Natalia Kolenko - 2016 Program Participant

What inspired you to go abroad?

I love travel and London is my favorite city. Not only did I want international experience, I wanted future contacts in case I ever get the chance to move to London (like I hope to).

Edinburgh, capital of Scotland

Why did you choose Anglo Educational Services?

Studying abroad would have been fun but with an internship you get work experience and contacts for networking.

What was your favorite part about London?

Everything! London in my favorite city. I love how historic and creative it is. There are so many things to do, so many great places to eat. I also love how easy it is to get to other places, like Scotland which was incredible!

What made your experience abroad unique?

It's so different spending two months in a city and interning there rather than just visiting. I've visited London before, but this trip let me really experience the city.

London Eye in England
The London Eye

How did local staff support you throughout your program?

They were great! Stephanie Hodges and Jill were incredibly helpful and were great to talk to about anything.

What's one thing you wish you would have done differently?

Taken fewer classes. The internship was three full workdays and I understood having Alan's class on Monday and Friday, but the extra class on Monday with Leslie was a bit too much and didn't feel very helpful.

Describe a typical day in the life of your program.

On a class day, we would wake up, go to class, probably explore the city for a while, go back to the flat and relax, then maybe go out for dinner. On an internship day we would wake up, go to our internship, maybe explore the city a bit after work, go home and relax, then either go out for dinner or buy dinner and bring it back home.

What did you enjoy doing in your free time?

Everything. We explored neighborhoods, went out to eat, went sightseeing, had picnics in Regent's Park, went to plays, went shopping. I saw a concert once, I got a tattoo, one weekend we took a day trip to Brighton, another weekend we went to Edinburgh.

What was your accommodation like? What did you like best about it?

We stayed in Ability Towers in Angel/Islington. It was a flat with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a living room and a kitchen. I liked the location and it was a fairly nice view.

What is one thing every participant should know before participating in your program?

Money goes FAST. Be prepared for the exchange rate and make sure to bring enough to be comfortable. I learned this the hard way…

Tower Bridge, London
Tower Bridge

What was the hardest part about doing an internship abroad?

I think the hardest part was budgeting money. The U.S. dollar just does not go as far as you think it does in the UK! Also it was occasionally tricky figuring out how public transportation worked, but after a while it was fine.

What surprised you most about London?

What surprised me most about London was how changeable the weather could be. People always say that London rains all the time, and it does frequently, but not in the way people think. Sometimes it rains for five minutes then it stops all day, sometimes it rained all morning and was gorgeous in the afternoon, sometimes it would go from raining to sunny to rainy back to sunny. It was sometimes difficult to dress for the weather!

What is one thing you wish you would have known before interning abroad in the United Kingdom?

I wish I knew that the attire was more casual, because I packed a lot of business professional clothes. I also wish I packed warmer clothes because I thought it would be warmer than it actually was. For my internship, I wish I had known that I would need to speak up more. I was really quiet because I was getting accustomed to the position, but then I got stuck in that mind set. I wish I could have relaxed and been myself a bit more.

If you could intern abroad again, where would you go?

London in a heartbeat! But maybe Germany or Switzerland or Sweden.

What do you feel the biggest benefit of doing an internship abroad is?

The biggest benefit of an internship abroad is the global experience, where you get to learn from people who are different from you. 

It really stands out on a resume.

Beach in Brighton, England

Do you have any packing tips for individuals headed to London?

Pack light! You will thank yourself so much for doing that! Also pack warm because it does not get as warm as you think it will, except for a couple of days.

Would you recommend Anglo Educational Services to others? Why?

Yes absolutely. It was a great experience and so easy to succeed in (as in applying to go and the steps taken to make the trip happen).