BY OLLY SULLIVAN,
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND JOURNALISM STUDENT
Before starting at DMU, I had never left Europe. Now, in my final months of study, I’m lucky enough to say that I have added three new countries to my list, spanning three continents.
#DMUglobal wasn’t a driving force for me picking DMU, but after hearing about it on an open day and seeing the departures board outside the Hugh Aston building, I knew it was something I had to get on board with to complete my university experience.
My first trip was in February 2017, during my second year. As part of my Corruption and its Avoidance module, myself and 12 other students flew across the globe to Hong Kong.
The culture shock was immense the very second I stepped off the plane, it was like visiting a whole new world. With no knowledge of the local language, and not much money in our pockets, our group dived straight into the deep end, immersing ourselves into the local culture, and making friends with fellow students at City University.
In all honesty, it didn’t really seem real. We had been given £400 each by the university to help fund our trip, and couldn’t have done it without the fantastic support the university offer.
My second trip was even more beneficial to my course – this time, an 11-day journalism internship in partnership with the prestigious Charles University in Prague.
This was a perfect opportunity to practice my dream profession in the field, this time with the added difficulty of a language barrier and a city I’d yet to familiarise myself with, rather than roaming DMU campus with a notepad. Sharing my experience with other second years, as well as a handful of first years, we became a close-nit group of friends by the end, which is always an added bonus.
Finally, my third (and hopefully not final) DMUglobal trip was the mass-trip to New York City. Although some of us didn’t actually make it to New York because of the infamous ‘bomb cyclone’, it was amazing to see Times Square flooded with DMU scarf wearing students throughout our five-day stay.
The highlight of the trip was the UN Together event held at the UN HQ, where the university signed a charter with nine other higher education centres from around the globe to help combat the refugee crisis.
The most important thing to express about DMUglobal that the trips aren’t just an opportunity to see the world, immerse yourself into new cultures, discover new experiences or make memories that last a lifetime. DMUglobal does all of these things with one key bonus – the opportunities enrich your studies.
The bursaries I received for my trips are available to all other students, and help make the trips affordable for everyone. I never expected I’d ever be able to afford to visit Hong Kong, Prague and New York City all in the space of 12 months.
Without a doubt, I feel like a better student thanks to my DMUglobal experiences, and unquestionably, I would recommend it to every single other student, either current or future.