I decided to study abroad in Brighton because it was an english-speaking country, it was right on the ocean, and would offer me countless and amazing experiences. I studied here in the fall of 2014.
I was majoring in exercise science at the time, so I took one class at the Falmer campus, and then had to travel to Eastbourne to go to my other classes because Eastbourne is where the exercise science buildings are. Traveling to the Eastbourne campus from Paddock Fields (on Falmer campus) was kind of a pain because I had to walk to the train station, take the train for around 45 minutes, and then walk another 20ish minutes to class. However, this was when I found my love for trains, my love for travel... I was able to just sit on the train and look out the window, and it actually forced me to get out there and see more of England. The mandatory class, British Culture, was pretty easy and fun because we took it with our flatmates/other USAC students. The other two classes I took had very supportive professors that I still think about to this day.
Support wise, Becca and Mary were nothing short of amazing. Seriously. (PS. I Miss you guys!!) I don't know how they put up with us constantly, but they did. They are like your parents over there and we always had fun going to their office just to chat. Shoutout to you guys, and thank you for making our field trips unforgettable!
If I could rank "fun" on a scale of 1-10, it would be a 100. Seriously, I had the time of my life in Brighton. Whether it was traveling to class, hanging out with my flatmates, going downtown at night, visiting the beach and the Laines during the day, ice skating at the Royal Pavillion, and traveling on the weekends, it was fun all of the time. Honestly, the first couple weeks I barely slept because I didn't want to miss anything.
Housing was decent. I lived in a flat in Paddock Fields. The room is pretty small, with a bathroom/shower included. There is no barrier between the bathroom part and the shower part so that usually left for some wet floors. The bed was pretty small and uncomfortable. I lived on a flat with 7 other people, and there was a common area with couches, the kitchen, the tv, etc. The kitchen only had two mini fridgerators, which was a little too limited for 8 people living in one flat. However, I made some of my best friends to this day on that floor, and in Paddock Fields. It was in a good location on Falmer campus, and it was pretty. It was a bummer to do laundry because we had to walk outside to get to the laundromat and it was usually raining! Also just want to note that in order to get to the grocery stores downtown, you have to take a 20 minute bus ride, which can get rather tedious and frustrating when you have lots of bags of groceries and you have to travel outside with no car. There is a website (can't remember what it is called) where you can get groceries delivered though!
Safety was never an issue. I always felt safe in Brighton.
Overall, my experience in Brighton was one I will never forget. I strongly, strongly, strongly recommend you study abroad here. It is not as busy as London, but you still get the "city" feel, and it reminds me a lot of San Francisco. It is a lovely little quaint town right on the water with a fun pebbly beach, entertaining pubs (go to the Hobgoblin), and cute shops. I strongly suggest just riding the bus around one day to really take in the beauty Brighton and Hove have to offer. I learned so much about myself, about other cultures, and about England when I lived here. I also was lucky enough to travel to 12 other countries while I studied there, really broadening my horizons on Europe and the United Kingdom. I literally could go on and on about how amazing this study abroad experience was. You will have the time of your life, and will likely meet friends that you will be in contact with forever. I am forever grateful for the time I spent in Brighton, the experiences, and the friends I made.
I also wrote a blog while I studied abroad if you wanted to read it to get more detailed aspects and pictures of the trip: https://jennstudyabroad.wordpress.com