BMT 038: Enrolling in a Foreign University with Hayley Swinson

(Last Updated On: January 20, 2021)
Enrolling in a Foreign University

Have you ever considered skipping the traditional study abroad structure and enrolling straight into a foreign university? Hayley Swinson decided she wanted to study abroad again after college and that she didn’t need a structured program to help her do it.

Instead, she took it upon herself to apply at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, get accepted, secure her student visa, find housing, and essentially create her own study abroad experience according to her interests.

She received a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Edinburgh at the end of 2014 and is here to share about her experience, challenges, costs, surprises along the way, and of course, offer advice for others considering the same thing.

About Hayley

Hayley Swinson was born in Columbia, SC, but has never felt more at home than when she is on the road. She attended the University of Richmond, VA where she received a bachelor’s degree in French and Creative Writing. She independently enrolled and was accepted into the University of Edinburgh to study for a Masters in Creative Writing: Prose, and completed her degree in August 2014.

She loves music, crafts/sewing, horseback riding, fashion, modeling, theatre, writing/reading, traveling, yoga, meeting new people, webcomics, rock climbing, Japanese jujitsu, Lomography, playing guitar, social media, language & cultures, and will try just about anything once.

You can find her at her online travel magazine Savvy Girl Travel.

Episode 38 Show Notes

What you will hear in this episode:

Hayley’s story about how she decided to study abroad for a second time, this time to get her Master’s degree in Scotland. She shares details about the cost of tuition, how she had to get her visa, how she found housing, and what life was like living in Scotland as an international student, yet not as part of a structured study abroad program. She gives great advice about what to expect and how to decide if this type of study is for you and also describes the process and cost of getting foreign transcripts assessed by a third party so they are accredited in the US.

Links and resources mentioned in this episode:

  • Help with visas and passports – use the links on this page if you need to find out what it will take to get a visa to any country
  • Hayley’s website – Savvy Girl Travel
  • Say hi to Hayley on Twitter, and please feel free to ask her questions about her experience in the comments below.

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Thanks again to Hayley for sharing her story with us!