Study Abroad in Madrid

Serena Scalvini – BSc (Hons) Business Management and Spanish – Study Exchange at Universidad Pontificia Comillas

My experience during my placement abroad has been exciting and unforgettable. It had its ups and downs, but every moment has made me more resilient and allowed me to grow academically and personally. Moving abroad can be a daunting experience, but I am very thankful for everything that I have experienced during the past few months. I studied at Universidad Pontificia Comillas in Madrid, and although this was not my first choice, I can now say that I am happy to have studied there. As a language student studying Business Management and Spanish, I had a few options when choosing which university to go to across Spain. Nonetheless, Comillas is possibly one of the best due to its fantastic reputation in the country and its modern facilities. From its well-equipped libraries and advanced research centers, modern classrooms and collaborative spaces, the university provides an optimal environment for its students.

One of the small downsides of the university was its location on the outskirts of Madrid. The campus was reachable only by bus or train, which, unfortunately, made my commute roughly 1 hour long every day. Thankfully, Madrid has a very efficient and extensive public transportation system. Madrid’s metro and train system became my reliable companion, providing me with an opportunity to observe the diverse community, and it truly felt like I was part of the bustling city rhythm. 

The modules I chose at Universidad Pontificia Comillas were mostly related to the Business Management part of my degree, as there weren’t many options related to the Spanish language aspect. To make up for it, the classes I took were mainly with Spanish students, which helped me immerse myself in the Spanish culture and practice my language skills often. Additionally, the professors were highly knowledgeable in their respective fields and very supportive, as they were always available for academic guidance and mentorship.

During my time in Spain, I had the chance to go on many exciting trips. Among them, my favourite was visiting the city of Toledo with some new friends I met during my time abroad. Located just a short bus ride away from Madrid, Toledo captivated me with its rich history, stunning architecture, and breathtaking views. Exploring the historical streets, visiting the Alcázar, and admiring the Toledo Cathedral left a truly beautiful impression.

I also took advantage of my time abroad to explore other captivating Spanish cities. Barcelona, with its unique architecture and vibrant atmosphere, Valencia’s blend of stunning beaches and rich history, and the beauty of Mallorca, with its crystal-clear waters which offered a relaxing retreat from the bustling city life. Each destination added a layer of richness to my study abroad experience, making me admire the country of Spain even more.

Choosing a study abroad destination may not always align with our initial preferences, but it is essential to embrace the opportunities that come our way. If you end up in a different university than your first choice, my advice would be to approach it with an open mind and a positive attitude. Studying abroad is about embracing new experiences, cultures, and personal growth. In the end, it can become a beautiful and exciting journey.