Tell me a little bit about yourself.
My name is Chengzi Huang and I am from Leshan City, China. I am studying for my Bachelor’s degree in English at Hong Kong Baptist University.
Why did you decide to study abroad, and what made you pick Swansea University?
I wanted to improve my ability to speak and write in English, and I really wanted to experience a different type of university life from my own. Swansea had a beautiful coast and I really liked the look of the area.
What is the process you had to go through to participate in the overseas programme?
Applying for the overseas programme was an interesting experience. I had to qualify with an IELTS score of 6.0, and then I applied via my own university system. There was also an interview and, of course the application for a visa.
What were you most worried about before you came
I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to communicate well at first. It is intimidating when you have to study in a foreign language. I was also worried about the different types of food that might or might not be available. Also, I had heard the weather was quite rainy. But it was all okay in the end.
What were you most looking forward to before you came?
It was a good opportunity to improve my English, see different places in the UK, and make new friends, which has been very nice.
How have you found Swansea University?
Swansea is a quite lovely city and I have enjoyed my time here. Swansea University itself provides me with all the necessary help that I might need, and all the teachers and staff are always nice and warm-hearted. I am really grateful for that.
What courses have you done and which ones have you enjoyed at Swansea University?
I took three modules in English language – The Language of Everyday Life, Studying the English Language and Psycholinguistics, all of which I enjoyed. I particularly loved the Psycholinguistics course which wasn’t like anything I had done before.
What has the workload been like, what is a typical week for you?
I will usually prepare by reading the textbook chapter, or required materials, set for the week. I prepare any questions set for classes. I make sure I attend all the lectures and seminars. I love to do sports and go out with friends after my classes.
Do you think the experience has helped/changed you? If so, how?
Yes, definitely. As an exchange student, I think this one semester gave me so much inspiration for both my study and my life. Living in a foreign country has given me a better chance to experience the local cultures and provide me a new vision to see the world.
What has the cultural experience been like, for you?
I’ve realized people have very different interests (e.g. British people have much passion for football), and I’ve learned that people deal with things in different ways. It’s an absolutely worthwhile adventure to come and study at Swansea University, and I’m quite enjoying what I’m doing here. I feel like I’m a much better person now than I was a year ago.