Former summer school student Nagako Mizobe says that the many trips outside of the classroom were the best part of the summer school experience.
The 21 year-old from Toyota, Japan, attended the Language Academy in 2014 with the objective of improving her English skills while learning about British culture. Trips and activities are an integral part of the course and it was an excursion to York which Nagako enjoyed the most.
“My favourite thing was the many short trips to wonderful places. They were very enjoyable and it would have been difficult to visit these places by myself,” said Nagako.
“My favourite trip was visiting York. I did not know how wonderful York was until I visited there. It was more beautiful than I expected. I enjoyed the awesome view of the landscape from Clifford’s Tower. The history of York was also interesting.”
Experiencing British culture first-hand is one of the advantages of attending the summer school, and the various trips students go on can provide plenty to surprise and fascinate the students about the UK.
“The UK is very nice. It has a great culture and history. Moreover, there are so many historical buildings, delicious sweets and stylish clothes. I was surprised at the size of the Fish & Chips- the fish were huge!”
“And how kindly people treat you fascinated me. For example, when I struggled to carry my heavy luggage in the train station, people helped me out.”
Students also spend 17 hours a week inside the classroom, improving their speaking, reading and writing skills through weekly themes and topics. The teachers were very helpful in developing the students’ English skills according to Nagako.
“The teacher my class had was very clear with her pronunciations, so I could easily listen to her speaking. Moreover, she gave us a lot of chances to speak English with our classmates. We had many conversations in the class. If I used the wrong grammar in our conversations, she pointed it out and kindly corrected me.
“On Fridays, we had to give presentations in English which was an effective way to improve my English skills.”
Making new friends and sharing the summer school experience with them is something the programme encourages and Nagako still keeps in contact with the friends she made during her time in the UK.
“I made so many international friends whilst at UCLan and I still keep in touch with my Korean friends. We sent each other a New Year’s card and keep in touch through Facebook. She plans on coming to Japan in the near future. I’m looking forward to seeing her again.”
Nagako is now in her third year at Kanazawa University in Japan studying Sociology, and holds fond memories of the summer she spent in Preston.
“I appreciated taking part in the awesome programme run by the Language Academy. By participating in the summer course, I have many nice memories and made kind friends.”