After checking my schedule and making a quick lunch this past Wednesday, I decided it was time I head to the Study Abroad Fair hosted by the University of St Andrews Global Office. I grabbed my coffee and started the long journey up the stairs of my flat to my room where I plopped down at my desk and logged onto Facebook, the classic COVID-19 era means of attendance. Using HopIn software, the Fair was organized into different areas that students could join, including a main ‘stage’ and individual ‘booths’ for the various partnering universities. The Fair began with an informative introduction from the Global Office’s Outbound Student Mobility Officer, Bronagh Masterson. The introduction gave a brief overview of the various programs available; it highlighted the competitive yet rewarding nature of studying abroad and provided some administrative information on how studying abroad can fit within your degree path. The Fair was oriented towards a second-year audience, yet they provided a great foundation for any first-year students looking to get an early start in their study abroad research.
According to HopIn, close to 400 people attended the online event between 14:00 and 16:00 BST. Luckily, the Global Office organised the online Fair in such a way that students could easily look further into specific study abroad opportunities. For example, the Global Office answered questions posed in an accompanying chat whilst representatives from other universities used the online ‘booths’ to answer any questions or concerns. Though I cannot compare this Study Abroad Fair to the Global Office’s previous ones, I was impressed with how easy it was to find the information needed to inquire further about studying abroad on an online forum as busy as this one. The different channels provided prospective study abroad students a great way to see all the different options available to them, from the comfort of their own flats!
The Study Abroad Fair provided several resources to help potential study abroad students find their bearings; the Global Office made it very clear that they are available to help students during their application process, and they can be contacted at [email protected]. Their Facebook page also provides a lot of information regarding application deadlines, updates on IT related issues, booking appointments, as well as personal accounts from former study abroad experiences. Any students interested in studying abroad should check out these resources or the study abroad page linked on the university’s website to find out more about how studying abroad fits within your degree program and what the application process entails. If you were unable to attend the online Fair, you can easily find recordings from the Study Abroad Fair on the ‘Study Abroad Fair Materials 2020’ Moodle module.