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Questions about studying and working abroad during your degree.

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How do you tell if a friend has depression?

3 answers

I'm on a year abroad at the moment and I've got a group of friends here who are also on a year abroad. Most of us are having a great time but one is really miserable - she never wants to leave her flat, spends every evening on Skype with her family/boyfriend back home and is always crying. At first we thought it was just homesickness but she's been like this for months and almost didn't come back after Christmas. Is there something we should be doing??!

Has anyone had experience with living alone?

4 answers

I'm considering getting a studio apartment and living alone on my year abroad, as I haven't had great experiences with flatmates and I really like to have my own space. Hopefully I will be motivated to join in with more things and make more effort to talk to people as I will really have no other choice. Does anyone have any advice?

Are there many jobs in academia for linguists?

2 answers

I'm in my final year studying French and Italian and am interested in doing a Masters and then potentially a PhD but I've heard that there aren't many opportunities in academia for humanities students. I also can't afford to fund it myself. Is it still worth applying?

Which is the best UK university for French and German?

5 answers

I want to study these two languages at uni but don't know if there's a place that's especially popular/has great language teaching for both subjects?

Has anyone worked for PGL before? Or know anyone that has?

3 answers

Hello! I have graduated in June. I am looking at language based roles with PGL. Has anyone or does anyone know anyone that has worked for this company before? Thanks.

How do I deal with misgendering?

1 answers

I'm trans and so the pronouns I use in English are not the ones people would expect to use when they look at me ("she"). I'm non-binary so I often use gender-neutral pronouns like ze/hir and they/them. -- How do I deal with it if people "correct" me for using the "wrong" pronouns and adjective/noun endings if I go with the masculine form? -- I'm worried about asking people to use the right pronouns and adjective/noun endings if I do go with a masculine or some sort of created gender neutral form. Any tips? I'm in Western Europe speaking a romance language btw :)

Is it possible to change work placements halfway through, and still qualify for an Erasmus grant?

3 answers

Six weeks in to my placement at a life and culture magazine in Florence, Italy, I've found it's not what I expected. My boss makes me work far more hours than my contract set out (last week I worked 40 rather than the specified 30), and although I was promised lots of Italian practice, so far, it's been entirely English-speaking. I keep hearing "we're getting there, soon we'll sort it out" but it's pretty clear to me they're empty promises. To top it all off, when I tried to bring my problems up with her, she shouted me down, then proceeded to tell me off, and later send me a passive-aggressive email basically telling me why I should be grateful for the opportunity to work for her. I am desperate to change placements, and have already found a new one that my uni tutor has 'okay'ed, but I don't know if this will make my Erasmus grant void as a) neither placement will be 3 months long, and b) it's not the placement I originally applied for. If I don't get the Erasmus grant, I can't afford to stay out here, but I feel I'm working in such a hostile environment I won't last in the job til Christmas!! Any knowledge on this would be so gratefully received :)

If I want to work in the foreign office, is one language enough?

2 answers

I'm interested in working in the foreign office but I study English and French at uni. Do I need to pick up a second foreign language to apply?

What are people's experiences of au pairing?

2 answers

I have recently graduated and - as I love working with kids and enjoyed my experience as a language assistant on my year abroad - I am considering seeking out au pairing work in Spain in the near future in order to perfect my spoken Spanish. However, I have heard a few horror stories from au pairs in the past, such as feeling stuck with horrible families with bratty children or parents who keep rowing, which can lead to a sense of isolation. What have been people's experiences of working as an au pair? Do you recommend it?

Staying abroad at Christmas (probably alone)?

2 answers

Does anyone have any experience of spending Christmas in their year abroad destination, and have any tips, please? I'm thinking of staying in Italy over Christmas but I'm a bit worried, because I'll be alone, and it'll be my first Christmas away from my family, and the UK! If anyone has any advice or experience to share, thank you.

Do people ever take their partner on a year abroad?

2 answers

I just wondered if anybody else has done the same thing and if so, can you give any advice? My partner and I have been together 3 years and already live together so obviously, I don't wanna leave him behind! I'm a bit concerned for him in regards to support and getting work etc. Any help would be great!

What should I do about mobile phones in France?

5 answers

I'm going to France for my year abroad soon and I was wondering what might be the best thing to do about getting a mobile out there. I have Skype for chatting to people back home, but if you want to text a lot or just need to call someone at home while you're out, is it best to use your english mobile or to buy one out there and use that? It's just that I can't see any way around it being very expensive either way. And how would you go about getting a mobile? The French equivalent of a Carphone Warehouse?