Study Abroad Reflections: Jamie Hinch

Alyssa Skvarla
Friday 24 May 2019

Exams are over at last! To celebrate, we have another study abroad reflection ready for you. This time, we’re taking you even farther north than St Andrews. Jamie Hinch spent this past semester abroad in Iceland, and he’s ecstatic to tell you all about his experience.

Three students on the beach

“Hi, my name’s Jamie and I’m just coming to the end of my semester abroad in Iceland! Spending 5 months in the world’s most northerly capital city has been a delightfully weird experience; from the nature to the people, it’s by far the quirkiest place I’ve been! This quirkiness is best demonstrated by the daylight hours, which throughout my stay have had me awe-struck. In January I’d have classes ending at half 11, and the sun STILL wasn’t up, through to now in May when it never even gets dark! Noticing these changes day-by-day has been a real highlight, as you realise the effects it has on your emotions, body and behaviour- you feel so connected to the place through the weather and light; it’s something I’ve really embraced and learned to value! The other major highlight was back in March when me and some friends travelled a few hours north to the peninsula of Snæfellsnes to watch the northern lights; it was cloudy for hours and we were beginning to lose heart, but around 9 o’clock suddenly the clouds shifted, and another hour later and the sky was dancing with purple, red and green lights. It was simply magical! Whilst it’s an amazing place to be, I owe a lot to luck in finding a good friend-group in the first week of my arrival, which has allowed me to fully make the most of being here. As my return to the UK beckons, I am
sad to be leaving, but am so excited to be back in St Andrews!

(Also, it was -20 degrees Celsius in the attached picture, hence the snood and hat combination was a must!!)”

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