Courtney Caddy at the Winterbourne Botanical Gardens in Birmingham.

Studying abroad in England

I learned that I could be very independent, somehow become a five-star chef and live away from home just fine.

By Meghan Sired

Courtney Caddy, 22, grew up in Warman, Sask. and is studying in the College of Arts and Science. She recently studied at the University of Birmingham in England. While abroad she took a number of classes including Ancient Worlds, Roman Art and Archaeology, Greek Art and Archaeology, Greek and Roman History, Imperial Rome, Artefacts and Material Culture, and the Cultures of Contemporary Africa.

Caddy recently answered some questions, while still in England, and sent us a few photos too.


A shot of the University of Birmingham campus.

What was one of the best moments of your trip?
The best moment of my trip so far was going to Helston in Cornwall (southern coast of England). I was born just outside of London, but my dad and his family grew up in Helston. Meeting some family I have never met in person was incredible and seeing the place where my dad came from and even where my sister and I were baptized was very emotional and unreal. Cornwall is really beautiful, more of a countryside feel with rolling hills and quiet towns, it really felt, and reminded me of home.

Tell me about one person you met.
One of my roommates is from Singapore and her name is Waverly. Interestingly enough, we found that Singapore and Canada seemed to have a lot in common, more than compared to Britain at times. Her first language is English so there was no language barrier, we got on really well and did lots of exploring together around the city. It’s really amazing how fast you click with people when you live together and how cool it is to learn about other countries and their culture. 

What’s the first image that comes into your head when you think of where you travelled to?
Green. It may be odd, but there is so much green in trees, bushes and hedges, way more than I thought there would be. At home, we just have the prairies, but here there are trees and hills everywhere! A lot of places just have all these hedges everywhere instead of a fence and it’s really quite pretty!

What was the hardest or most frustrating part of the trip?
Honestly, I think the hardest part was just doing the trip over to England. I felt so sick and nervous coming over by myself, it sort of felt like an out of body experience, sitting through different planes and taking a taxi over to my new accommodation. As soon as I walked in to my flat and bedroom, I wanted to go home. Once I unpacked everything and it felt a little more like home and I realized I could do it.

The most frustrating parts were adapting to live with people, the first year students are all very “party every day” and loud and we set down rules in my flat about cleaning and noise, so it all got sorted out and its way better now. Getting classes sorted for the year was actually extremely awful, I will never ever take the U of S for granted again. 

What did you learn about yourself?
I think I am stronger than I thought. Coming here was one of the scariest and most exciting things I have done—even after three months it still doesn’t really feel real at times. I learned that I could be very independent, somehow become a five-star chef and live away from home just fine. I’m not so scared to go out and explore or try new things. I really just don’t want to go home with any kind of regrets, wishing I had done something and didn’t so I’m doing everything I can out here! 

Exploring a castle in Marazion, Cornwall.

To learn more about the study abroad opportunities offered at the U of S, visit or drop by the International Student and Study Abroad Centre.