Lim Kay Yong

Lim Kay Yong standing in front of a statue in London.

Normally, I would have spent my December holidays meeting friends or playing games. This year, I signed up for UB Winter Study Abroad London and it was one of the best choices I could have made.

London is full of different activities which you can engage in. During the few weeks, I managed to visit many museums, palaces and musicals, many of these are places which I would not have experienced if I were to go on a leisure trip.

One of the major events that baited me was the Light Festival in London, also known as the Lumiere, where streets are decorated using “light” or illuminated objects and these decorations come in the form of architecture or animation. Another event that is exclusive to the winter program is the opportunity to do the New Year countdown in a foreign country. For me, I went to the top of a hill to watch fireworks with a few of the other students. The hardest part of the course is to resist the temptation to get out of your dorm and enjoy every moment in London. The best advice that I could give is to start planning for your course work as soon as you receive your course syllabus and weave in any activities or events alongside your academic requirements.

For someone who is living in Singapore, where it is summer all year round, being able to experience winter is also a different form of exposure. The clothes I wear and the facilities which I used are also different. Instead of randomly picking a set of clothes from the wardrobe, I had to check the weather forecast and plan how many layers I have to wear to ensure that I will be kept warm. The use of a heater inside our own room is something I am very foreign to.

Not only were the experiences important, but also the people you get to meet and interact with during the London winter session program is another reason to participate. During the program, I made friends with other students from the UB home campus. We get to learn together and experience firsthand how differently we live our everyday lives.

Even though the Winter Study Abroad program lasted for only three weeks, it was a great experience.

– Lim Kay Yong