Working abroad – WIYA and External Placements – Austria

Antonia (Modern Languages), worked in Austria

I have been learning languages since I was six years old and the culmination of all this hard work and enthusiasm was the opportunity to go to Austria and live the culture and language to which I have devoted so much time. Nothing compares to finally getting to stretch yourself away from the classroom and actually enjoy speaking a language on a daily basis to make friends, have fun and, essentially, to live!

My year in Austria was an opportunity to live like somebody else, to really get into the way of life in the Tyrolean Alps and to have a year away from university where you can really let go. I tried skiing for the first time (turns out it’s a lot harder than it looks!), I watched professional skiers risk life and limb to fly down a mountain in the quickest time, I went to school balls, I climbed up mountains in the middle of the night, I saw Salzburg Sound of Music style, I drank Stiegl, I made some unforgettable friends and most importantly I had an amazing time.

Living abroad is the best experience of my life so far and it has given me real confidence in my capabilities – to cope alone in a foreign country and to make the best of it. When I was told that the Year Abroad would be the best year of my life, I thought that was a bit extreme but, to be quite honest, the years to come now have an awful lot to live up to!

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