A recap of my year abroad in Los Angeles


Hi everyone!

It’s the start of a new academic year for most of you, and sadly the start of my final year for me. I’m studying the BSc. International Management with American Business Studies programme which means I’ve recently completed my year abroad in sunny Los Angeles!

I’m going to quickly recap my experience and hopefully it could be helpful for those of you contemplating on whether you want to do this course or to any current students that are about to go on a year abroad.

Deciding to go abroad was never an easy choice. As a Malaysian international student, coming to study in Manchester was already going abroad for me, so the thought of leaving and starting over again in another part of the world sounded absolutely daunting. However, I’m super glad I took the risk because it turned out to be the best year of my life!

When I first arrived at the University of Southern California, I was amazed at how beautiful the campus was. Fun fact: the USC campus was used to film iconic movies such as ‘Legally Blonde’, ‘Princess Diaries 2’ and ‘How To Get Away With Murder’. It was even used as the set for the ‘Black Magic’ music video by Little Mix!

Whilst I was there, I truly stepped out of my comfort zone and fully immersed myself into the American culture, whilst playing tourist at the same time! I joined a sorority called Delta Phi Kappa, went to college football games, went to the Dodgers stadium and watched a baseball game, hiked to the Hollywood sign, attended a James Corden show as an audience, went to the American Music Awards, sun-tanned on the beaches of Santa Monica, Venice beach and Malibu, felt like a child again at Disneyland and Universal Studios and so much more!

As you can see, there was always something to do in LA! I also ventured out of LA and did road trips to explore San Diego, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Arizona, Mexico etc.

The classes I took at USC was also a unique experience. It was very different to the lectures and seminars at Manchester, since all classes were relatively small and consisted of pop quizzes or midterms every 2 weeks. One of the most memorable classes was this advertising class I took, where we got to work with Universal Pictures and pitch an advertising campaign for Jurassic World 3 and Cats The Musical.

My year abroad in LA truly exceeded my expectations and I was truly living the Californian dream.  I made some of my closest friends during my time there and I can’t wait to go back in the near future!

Now that I’m back in Manchester, I’ve come back a completely different person. I’ve grown in terms of confidence, maturity and am ready to take on my final year of studies!

If you have any questions or want to know more about my year abroad experience, don’t be afraid to message me!

Till then, see you in the next blog!


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Brenda Lye

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