You have stumbled upon our favourite section of the whole site! The whole purpose of ThirdYearAbroad.com is to help you make the most of your year abroad, whether you're at the planning stage, about to jet off or reluctantly back for final year. Here you can find the best apps, online resources, evening courses, CV-enhancing tips and survival tactics; all to keep you one step ahead when it comes to having the best year abroad imaginable, learning loads of new skills and eventually finding your dream job. Here's some inspiration:
Lukas is 23 years old from Hamburg in Germany, and he's doing his Interpreting and Translating (French and Spanish) degree at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh. He is currently spending the first semester of his year abroad in Brussels, and will be heading to Barcelona for his second. As a seasoned and thrifty traveller, here is his advice about making the most of budget airline Ryanair on your year abroad...
It’s a great time to be a year abroad student. The sun has well and truly got his hat on, picnics in the park or at the beach become a daily occurrence, work/university becomes even less of a priority, and one glance at your Facebook or Twitter newsfeed confirms why you took a year abroad in the first place: all your third year friends back at home are panicking through the 17th draft of their dissertation or drowning in revision notes for their final exams, and you’re definitely, definitely not.
I'm writing this because I wish I had documented my time abroad better. It has bugged me ever since, especially as my computer had an irrevocable crash and I lost a huge number of my favourite photos (pleeease make sure you print them, or at least back them up properly!).
To help you avoid making the mistake I did, here are some great ways to preserve your photographs and itineraries: scrapbooking, an intriguing handbag idea, a stop-motion video, a clever keyring, a beautiful printed book, or even a photo patchwork quilt/cushion can all come to your memory's rescue when you're a nostalgic graduate.
Lying on the beach soaking up the Spanish sun with not a care in the world, but just as the sand starts to creep into your hair and you take a deep breath to inhale the sea-air, you remember that project you have to do for University. Suddenly the experience becomes nothing like you had envisaged when you chose your degree programme 3 years ago and were promised a fun-filled time abroad. The reality of an impending University deadline hits you and you’re forced to dump the beach towel, screw the lid back on the sun lotion and head inside to start the essay you thought would be a lot easier to churn out when the time came.
Jen is studying English and French at the University of Warwick, and is spending her year abroad as a Language Assistant in Caen, the largest city in Normandy. Here is her advice about documenting your year abroad with 'BlipPhoto', a blog for keen photographers.