Turing Story: Reflection on my Turing-funded study exchange semester in Canada

Posted in: Student mobility, Turing funding

Martin Kasperlik, a fourth-year BSc (hons) Business Administration student from the School of Management writes about his time in Canada.

After the COVID pandemic, I was lucky enough to spend 4 months in Canada in a small student town near Toronto called Kingston. Here, I was studying business-related units contributing to my degree in the UK. I was able to experience a completely different approach to teaching where a quarter of our overall mark was based on our contributions to the class. Given the huge student community, I was able to interact with several extremely interesting students and teachers from all around the world. This has helped me develop my social and soft skills. I have made a few great friends with whom I have made memories I will never forget. Living on a different continent was a life-changing experience as I could discover Canadian culture first-hand whilst embracing the different styles of living and working.

I chose the Business Administration degree program at the University of Bath back in 2019 because it offered a study exchange in the final year. Since then, I knew I wanted to participate in this exchange because I am very keen on travelling abroad and mainly exploring different cultures as it usually makes me grateful for what I have at home. Moreover, since English is not my native language, I love being able to practise speaking it abroad whilst making new friends in a different environment.

Before going abroad, I expected that it was going to be very difficult financially, especially in Canada. However, when I arrived there, it was even worse than I initially anticipated. Canada is extremely expensive, especially for travelling around the country or for eating out. Due to the latter, I have taught myself to cook which is something I am really grateful for. Moreover, I did not obtain the type of visa which would allow me to work whilst being in Canada. Because I had very limited savings from my previous jobs, securing the Turing Scheme was vital for me to be able to afford this change of lifestyle. The funding allowed me to focus on fully enjoying my exchange, and my studies, as well as travelling around Canada without having to sacrifice any aspect of the exchange.

Student posing high on a mountain, with a lake in the background
Conquering Lake Louise – the bluest lake I have ever seen

The study exchange in Canada has been a dream come true for me and it has been an experience unlike any other so far. Upon first arriving in Kingston, I worked on learning to embrace being out of my comfort zone and grow as a person. Living alone almost 6,700 kilometers from my parents and friends allowed me to take full responsibility for myself and taught me a very valuable lesson. I met extremely inspiring people and discovered a true passion for hiking Canadian mountains and admiring their crystal-clear lakes. I believe opportunities like this are rare and they should be taken even if it is challenging. I am now counting the days until I can come back to Canada again.

Niagara Falls
Niagara Falls are as massive in reality as they seem in the picture

Experiencing a study exchange abroad is life-changing and I highly recommend it, especially because the Turing funding can make such dreams come true.

Martin Kasperlik

Posted in: Student mobility, Turing funding


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