Final London Reflection

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Hello guys, I write one last entry into my journal now that my program has finished and I am back in Texas. Living and studying abroad in London was an enriching and transformative experience, to say the least. The blending of ancient tradition with modern innovation offered a unique learning environment that was just as inspiring as it was educational. As for my academic program, it went beyond my initial expectations.

The program offered a rigorous blend of theory and practice, which was what I was hoping for, but through the environment of a small classroom, my learning experience exceeded what I expected. The professor and TA were not only knowledgeable but also committed to our learning. They consistently made complex concepts easier to understand, encouraging us to think critically and to develop our problem-solving skills.

One of the most significant changes that came about was a shift in my perspective, both personally and academically. Before, my view of the world was narrower and more locally oriented. After this experience, I came to understand that the world is interconnected in so many complex ways. My goals also shifted from being largely centered on personal achievements to wanting to contribute to the broader global community using the skills and knowledge I’ve gained.

During my time abroad, I was able to build upon my technical skills in Mechatronics, particularly in circuit theory. Mechatronics essentially is a brief overview of many topics that Electrical Engineers have to learn. It was fun stepping into their shoes for a course and learning a Mechanical Engineer’s equivalent to Thermodynamics or Strength of Materials. Besides academic proficiency, I also improved my communication skills, learning to express my ideas clearly and effectively in a multicultural environment.

As much as I found the experience rewarding, it also came with a set of challenges. Being far from home, I struggled with homesickness and the language barrier, specifically from the different English accents spoken in London. I realized early on that immersion is the best way to learn, so I actively sought out opportunities to interact with locals, attend cultural events, and explore the city to familiarize myself with the local customs and language. With time, these obstacles became less daunting and even offered a learning experience in their own right.

Another challenge was the intensity of the academic program. Balancing a rigorous curriculum with the desire to explore a new city was difficult. I had to learn to manage my time effectively, balancing study, research, and leisure. I started making to-do lists and schedules, and before long, I found a rhythm that worked for me. I made sure to study all throughout the week and finish strong so that I could use the weekends for travel and relaxation. Thus, this experience was an incredible lesson in discipline and time management.

All in all, this journey has been an invaluable chapter in my life. I’ve grown personally and academically, equipped with new insights, skills, and a renewed sense of purpose. I am excited to use what I have learned to contribute to my field and to the broader community.