Some people walk in the rain, others just get wet!

Friday, 30 December 2011

Small beginnings

Hi all!

So, I'm not entirely sure how I go about this blog thing but please bear with me while I try to work it out! This is my first blog post so I'll start by giving an explanation behind why I have this blog in the first place.

For a while now I've wanted to go on exchange but it's alway been one of those things that I never thought could or would actually happen. Back in January, 2011 I started talking to a lady at work. I can't even remember what the conversation was originally about but we somehow came around to talking about going on exchange. From there I decided to go home and start doing some research. I've looked at going on exchange before but this time I really thought that it might be possible and so I printed out all the forms and information that I could find, I looked at many different universities all around the world, I thought about what I wanted from this exchange and I looked at the school catalogues to work out if they would suit the classes that I had to take. In the end I decided that America was the way to go as they could better match my degree than in other countries. From there I had to decide on a school. This part was hard, so many to choose from! I eventually narrowed it down to 5 schools, Western Washington University being one of them, and with a lot of research, questions and discussions I eventually decided.

I don't know if any of you who are reading this have ever looked into going on exchange but I'll tell you that it takes a lot of time and preparation. I started doing this in January and my application wasn't due into ECU until July. After I'd made up my mind that I wanted to do this and had settled on WWU I had to collect everything together for my application. This included writing a personal statement, getting an official transcript from the office, finding units/courses that would match the classes that I was expected to take back home, I also had to include a second choice school which meant more research. And after all this I had to have a meeting with my course coordinator and get her to sign off my application. Definitely not something that I would recommend doing at the last minute!

After being accepted into the program by ECU I then had to apply to WWU which was a similar application. Finally, in November (or maybe late October..I forget now...and in my defence i'm still jet lagged!) I found out that I had been accepted!! What followed was sorting my visa, booking flights, applying for accommodation, countless emails to "buddies" and room mates, getting vaccinations, sending in proof of vaccinations and telling my employers that I unfortunately would be leaving them in a couple of months. But after all that here I am ready to explore America (admittedly I missed my connecting flight from LA to Seattle and arrived later than anticipated in Bellingham (more on that later))!

Anyway,  the point of this blog is share my adventures and experiences with my friends, family and other students who are considering going on exchange. I'll keep you updated on what Bellingham is like, what being on exchange is like, the things I do and see and my what my time in the US is like.

I hope you enjoy reading this (I can't promise it will be amazing but it will be honest) and my goal is to try something new everyday which will hopeful make for some interesting posts (thanks to those who suggested it!!)...I think flying for 32 hours and stopping in 4 different airports counts as something new for today!

I think it's time to find some food, haven't eaten in a considerable amount of time...whoops!!

Love Danielle xx


  1. It was a great first blog Danielle. We are looking forward to hearing about your adventures. I am sure all the work you have put into your exchange will be truely worth every minute. SHeryl & Ross

  2. Awww! Haha, I didn't know how to start off so I thought I'd explain the process of going on exchange. I hope it was ok! Have a lovely New Year xx

  3. hey great blog, I've been considering exchange myself, as I am also a student of ECU, i just wanted to know if u needed really good grades to be considered to go on exchange? As I am not a student that is getting alot of Hdistinctions or distincstions, but from what I've read I dont want this to hold me back, so I will put in the effort next semester if this is the case!

    Thanks Mike, hope you are having a blast

    1. Hi Mike. I'm so sorry! I didn't see this until now. You don't need really good grades (as in you don't have to be a HD student), you just have to be in good standing which basically means you need to be passing everything. The individual unis that you then apply to may look at your grades to determine whether you could keep up with the work and such but so long as you're passing then you can apply to go on exchange. I would definitely recommend it, it's a lot of fun albeit hard work!
      I hope this helped! Have great week :)