A two-year journey from Italy to Coventry

Italian high school student Ludovica spent six months on EIL’s Study Abroad programme in 2021-22, living with a host family in Worcester and studying at Christopher Whitehead Language College, one of our long-standing school partners. Ludovica tells us the experience changed the direction of her life and brought her back to the UK.

Ludovica exploring the meaning of the 'afternoon tea'

Ludovica exploring the meaning of ‘afternoon tea’

“There are many happy memories that I collected during my stay, ranging from memories with my host family, to memories with my friends, to those with other Italian students who were in the UK doing the same programme. In addition to special days such as my birthday, Christmas, and weekends, every time there was something new to do and some new place to discover. My host family enjoyed hearing about me, and my culture and I remember that the desire to discover new things about me and my culture were always present in every little thing I did and in every conversation we had. I learned as much from them as they learned from me! During the six months, I received a lot of love and support from all the people around me, so much so that I changed completely.”

Ludovica has now returned to the UK to begin a degree in International Law at Coventry University and feels that her experience in 2021 was a valuable stepping stone into the future.

“Everything I experienced during those six months helped me, particularly during my current adventure at Coventry University. My previous experience is helping me, especially in the small things daily, having become more independent. For this I thank my host family who helped me during the programme, helping me especially to play a family role during those months and making me always feel part of the family no matter how much time has passed since my exchange programme.”

The EIL team is very excited to see Ludovica now take up an important role as our support volunteer, working on the very same Study Abroad programme that she participated in two years ago. It is fantastic to have her pass on her knowledge and enthusiasm to the new students during orientation sessions and assist the team in the arrivals or conducting the trips for those currently being hosted around the country. Having kept in touch, Ludovica is once again a regular visitor to her host family.

“I’m still in contact with my host family, in fact, I’m always very happy to visit them, which often happens due to the short distance! I couldn’t have asked for better, I am very lucky.”