Elise Fernandez wins the March Student Blog Competition!

Fountain of Color by sunsurfrMany congratulations to Elise Fernandez who is the first ever winner of the Student Blog of the Month Competition!  The London Undergraduate Program Staff, including Director Warren von Eschenbach and Director of Student Affairs Judy Hutchinson, judged the blogs.

The aim of the competition is for students to give each other and future London undergraduates advise, encourage them to go out and explore the city, and make their time abroad unforgettable!  In her blog post Tupperware Makes me Happy… or the Adventures of Living on a Budget, Elise talks about her newfound self-confidence and self-sufficiency in a city with a rather complicated transportation system, her cooking feats, and success of living on a budget.

Judy Hutchinson said:

“While I really enjoyed reading all of the blogs, I thought Elise’s blog captured, quite humorously, some of the things that make up a good part of the daily life of students who come here to London.  While they all do amazing things and visit unbelievable sites, much of their time is spent learning how, for the first time, to live on a budget, how to cook, and how to navigate the transportation system and get around in a big city.  These are things they often mention on their initial applications to the program, and I think that many students take a large measure of satisfaction in learning how to accomplish these tasks while living here in London.  I think many students would say that living here, above all, was a huge boost to their self-confidence and Elise’s blog clearly conveys that sentiment.”

Take another look at Elise’s blog post.

Well done to the other applicants Colby Hoyer and Caitlin Schlehuber!

– Emily

Image by sunsurfr under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic

Student-Alumni Dinners!

Last month, 13 members of the Notre Dame Club of United Kingdom – London hosted a series of dinners for London Undergraduate Program and London Law Centre students.  The dinners provided students with the opportunity to network and meet friendly faces in London, hear advice and stories of life in London, and eat a delicious meal!  Read on for some fantastic comments:

“So tonight I attended one of the alumni dinners at a local family’s house.  Amy Neeb hosted me and three other students for dinner. It was actually one of the best nights I have had in London.  She made a great home cooked meal and even sent us home with granola bars, skippy peanut butter, homemade brownies and more.  She made dinner conversation so fun and interesting.  I guess we did too because she invited us back for round two!  It was a great taste of home with a good meal, friendly mom and a doggie who begs for scraps by the table.  I cannot wait to return and I sure hope she knows how much I appreciate it!” – Colby Hoyer (London Undergraduate Program, Spring 2014).  Check out Colby’s blog London’s Calling.

“Last night, I had dinner with Libby Bishop Shields, Director of Operations at the University of Notre Dame (USA) in England at her beautiful home in South Kensington, London.  The alumni dinner night was an extraordinary opportunity to get out of the dorm and eat a delicious home-cooked meal in great company!  Learning about Libby’s day-to-day experiences in London were extremely enlightening.  I am considering moving to London one day for work and loved hearing about her adjustment from life at Notre Dame.  It was great catching up with my peers in a new setting, and I would definitely do it again, soon.  Thank you for providing students with this wonderful opportunity.” – Nicole Sganga (London Undergraduate Program, Spring 2014)

“I had a great time at dinner last night.  Libby was kind enough to host us at her apartment last evening, and it reminded me yet again, of the how powerful the Notre Dame connection is.  I didn’t know this at the time but one of the reasons why Notre Dame is so great is because people truly care about you and want to know what/how you’re doing.  Libby and four of us students were able to get a dialogue going about what we are doing and what we want to do, how we’re liking the London program and what can be improved in.  Apart from the delicious home-cooked food and the entertainment of her adorable daughter, Chloe, Libby shared some of her wisdom with us.  I thoroughly enjoyed my evening and definitely think we should organize similar events more often.” – Charitha Isanaka (London Undergraduate Program, Spring 2014)

We look forward to organizing more dinners with the generous alumni hosts next semester!

London Past and Present photo contest winners

The LUP is pleased to announce the winner of our Fall 2013 “London past and present” photo contest: Graham Englert with “Towers Through Time”

Towers Through Time by Graham Englert

Graham writes: “I decided to take this photo during a morning run because it captures two unique time periods of London’s History. The Shard and the Tower of London were built almost 1000 years apart for different purposes. They also exhibit a stunning contrast in architectural styles. What they have in common, however, is that they both have stood above the other buildings of their time period. Although different, both towers represent the longevity of the innovative spirit of London.

After returning back to my flat, I noticed the Thames flowing through the picture adds much to the photo’s meaning. As a river that has been present for the entirety of London’s history, it represents that the core innovative values of London have remained strong despite the passage of time. I also like how the Thames flows between the towers just as time divides the periods in which they were built.”

We had three photos tied in the voting, and had to recruit an additional tie-break judge, and so decided to award “highly commended” prizes to the two close seconds.

Kate Privateer, with “Ships and Shards” and Carolyn Hutyra with “A moment in time”

Ships and Shards by Kate Privateer

Kate writes: “The Thames River has been a defining aspect of London’s history from the age of wooden masted ships to the time of glass skyscrapers. I chose this picture, which was taken from the river, for the way it shows how the city and river have been interconnected since London’s creation.”

A moment in time by Carolyn Hutyra

Carolyn writes:
“This photo was taken in the East End. Not only does the clock capture the exact moment the photo was taken, but the picture showcases the beautiful intermingling of both old and new architecture.”

This was an extremely hard contest to judge with a great pool of entries, so congratulations to our winners, and thank you to all our entrants!