“My friends at other colleges and universities are always surprised when I tell them how many Transylvania students study abroad.” —Andrew Goff
Even the London fog couldn't dampen the spirits of Andrew Goff '13 and Lindsey Anderson '13. As participants in the Hansard Scholars Program in London during their junior year at Transylvania, these students discovered a new approach to hands-on learning.
Mondays they were students, taking classes at the London School of Economics. The rest of the week they were interns to a Member of Parliament (MP)—their hands on the pulse of British government.
Both Goff and Anderson were thrown amidst exciting action. "Being introduced to the British system and at such a high level was definitely the most rewarding part of my experience," Anderson says. "I witnessed debates in the House of Commons, accompanied my MP to talks with constituents, and even helped prepare questions for him to ask at meetings of the Justice Select Committee."
Goff, too, encountered exciting opportunities, including a trip to 10 Downing Street with his MP's team and a special tour. "Someone on [Prime Minister] Cameron's staff gave me the tour, and she told me it was the same one they gave to President Obama on his first visit to No. 10," Goff recalls. "I was honored to get an insider's glimpse of the rich and storied institution."
Often, the most compelling discoveries occur outside the structure of the study abroad program. Goff and Anderson toured the Palace of Westminster, the White Cliffs, and St. James Park. While walking or hiking in England, they were able to reflect on new perspectives they developed during their term abroad.
"By far the most important thing I learned is my new appreciation for self-reflection," Goff says. "As a people person, I never envisioned myself saying that, and I can thank my amazing experience in London for that."
Her time in London gave Anderson a fresh perspective on her past and future. "I have learned to appreciate where I come from," she says. "And I know that Lexington is the type of place where I want to spend the rest of my life and the type of community where I want to focus my future endeavors."
Both Anderson and Goff are thankful to Transylvania for this once-in-a-lifetime experience. "Virtually none of this would have been possible without the help of the Transylvania study abroad office," Goff admits.
Anderson also values the role her Transylvania education has played. "Transylvania prepared me for this program through its rigorous academic workload. I was exceedingly prepared to do the work that was asked of me and to do it well."
Anderson and Goff can surely agree that their term in London will transcend ocean and time—forever staying with them and shaping who they become.