institution where you will be studying.
Find your perfect match
Every one of our partner institutions is different: they each have a unique character and individual strengths.
We encourage you to choose a host institution that you think YOU will be best suited to and where you are confident that you will thrive.
If you are interested in undertaking part-time work whilst abroad you should consult visa and immigration advice for your host country to find out if you are eligible to work. You may also wish to contact your host university to ask if they can provide further advice.
Find out more about your host country
If you want to find out more about your chosen country, you can visit topuniversities.com and read their country guides or look at the destinations section of the Global Graduates site. The UK Government also provides Living in country guides which you might find useful.