Dylan Porcello - 2014 Program Participant

Outside the Parliament building in London, England

My first time seeing Parliament.

What inspired you to study abroad?

I decided to apply for an international program because frankly I just wanted to experience something new and interesting. I had never really traveled outside of the United States and I was looking to break out of my comfort zone, while also enhancing my education.

Why did you choose CAPA’s program in London specifically?

I chose the CAPA London Internship Program because it gave me the opportunity to study and live in a new city and country, while also enhancing my professional development through an internship in the legal field.

What was your favorite part about interning in London?

My favorite part about London was how diverse the city was. There was a variety of different cultures and subcultures which showed how much the city had to offer. London is a city that remains fond of its historical roots, while at the same time keeping up with a modern cosmopolitan identity. This was also indicated through its astounding architecture. For example, while new architectural marvels, such as the Shard and Gherkin, highlight the city's skyline, St. Paul's Cathedral and Tower Bridge also remain important parts of London's identity.

What made CAPA’s London program stand out?

Something very unique about this program was the staff at CAPA London. Never have a been so amazed by a group of individuals whose sole objective is to benefit the students. I felt very welcomed by their presence early on in the program, especially during move in and orientation. As the semester continued this opinion solidified. The staff worked diligently to take care of anything the students needed, and were also willing to assist with anything that was not academically related. I believe that they were an vital part in my positive experience.

What do you wish you would have done differently in London?

One thing I wish I had done differently was budgeting. Had I planned further ahead I would have most likely saved some more money, which could have made things slightly easier down the road. I recommend to any future study abroad students that they plan most of their excursions and flights ahead of time, which will save a lot of money.

What was an ordinary day like for you as an intern in London?

My ordinary day in London would consist of the following: Wake up around 7:30 a.m., get ready and leave for either class or work (depending on the day) around 8 a.m. I would take the Northern Line from Camden to Borough if I was working, or take it to Piccadilly Circus, switch to the Piccadilly Line and take that to Earl's Court if I was going to class.

On a work day, I would spend some time in the office preparing court bundles, and then most likely take the 88 Bus to Holburn to attend proceedings at the Central Family Court, on High Holborn. On a class day, I would either have a lecture or a field trip in the morning for about three hours and then get lunch somewhere near school, and go to acting class for the rest of the day.

Tuesdays I had a free afternoon, so often times I would go exploring to somewhere new in the city with a friend, and see different museums or other interesting things in London that I had not seen before. At night we would cook dinner in the flat, and during the later nights of the week we would go to pubs and clubs for the rest of the night.

What was your favorite activity outside your normal day-to-day schedule?

My favorite activity outside of the normal day to day was traveling. I went to Paris, Rome, Naples, Venice, Dublin, Stonehenge, Bath, Amsterdam, Interlaken, Berlin, and Prague. I loved traveling because I had never been to these places before so I was experiencing so many new things all at once.

Where did you live during your internship in London?

I lived in a four man flat right in the heart of Camden Town. The best thing about my living accommodation was the surrounding area. Camden is a lively place, inspired by music and youth culture. There was always a great place to hangout, live bands every night, and the famous Camden Market. Camden was a place which I thought at first was quite rough around the edges, but after a short period of time it grew to become my home.

How has your program impacted your life?

The program has impacted my life greatly. I am now much more cultured and feel as though I have gained invaluable insight on the world around me. I have been encouraged to travel more, and to keep exploring. I cannot wait until my next adventure.