An International insight to studying at Lancaster

Beans on toast, banter and constant drinking seems to sum us up


The typical problem for an international student is familiarising with the culture of an English university, so it is interesting to see how international students have adjusted to life in England.

Betts Talbot from America, History and Criminology

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Betts Talbot taking full advantage of the over 18 drinking age

What is the scariest thing about studying abroad?

A: There are a lot of things that are scary about going abroad, but the hardest thing for me was getting on a plane going somewhere 15 hours away from home having no idea where I was going to be living or if I would make friends or not. I was also extremely nervous about people stereotyping me because of my background.

What’s the most interesting/bizarre thing that’s happened to you whilst you have been here?

A: It’s been an eye opening experience. I do like that it’s legal for me to drink here.

Is there anything you don’t like about England?

A: Beans on toast.

Apparently the concept of baked beans on a toasted bread is too much for American Betts to handle.

A reoccurring motif for some involves adjusting to the boundless drinking activities. This has led to many of the Internationals being accustomed to the question “another round of ring of fire?”

Attending an university in a different country can be very uneasy for the most confident of individuals. Especially after experiencing the fast lane of the university that we call the spine (a part of campus that causes so much frustration and anger from the speed demon students).

Yichen from China, English lit, Intro to Media and Cultural Studies and Discourse Analysis

What is so scary about studying abroad?

A: Being alien and different, I mean, the physical appearance, is enough for me to feel uneasy and nervous. I remember the first day I was left on my own to take the air plane to Manchester. This superficial difference does have some mental influence on me and ‘reminds’ me from to time to time that I am a foreigner here. Maybe this reflects my fear of being different, or being a minority.

What’s the most interesting/bizarre thing that’s happened to you whilst you have been here?

A: I have never had such experience of drinking for drink’s sake…so when it comes to drink with British students together, I just have no idea how to ‘behave myself’ NORMALLY and decently at the bar.

It surprised us a lot that students here have a party from time to time and come back at even three or four am.

Dyhei Chan from Hong Kong, Accounting and Finance

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What’s the scariest thing about studying abroad? 

A:The scariest thing could be the cultural difference since me and local students cannot be close friends due to the language barriers and the fact that it is hard for us to hang out due to different interest and culture.

What do you think about the British culture?

A: Frankly, I don’t know much about the British culture. However, I enjoy the learning environment in the UK, except the rainy weather haha. Furthermore, I am keen on learning British slang (though I am not sure whether this is a part of the British culture).

Collin Gruener from America, International Law

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Collin’s main surprise was “meeting people who actually like American football” Maybe we aren’t that different compared to our fellow Americans…

What is so scary about studying abroad?

A: Not getting along with the people I live with.

Have you felt there has been a language barrier?

A: Other than the fact that you guys spell things incorrectly, no. I have learnt a few words like Cheeky Nandos, Bellend and Banter.

Siddhant Daryani from India, second year Accounting and Management Studies

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Whilst our modern British culture can be weird and interesting for international students, we should not forget that Lancaster is one out of six collegiate universities in the UK, a wonderfully weird experience for any student.

What’s the most interesting/bizarre thing that’s happened to you whilst you have been here?

A: The accommodation system man. It’s sick. It gives a community feeling to everyone.

What is so scary about studying abroad?

A: Adjusting to the culture, but after a bit it is no problem because it is really comforting and welcoming.