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A Canadian Living Abroad in Their Final Year of Law School

By Gurkamal Dhaliwal

Project Director of the Insight Project

As a Canadian student, studying at the University of Leicester for my final year of law school, it has been a roller coaster of emotions. I did my first year online and came to Leicester in September to start my second/final year of law school. I felt a huge culture shock as soon as I arrived. The people, food, and the atmosphere felt very different but good at the same time. It took some time to get used to the ‘slang’ everyone used here or the way things were referred to such as not calling a can of coke – ‘pop’ because that word is rarely used here and saying ‘cheers’ instead of ‘thank you’. My personal favourite – calling everyone ‘mate’.

I am someone who likes to stay consistent with little to no change. This shift of staying away from my loved ones was a huge change for me and something that I am slowly adapting to. Whilst I still miss everyone back home, I am starting to make many more new, meaningful friendships with everyone in my program. I can also participate in more social events on and off campus and have more extracurricular activities such as mooting, mock trials, the Insight Project and many more that are available to me.

A major shift would be living alone. I have lived with my parents my whole life, so having to live on my own and away from them for this year has been difficult. This is because as university life is stressful enough, there are so many other factors that are solely my responsibility now as well. It has been difficult trying to balance school and home life, but I am slowly starting to adapt to a fixed schedule that will help me manage my time well. On the other hand, I am very excited to be here and to try and explore new things that I would not get to experience back home. Therefore, my advice to anyone considering Leicester law school would be to GO FOR IT! It may seem scary at first but that will slowly start to turn into excitement, and you will be looking forward to trying new things every week! You get to meet all kinds of people with different backgrounds and experiences. Personally, I feel like you get to grow in ways you would have never imagined. I have become a lot more independent and a lot more open to trying new things because this is the one and only year to try them!

“Study abroad is the single most effective way of changing the way we view the world” – Chantal Mitchell

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