I think I may be one of the most indecisive people in the world. I mean I know loads of people say this but really I think I could be.As an indecisive person, having to pick 10 universities in order of preference that I would like to study abroad at was absolute hell. It’s hard to narrow down an entire country to 10 places, especially when you can’t go and see any of them. I’m the kind of person that likes to get the ‘vibe’ of a place, and as great as virtual tours are, you can’t get a true sense of that feeling over the internet. We all know that websites for universities like to sell the positives as much as possible, and without talking to the students it’s hard to get the whole picture.
As ISEP has links with such a large number of institutions, I had to put some strict criteria in place to make sure I wasn’t spending ages considering a place that wasn’t right for me just because they had a pretty library or a fancy gym. My degree is American Studies, which is quite broad, but my focus is in politics, media, sociology and similar fields, so there had to be a decent amount of choice in those areas. I’m also interested in women’s and gender studies, as that’s not something I’ve done a lot of at Essex, as well as history, particularly African American history and the Civil Rights and Cold War eras. If modules on these topics weren’t offered, I moved on to the next place.
I also considered location. I’ll admit I factored weather in, because I’m more of a warm weather woman, and I know I’m not one to be excited about it raining during my walk to campus. I included politics in my decision making process too, and thought about where my political leanings slotted in by state and city. Now I have a much shorter list than I had begun with, and even have a few universities that I can really see myself going to.
Even with my matrix, I like to think that trusting your gut is often the best way to go; if you’ve got any reservations then there’s probably a reason why. I think I’ve finally narrowed it down now. I think. Although maybe I should just double check…