‘Dear Julia…’

24 Aug 2022

More than 600 exchange students are joining Radboud University this year. English Literature student Holly Hartley from the University of Exeter is one of them. For the upcoming semester, she is going to participate in a letter exchange, discussing her experience in Nijmegen with Julia Vosmeijer, an English Language and Culture student from Radboud who is going to do an exchange in Holly's home county, Kent.

Dear Julia,

My name is Holly, a British student that is going to study in the Netherlands for a year. When I heard you were studying in Kent (my home county!), I was so excited to contact you. I’m really looking forward to getting to know you and finding out all the vital information (like the best places to grab a coffee) I’ll need to know for a successful year abroad.

First things first: one thing you must know about me is that I absolutely love reading. I even run my own successful book-blog on Instagram. As an English and Drama student, I’m constantly surrounded by books so it’s sometimes hard to try and balance reading for work and for pleasure. I try to remedy this by reading books that seem far removed from what I’m studying. For example, I’m currently reading a fantasy retelling of The Great Gatsby called Wild and Wicked Things by Francesca May, and I couldn’t recommend it more.

I always think that the best way to get to know someone is through their taste in books, so I’d love to know what kind of books you enjoy reading. Are there any popular bookstores in the Netherlands? Where’s your favourite place to buy books, or do you prefer the library? I’d love to know!

There’s so much I could tell you about myself, and the beautiful county of Kent where you’ll be studying for the upcoming six months. Hopefully over the coming months we’ll be able to write to each other more and get to know each other better, but for now here are some random, (semi) interesting facts about me:

  1. I have a pet tortoise called Boris. My mum has had him since she was three years old, and he’s still going strong!
  2. I’m a classic Brit who can’t resist a good cup of tea; it’s possibly my favourite beverage in existence (only topped by an Oat Milk Iced Latte if it’s a hot day).
  3. My favourite music artists are Phoebe Bridgers, The Courteeners, and The 1975. Let me know if you want any specific song recommendations.
  4. ‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin’ has to be my favourite book of all time, either that or ‘A Thousand Splendid Suns’ – it’s too hard to choose between the two!
  5. My favourite beach in the UK is Fairy Cove in Paignton, Devon.

So that’s all for now! I can’t wait to hear back from you and I’m really looking forward to hearing more about your thoughts on studying in the UK.

Speak to you soon!

Holly x

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