Interview with Hannah Hodson – Studying in the UK


Hailing from Hong Kong, Hybrid News Project Manager Hannah Hodson chose a study abroad experience fuelled by tea, Hobnobs and unnecessary politeness; where else could she have landed but the UK?

During a chat with our Editor, Hannah provided some insight into her experience of life in the UK as an international student.

1.    So, Hannah, why did you choose to study in England? 

I have some family in the UK, which means that I have spent many summers in and around the country. To be honest, I felt relatively comfortable with living in the country even before I arrived.

2.    What did you study? 

I chose to study for an MA in International Relations and Journalism at the University of West England in Bristol. I love Bristol’s buzzing student scene!

3.    How did you find the application process?

Surprisingly, I found it relatively easy. I studied Art at undergraduate level in my home country, so I just showed my portfolio of work to an International Officer at the University and was accepted soon afterwards! I didn’t expect the process to be so simple…

4.    Did you consider studying anywhere other than England?

I did consider studying in Australia- however, while there is a huge range of interesting course options available in Australia, I found that UK programmes catered for what I was looking for more specifically.

5.    How did you find the people and culture in the UK?

Despite having some British family members, I did find moving to England something of a culture shock; I’d always considered a summer holiday destination rather than somewhere I would live from day to day. The people on my course and in my accommodation block were, however, extremely welcoming and friendly, so settling in wasn’t an issue for long. As might be expected, the weather also proved to be a bit of a shock to the system!  

6.    Did you learn the language? If yes, how difficult was it? If no, how did you cope?

Luckily, English is my native language – so no problem there!

7.    How do you feel that studying abroad has helped you and furthered your career?

I feel that studying abroad has allowed me to develop a more comprehensive understanding of how different countries operate. Experience of living and studying independently in both Hong Kong and the UK has given me the confidence to want to travel more and explore a variety of different cultures later in life.