Devin Hassay
English, Spanish, Secondary Education
Class of 2011
Scottish Universities International Studies Program - Arcadia Edinburgh, Scotland

How did you select your Study/Intern Abroad location?

I chose the SUISS program in Edinburgh, Scotland, mostly due to the fact that it offered an affordable way to study abroad. Also, as an English student, it offered a class which would easily transfer and count towards my major. These were the most important factors to me; the location was only a secondary factor. However, I had always wanted to see the United Kingdom, and Edinburgh was the perfect place to experience Scotland's rich culture and history.

Why did you want to study or intern abroad?

Being a local resident and commuter, I have never really had the experience of living in a new environment. I have always had a strong desire to travel and see the world, and so I believed that studying abroad would be a rewarding and eye opening experience.

What were the highlights of this experience?

The SUISS program attracts students who are not only American and British, but from all over the world as well. Meeting so many incredible new people from numerous different countries and cultural backgrounds was something I will never forget. Because the classes are taught entirely in English, everyone was fluent in it as well. As a result, we had a diverse group of people who could all share our own experiences while still exploring Scotland together.

What surprised you the most?

What surprised me the most was how quickly a foreign country could come to feel like home, and how a group of strangers could become more like a family. Because I have been living in Pennsylvania since childhood, I thought that I would begin to miss my home and family at some point. However, that point never came.

How has (or how might) this experience affect your major and future career?

Meeting with so many people from different backgrounds really inspired me to take more of an interest in global cultures and world events. Through my English major, I have mostly dealt with American literature. However, in the future, I wish to engage with texts from other cultures; possibly even translations of foreign texts.

What would you tell students considering studying or interning abroad?

I would say that it's definitely a rewarding experience! Studying abroad opens your eyes to new cultures, and new experiences that will stay with you for life. You really never know what else is out there until you've seen it for yourself.

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