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A Tiger from Overseas

Photo Courtesy of Jamie Hartley

I am currently studying at Clemson as part of the International Exchange Program from my home university in Scotland. I have studied here for the last two semesters, and now that my time is almost up, I have the opportunity to reflect on what an amazing experience it has been! 

The biggest change for me were the sports at the university and the level at which they are played. When my home university plays sports, there are barely 100 people there to watch — never mind 85,000! I was lucky enough to see the best Clemson football season since 1981 and experience the phenomena of tailgating, which doesn’t exist back home!

Although we didn’t get the best end result, the games have left me some of the best memories. I will always remember the atmosphere at Death Valley. Hopefully this isn’t the last time I get to see Clemson winning in front of its amazingly passionate fans. 

I have also had the opportunity to meet so many amazing people — both fellow internationals here on exchange programs and other Clemson students. The people have been so generous, hospitable and welcoming, which makes the whole experience much easier and more rewarding. You really are part of a family.

Southern hospitality is some of the best, and I have tried food combinations that I thought were crazy before I tasted them. I have made friendships that will hopefully stay with me after I return home, and I now have so many connections in amazing places to visit! 

I’ve been lucky enough to travel the U.S. as part of my experience here and check off a lot of places that I have been waiting to visit. Travelling around just reminds me how big this country is in comparison to Scotland and how many places I have yet to see. I will definitely have to come back! 

Finally, I have really enjoyed my classes at Clemson and getting a different perspective of teaching from how the course is taught at my home university. I have been lucky to have so many great professors in my time here who are very supportive and willing to help with any problems you may have.

Their enthusiasm really adds to the learning process and allows their students to flourish. Taking classes that are different from home, from a different perspective and with enthusiastic professors has been one of the most rewarding experiences!

Clemson — I will forever be a Tiger. 

Jamie Hartley

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