My Santander exchange at the University of North Texas (Alex Fletcher)

Living and studying in another country has been the best experience of my life. I studied at the University of North Texas in a university town called Denton. Most of the people I made friends with during my time there were mostly from Europe, with some of them being Americans, my girlfriend being one of them. I was mostly taking classes that were centred on jazz music, but I had the freedom and opportunity to choose other classes throughout the university. I used this opportunity to take both piano classes and saxophone lessons, learning two extra instruments that I had always wanted to learn.

Texas is a very big state, a car is needed to get to and from places with public transport lack luster and not a primary focus. This was difficult when trying to plan anything with my friends because we always had to have our American friends drive us around. UNT itself is a great school for music, having a massive music department and facilities (there are two big buildings that are just for practice rooms!) as well as having other great facilities like the Union for food and leisure.

Before I started my studies in Texas, I had the chance to travel throughout the United States of America, visiting cities like Chicago, St Louis, Washington D.C, Miami, New Orleans, Dallas and Houston (the latter two were actually during my studies). I discovered a lot of new things like what shooting a gun really felt like, how to ride a jet ski in Miami, what six flags was really like. I also saw a lot of the famous sights that we have all seen on the television screen like all the monuments in Washington D.C, the Gateway Arch in St Louis, South Beach in Miami, Bourbon Street in New Orleans, Key West in the Florida Keys and the Johnson Space Centre in Houston. I met so many people from all around the world and am still in contact with a lot of them. Travelling around and studying in another country really helps to learn how to talk and become friends with new people. Being by yourself in another country, you have to learn quickly how to talk to people and make friends, be open minded so you enable yourself to try new things and not be afraid of going places you’ve never been before.

Alex Fletcher, Music