I knew going into college that I wanted to study abroad and specifically study abroad in England. Wroxton College gave me the perfect opportunity to learn in the traditional English way of learning, tutorial style, while living in a historical abbey but still having the opportunity to travel and explore. Wroxton College is accommodating to any and all majors as long as you plan appropriately. They also offer different programs with different lengths of time to fit anyone’s needs.
Living in the Wroxton Abbey is like stepping back in time. The history of the Abbey is something in and of itself that can keep someone entertained for a semester. Each room has its own piece of history. Some may be concerned that with a typical class of 45-50 it would be difficult to find a quite place in the Abbey but there are plenty of little hide aways that you could always find the space you need. Or if you would rather the comfort of your own room, most of the rooms at Wroxton are singles with on suite bathrooms.
When studying at Wroxton for a full semester, you learn in the traditional English style of learning. Typically you have 2-3 hours of lecture for each class a week and a 1 hour tutorial every other week. Lectures from range anywhere from a typical professor lecture to watching a movie, going on a trip, or having a special guest speaker. For tutorials, the class is broken up into groups of 3-4 and every other week a subject is assigned that the group is expected to present on. It gives the students the opportunity to take what they have learned in lecture and in their own studies and present it back to their professor in great detail and in fun and creative ways, for example as a podcast like I had to do for one of my English tutorials. This also gives the professors an opportunity to discuss on a more personal level anything that a student may not fully understand.
Grading at Wroxton is mostly weighed on essays and finals. All classes are different but for me I had essays dues about every 2 weeks between the 5 classes I was taking. All Wroxton students also take a class called The Anatomy of Contemporary Britain or known to students as “Inter”. Inter classes are taught by all the professors at Wroxton and focus on modern day England. Lectures include topics such as politics, culture, literature, art, sports and leisure. When you first arrive at Wroxton, you are given a list of topics and questions that you then have to write essays about for Inter. These essays are done at your leisure and are due in week 10 but these are the least stressful of the essays because they are based on your experience while living in England. For example, as a hospitality major, I choose to write an Inter essay about the concessions at a Premier League soccer match we went to.
While spending a semester at Wroxton, classes are scheduled Monday-Thursday and then there are trips every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Most trips are not mandatory but there are some that are required for classes. You sign up for trips the week before and give a 5£ deposit which you then get back as long as you show up on the bus. There are also 3 long weekend trips throughout the semester, London, Edinburgh, and Paris. These give the students 3-4 days to explore the cities and do whatever they want to do.
Wroxton College is located in the small, white, and close knit Wroxton Village. I never personally felt in danger while at the Abbey or roaming around the village. Larger Banbury is just a few miles up the road and it again is a very safe community. Wroxton has struck rules about who is allowed into the abbey and they keep track of who is in and out of the abbey using firecards. Wroxton students are also given Wroxton IDs so they can identify themselves as a Wroxton student.
Studying at Wroxton is an experience that you will never forget. You become a part of a large alumni pool who you can share experiences with no matter when the studied at Wroxton. Because Wroxton College is just a campus of Fairleigh Dickinson University, being at Wroxton provides you with all the normal support networks you would have at either of the New Jersey campuses or the Vancouver Campus. Wroxton does their best to balance all the hard work and long hours you put in with dance parties and fun events. They hold multiple formal dinners throughout the semester which is typically followed by the pub being open in the buttery and a DJ in the lecture hall. We also had trivia night and a scavenger hunt throughout the abbey. I was there in the Fall semester so we had a Halloween party and special Thanksgiving dinner. We also decorated the Wroxton Christmas tree and were given presents from Dean Baldwin. All personal books based on what he has learned about us throughout the semester. This goes to show the deep connection you grow with professors at Wroxton. Because you live and study all in the same environment, the professors and staff at Wroxton see it all. I always found there are there to lend a helping hand or useful advice on anything you are dealing with.
The Wroxton Experience is something I recommend to everyone who mentions studying abroad. I met my best friends while at Wroxton and found my home in England. It helped me grow as a student and as a person. It talk me that you can appropriately mix homework and classes with travel, fun, and a trip to the pub. A semester at Wroxton will be the longest 15 weeks when you are there in the middle of writing essays but once you look back on the time, you will realize it all went too quick.