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The National Gallery: A white stone building with a dome structure.

As you may know from my other blog post, I'm currently doing a Foreign Study Program (FSP) in London, studying English and Creative Writing at the Queen Mary's University of London. You may also know that I am an international student on financial aid. Let me tell you about how financial aid works for study abroad programs. 

When I first got into Dartmouth and learned about the wide range of study abroad programs offered, I was skeptical about how accessible they would be. After all, I was accepted to Dartmouth on a full financial aid package, and I was not sure whether the college would cover the increased costs of a term abroad. That was before I learned that my financial aid travels with me, which means that my financial aid increased to cover the additional housing and food for a term in London. 

Despite the financial aid, I was worried about staying in London for a term and what it would mean for me financially. I had sufficient aid to cover the price of food if I was very careful, but I also wanted to make the most of the city when I was there. I was anxious that I would miss out on what London has to offer because I was not working and therefore not earning as much money as I would during an on-campus term.

Luckily, I still have this job, blogging for admissions, which is remote by nature. Not only that, but Dartmouth also covers a lot of cultural activities integrated into our program, such as plays and excursions. For instance, we went to Bath as a cohort last weekend, and the train tickets were covered by our program. Similarly, we went to see "As You Like It" at Shakespeare's Globe with our Dartmouth professor, Alexander Chee, who is traveling with us. Not only does the program cover such costs, but I've also found London, which is an otherwise really expensive city, to have many low-cost or no-cost student opportunities. For one of my classes, I'm watching a performance each week.

So far, the tickets that we were responsible for booking have cost a maximum of thirteen pounds, given the student discounts. Some opportunities are either free or pay what you can. For instance, I will need to see two exhibitions at Tate Modern, which is a modern art museum with a free entrance. Outside of class, I booked pay-what-you-can tickets for a fantasy-focused exhibition at the British Library. 

In short, there are a lot of fun and cultural things to do in London on a budget, and the study abroad team at Dartmouth makes sure you have access to all London has to offer.

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